US 3601785 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent |72| Inventors Bruce Cueron Longenecker Harrisburg;
Stanley Byron Brinser, Steelton, both 01,
Pa. [21 Appl. No. 783,162  Filed Nov. 4, 1968  Patented Aug. 24, I97! I73] Assignee AMP Incorporated Harrisburg, Pa.
 DETACHABLE ELECTRICAL CONNECTORS 7 Claims, 11 Drawing Figs.
 US. Cl 339/256  H01r 13/20  Field oISurch 339/256, 258, 259
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,037,! 83 5/1962 Hopkins 339/2 I 7 S 3,104,927 9/1963 Cargill et a]. 339/256 SP 3,128,143 4/1964 Sitzler 339/223 3,270,251 8/1966 Evans 317/101 3,363,224 1/1968 Gluntz... 339/258 3,425,030 1/1969 Hadden 339/256 SP Primary Examiner-Marvin A. Champion Assistant Examiner-Joseph H. McGlynn Attorneys-Curtis, Morris and Safi'ord, Marshall M.
Holcombe, William Hintze, William .I. Keating, Frederick W. Raring, John R. Hopkins, Adrian .1. La Rue and Jay L. Seitchik ABSTRACT: This disclosure relates to detachable electrical connectors having contact postengaging portions thereon and conductor-receiving barrels coextensive therewith. The postengaging portions are disposed on a plane adjacent the plane of the wire barrels. The connectors are secured to lead wires whereafter one or more connectors may be insertably secured to a contact post from an associated component. Connections between the connectors and the post may be made and broken without the aid of application tooling. The connectors are rigid so as to be mechanically and electrically reliable over a long period of continued use.
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DETACIIABLE ELECTRICAL CONNECTORS This invention relates to detachable electrical connectors of the type adapted to be insertably connected to contact posts, and more particularly to electrical connectors which are crimped onto electrical lead wires and are adapted to insertably engage contact posts in such a manner that the posts extend through the contact-engaging portions of the connectors. This arrangement permits more than one electrical connector to be joined to one contact post if desired.
Connectors according to this invention are reusable, and they are specially adapted for use in applications requiring electrical circuits to be changed frequently. One type of application is computer panel wiring wherein many rows of closely spaced contact posts extend from panels situated inside or at the rear of computers.
Prior connecting techniques embody connectors which are cumbersome and hard to use. These connectors sometimes become short circuited against adjacent connectors or adjacent posts, and they usually require an insertion-extraction device to make and break connections. Another technique is that of wrapping a wire around a post. This is not always desirable because special wrap type application tooling is required and posts often become bent and twisted. These connections are also not readily removable.
It is therefore an object of this invention to provide detachable connector means by which electrical conductors may be removably secured to contact posts.
Another object is to provide detachable connector means wherein the postengaging portion is disposed along a plane adjacent to the plane of the conductor-engaging portion.
A further object is to provide detachable connector means wherein the postengaging portion is sufficiently flexible so as to insertably receive a post, but wherein the postengaging portion is sufficiently rigid so as to mechanically and electrically engage a post without becoming overflexed from continued use.
An additional object is to provide detachable connector means wherein a connector of one size may be used in conjunction with posts of different relative thicknesses.
Other objects and attainments of the present invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon a reading of the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the drawings in which there are shown and described illustrative embodiments of the invention; it is to be understood, however, that these embodiments are not intended to be exhaustive nor limiting of the invention but are given for the purpose of illustration in order that others skilled in the art may fully understand the invention and the principles thereof and the manner of applying it in practical use so that they may modify it in various forms, each as may be best suited to the conditions of a particular use.
These and other desirable objects are achieved in a preferred embodiment of the invention in which the connector comprises a rectangular shaped body member which is made from electrically conductive sheet metal such as brass. The body member has a postengaging portion thereon and conductor-receiving barrel means coextensive therewith. The body member has internal and external support means to assure its rectangular shape and to provide rigid support for the postengaging portion. Variations of the preferred embodiment are shown and described in a similar connector having a rectangular body member and having a conductor-receiving barrel means coextensive therewith. Other variations which are not shown may be made without departing from the scope of the invention.
In the drawings:
FIG. I is a perspective view of a connector according to this invention;
FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the connector of FIG. 1-,
FIG. 3 is a view taken along the lines 3-3 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a view taken along the lines 4-4 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 5 is a view taken along the lines 55 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 6 is a view taken along the lines 6-6 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view showing two connectors secured to a contact post;
FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view of another terminal accord ing to this invention;
FIG. 9 is a front end view of FIG. 8;
FIG. 9a is a cross-sectional view showing an alternative tab arrangement; and
FIG. 10 is a front end view of FIG. 8 showing an alternative postengagin g portion.
Referring to FIGS. 1-7 and particularly to FIG. 2, a connector 2 has a generally rectangular shaped body with conductorengaging barrels 6 and 8 extending beyond body 4. The conductor I0 of a lead wire LW is secured to barrel 6 and the outerjacket I2 of the lead wire is secured to barrel 8. One typical method of securing a conductor to the wire barrels is by crimping or swagging. Rectangular body 4 has a postengaging portion 14 disposed along a plane which is parallel to the plane containing the axis of barrels 6 and 8.
Postengaging portion I4 is formed from body 2 by first folding extension I9 of planar floor 18 upwardly across the front end of body 2. Secondly, extension 19 is folded back across floor I8 thereby becoming the floor 21 of postengaging portion 14. Floor 21 has downwardly directed sidewalls 23 and 25 which abut the planar floor I8 of rectangular body 4. This arrangement provides rigidity for floor 2I of postengaging portion I4. The sidewalls 20 and 22 of body 2, which are closed along sidewalls 23 and 25, extend upwardly from floor I8 and terminate in inwardly directed, arcuately shaped postengaging members 24 and 26 having spring characteristics. The rectangular area between floor 2I and substantially flat edges 24', 26 of members 24 and 26 defines the postengaging portion, as shown more clearly in FIG. 3.
Referring particularly to FIGS. 1 and 6, tabs 28 and 30, which are formed from the front end of extension 19, are folded backwardly against the outside surfaces of sidewalls 20 and 22. This arrangement provides rigidity for body 2 and prevents sidewalls 20 and 22 from opening outwardly from insertion forces of a contact post.
Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4, another pair of tabs 32 and 34, which are formed from sidewalls 20 and 22, are folded inwardly through a slot 35 in the rear end of floor 2I. The ends of tabs 32 and 34 are clinched against the inner surfaces of sidewalls 23 and 25. This arrangement assists in providing rigidity for body 2 by holding outer sidewalls 20 and 22 tightly against inner sidewalls 23 and 25 and also holding floor 21 of postengaging portion 14 in rigid horizontal and postengaging position. This arrangement also prevents sidewalls 20 and 22 from opening outwardly from insertion forces of a contact post. Of course, sidewalls 20 and 22 may be provided with slots receiving tabs 32 and 34 from sidewalls 23 and 25 as an alternative approach.
Referring particularly to FIG. 3, a contact post P is shown in its fully inserted position. It can be seen that forces exerted by post P on the postengaging portion 14 are confined to postengaging members 24 and 26 of sidewalls 20 and 22, rather than to the sidewalls of body 4. This provides uniform spring qualities in the postengaging portion 14 of the connector.
OPERATION Referring to FIG. 7, connectors 2 are stacked onto an associate contact post P by pushing a first connector 2 onto the post such that a substantial portion of the post protrudes through the postengaging portion I4 thereof. A second connector is rotatably turned l relative to the first connector wherealter it is pushed onto post P. It should be noted that any number of connectors may be stacked onto a post, however, each succeeding connector must be rotatably turned l80 relative to its preceding connector. If more than two connectors are terminated to one post, the lead wires of the preceding connectors should be deflected, as shown by broken lines in FIG. 7.
Referring to FIGS. 8 and 9, another embodiment of a connector according to this invention includes a generally rectangular shaped body 44 with conductor-engaging barrels 46 and 48 extending beyond body 44. The conductor 50 of a lead wire MM: is secured to barrel 46 and the outerjacket 52 of the lead wire is secured to barrel 48, Body 44 has a postengaging portion 54 disposed along a plane which is adjacent and parallel to the plane containing the axis of barrels 46 and 48.
In this embodiment, planar floor 56 includes a forwardly extending extension 57 which is formed upwardly along the front of body 44 and back inside of body 44, thus becoming a second planar floor 58. The free end of floor 58 is formed downwardly toward the planar floor 56. The sidewalls 60 and 62 of body 44 extend upwardly beyond floor 58, and ends 64 and 68 of sidewalls 60 and 62 are formed inwardly so as to overlie floor 58 and abut. The abutting ends may then be welded or soldered.
Supporting lugs or tabs 70 and 72, which are formed inwardly from sidewalls 60 and 62, support the second planar floor 58 and prevent it from becoming overstressed downwardly from repeated use of a connector as well as to provide spring characteristics thereto, Thus, tabs 70 and 72 and the free end of floor 58 maintain the floor in a postengaging position. Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 90, tabs 70a and 7011 may be provided on floor 58 cooperate with slots 59a which would perform the same antioverstress operation on floor 58 thereby maintaining floor 58 in a postengaging position. The rectangular area between floor B and ends 64 and 68 defines the postengaging portion of the connector. Connectors, as shown in FIGS. 8 and 9, are stacked onto a contact post in the same manner as shown in FIG. 7; however, they can be stacked into a post through openings 59in sidewalls 60 and 62 from which lugs 70 and 72 are formed.
Referring to FIG. 10, an alternative embodiment of the connector of FIGS. 8 and 9 is formed by having the ends 640 and 68a of body 440 curled inwardly toward floor 580 in the same manner as members 24 and 26 of FIGS. l6. The postengaging portion of this connector is defined by the area between floor 58a and tips 64b and 68b of ends 640 and 68a.
In all embodiments shown herein, sloped edges S may be formed in the entrance of the postengaging portions. This arrangement along with the radiused leading edges of floors 21, 58 and 58a provide lead-in means to guide posts into the postengaging portions.
It should therefore be appreciated that connectors according to this invention may e repeatedly secured to and removed from posts without danger of their contact portions becoming overstressed.
it will therefore be understood that the aforementioned and other desirable objections have been achieved; however, it should be emphasized that the particular embodiments of the invention which are shown and described herein are merely intended as illustrative and not as restrictive of the invention.
The invention is claimed in accordance with the following:
1. An electrical connector for connecting wire conductor means to contact post means including a conductor-engaging portion disposed on one plane of said connector and a postengaging portion disposed on another plane of said connector, said conductor-engaging portion adapted to be permanently secured to said conductor means, said postengaging portion including a floor and sidewalls adjacent thereto and adapted to slidably receive the contact post into one of its ends such that said post means extends through and beyond the other end thereof, said postengaging portion having confining means thereon to grip elements of said connector to prevent overflexing of said postreceiving portion from repeated use, and wherein said confining means includes a set of laterally opposed tabs which are formed from a section of the floor of said connector and which grip the sidewalls of said connector to hold said sidewalls in position so as to prevent said sidewalls from flexing outwardly when a post in entered into said postengaging portion,
2. A connector according to claim 1 wherein said confining means includes another set of laterally opposed tabs which are formed from said sidewalls and which (grip the floor of said postengaging portion to further hold sat sidewalls in position so as to prevent said sidewalls from flexing outwardly when a post is entered into said postengaging portion.
3. An electrical connector for connecting wire conductor means to contact post means including a conductor-engaging portion disposed on one centerline of said connector and a postengaging portion disposed on another centerline of said connector, said postengaging section having postreceiving means therein to insertably receive a post and having further means therein to slidably engage said post, said postengaging means adapted to flex a limited amount to receive posts of varying thicknesses, said limited amount controlled by tab means in said connector which grip and hold elements of said postengaging portion to prevent overflexing of the postengaging portion, said tab means including at least one set of tabs struck from the planar floor of said connector and in engagement with the sidewalls of said connector, and at least one set of tabs struck from said sidewalls and in engagement with said planar floor.
4. An electrical connector for connecting a wire conductor means to a post including the combination of a rectangular body member with a first planar floor and upstanding sidewalls, conductor-receiving barrels coextensive with said first planar floor, postreceiving means in said body having a second planar floor coextensive with said first planar floor, said first and second planar floors adjacent to each other, top edges of said sidewalls being curved inwardly and disposed to project toward said second planar floor, and tab means provided by said connector to secure said second planar floor against movement relative to said sidewalls whereby said postreceiving means is substantially rigid.
5. A connector according to claim 4 wherein said tab means extend from the sides of said second planar floor and engage slots in said sidewalls whereby said second planar floor is supported against overstress upon insertion of said post.
6. An electrical connector comprising a first floor having sidewalls extending outwardly from edges thereof, inwardly directed sections of said sidewalls being directed toward one another, an extension of said first floor being bent back across said first floor and defining a second floor, said sidewalls and said inwardly directed sections along with said second floor defining a postengaging section for electrical engagement with a post, and means provided by said second floor and said sidewalls maintaining said second floor in a postengaging position.
7. An electrical connector for releasably connecting a wire conductor to a contact post comprising wire conductor gripping means at one end of said connector, a first planar floor extending from said gripping means and having sidewalls integral with and extending generally normally thereto, a second planar floor spaced from and substantially parallel with said first planar floor and integral therewith through an extension of said first planar floor, said second planar floor lying between and spacing said sidewalls, said sidewalls having curved end portions extending inwardly toward each other and downwardly toward said second planar floor and each having an edge face spaced from said second planar floor, said edge faces, said sidewalls, and said second planar floor defining a contact post receptacle, first tab means on said extension engaging said sidewalls, and second tab means on said sidewalls engaging said second planar floor whereby outward flexing of said sidewalls upon insertion of said posl is limited by said tab means.