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Publication numberUS3544934 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 1, 1970
Filing dateMay 8, 1969
Priority dateMay 8, 1969
Publication numberUS 3544934 A, US 3544934A, US-A-3544934, US3544934 A, US3544934A
InventorsPoliakoff Theodore E
Original AssigneeAmerican Mach & Foundry
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Proximity switch-type control means
US 3544934 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 1, 1970 E. POLIAKOFF ,5

PROXIMITY SWITCH-TYPE CONTROL MEANS Filed May 8, 1969 I 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG. I

INVENTOR.

THEODORE E. POLIAKOFF 70 AGENT 1970 n T. E. POLIAKOFF 3,

PROXIMITY SWITCH-TYPE CONTROL MEANS Filed May 8, 1969 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 FIG. 4

INVENTOR. THEODORE E] POLIAKOFF AGENT United States Patent 3,544,934 PROXIMITY SWITCH-TYPE CONTROL MEANS Theodore E. Poliakolf, Alexandria, Va., assignor to American Machine & Foundry Company, a corporation of New Jersey Filed May 8, 1969, Ser. No. 822,910 Int. Cl. H01h 51/28 US. Cl. 335206 9 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Proximity switch-type control means having magnetic operating means and switching means including at least one reed switch, switch supporting and connecting means, and housing means consisting of a condulet and a cover therefor adapted to be removably mounted on supporting structure.

This invention relates generally to electric controls and more particularly to magnetically responsive proximity control means having reed-type switches.

Switch-type control means made in accordance with the present invention have no actuating portions extending therefrom which can become bent, broke or impacted with foreign matter to prevent operation. Therefore, while such control means may find utility in many different environments, they are particularly adapted for use as limit switches and will be described as such. It should be understood, however, that this is merely a preferred environment and is not to be construed as an implied limitation of the claimed invention.

An object of the present invention is to provide a proximity control means having a magnetic'operator means and electric switch means movable relative to each other, and the switch means including at least one reed switch is opened and closed depending upon the relative position of the operator means thereto.

Another object of the present invention is to provide the foregoing control means in which at least one reed switch is a normally closed switch due to the effects of a magnetic bias.

Another object of the present invention is to provide the foregoing control means in which the switch means is enclosed in a releasably mountable housing.

The present invention contemplates a proximity switchtype control means having magnetic operating means and switching means arranged for relative movement therebetween, and the switching means comprising housing means adapted to be removably mounted and defining a switch chamber, switch supporting and connecting means disposed in the switch chamber and releasably connected to the housing means, at least one reed switch carried by the supporting means and having at least one reed extending from each end thereof and conductively connected to the connecting means independent of the other reed, the reeds having a normal switching position and being caused to. assume another switching position by the magnetic operating means as it moves adjacent to the housing and into proximity of the reed switch. 7

:The foregoing and other objects and advantages of the invention will appear more fully hereinafter from a consideration of the detailed description which follows, taken together with the accompanying drawings wherein several embodiments of the invention are illustrated by way of example. It is to be expressly understood, however, that the drawings are for illustration purposes only and are not to be construed as defining the limits of the invention.

FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic illustration of the present invention.

3,544,934 Patented Dec. 1, 1970 FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of switching means made in accordance with the present invention and having a portion of the housing thereof broken away to more fully illustrate the working parts therein.

FIGS. 3 and 4 are sectional views taken on lines 3-3 and 44, respectively, of FIG. 2.

FIG. 5 is an end elevational view of the novel switching means of FIG. 2 with the receptacle box portion of its housing removed.

FIG. 6 is a plan view of another form of switch means with its housing removed.

FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken on line 7--7 of FIG. 6.

Referring now to the drawings, FIG. 1 is provided for discussing and teaching the present invention, and is not intended to be limiting to the specific parts as are shown. Thus, the novel proximity control means is comprised of a switch means 10 normally mounted on fixed structure (not shown) and an operating magnet or magnet means 11 suitably mounted on movable structure (not shown). The specific number of reed switches included in the switching means 10 is determined by the number of switching functions which are required. Similarly, whether any particular reed switch is normally open or closed and whether the reed of any switch is connected to a common or an individual conductor 13 or line 15 are determined by the character or type of each switching function required.

As shown, the switching means 10 is provided with a pair of reed switches or switch members 12 and 15 disposed in spaced parallel relationship. The reeds 13 and 14 of the switch 12 are normally open while the reeds 16 and 17 of the switch 15 are normally closed. All of the reeds 13, 14, 16 and 17 are made of an electrically conductive magnetic material and the reeds 16 and 17 are normally retained closed by the effects of a biasing bartype magnet or magnet member 18 with the poles thereof at its ends. The biasing magnet 18 is disposed adjacent and parallel to the reed switch '15. Reeds 13 and 16 illustrate connecting corresponding ends of the switches 12 and 15 to a common line or conductor C while reeds 14 and 17 are each connected to a different line or conductor. To reiterate, the novel switching means may be provided with one or more reed switches 12 or 14, or a combination thereof while the specific reeds may be connected to individual or common lines or conductors, as shown.

The operator magnet 11 is of a bar type disposed substantially parallel to the switches 12 and 15 and the magnet 18, and is movable along a transverse path to its polar axis, as indicated by the arrow in the drawing, between two arbitrary end positions shown as being axes X1 and X5. The axes X1 to X5 do not provide true proportional relationships. It also should be noted that the magnet 11, with its poles at its ends, is poled oppositely to the magnet 18.

Considering operation of a novel electric control means as diagrammatically shown in FIG. 1, the operator magnet 11 is disposed in its initial position on axis X1. Therefore, reed switch 12 is open or nonconductive and the effects of the flux of magnet 18 keeps the switch 15 closed or conductive so that the reed 16 connects the common line C to the reed 17.

As the magnet 11 is moved toward the switch means 10 (to the left as viewed in the drawings) it will arrive at a position in the proximity of axis X2 where its flux will successfully oppose the flux of the biasing magnet 18. With the effects of the flux of magnet 18 neutralized, reed switch 15 also opens and the common line C is fully disconnected. Continued movement of magnet 11 past switch 15 and toward the axis X3 will cause the effects of its fiux on switch 15 to weaken and on switch 12 to strengthen or intensify.

Depending upon the desired switching sequence, one of the switches 12 or 15 can be closed before the other or they may be closed simultaneously. To facilitate description, it will be assumed arbitrarily that the switching means is arranged for sequential closing of switch 12 and then switch 15. Accordingly, as the magnet 11 approaches its position in the proximity of axis X3, the intensifying effect of its flux on switch 12 will cause this switch to close whereby reed 13 will connect the common line C to the reed 14. Further movement of the magnet 11 will cause the effects of its flux to reduce to where it is overcome by the effects of the fiux of the biasing magnet 18 and cause the switch to reclose. The common line C is now connected to both of the reeds 14 and 17.

Both of the switches 12 and 15 will remain closed as the magnet 11 travels past the switch 12 to a position in the proximity of axis X4. However, continued travel of the magnet 11 past the axis X4 and toward the axis X5 Will cause a progressive weakening of the effects of its flux on the switch 12 and will result in this switch reopening when the operator magnet 11 is in the proximity of axis X5.

It should be fully appreciated that the foregoing is not intended to describe any particular switching sequence but, rather is merely a description of the effects of the magnet 11 during a complete excursion from axis X1 to axis X5. If the novel switch means 10 of FIG. 1 were to operate as a limit switch, the magnet 11 probably would travel only between its position indicated by the axis X1 and X3,

The novel switch means 10 in accordance with the showing of FIG. 1 is shown in FIGS. 2 to 5 as having a housing provided by a condulet or junction box and a cover therefor. The condulet 20 defines a chamber 21, which is open on one side in the usual manner, and has a portion 22 at one end adapted for connection to a conductor or wire protecting conduit or pipe P, as shown in FIG. 3. The connection portion 22 defines an opening for the conductors or wires (not shown) from the conduit or pipe P into the chamber 21. The cover 25 is releasably connected by threaded fasteners 23, in the usual manner, to the condulet 20 for closing the open side of the chamber 21. However, the cover 25 differs from the usual condulet cover by having lateral flange portions 26 which extend outwardly from or past the sides of the condulet 20. The flanges 26 are provided with openings 27 for any suitable fastening means (not shown) for releasably connecting the cover 25 to suitable supporting structure (not shown).

A bobbin or support member 30 and a terminal block 40, both of a suitable dielectric material are releasably mounted by suitable fasteners 29 to the inside of the cover 25 within the chamber 21 when the cover is connected to the condulet 20. The bobbin 20 is provided with end portions 34 and 36 and are substantially parallel to one another. An epoxy may be used to retain the switches 12 and 15 and the magnet 18 immovable in the respective bores or slots 31, 32 and 33. The reeds 13 and 16 of switches 12 and 15, respectively, are each soldered or otherwise suitably conductively connected to a different one of a pair of conductor pin members which extend through the end portion 34 while the reeds 14 and 17 are each similarly connected to a different one of a pair of conductor pin members 37 which extend through the end portion 36. It should be understood that, in some instances, the pin members 35 and 37 may be sufficient to hold the switches 12 and 15 in place and an epoxy would not be required.

The terminal block 40 has three connection terminal means each provided by a pair of terminal screws 41 and 42, and a plate member 43 conductively connecting the terminal screws together. The pin members 35 are conductively connected together and to one of the screws 41 or 42 of connecting terminal means while the pins 4 37 are each conductively connected to one of the screws of a different one of the remaining two connection terminal means,

The conductors or wires (not shown) extending from the conduit or pipe P into chamber 21 are each connected to the unused screw of the appropriate connection terminal means. When these electrical connections have been completed, the cover 25 is connected by fasteners 23 to the condulet 20 and then by means (not shown) to supporting structure (not shown). The number of connection terminal means can be varied as required and is determined by the number of electrical connections to be made. While the bobbin or switch support means 30 and the terminal block or electrical connecting means 40 are shown and have been discussed as separate parts which are mounted together, the two functions thereof could be served by a single dielectric member.

Towards this end, switch support means and a terminal block means 54 are of a unitary dielectric construction in a modified switching means as is shown in FIGS. 6 and 7. The support means 50 is provided with three diagonal grooves or grooved portions 51, 52 and 53 for receiving and housing the reed switches 12 and 15 and the magnet 18 which are held in place by epoxy or any other suitable means known in the art. The groove 51 is disposed at a right angle to and crosses the grooves 52 and 53 which are parallel to each other and spaced by a thin wall portion. The crossing grooves are at different levels and, alternatively, may be bores which are provided by molding when the member 50 is formed or by machining thereafter.

The terminal block means or portion 54, in this instance, is shown at one end of the member 50 and has four terminal connecting means each provided by a pair of terminal screws 41 and 42 conductively connected by a member 43, as heretofore described. The reeds of the switches 12 and 15 are electrically connected to the three of the electrical connecting means in the same manner as heretofore discussed, however, as indicated, the reeds 13 and 16 may each be connected to a dilferent one of the terminal connecting means if it is so desired.

The operator magnet 11 moves relative to the novel switching means along a path, shown by the arrow in FIG. 6, which is substantially parallel to the terminal board portion 54 and bisects the angle of intersection of the crossed grooves 51 and 52. The modified switching means may be mounted alternatively so the operator magnet assumes a position 11A and has a path of travel which are normal to the magnet 11 and its path of travel.

It should be understood that reed switch or reed switch 15 with its biasing magnet 18 may be eliminated if only a single switching function is required. On the other hand, additional switches may be provided to increase the number of switching functions that are available. The number of grooves or bores provided in the switching mounting means 30 or 50 is determined by the number of switches and biasing magnets to be supported while the number of terminal connecting means provided by a terminal block 40 or a terminal block portion 54 depends upon the number of independent reed connections to be made.

Although several embodiments of the invention have been illustratde and described in detail, it is to be expressly understood that the invention is not limited thereto. Various changes may be made in the design and arrangement of the parts without departing the spirit and scope of the invention as the same will now be understood by those skilled in the art.

What is claimed is:

1. In a proximity switch-type control means having magnetic operating means and switching means arranged for relative movement therebetween, comprising a condulet defining a switch chamber with one open side, and having means at one end thereof adapted for connection to a conduit enclosing and protecting conductors to be connected to said control means, said means at said one end defining an opening through said condulet for passage of conductors into said switch chamber,

a cover releasably connected to said condulet thereby closing the open side of said switch chamber, and having a pair of flanges each extending away from the other laterally outward from said condulet,

said pair of flanges being adapted to be removably mounted on supporting structure,

switch supporting and connecting means disposed in said switch chamber and releasably mounted on said cover,

at least one reed switch member being carried by said supporting means adjacent said cover and having at least one reed extending from each end thereof and conductively connected to said connecting means independently of said reed extending the other end, and

said reeds of each of said reed switch members having a normal switching position and being caused to assume another switching position by said magnetic operating means moving adjacent said cover transversely to the axis of and into the proximity of said reed switch member.

2. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 1, wherein said reeds of at least one of said reed switch member assume an open and nonconductive normal switching position and are biased by said magnetic operating means to a closed and conductive other switching position.

3. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 1, and

at least one bar-type magnet member carried by said supporting and connecting means adjacent to a reed switch member and having its polar axis substantially parallel to the axis of said adjacent reed switch member,

said bar-type magnet member biasing said reeds of said adjacent reed switch member to a closed and conductive normal switching position, and

said magnetic operating means overcoming the bias of said bar-type magnet member when in the proximity of said adjacent reed switch member thereby causing said reeds of said adjacent reed switch member to assume an open and nonconductive other switching position.

4. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 1 and having a plurality of said reed switch members, wherein said reeds of at least one of said reed switch members assume an open and nonconductive normal switching position,

at least one bar-type magnet member carried by said supporting and connecting means adjacent to another reed switch member and having its polar axis substantially parallel to the axis of said other reed switch member,

said bar-type magnet member biasing said reeds of said other reed switch member to a closed and conductive normal switching position,

said magnetic operating means biasing said reeds of said one of said reed switch members to a closed and conductive other switching position when in the proximity of said one of said reed switch members, and overcoming the bias of said bar-type magnet member when in the proximity of said other of said reed switch members thereby causing said reeds of said other of said reed switch members to assume an open and nonconductive other switching position.

S. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 4, and said supporting and connecting means comprising:

a supporting member of dielectric material having a plurality of axially disposed and parallel portions each receiving and housing therein a ditferent one of the members carried by said supporting means,

a terminal block of dielectric material,

a plurality of terminal connecting means each independently connecting at least one of said reeds to a conductor, and

each of said terminal connecting means comprising a pair of spaced fasteners threadedly engaging said terminal block, and a member conductively connecting said pair of spaced fasteners together.

6. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 5, and

said terminal block having a plurality of integral wall portions extending outwardly therefrom and being disposed in spaced parallel series with one another, and

said terminal connecting means each being disposed between a ditferent two of said wall portions.

7. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 6, wherein said magnetic operating means including a magnet with a polar axis substantially parallel to the axes of said reed switch and bar-type magnet members, and

relative movement between said magnetic operating and switching means causing said magnet to move adjacent said cover in a direction substantially normal to all of said axes.

8. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 4, and said supporting and connecting means comprising:

a single support member of dielectric material having a plurality of portions thereof each receiving and housing therein a different one of said members carried by said supporting and connecting means,

at least one of said portions and one of said reed switch members therein being disposed at substantially a right angle to and crossing the remaining of said portions and said members therein,

a plurality of terminal connecting means disposed in spaced series across one end of said support mem ber each independently connecting at least one of said reeds to a conductor, and

each of said terminal connecting means comprising a pair of spaced fasteners threadedly engaging said support member, and a member conductively connecting said pair of spaced fasteners together.

9. The proximity switch-type control means in accordance with claim 8, wherein said magnetic operating means including a magnet with a polar axis, and

relative movement between said magnetic operating and switching means causing said magnet to move adjacent said cover in a direction substantially normal to its polar axis substantially bisecting the angle between the crossing portions of said support member.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,912,540 11/ 1959 Sawicki 335-207X 3,161,742 12/ 1964 Bagno 335-207X 3,187,129 6/1965 McBrian 335-153X 3,387,240 6/ 1968 Koppensteiner 335153 BERNARD A. GILHEANY, Primary Examiner R. N. ENVALL, JR., Assistant Examiner

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2912540 *Feb 13, 1958Nov 10, 1959American District Telegraph CoDefeat resistant burglar alarm contact
US3161742 *Aug 24, 1961Dec 15, 1964Specialties Dev CorpMagnetic intruder and fire deterctor
US3187129 *Apr 5, 1962Jun 1, 1965Mosler Res Products IncMagnetic switch assembly
US3387240 *May 31, 1966Jun 4, 1968Automatic Elect LabReed relay with mounting for protecting encapsulated switches and for positioning bias magnets
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3668579 *Nov 9, 1970Jun 6, 1972Door Alarm Device CorpMagnetic door alarm
US3771153 *Mar 8, 1972Nov 6, 1973District Telegraph CoDefeat resistant burglar alarm contact
US3896427 *Jun 27, 1974Jul 22, 1975Campman James PMagnetically operated alarm
US4825181 *Mar 3, 1988Apr 25, 1989Kabushiki Kaisha ToshibaSwitching device
US6274830Feb 25, 2000Aug 14, 2001Welker Bearing CompanyStop block with embedded proximity switch
US6977570Feb 19, 2003Dec 20, 2005Gilmore Glendell NReed switch apparatus
US7057484Feb 19, 2003Jun 6, 2006Gilmore Glendell NReed switch device and method of using same
US7259647Nov 16, 2005Aug 21, 2007Gilmore Glendell NMethod of using reed switch apparatus to control one or more devices
US8111119Aug 21, 2007Feb 7, 2012Gilmore Glendell NReed switch apparatus and method of using same
US8866570Feb 7, 2012Oct 21, 2014Glendell N. GilmoreReed switch apparatus and method of using same
US9236721 *Jul 8, 2014Jan 12, 2016Cooper Technologies CompanyCondulet coupler
US20060077024 *Nov 16, 2005Apr 13, 2006Gilmore Glendell NMethod of using reed switch apparatus to control one or more devices
US20150008666 *Jul 8, 2014Jan 8, 2015Eaton CorporationCondulet Coupler
Classifications
U.S. Classification335/206, 29/622
International ClassificationH01H36/00
Cooperative ClassificationH01H36/0033, H01H36/0026, H01H36/0046
European ClassificationH01H36/00B4
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 21, 1988ASAssignment
Owner name: POTTER & BRUMFIELD, INC., 200 SOUTH RICHLAND DRIVE
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:POTTER & BRUMFIELD, INC., A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004862/0591
Effective date: 19880119
Owner name: POTTER & BRUMFIELD, INC., INDIANA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:POTTER & BRUMFIELD, INC., A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004862/0591
Dec 23, 1985ASAssignment
Owner name: POTTER & BRUMFIELD INC., 200 RICHLAND CREEK DRIVE,
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:AMF INCORPORATED;REEL/FRAME:004508/0653
Effective date: 19851118