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Publication numberUS3538485 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 3, 1970
Filing dateAug 29, 1967
Priority dateAug 29, 1967
Also published asDE1765950A1, DE1765950B2, DE1765950C3
Publication numberUS 3538485 A, US 3538485A, US-A-3538485, US3538485 A, US3538485A
InventorsHennessey Walter F Jr
Original AssigneeBendix Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Coupling device
US 3538485 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

1970 w. F. HENNESSEY, JR 3,533,485

COUPL ING DEVICE Filed Aug. 29, 19s? IIIIIIIII I.

25 3? 36 59 24 INVENTOR WALTER F. HENNE SSEY,Jr.

BYgmww ATTORNEYS 3,538,485 COUPLING DEVICE Walter F. Hennessey, .lr., Sidney, N.Y., assignor to The Bendix Corporation, a corporation of Delaware Filed Aug. 29, 1967, Ser. No. 664,172 Int. Cl. Htllr 13/62, 23/00 US. Cl. 33945 18 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE This invention relates in general to Coupling devices and is particularly directed to quick action coupling nut type disconnect means for disengaging connected members such as conduits, mating electrical connector parts and the like.

It is a principal object of this invention to provide a novel twist-to-lock, pull-to-unlock type of coupling device.

It is a further object to provide a novel separable coupling device for coupling conduit members of the pin and socket type electrical connectors which is of simple, rugged and compact construction.

Another object of the invention is to provide a separable electrical coupling device of such construction that the two main connector portions may be easily and quickly disengaged regardless of their relative angular position with respect to the mechanical coupling means associated therewith.

A still further object is to provide a separable twist-lock type electrical connector which is easily and quickly disengageable regardless of the twist or look position of the coupling nut on the connected parts.

Another object is to provide a novel coupling device for connecting a pair of members and which permits rapid disengagement of said members upon the application thereto of opposed axial forces in the process of pulling said members apart.

The above and further objects and novel features of the invention will more fully appear from the following detailed description when the same is read in connection with the accompanying drawings. It is to be expressly understood, however, that the drawings are for the purpose of illustration only and do not constitute a limitation of the invention.

In the drawings, wherein like reference characters refer to like parts throughout the several views:

FIG. 1 is a View in longitudinal axial section, taken on line 11 of FIG. 2, of an assembled electrical connector embodying the coupling device contemplated by the invention;

FIG. 2 is a view in end elevation of the right-hand separable part of the assembled connector of FIG. 1, the view being taken on line 22 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a partial sectionalized view, taken on line 3-3 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a view similar to FIG. 3 wherein the coupling nut is in releasing position;

FIG. 5 is aplan view on an enlarged scale of the United States Patent 0 3,538,485 Patented Nov. 3, 1970 internal surface of one of the helically grooved segments of the coupling nut;

FIG. 6 is a detail sectional view, taken on line 66 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 7 is a development showing the internal surfaces of the segmented coupling nut in a single plane on a reduced scale; and

FIG. 8 is a development of a portion of the outer surface of sleeve 12 on a reduced scale.

The single embodiment of the invention illustrated in the drawing is, by way of example, shown in the form .of a plug and socket type electrical connector comprising two mateable parts or assemblies 2 and 3. These assemblies are adapted to be releasably coupled in mating condition for quick and easy simultaneous uncoupling and disengaging by the novel coupling device of the invention.

The connector assembly or part 2 is shown as com prising a tubular shell 4, an insulating contact supporting insert 5 mounted in the shell, and a plurality of socket contacts 6 supported by the insert. For a purpose to more fully appear hereinafter, shell 4 has three equally spaced coupling pins or lugs 7 projecting radially therefrom, only one of said pins being shown.

The connector part or assembly 3 shown mated with assembly 2 in FIG. 1 comprises a tubular shell 8 which telescopes with shell 4 and has a plurality of axially extending keys 9 on the periphery thereof. These keys mate with keyways in shell 4 to angularly orient the assemblies and prevent relative rotation thereof. An insulating insert 10 supports a plurality of pin contacts 11 in shell 8 for mating with socket contacts 6.

Novel means are provided for mechanically releasably coupling connector assemblies 2 and 3 together in mated relation in a novel manner which permits quick, simultaneous release of the coupling means and disengagement of the connector assemblies. Said coupling means is novelly associated with shell 8 and forms a novel assembly therewith. In the illustrated embodiment, the coupling comprises an inner sleeve 12, the forward end of which surrounds a rear portion of shell 8 and has an internal groove 14 in which is mounted an annular wavy compression spring 15. Alternate lobes of the spring engage the rear wall 16 of said groove, and the other lobes thereof engage concentric telescoping flanges 17 and 18 on shell 8 and sleeve 12, respectively. Sleeve 12 is free to rotate about shell 8, and axial movement of sleeve 12 to the right or rearwardly relative to shell 8 is limited by a split washer 19 seated in an annular groove on the shell and engageable with an external shoulder 20 on the sleeve. Shell 8 is permitted limited axial movement to the right or rearwardly relative to sleeve 12 against the compression of spring 15 for a purpose to hereinafter appear.

An outer 'sleeve 21 surrounds inner sleeve 12 and is connected thereto for rotation therewith and limited axial movement relative thereto by any suitable means, such as an inwardly projecting tab or key 22 (FIG. 6) on sleeve 21 and a mating groove or keyway 23 in the periphery of inner sleeve 12.

Said inner and outer sleeves have abutting shoulders 24 and 25 which limit relative axial movement thereof in one direction, and such movement in the opposite direction is yieldably opposed by a plurality of coil compression springs 26 and is limited by said springs and a spht washer 27 seated in a groove 28 in the outer surface of sleeve 12. Six springs 26 are shown in the illustrated embodiment, each mounted in a cylindrical cavity 29 formed by registering opposed semicircular slots 30 and 31 in the inner surface of outer sleeve 21 and the outer surface of inner sleeve 12, respectively. At one end thereof springs 26 engage the forward ends of grooves 30 and 31, and at the other end said springs engage stop washer 27 or a cupped washer 32 associated therewith. Any suitable means, such as a lanyard 33, may be secured to outer sleeve 21 for pulling the latter rearwardly relative to inner sleeve 12 and hence, relative to connector assembly 3 against the pressure of springs 26.

Captured between sleeves 12 and 21, Without physical attachment to either sleeve, are a plurality of arcuate segments 34 which collectively and in conjunction with sleeves 12 and 21 form a segmented coupling ring or nut. In the form shown, said segments form a so-called bayonet-type nut having three internal helical grooves 35 for engagement with coupling pins 7 of shell 4. Segments 34 also have transverse grooves on the inner faces thereof which collectively form an annular internal groove 36 that receives an external rib or flange 37 on sleeve 12. The mating surfaces 38 of groove 36 and rib 37 are preferably slightly tapered or inclined, as shown, to facilitate proper action of the segments during the unlocking procedure to be described below. Although not essential, segments 34 may be yieldably held against sleeve 12 by a spring or elastic band 39 seated in a groove in the outer surface of segments 34. Circumferential movement of the segments relative to sleeve 12 is prevented by tongues 40 integral with the segments and extending axially into grooves 41 in the outer surface of sleeve 12. When segments 34 are in operative position (FIG. 1), tongues 40 lie against the surface of sleeve 12 within grooves 41, and the radial thickness thereof is small in comparison to the depths of the grooves so as to permit the segments to tilt or pivot relative to the axis and, hence, to the uncoupling position shown in FIG. 4.

The external peripheries of segments 34 forward of groove 36 form an external groove 42 flanked by external ribs 43 and 44. With the parts in operative position (FIGS. 1 and 2) rib 43 fits closely within an internal flange 45 at the forward end of outer sleeve 21, and a portion of the rib 44 fits closely within an inner surface of sleeve 21. The latter has an internal groove 46 for receiving rib 44 and thus to permit movement of the segments 34 to releasing or uncoupling position (FIG. 4) when outer sleeve 21 is pulled to the right or rearwardly relative to sleeve 12 and connector assemblies 2 and 3.

When it is desired to electrically engage and mechanically couple the connector parts 2 and 3, the elements of the coupling nut assembly will be held by springs 26 in the positions shown in FIG. 3. The keyways of shell 4 are first oriented with the keys 9 on shell 8, and the open ends of helical grooves 35 of the coupling nut assembly are oriented with pins 7 on shell 4. The assemblies are now moved together axially until pins 7 enter grooves 35. The coupling nut assembly comprising sleeves 12 and 21 and segmented ring 34 is now rotated relative to shells 4 and 8 to effect a bayonet-type coupling. The assemblies 2 and 3 are drawn axially together by the cooperating pins 7 and helical grooves 35 during rotation of the coupling nut. The parts are preferably so designed that the inserts and come into facial engagement just prior to the final axial movement of the coupling nut onto shell 4. During this final movement, the coupling nut assembly will also move axially relative to assembly 3 against the resistance of spring whereby to effect a pressure seal between the engaging faces of the inserts 5 and 10. If desired, spring 15 may be eliminated and the parts so constructed that sleeve 12 and shell 8 move axially substantially as a unit.

To uncouple conduits or shells 4 and 8 and elfect electrical disengagement of pin and socket contacts 6 and 11 it is necessary only to pull toward the right (FIG. 1) on lanyard 33, assuming assembly 2 is suitably anchored or held. Thus, pulling on lanyard 33 will move sleeve 21 toward the right relative to the remainder of the assembled device, compressing springs 26 as in FIG. 4. It will be evident that the force applied to springs 26 is transmitted through ring 27 to sleeve 12 and thence through flange 37 to segments 34, the grooves 35 of which engage lugs 7 on shell 4. Sleeve 12 and segments 34 are thus prevented from moving with sleeve 21 until the latter has been moved a sufiicient distance to bring annular groove 46 into registry with flange 44 and groove 42 into registry with flange 45 as in FIG. 4. Such registry permits the six segments 34 to move radially and to pivot about tabs 40 a suflicient amount to release lugs 7 from grooves 35 so that the entire assembly comprising sleeves 21 and 12, segments 34 and pin contact assembly 3 will move relative to socket contact assembly 2 and effect disengagement of assemblies 2 and 3. The radial and pivotal movement of segments 34 are effected by components of force which result from the axial pulling force applied at the beveled surfaces 38 and at the engaging surfaces of lugs 7 and the radial, helical walls of grooves 35. In view of the fact that segments 34 make up the entire circumference of the nut, release or uncoupling may be effected by an axial pull on sleeve 21 irrespective of the position of lugs 7 in helical grooves 35. It will, of course, be apparent that uncoupling may also be effected by reverse rotation of the nut assembly 12, 21, 34 followed by axial separation and disengagement after lugs 7 emerge from helical slots 35. After uncoupling, the springs 26 will move the parts of the nut assembly to the positions illustrated in FIG. 3 ready for the next coupling operation.

Although only a single embodiment of the invention has been illustrated in the drawings and described in the foregoing specification, it is to be expressly understood that the same is not thus limited, but that various changes may be made, such as in the design and arrangement of parts thereof, without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. For example, the pin and slot type bayonet connection 7, 35 may be replaced by mating threads on shell 4 and segments 34.

What is claimed is:

1. A quick-release coupling device comprising first and second tubular shells, and a coupling means assembly cooperable with said shells releasably locking the same together, said coupling means assembly comprising an inner sleeve mounted on said first shell for axial movement therewith and rotation relative thereto, an outer sleeve mounted on said inner sleeve for rotation therewith and axial movement relative thereto, an intermediate sleeve surrounding said inner sleeve within said outer sleeve and consisting of a plurality of arcuate segments circumferentially arranged, said intermediate and inner sleeves having cooperable inter-fitting portions preventing appreciable relative axial and rotational movement thereof while permittting said segments to move radially relative to said inner sleeve, and said intermediate and outer sleeves having cooperable surfaces hereby when said outer sleeve is in a predetermined first axial position said segments are retained thereby in closely assembled relation around said inner sleeve and when said outer sleeve is in a predetermined second axial position said segments are released thereby for limited radial movement, and cooperating means on said intermediate sleeve and said second shell to operatively connect the same against axial separation when said outer sleeve is in said first axial position and to release the same for axial separation when said outer sleeve is moved to said second axial position and said segments move radially outward, said cooperating means comprising at least one internal helical groove in said intermediate sleeve and at least one radial lug on the second shell engageable with the helical groove.

2. A coupling device as defined in claim 1, wherein said helical groove spans at least two consecutive segments.

3. A coupling device as defined in claim 1 wherein said device is an electrical connector having cooperable pin and socket contacts mounted in said shells, and wherein the contacts are in mating relationship when said shells are locked together.

4. A coupling device as defined in claim 1 wherein said inner sleeve is axially movable on said first shell between predetermined limits and comprising resilient means yieldably urging said inner sleeve toward one of its limiting positions on said first shell.

5. A coupling device as defined in claim 1 comprising means on said inner and outer sleeves to limit axial movement of said outer sleeve relative to said inner sleeve between said first and second axial positions, and resilient means interposed between said inner and outer sleeves and yieldably urging said outer sleeve to said first axial position on said inner sleeve.

6. A coupling device as defined in claim 1 wherein said interfitting portions include an annular rib on said inner sleeve and a matching groove in the intermediate sleeve to hold the same against relative axial movement.

7. A coupling device as defined in claim 6 wherein two engaging surfaces of said rib and groove are bevelled to facilitate radial movement of said segments in response to an axial force urging said bevelled surfaces together.

8. A releasable coupling device for connecting conduit members comprising a pair of concentric interlocking sleeves axially displaceable with respect to each other and arranged to be carried by one of said conduit members, expandable coupling nut means including a plurality of rigid circularly arranged arcuate segmental elements which when in their inner, closed positions are in substantial edge engagement, interposed between said sleeves and carried thereby and disposed to radially expand upon relative axial displacement of said sleeves, and means carried by said other conduit member for engaging said coupling nut means to couple the said conduit members, said coupling nut means being disengageable from said other conduit member upon radial expansion thereof to permit axial separation of said conduit member.

9. A releasable coupling device as defined in claim 8 comprising resilient restorative means interposed between said axially displaceable concentric sleeves for restoring said sleeves axially in opposite directions to their normal positions relative to said coupling nut means.

10. A releasable coupling device as defined in claim 9 wherein said resilient restorative means includes coil springs circumferentially arranged between and around the axis of said sleeves.

11. A releasable coupling device as defined in claim 8 wherein said segmental elements include helically oriented grooves along at least one surface thereof.

12. A device for coupling first and second conduits comprising a first sleeve mounted on the first conduit, a second sleeve mounted on said first sleeve and consisting of a plurality of arcuate segments circumferentially arranged, said second sleeve and said second conduit having interfitting means to hold the same against relative axial movement, a third sleeve surrounding said first and second sleeves and movable axially thereof between a first position to hold said segments closely assembled about said first sleeve and a second position to release said segments for limited radial movement relative to said first sleeve, and radially outwardly projecting lugs on the second conduit, said segmental second sleeve being internally helically slotted to engage said lugs on the second conduit to couple said conduits when said third sleeve is in said first position and to release the same for axial separation when said third sleeve is in said second position.

13. A device as defined in claim 12 comprising resilient means for normally retaining said third sleeve in said first position.

14. A device a defined in claim 13 wherein said resilient means comprises a plurality of circumferentially spaced coil springs.

15. A device as defined in claim 12 comprising coperating means on said first sleeve and said first conduit for limiting relative axial movement thereof, and resilient means for resisting such relative movement of said first sleeve and first conduit in one direction.

16. An electrical connector comprising first and second tubular shells, cooperable pin and socket contacts mounted in said shells, and a coupling means assembly cooperable with said shells releasably locking the same together with said contacts in mating relationship, said coupling means assembly comprising an inner sleeve mounted on said first shell for axial movement therewith and rotation relative thereto, an outer sleeve mounted on said inner sleeve for rotation therewith and axial movement relative thereto, means on said inner and outer sleeves to limit axial movement of said outer sleeve relative to said inner sleeve between first and second axial positions, resilient means interposed between said inner and outer sleeves and yieldably urging said outer sleeve to said first axial position on said inner sleeve, said resilient means comprising a plurality of coil springs circumferentially arranged between said inner and outer sleeves in cavities each formed by oppositely facing semicylindrical grooves in said sleeves, an intermediate sleeve surrounding said inner sleeve within said outer sleeve and consisting of a plurality of arcuate segments circumferentially arranged, said intermediate and inner sleeves having cooperable inter-fitting portions preventing appreciable relative axial and rotational movement thereof While permitting said segments to move radially relative to said inner sleeve, and said intermediate and outer sleeves having cooperable surfaces whereby when said outer sleeve is in said first axial position said segments are retained thereby in closely assembled relation around said inner sleeve and when said outer sleeve is in said second axial position said segments are released thereby for limited radial movement, and cooperating means on said intermediate sleeve and said second shell to operatively connect the same against axial separation when said outer sleeve is in said first axial position and to release the same for axial separation when said outer sleeve is moved to said second axial position and said segments move radially outward.

17. An electrical connector comprising first and second tubular shells, cooperable pin and socket contacts mounted in said shells, and a coupling means assembly cooperable with said shells releasably locking the same together with said contacts in mating relationship, said coupling means assembly comprising an inner sleeve mounted on said first shell for axial movement therewith and rotation relative thereto, an outer sleeve mounted on said inner sleeve for rotation therewith an axial movement relative thereto, an intermediate sleeve surrounding said inner sleeve within said outer sleeve and consisting of a plurality of arcuate segments circumferentially arranged, said intermediate and inner sleeves having cooperable interfitting portions preventing appreciable relative axial and rotational movement thereof while permitting said segments to move radially relative to said inner sleeve, said interfitting portions including axial projections on said segments extending into axially extending slots in the surface of said inner sleeve to hold the latter and said segments against relative rotation, and said intermediate and outer sleeves having cooperable surfaces whereby when said outer sleeve is in a predetermined first axial position on said inner sleeve said segments are retained thereby in closely assembled relation around said inner sleeve and when said outer sleeve is in a predetermined second axial position on the inner sleeve said segments are released thereby for limited radial movement, and cooperating means on said intermediate sleeve and said second shell to operatively connect the same against axial separation when said outer sleeve is in said first axial position and to release the same for axial separation when said outer sleeve is moved to said second axial position and said segments move radially outward.

18. A quick-release coupling device for interconnecting shell members comprising a pair of axially aligned inner and outer sleeves connected to one of said shell members, said sleeves having interfitting keying means thereon to prevent relative roational movement thereof while per- 7 mitting relative axial displacement, circumferentiallyspaced radially aligned recesses along the outer and inner peripheries, respectively, of said sleeves, compressive coil spring members in said recesses, retention means disposed between said sleeves for retaining said compressive coil spring members when under compression, segmented ele mental means comprising a plurality of arcuate segments disposed about the outer and inner peripheries, respectively, of said sleeves in a circular array and carried thereby, each said segment having a helical groove along a surface thereof, compressive means interposed between said sleeves for retaining said segments in their circular array while permitting radial movement thereof in response to the relative axial displacement of said sleeves in opposition to the compressive forces exerted by said coil spring members upon separation of said shell members, and means connected to the other shell member having protruding members circumferentially spaced for engaging said helical grooves of said segments in twistlock fashion for connecting the shell members, the latter being disposed to become rapidly disengaged upon said axial relative displacement of said sleeves, such disengagemeat being responsive to a continued application of the force which effects said axial displacement.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,951,713 9/1960 Hoffstrom 285-322 XR 2,984,811 5/1961 Hennessey et al. 33945 3,097,867 7/1963 Saldum 285-86 3,100,655 8/1963 Work 285-316 XR 3,202,956 8/ 1965 Hennessey 339-90 3,322,923 5/1967 Brush 339-45 XR 3,336,562 8/1967 McCormick et al. 3,452,316 6/1969 Panel: et a1.

FOREIGN PATENTS 1,221,079 1/ 1960 France.

RICHARD E. MOORE, Primary Examiner 20 P. A. CLIFFORD Assistant Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 339--91; 285-316

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2951713 *Mar 12, 1956Sep 6, 1960Nilsson Hoffstrom BoCouplings
US2984811 *Feb 6, 1957May 16, 1961Bendix CorpElectrical connector
US3097867 *Apr 13, 1961Jul 16, 1963Snap Tite IncCoupling
US3100655 *Mar 17, 1961Aug 13, 1963Work Ralph OBayonet type coupling with pivoted segment release means
US3202956 *Aug 12, 1963Aug 24, 1965Bendix CorpElectrical connector
US3322923 *Sep 1, 1964May 30, 1967Bendix CorpElectrical connector with automatic disconnect
US3336562 *Jul 27, 1964Aug 15, 1967Gray & Huleguard IncLow separation force electrical connector
US3452316 *Mar 22, 1965Jun 24, 1969IttPeripheral threaded tang quick-disconnect umbilical connector
FR1221079A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3790922 *May 8, 1972Feb 5, 1974Bendix CorpCoupling for an electrical connector
US5080601 *Feb 15, 1991Jan 14, 1992Aloys Mennekes AnlagengesellschaftAppliance plug
US5141448 *Dec 2, 1991Aug 25, 1992Matrix Science CorporationApparatus for retaining a coupling ring in non-self locking electrical connectors
US5554045 *Jun 19, 1995Sep 10, 1996Itt Cannon, Inc.Latch for IC card connector
US6732755 *Mar 31, 2003May 11, 2004Johan Christiaan FitterAttachment mechanism for attaching ports to liquid containers
US20030183281 *Mar 31, 2003Oct 2, 2003Fitter Johan ChristiaanAttachment mechanism for attaching ports to liquid containers
Classifications
U.S. Classification439/258, 439/352, 285/316, 439/314, 403/349
International ClassificationH01R13/635, H01R13/633
Cooperative ClassificationH01R13/635
European ClassificationH01R13/635
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Jun 12, 1992ASAssignment
Owner name: AMPHENOL CORPORATION A CORP. OF DELAWARE
Free format text: RELEASED BY SECURED PARTY;ASSIGNOR:CANADIAN IMPERIAL BANK OF COMMERCE;REEL/FRAME:006147/0887
Effective date: 19911114
Oct 1, 1987ASAssignment
Owner name: AMPHENOL CORPORATION, LISLE, ILLINOIS A CORP. OF D
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:ALLIED CORPORATION, A CORP. OF NY;REEL/FRAME:004844/0850
Effective date: 19870602
Owner name: AMPHENOL CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE, ILLINOIS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:ALLIED CORPORATION, A CORP. OF NY;REEL/FRAME:004844/0850
Jul 2, 1987ASAssignment
Owner name: ALLIED CORPORATION, A CORP. OF NY
Free format text: MERGER;ASSIGNOR:BENDIX CORPORATION, THE,;REEL/FRAME:004765/0709
Effective date: 19850401
Owner name: CANADIAN IMPERIAL BANK OF COMMERCE, NEW YORK AGENC
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMPHENOL CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004879/0030
Effective date: 19870515