US 3568139 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent  Inventor JacobJ.Delzer 3212 Fruitvale Blvd., Yakima, Wash. 98902  Appl.No. 774,686  Filed Nov. 12,1968  Patented Mar.2,197l
 BATTERY CABLE CONNECTOR 10 Claims, 8 Drawing Figs.
 U.S.Cl 339/239, 339/274  Int.Cl H01r7/06  FieldofSearch 339l224- -240,274
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,522,728 1/1925 Krohn 339/230 1,724,753 8/1929 Doherty.. 339/229 2,142,759 1/1939 Plachy 339/227 2,819,455 1/1958 McCray 339/225 Primary Examiner-Marvin A. Champion Assistant Examiner-Joseph H. McGlynn AnorneyVan Valkenburgh and Lowe ABSTRACT: A connector for the terminal post of a storage battery, in which a U-shaped clamp having a generally circular center is adapted to embrace the post and to be secured in position by squeezing the center of the clamp upon the post. A channel-shaped cover is secured to the clamp by a pivot connecting the cover at the free ends of the clamp legs in a manner which permits the cover to be swung over and onto the clamp. This cover includes inward wedging abutments which squeeze the ends of the clamp together when the cover is swung into position upon the clamp, to lock the center of the clamp upon a battery post, but to thereafter release the clamp from the battery post when the cover is lifted away from the clamp.
Jacob J. Delzer BY VM VM 1 W ATTORNE YS BATTERY CABLE CONNECTOR The present invention relates to electrical cable connectors and more particularly to cable connectors for the terminal posts of storage batteries.
A primary object of the invention is to provide a novel and improved cable connector which is especially adapted to be affixed to the terminal post of a lead-acid type storage battery. As such, the invention will be referred to as a battery terminal connector.
Another object of the invention is to provide a novel and improved construction of a terminal connector which is quickly, easily and tightly connected to the tapered lead post of a lead-acid type storage battery with a resilient grip which resists subsequent loosening by jarring and vibration tending to pull the cablefrom the post.
Another object of the invention is to provide a novel and improved construction of a battery terminal connector for the lead post of a storage battery, which is easily cleaned and prepared for mounting upon the post, which does not require hammering or wedging to secure it in place upon the post and which may be tightened upon the post without marring or distorting the surface of the post.
Other objects of the invention are to provide a novel and improved battery terminal connector which will provide current flow from the battery terminal post to the cable with a minimum loss, which is capable of remaining upon a battery post for a substantial period of time without excess corrosion, which does not include any bolts or similar clamping members having threads which corrode and produce difficulties in removal, and which may be quickly and easily removed from a battery post without pounding and prying the clamp from the post.
Further objects of the invention are to provide a novel and improved battery terminal connector which is a simple, low cost, neat appearing, rugged and durable unit.
With the foregoing and other objects in view, as will hereinafter appear, the present invention comprises certain constructions, combinations and arrangements of parts and elements as herein described and illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a fragmentary perspective view of a corner of a storage battery, illustrating a connector constructed according to the principles of the present invention affixed to a terminal post of the battery.
FIG. 2 is a side elevation of a portion of the battery and of the connector, as taken from the indicated arrow 2 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a side elevation, similar to FIG. 2 but with the cover of the connector lifted to a position which permits the connector to be attached to or removed from the terminal post.
FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the corner of the battery and of the connector when the cover is lifted, as in FIG. 3.
FIG. 5 is a horizontal section, taken along line 5-5 of FIG. 2, illustrative of the manner in which the connector is secured to a battery post.
FIG. 6 is a vertical section of the connector, taken along line 6-6 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 7 is a longitudinal section of the connector secured upon a battery post, taken along line 7-7 of FIG. 5.
FIG. 8 is a fragmentary perspective view of a corner of a storage battery, similar to FIG. 1, but illustrating a modified construction of the connector mounted upon the battery post, with the cover being partially lifted and retracted from its locking position over the terminal to show the arrangement of the parts more clearly.
The present invention was conceived and developed to provide an improved manner by which either the main service cable and the ground cable of a motor vehicle are attached to the lead posts of a lead-acid storage battery. The conventional connector, which is almost universally used for lead-acid storage batteries, is a heavy clamp which is fitted upon a battery post and then tightened by a bolt on the clamp. The conventional clamp subjects the battery terminal to considerable abuse when it is fitted, for the clamp may need to be pounded in place as with a hammer, and thereafter, the bolts are tightened by pulling it with a wrench in a manner which places considerable strain upon the battery post. Moreover, after several years of service, the removal of a clamp may become a chore, because the threads are corroded, and again twisting and pounding is required to spread and loosen the clamp from the post.
The basis structure of the battery post connector of the present invention consists of a clamp L and a cover C. The clamp L is a U-shaped member of resilient metal having a socketed head at its crotch to engage a'battery post 20 and generally parallel arms extending from this head, while the cover C is a channel-shaped member of rigid material having flanges which embrace the head and arms of the clamp. These flanges are conveniently connected to the extreme end of the clamp arms by a pivot. Thus, the cover will swing out of the way when the clamp is to be fitted upon or removed from battery post 20. Lugs or wedging abutments at the inner face of these cover flanges are adapted to engage the legs of the clamp to squeeze them together whenever the cover is pushed downwardly upon the clamp. The result is to squeeze the head about the battery post for tight engagement thereto, as hereinafter set forth in detail. The manner of attaching or removing the connector to or from a battery post is quick and simple and pounding and twisting upon the battery post to effect a connection is unnecessary.
Referring more particularly to FIGS. l4 of the drawings, the improved connector is illustrated as being mounted upon a tapered lead post 20 of a common lead-acid type storage battery B, which is ordinarily located at a corner of the storage battery B, as in the manner illustrated. The common practice is to form these posts as frustoconical members having a small taper, as of approximately 10 degrees. These porportions and the diameter diameter of the posts are standardized as two sizes, the larger size being for the positive terminal of the battery. The other, a slightly smaller post, is for the negative terminal of the battery. It is therefore contemplated that the improved connector, as herein described, will be provided commercially in two different sizes, one for the positive post and one for the negative post, according to common practice. However, a single size of clamp can be easily altered to accommodate either size of post whenever the same is desirable.
The clamp L is formed as a strip of selected metal having a width which may vary from one-half to three-fourths inch and which will be suitable to effectively embrace a major extent of a post 20 upstanding from the battery. This strip is folded to a generally U-shaped form and the crotch of the U-shaped strip forms a circular closed head 21 with each side of the strip having an inward turn to form a neck 22 at each side of the head and shoulders 23 at each side of the neck. Each end of the strip extends beyond the shoulder 23 as an arm 24, and the two arms 24 are spaced apart to lie generally parallel to each other, with their spacing being slightly greater than the diameter of the head 21 to define the normal width of the clamp and to provide clearance between the cover C and head 21.
It is to be noted that the socket within the head 21 should be tapered to receive a battery post with a snug, firm fit. Once the head 21 of the clamp is so fitted upon a post 20, the arms 24, which normally lie parallel to each other, may be squeezed together. This reduces the diameter of the head and causes it to grip the battery post in a surprisingly tight manner. To
enhance and assure this desirable gripping of the post, the strap forming the clamp L should be made of a comparatively strong, elastic material, such as steel. A metal having the properties of soft copper or lead is unsatisfactory for this purpose, although it may be a better conductor. While a steel clamp may be made large enough and thick enough as to have no undesirable resistivity, a desirable clamp construction is a laminated unit having an inside layer of copper and/or lead on a selected type of steel, preferably an acid resisting type, and with the thickness of the clamp being such as to produce any desired degree of rigidity. It is to be noted that the rigidity of this clamp may also be enhanced by longitudinal corrugations 25 about the head 21, neck 22, shoulders 23 and a portion of the arms 24, as on the clamp L of FIG. 8. The selection of suitable materials for the formation of the clamp need not be considered further, since the same is well within the skill of artisans and fabricators who would manufacture the clamp.
The clamp L includes provision for the attachment of a cable 26. In the construction illustrated in FIGS. 1 to 7, cable 26 is shown as being connected to one of the arms 24, as by a hook-shaped clip 27 at the end of the arm. Such a hook may be formed in the face of the arm, as by a simple punching operation which forms hole 28 of FIG. 3 and at the same time shifts the clip 27 out of the plane of the arm. A suitable electrical connection is possible by squeezing the cable against the inner face of the arm by clip 27, as illustrated in FIGS. 46. and this connection may be further supplemented by brazing the cable in place, if necessary. The clamp L is completed by providing a preferably longitudinally elongated hole 29 at the rear end of each arm, as in FIG. 7, to connect the clamp with a transversely disposed pivot carried by the cover C, as will be described below. In the alternative clamp L illustrated in FIG. 8, a tubular lug 30 may be brazed or otherwise formed on the front of the head 21. The end of the cable 26 may be inserted into the socket in lug 28 and soldered in place.
The cover C, as indicated, is formed as a channel-shaped member adapted to overlie the clamp L. As such, it includes a top or web 31 from whence two longitudinally disposed flanges 32 depend in spaced parallelism. The spacing of flanges 32 is'such that they lap the arms 24 and head 21 of the clamp L to embrace the top and sides of the clamp when fitted thereupon. The forward end of cover C, adjacent to the head 21, is suitably closed by a transversely curved flange 33 to completely enclose the head of the clamp, whenever the clamp is fitted over it. However, when the construction of the cover C illustrated in FIG. 8 is used, the corresponding flange end 33 is modified to include a slot 34 to provide clearance for the cable lug 30, as illustrated.
Cover C is pivotally connected to the ends of the clamp arms 24, as by a transverse pivot pin 35 which is secured in suitable holes 36 in the flanges 32, indicated by dotted lines in FIG. 5, and extends through the holes 29 in the clamp arms 24. The ends 37 of the pivot pin 35 may be enlarged, as by riveting as illustrated, to secure it in position. The cover C may be lowered onto the clamp L to lock the clamp upon a battery post, or it may be raised to free the clamp from the post, as by swinging it about the pivot pin 35, as will be described. To facilitate the swinging of the clamp upwardly from a locked position upon the post, a finger ledge 38 may be provided at the forward end of the cover.
In further accordance with this invention, a wedge-shaped abutment 40 is provided on the inner face of each cover flange 32, at an intermediate position on the flanges and adjacent to the clamp arms 24, so that each abutment 40 will engage a clamp arm 24 whenever the cover C is swung to a lowered position over the clamp L. This action squeezes the arms 24 together, as in the manner illustrated in FIGS. and 6, to effectively grip and hold the clamp head upon the battery post, as heretofore explained. The cover C of FIG. 8 is provided with similar wedging abutments 40 for the same purpose and acting in the same way as abutments 40 of the form shown in FIGS. l7. Except for the differences previously described, the cover C and clamp L of FIG. 8 are also respectively similar to cover C and clamp L of FIGS. l7, as indicated by corresponding reference numerals.
It is to be noted that cover C or C may be made of metal or of a suitable synthetic resin and by any suitable fabrication process, such as casting or injection molding. However, the materials and methods used to manufacture the cover need not be described herein, since the same will be entirely conventional and common.
The use of the connector is believed to be clear from the description of the foregoing components. To recapitulate, in order to place the same upon a battery post 20, the cover C is lifted from the clamp L so that the wedge abutments 40 do not contact the clamp arms 24. With the clamp arms so relaxed, it is but a simple matter to fit the clamp head 21 snugly upon the battery post, such as after the battery post and clamp head are cleaned, as with sandpaper, to assure a solid metal to metal contact. Thereafter, the cover C is swung downwardly to enclose the clamp L and at the same time, to force the clamp arms 24 together by the action of the abutments 40, all of which produces a tight grip of the clamp upon the battery post. Subsequently, when it becomes desirable to remove the connector from the battery post, the cover C is merely lifted to expose the clamp and at the same time to permit the arms 24 to spread and release the clamp from its grip upon the battery post. The connector of FIG. 8, comprising clamp L and cover C, is used in a similar manner.
Although two embodiments of this invention have been described in considerable detail, it will be evident that other embodiments may exist, and that other alternative or equivalent constructions can be devised and built without departing from the spirit and scope of this invention.
1. A battery post connector comprising:
a clamp formed as a generally elongated, U-shaped member having a closed head adapted to be fitted upon a battery post and a pair of arms extending from the head as spaced-apart, generally parallel members which may be squeezed together to clamp the head upon a battery post;
a cover formed as a generally channel-shaped member movable between a position fitting over said clamp and a position generally away from said clamp, said cover having flanges pivoted on said arms at a position spaced from said head and adapted to embrace the clamp when so fitted;
wedging means on one of said flanges and arms adjacent to said pivot to squeeze said clamp arms together when said cover is fitted upon said clamp; and
means for connecting a cable to said clamp.
2. In the connector defined in claim 1, wherein said wedging means are carried upon and project inwardly from the inner walls of the flanges at opposing positions.
3. In the connector defined in claim 1, wherein:
said clamp is formed as a metallic strip; and
said head is formed as a tapered socket adapted to snugly fit a battery post, with a narrower neck portion between said head and said arm.
4. In the connector defined in claim I, wherein said clamp is formed as a laminated metallic strip including a softer metal on the inside of a harder and stiffer but resilient metal, said softer metal having a greater electrical conductivity than said harder and stiffer metal.
5. In the connector defined in claim 1, wherein said clamp is stiffened by corrugations adjacentthe area engaged by said wedging means.
6. In the connector defined in claim 1, wherein:
said cable connecting means includes a socket outstanding from the head of the clamp and adapted to receive and hold the end of a cable; and
said flanges of said cover include an opening which permits said socket to extend therethrough when said cover is fitted upon said clamp.
7. In the connector defined in claim 1, wherein said clamp is formed of resilient metal adapted to cause said arms to spread when said cover is moved to a position away from said clamp.
8. In the connector defined in claim 1, wherein said cover includes a top web and spaced apart flanges depending therefrom.
9. In the connector defined in claim 8, wherein said flanges extend around the end of said web adjacent said clamp head so as to substantially enclose said clamp head whenever said cover is fitted onto said clamp.
10. In the connector defined in claim 8, wherein said wedging means comprise a wedge-shaped lug projecting inwardly from each inner face of said cover flanges.