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Publication numberUS3614709 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 19, 1971
Filing dateMay 20, 1969
Priority dateMay 20, 1969
Publication numberUS 3614709 A, US 3614709A, US-A-3614709, US3614709 A, US3614709A
InventorsSchweihs Richard F
Original AssigneeSchweihs Richard F
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Electrical connector unit
US 3614709 A
Abstract  available in
Images(5)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

[72] Invent r Ri h r F- h h 2,824,290 2/1958 Archer etaL. 339/49 640 C rn Villa P k, HL 60181 2,869,094 1/1959 Francis..'...,. 339/59 1 PP 826,123 3,246,278 4/1966 Silver 1. 339/8 [22] Filed May 20, 1969 FOREXGN PATENTS 7 [45] Patented 19 1 1,011,629 4 1952 France 339/60 319,905 10/1929 Great Britain 339/103 5 ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR UNIT 91,486 2/1938 Sweden 339/74 4 Claims, 19 Drawing Figs- Primary Examiner-lan A. Calvert [52] US. Cl 339/63 R, ASH-5m"! Examiner50seph McGlynn 339/94 R, 339/126 R, 339/1761, 339/253 R Attorney-Charles Cannon [51] lint. Cl ..H0lr 13/52, HOlr 13/54 [50] Field ofSearch 339/59-63, ABS R An electrical connector unit is provided for 74, 94, 1761253 detachably attaching a thermocouple to an electrical instrument, or instrument panel, or the like, without the use of [56] References Cited screws, or like fastening elements, and without the need for UNITED STATES PATENTS any tool other than a suitable soldering tool, preferably a sol- 2,823,364 2/1958 Walter 339/191 M dering tool ofthe so-cal1ed pencil type.

, 2 l Y 1 I? 1; /943 1 11 1 '28 1 1 2 44 1 11/ 1 27a. 3 1 h 34 62 36 3.9 1 25a 26a. 38 I 43 /2 /6Q 37 42 1 1 My N; 1 l /5a PATENTEDUET 19 I971 SHEET 2 BF 5 By W 42 ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR lUNllll OBJECTS An object of the invention is to provide a new and improved electrical connector which is especially adapted for use in detachably attaching a thermocouple to an electrical instrument, or instrument panel, or the like, without the use of screws, or like fastening elements, and without the need for any tool other than a suitable soldering, preferably a soldering tool of the so-called pencil type.

Another object of the invention is to provide a new and improved electrical connector which is especially adapted for use in detachably attaching a thermocouple to an electrical instrument, or instrument panel, or the like, without the use of screws, or like fastening elements, and embodying parts which, when assembled, will remain in their proper assembled position until it is desired to disassemble the unit.

A further object of the invention is to provide an electrical connector unit for attaching a thermocouple to an electrical instrument, or instrument panel, or the like, without the use of screws or other fastening elements, and which includes a plurality of detachably interconnected components arranged in end-to-end relationship and embodying novel means for detachably attaching the said components together in assembled relationship, and novel electrically conductive means carried by said components for conducting an electrical current therethrough.

An additional object of the invention is to provide, in one embodiment thereof, novel means carried by one of the end components for detachably attaching a thermocouple thereto, and novel means carried by the other end component for detachably attaching the lead wires from an electrical instrument, or instrument panel, thereto.

Other objects will appear hereinafter.

DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS In the Drawings:

FIG. I is a perspective view illustrating a typical and preferred embodiment of the present invention in assembled condition;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view illustrating the component parts of the new electrical connector shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged central longitudinal sectional view on line 3-4] in FIG. 1;

FIG. is an exploded perspective view illustrating, in central longitudinal section, the component parts of the new electrical connector shown in FIGS. 1 to 3, inclusive;

FIG. 5 is a view, partly in section and partly in elevation, of a pair of combination electrical conductor and latching members embodied in the new electrical connector unit, as shown in FIGS. I to 1, inclusive, and showing the same in assembled condition;

FIG. 6 is an exploded elevational view of the two pairs of electrical conductor members embodied in the form of the invention shown in FIGS. 1 to 5, inclusive, and showing the same in disassembled condition; 7

FIG. 7 is an enlarged central longitudinal sectional view of the form of the new electrical connector unit shown in FIGS. 1 to 6, inclusive, and showing a thermocouple unit and lead wires from an electrical instrument, or instrument panel, attached thereto;

FIG. S is a fragmentary exploded view, partly in section and partly diagrammatic, of a bank of the new electrical connector units as used for connecting thermocouple units to an instrument panel;

FIG. SA is a fragmentary central vertical sectional view on line 8A-fiA in FIG. 8, on a reduced scale;

FIG. 9 is a bottom plan view, as seen from the bottom in FIG. 8, showing a plurality of the new electrical connectors attached to an instrument panel;

FIG. I0 is an enlarged sectional detail view of the area circled and indicated at A in FIG. 5, showing the novel means embodied in the form of the invention shown in FIGS. I to 9,

inclusive, for detachably latching the intermediate components together in electrically conductive and physically assembled relationship;

FIG. II is an enlarged exploded elevational view illustrating in disassembled position certain parts of the novel combination electrical conductor and attaching unit embodied in the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 11 to Ill, inclusive, for attaching and holding the intermediate components of the new electrical connector unit in electrically conductive and assembled relationship;

FIG. 12 is an enlarged exploded elevational view illustrating a modified form of construction for attaching and holding the intermediate components of the new electrical connector unit in assembled and electrically conductive relationship;

FIG. 13 is a central vertical sectional view illustrating the manner in which and the means by which the intermediate components are held together in assembled and electrically conductive relationship by the modified form of attaching and electrically conductive members shown in FIG. I2;

FIG. M is an enlarged transverse sectional view on line 114-- M in FIG. 13;

FIG. 15 is a perspective view of a modification of the inventron;

FIG. 16 is an enlarged central vertical sectional view on line 116-116 in FIG. 15;

FIG. 17 is an enlarged central vertical sectional view of another modification of the invention; and

FIG. IS is a perspective view of a ferrule member which is embodied in the form of construction illustrated in FIG. 11?.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE FORM OF THE INVENTION SHOWN IN FIGS. I TO II, INCLUSIVE A typical and preferred embodiment of the new electrical connector unit is illustrated in FIGS. 1 to 11, inclusive, of the drawings, wherein it is generally indicated at It), and comprises a pair of similar and complementary outer or end components II and 12., respectively, and a pair of similar and complementary inner or intermediate components 13 and M, respectively. Since the two end components 11 and 12 are identical and complementary to each other in construction, only one of the same will be described in detail herein, and similar parts embodied in the other end component will be given the same reference numerals followed by the additional and distinguishing reference character a.

The bodies of the two intermediate: components 13 and M are identical and complementary in construction but other parts of the intermediate components 13 and M differ from each other. Hence those parts of the intermediate component M which are similar or identical in construction to corresponding parts embodied in the intermediate component I3 will be given the same reference numerals followed by the additional and distinguishing reference character a, and those parts embodied in the intermediate component 14 which differ from parts embodied in the intermediate component 13 will be given different reference numerals.

Thus it will be noted that the end component I1 includes a body 15 which may be made of any suitable electrically insulating and nonconductive material such, for example, as flexible natural latex rubber or synthetic plastic resinous elastomeric electrically insulating and nonconductive material, and for this purpose a suitable and preferred material is the flexible resilient silicone rubber known as SE-b 482 (General Electric) which is described in Technical Data Book 8-1 of the Silicone Products Department of the General Electric Company, Waterford, NY. The body of the end component II is generally oval shaped in cross section, and has a centrally arranged internal cavity 16 therein which is likewise generally oval shaped in cross section. The internal cavity 16 in the body 15 of the end component 11 is open at its axially inner end, as at 17 (FIG. 4') and has a reduced centrally arranged passage 18 formed therein at its axially outer end (FIGS. 3 and d). This central passage 118 communicates at its axially outer end with the interior 19 of an externally threaded metallic clamping ferrule 20 which is provided with radially spaced longitudinally extending slots 21 (FIGS. 1 and 4) so that it may be contracted somewhat, for a purpose which will be described hereinafter.

The inner end portion of the metallic clamping ferrule 20 has a pair of axially spaced external flanges 22 thereon which provide an anchoring groove 23 for the reception of an annular anchoring flange 24 which is formed in the flexible rubber or like body 15 of the end component 1 l.

The body 15 of the end component 11 has an attached element in the form of a circumferentially extending attaching or anchoring groove 25 formed therein, in its inner surface, adjacent the axially inner end thereof, and this attaching or anchoring groove 25 is adapted to receive a correspondingly shaped attaching element in the form of an attaching or anchoring flange 26 which is formed in the body 27 of the intermediate component or member 13. The body 27 of the intennediate component or member 13 is likewise preferably composed of the same material as that employed in making the body 15 of the end component leg, as described hereinbefore, and is shaped and sized to fit snugly, with a friction fit, into the central internal cavity 16 in the body 15 of the end component 11. The body 27 of the intermediate component or member 13 has an external flange 28 formed therein at its axially inner end (FIGS. 3, 4 and 7) and, when the parts are assembled, this flange 28 abuts against the axially inner end wall surface 17 of the body 15 of the end component 13, as shown in FIGS. 3 and 7. As shown in FIGS. 2, 3 and 4, a peripheral groove 61 is formed in the body 27 of the intermediate component 13, between the flanges 26 and 28, for a reason which will be pointed out hereinafter.

The body 27 of the intermediate component 13 has a hollow metallic combination electrical conductor and female latching member 30 mounted therein, in a suitable recess provided therefor, and this combination electrical conductor and female latching member 30 has a hollow open-ended terminal contact portion or post 31 at its axially outer end for the reception and attachment of the end portion of an electrical metallic conductor element of a thermocouple unit, as will be explained hereinafter. The hollow metallic combination electrical conductor and female latching member 30 has a latching slot 46 formed in the wall thereof between its ends, for reason which will be pointed out hereinafter (FIGS. 2, 3, 4, and 6).

The body of the intermediate component 13 also has a solid metallic electrical conductor member 32 mounted therein, in a suitable recess provided therefor in the body 27 of the intermediate member 13. This electrical conductor member 32 has a hollow open-ended terminal contact portion or post 33 at its axially outer end, for the reception and attachment thereto of a second metallic conductor element of a thermocouple unit, as will be described more fully hereinafier. In addition, the electrical conductor member 32 has a solid electrically conductive portion 34 which projects outwardly, and axially inwardly, of the body 27 of the intermediate member 13, and has a cone-shaped contact outer end portion 35.

It will thus be noted that the hollow contact members 31 and 33provide contact terminal posts which are disposed adjacent to or in side-by-side relationship in the internal cavity 16 of the end component 11 (FIGS. 3 and 7) for the reception of attaching end portions of the metallic elements of a thermocouple unit, as will be described presently.

The end component 12 includes a body which is preferably composed of the same material as described hereinbefore in connection with the members 11 and 13 and has a central internal cavity 160 therein which is provided, adjacent its axially inner end, with an internal attaching or anchoring groove 25a. A metallic ferrule 20a is attached to the body a of the end component 12 in the same manner as that in which the metallic ferrule is attached to the body 15 of the end component 11, and the metallic ferrule 20a has radially spaced longitudinally extending slots 21a therein.

The intermediate component 14 includes a body 27a which is likewise preferably made of the same material as described hereinbefore in connection with the members 11, 12 and 13, and a hollow metallic conductor member 36 is mounted in the body 27a of the member 14. This hollow metallic conductor 36 has a terminal contact portion or post 37 which projects axially outwardly from the body 270 of the intermediate component 14 (FIGS. 2, 3 and 6). The conductor member 36 has a cone-shaped recessed contact portion 42 at its axially outer end (FIGS. 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6).

The intermediate component 14 also has a solid metallic combination electrical conduct and male attaching or latching member 38 mounted therein and this male attaching or latching member 38 includes a combination electrically conductive and male attaching or latching portion 39 of reduced diameter which projects axially outwardly beyond the body 27a of the intermediate component 14. This male projecting combination conductor and attaching or latching portion 39 has a cone-shaped combination contact and latching head 40 at its axially outer end, and this combination contact and latching head portion 40 has an annular latching flange 41 formed thereon at its axially inner end (FIGS 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6). Likewise, the member 38 has a terminal contact portion or post 42 at its opposite or axially outer end and, when the parts are assembled, as in FIGS. 3 and 7, the terminal contact portions or posts 39 and 42 are disposed in side-by-side relationship in the internal cavity 16a of the end component 12.

The intermediate component 14 also has a peripheral attaching or anchoring flange 26a thereon which is adapted to fit into the internal attaching or anchoring groove 25a in the end component 12, and the intermediate component 14 has an external flange 28a which is adapted to abut against the external wall surface 17a of the body 15a of the end component 12, when the parts are in assembled position, as in FIGS. 3 and 7. In addition, the intermediate component 14 has a peripheral groove 62 formed therein between the flanges 26a and 28a FIGS. 2, 3 and 4) for a purpose which will be described hereinafter.

The external diameter of the electrical conductor member 32-34 is slightly less than the internal diameter of the metallic conductor member 36 so that the projecting portion 34 of the electrical conductor member 32-34-35 will slide readily into and out of the contact member 36 with the cone-shaped contact nose or inner end portion 35 thereof bearing against the cone-shaped recessed contact portion 43 at the axially outer end portion of the conductor member 36 so as to effect a good electrical contact between the parts 32-34-35 and 36-42 (FIGS. 3 and 4).

However, as shown in FIG. 11, the longitudinal axis of the body of the combination electrical conductor and attaching member 38-3940-41 is oflset slightly, preferably in the order of about two degrees (2 from the longitudinal axis of the intermediate component 14 and from the longitudinal axis of the electrical conductor members 30-31-32-33-34-35 and 36 carried thereby, for a purpose which will be described hereinafter; said longitudinal axes being indicated .by the broken line indicated atLA" in FIG. 11.

All of the electrically conductive contact members, as 30-38-32-36 (FIGS. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, l0 and 11) are preferably composed of suitable electrically conductive material of the so-called thermocouple type and quality such, for example, as so-called IRON-CONSTANTAN (Calibration J), so-called CHROMEL-ALUMEL (Calibration K), (Hoskins Mfg. Co.) and so-called COPPER-CONSTANTAN (Calibration T) as made by the Wilbur I-Iarris Co., in accordance with the requirements of the Instrument Society of America.

OPERATION AND USE OF THE FORM OF THE INVENTION SHOWN IN FIGS. 1 TO 1 l, INCLUSIVE The operation and use of the form of the new electrical connector unit shown in FIGS. 1 to l l, inclusive, are as follows: In

assembling the parts of the new electrical connector unit ill) for packaging, sale and shipment, the body 27 of the intermediate component 1L3 is manually inserted and forced into and frictionally fitted into the central cavity llti in the body i5 of the end component ll ll. During this operation the peripheral anchoring or attaching flange 26 on the body 27 of the intermediate component l3 fits snugly, with a friction fit, against the inner wall surface of the central cavity lid in the body of the end component llll, whereupon the parts assume the position in which they are shown in H08. 3 and 7, with the peripheral attaching or anchoring flange 26 on the intermediate component l3 engaging in the attaching or anchoring groove formed in the inner surface of the internal cavity 16 of the body 115 of the end component iii, and with the peripheral flange Eli on the body 27 of the intermediate component l3 abutting the axially inner end wall surface 117 of the end component lll, as shown in FIGS. 3 and 7. At this time, the metallic electrical contact elements or terminal posts 311 and 3? are disposed in side-by-side relationship in the central cavity M in the body lift of the end component illl, as shown in H65. 3 and 7.

The intermediate component M is then assembled with the intermediate component 13 by inserting the projecting portion Mi -35 of the metallic conductor member 31 into the body of the metallic conductor member 36 until the cone-shaped contact nose portion 35 engages the cone-shaped contact recess d3 in the hollow conductor member 36 while, at the same time, inserting the male projecting portion 39 of the combination electrical conductor and male latching member Elli into the body of the metallic combination electrical conductor and female latching member 350. During this operation the cone-shaped combination latching and contact head portion dMl of the combination electrical conductor and male attaching member Slit-39 frictionally engages and bears against the inner wall surface of the hollow conductor and female latching member 3G) by reason of the offsetting of the longitudinal axis of the combination electrical conductor and male attaching or latching member lib-39 M) from the longitudinal axis of the intermediate component M!- and from the longitudinal axis of the metallic conductor members 32-34-35 5 and 3b carried thereby, all of said longitudinal axis being indicated by the brolren line LA" in FIG. l l.

Accordingly, as the combination electrical conductor and male attaching or latching member Bib-ElMll-lll is thus moved through the body of the hollow conductor and female latching member 2th, the annular latching and contact flange ll on the head d ll snaps into and engages in the latching slot Alb in the hollow female conductor and latching member 30, thereby firmly latching the combination electrical conductor and male latching member 3ti-39-4lll-3l to the hollow conductor and female latching member -46 in physically assembled and electrically conductive relationship with each other. Thereupon, the intermediate components i3 and M and the parts 33ll and 333d -35 and 3&39-dll-4lll-d2 and 323 l-35 and 36-39 assume the positions in which they are shown in F1683 and 7.

The end component 12 may then be assembled with the intermediate component i l, with the peripheral attaching or anchoring flange 26a on the intermediate component l4 fitting snugly, with a friction fit, into the attaching or anchoring groove 25a in the body 115a of the end component 14, and with the end flange 28a on the intermediate component l4 abutting the internal end wall surface ll7a of the end component l2, whereupon the parts are disposed as shown in FIGS. 3 and '7 and with the electrical contact or terminal post members 37 and 42 disposed in the internal cavity lea in the body 115a of the end component 12, as shown in FIGS, 3 and 7.

When the end components 11 and 112 and the intermediate components l3 and ll ll are thus assembled, the new electrical connector unit ill is ready for packaging, sale, shipment and use.

When it is desired to use the new electrical connector unit it) as, for example, in connecting a thermocouple to an electrical instrument, or instrument panel, or the lilre, this may be accomplished as follows:

Thus, a typical and conventional thermocouple unit is generally indicated at M (MG. '7) and includes a body or housing 45 in which a pair of electrically conductive dissimilar electrically conductive metallic members we are mounted, as is well known in the art of thermocouples. Each of these electrically conductive, metallic thermocouple members do has an inner end portion 47 which is adapted to be attached, as by soldering (preferably using a soldering gun of the pencil type) to a corresponding one of the metallic thermocouple members 45 are suitably soldered or welded together and to the end wall of the housing 45, as at iii (FllG. 7). An internally threaded clamping nut 49 is provided for threaded attachment to the externally threaded split metallic ferrule 20 so as to clamp the thermocouple unit Ml in position of use to and upon the electrical connector unit lltl (H6. 7).

An electrical conductor member Sill is shown in H6. 7 and embodies a pair of lead wires or conductor wires 50 which are adapted to be connected to any desired electrical instrument, or instrument panel. Each of these lead wires St) has an inner end portion 52 which is adapted to be attached, as by soldering, to one of the contact terminal members or posts 39 and 42. An internally threaded clamping nut 53 is provided for threaded attachment to the externally threaded split metallic ferrule Ella so as to clamp the conductor member 56 and its lead wires 51 in position of use to and upon the electrical connector unit lllll (lFlG. 7).

A typical instrument panel is fragmentarily shown in FIGS. d, 8A and 9 of the drawings, wherein it is generally indicated at 54, and has rows of spaced openings 5 therein for a reason which will be pointed out presently. in order to attach a bank of typical thermocouple units, as M, to an instrument panel, as M, by means of the new electrical connector units 110, this may be accomplished as follows: The end component lll may be manually detached from the intermediate component l3 and the (in use) inner end portion of the thermocouple unit M inserted into the split metallic ferrule 20 with the inner end portions 47 of the electrically conductive thermocouple members do of the thermocouple unit M inserted through the metallic ferrule 20, and through the passage 18, and suitably bent and attached, as by soldering, to the metallic terminal contact members or posts 31 and 33 (H6. 7). The end component ill, and attached thermocouple unit 44 may then be reassembled with the intermediate component 13 and the clamping nut 49 screwed into position on the split metallic ferrule 20 so as to clamp the thermocouple unit 44 in assembled position on the electrical connector unit lllll.

Likewise, the end component 12 may be manually detached from the intermediate component M and the body of the electrical conductor member 50 inserted into the split metallic ferrule 20a with the instrument lead wires 51 extended through the passage 118a and with their inner end portions 52 suitably bent and attached, as by soldering, to the contact terminal members or posts 39 and i2. An internally threaded clamping nut 53 may then be secured in position on the split metallic ferrule 20a so as to clamp the conductor member 50 and the instrument lead wires Sll embodied therein to the electrical connector unit if), as shown in MG. 7..

Thus, it will be noted that when in position of use the assembled end components 112 and M and attached lead or conductor wires SW51 are mounted at one side of the instrument panel 53 with the end components ill and i3 and attached thermocouple units d4 disposed at the opposite side of the instrument panel 54, as shown in FIG. El.

in order firmly to mount the electrical connector units if in attached position on the instrument panel 54, a generally rectangular-shaped clamping plate member 56 is provided in association with each of the electrical connector units it) and each of the openings 55 in the instrument panel 54. As shown in H68. 8 and dA, each of those clamping plate members 56 is provided with a slot 57 which extends between the sides thereof, and each of these slots has an inlet mouth or opening 58 at its outer end, the slot 56 forming a pair of spaced arms 59 in each of the clamping members 56.

In attaching the electrical connector units and thermocouple units 44 to the instrument panel 54 the intermediate components 14 are mounted in the openings 55 in the instrument panel 54 with one surface of the flange 28a on each of the intermediate components 14 arranged generally flush with or projecting slightly below (as shown in FIGS. 8 and 8A) the bottom surface 60 of the instrument panel 54. The clamping plate members 56 are then manually slipped into position of use along the (as shown) upper surface 61 of the instrument panel 54 with the marginal edge portions of the clamping plate members 56 which define the slots 57 therein engaging in the peripheral grooves 62 which are formed in the intermediate components 14 (FIGS. 2, 3 and 4), whereupon the clamping plate members 56 are adhesively secured, as at 67 (FIG. 8A) to the upper surface 61 of the instrument panel 54, by means of any suitable adhesive, as shown in FIG. 8A.

Hence, to complete the mounting of the thermocouple units, as 44, on the instrument panel 53, the assembled end components 11 and attached intermediate components 13, with the thermocouple units 44 attached thereto, are attached in position of use upon the instrument panel 54 by inserting the combination metallic conductor and attaching members 34-35, which are carried by the intermediate component 13, into the hollow female metallic conductor and attaching members 36 which are carried by the intermediate component members 14 (FIGS. 2 and 4) with the portions 34-35 of each of the electrical conductor members 32-34-35 projecting into a corresponding one of the female electrical conductor members 36-37 so as to provide a good electrical contact therewith while, at the same time, the parts 38-39-40-41 and 30-46 attach the intermediate components 13 and 14 in assembled and electrically conductive relationship with each other, thereby completing the mounting of the thermocouple units 44 in position of use on the instrument panel 54.

Any one or all of the thermocouple units 44 may be readily detached from the instrument panel 54 by manually separating the assembled end components 11 and attached intermediate components 13, and attached thermocouple units 44, from the assembled end components 12 and intermediate components 14. This operation is facilitated by the fact that the latching engagement between the latching and male contact head 40-41 on each of the members 38-39-40-41 and the latching slots 46 in the hollow conductor and female latching members 30 is such that when manual force is applied to the assembled end components 11 and intermediate components 13 (and attached thermocouple units 44) the walls of the hollow conductor and female attaching members 30 will yield slightly, due to their innate resiliency, to enable the combination latching and contact flanges 41 on the heads 40 to be separated from the combination latching and contact slots 46 in the conductor and female latching members 30.

MODIFICATION OF FIGS. 12, 13 AND 14 A modified form of construction for holding the intermediate components 13 and 14 in assembled and electrically conductive relationship is illustrated in FIGS. 12, 13 and 14 of the drawings and those parts thereof which are similar to, parts embodied in the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1 to 11, inclusive, have been given the same reference numerals followed by the additional and distinguishing reference character b,

Thus in the modification illustrated in FIGS. 12, 13 and 14 the cooperating attaching and electrically conductive members 30-38-39-40-41 are eliminated and two pairs of cooperating metallic attaching and electrically conductive members 32b-34b-35b and 36b-39b and 43b are provided. These cooperating pairs of members 32b-34b-35b-36b-39b and 43bare shaped and sized to fit tightly and telescopically together, with a friction fit, so as to hold the assembled intermediate components 13b and 14b in assembled and electrically conductive relationship, as shown in FIG. 14.

MODIFICATION OF FIGS. 15 AND 16 Another modification of the invention is illustrated in FIGS. 15 and 16 of the drawings and those parts thereof which are similar or correspond in construction, use and mode of operation to corresponding parts in the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1 to 11, inclusive, have been given the same reference numerals followed by the additional and distinguishing reference character c.

The form of construction illustrated in FIGS. 15 and 16 is substantially similar to that shown in FIGS. 1 to 11, inclusive, but differs therefrom in that the clamping ferrules 20 and 20a and attached clamping nuts 49 and 53 are eliminated and the body 150 of each of the end components 1 1c and is formed with an outer neck flange 63 which has a centrally arranged opening 64 therein for the passage of the lead-in conductor wires 51c and the thermocouple members 46c -47c (FIG. 16).

MODIFICATION OF FIGS. 17 AND 18 A further modification of the invention is illustrated in FIGS. 17 and 18 of the drawings and those parts thereof which correspond in construction, use and mode of operation to similar parts embodied in the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1 to 11, inclusive, have been given similar reference numerals followed by the additional and distinguishing reference character d.

The form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 17 and 18 is substantially similar to that shown in FIGS. 1 to 11, inclusive, except that in this form of the invention a flexible, resilient, strain-relieving ferrule 65, having a central longitudinally extending opening 66 therein, is arranged within each of the split externally threaded clamping ferrules 20d and the lead-in conductor wires 51d and the thermocouple members 46d-47d lead-in conductor are inserted through these flexible, resilient, strain-relieving ferrules 65 (FIGS. I 7 and 18). In the use of the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1 7 and 18 internally threaded metallic clamping nuts, as 49d and 53d, are threaded onto the externally threaded metallic clamping ferrules 20d and thereby firmly clamp the flexible, resilient ferrules 65 in position of use within the externally threaded metallic clamping units 20d without exerting any strain or pressure on the lead-in conductor wires 51d or on the thermocouple members 4611-47.

The flexible, resilient ferrules 65 may be made of the same material described hereinbefore as used in the bodies of the components 1 1, 12, 13 and 14 and these flexible, resilient ferrules 65 are particularly useful in those instances in which the inside diameter of the externally threaded clamping ferrules, as 20d is less than 5/16 inch. When so used the flexible, resilient ferrules 65 not only prevent strain on the lead-in conductor wires 51d and on the thermocouple members 46d and 47d but they also prevent the parts from turning and twisting out of proper position when in use.

It will thus be seen from the foregoing description, considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, that the present invention provides new and improved electrical connector units for their intended purposes, having the desirable advantages and characteristics, and accomplishing their intended objects including those hereinbefore pointed out and others which are inherent in the invention.

Iclaim:

1. An electrical connector unit for detachably attaching a thermocouple embodying a pair of electrically conductive metallic thermocouple elements to an electrical instrument or instrument panel, or the like, comprising:

1. a plurality of interconnected separable components arranged axially of the said connector unit in end-to-end relationship and including a. a pair of outer or end components each including 1. a body of flexible, resilient electrically nonconductive material; b. a pair of intermediate components each including 1. a body of flexible, resilient, electrically nonconductive material arranged between the said outer end components in end-to-end relationship therewith; and

2. pairs of interengageable electrical conductor members anchored in and carried by the said intermediate components,

2. means for detachably holding each of the said outer or end components in assembled relationship with an adjacent one of the said intermediate components;

3. additional means for holding the said intermediate components together in assembled relationship including a. a female combination electrical contact and latching member anchored in one of the said intermediate components and having 1. a combination electrical contact and latching element formed therein between its ends; and

b. a male combination electrical contact and latching member;

4 the said female combination electrical contact and latching member and the said combination male electrical contact and latching member being arranged generally parallel to the longitudinal axis of the said outer or end components and of the said intermediate components; and

5. the said combination male electrical contact and latching member including a. a longitudinally extending base portion which is yieldably embedded in and is surrounded by and is in intimate contact with the material of the said flexible, resilient body of the other one of the said intermediate components and including b. a protruding shaft portion which projects outwardly of the said flexible resilient body of the said other one of the said intermediate components and is ofi'set laterally from the longitudinal axis of the said female combination electrical contact and latching member and from the longitudinal axis of the said outer or end components and of the said intermediate components 6. whereby when the said intermediate components are assembled together the said protruding shaft portion of the said male combination contact and latching member will yield slightly by reason of the said base portion thereof being yieldably embedded in the said flexible, resilient body of the said other one of said intermediate components and will yieldably engage the said female combination contact and latching member in electrical contact and latching engagement therewith.

2%. An electrical connector unit as defined in claim l in which a. the said protruding shaft portion of the said combination male electrical contact and latching member has l. a combination latching head and contact member formed thereon at its outer end which is yieldably engageable with the said female combination electrical contact and latching member when the said male combination contact and latching member is inserted into the said female combination contact and latching member.

3. An electrical connector unit as defined in claim 1 in which the said male combination electrical contact and latching member is offset from the longitudinal axis of the said female combination electrical contact and latching member at an angle of approximately 2 t 4. An electrical connector unit for detachably attaching a thermocouple embodying a pair of electrically conductive metallic thermocouple elements to an electrical instrument or instrument panel, or the like, comprising:

1. a plurality of interconnected separable components arranged axially of the said connector unit in end-to-end relationship and including a. a pair of outer or end components each including 1. a body of flexible, resilient electrically nonconductive material;

b. a pair of intermediate components each including 1. a body of flexible, resilient, electrically nonconductive material arranged between the said outer end components in end-to-end relationship therewith; and 2. pairs of interengageable electrical conductor members anchored in and carried by the said intermediate components; 2. means for detachably holding each of the said outer or end components in assembled relationship with an adjacent one of the said intermediate components; 3. additional means for holding the said intermediate components together in assembled relationship including a. a female combination electrical contact and latching member anchored in one of the said intermediate components and having 1. a combination electrical contact and latching element formed therein between its ends; and b. a male combination electrical contact and latching member anchored in the said flexible, resilient body of the other one of the said intermediate components and having a combination contact and latching head thereon whereby the said intermediate components may be assembled together in physically assembled relationship and the said pairs of interengageable electrical conductor members assembled in electrically conductive relationship by inserting the said male combination electrical contact and latching member into the said female combination electrical contact and latching member and into latching engagement and into electrically conductive relationship with the said female combination electrical contact and latching member; 4. the said female combination electrical contact and latching member and the said combination male electrical contact and latching member being arranged generally parallel to the longitudinal axis of the said outer or end components and of the said intermediate components and 5. each of the said combination male electrical contact and latching members including a. a longitudinally extending shaft portion which is yieldably mounted in the said flexible, resilient body of the said other one of the said intermediate components and is ofiset laterally from the longitudinal axis of the said female combination electrical contact and latching member and from the longitudinal axis of the said outer or end components and of the said intermediate components whereby when the said intermediate components are assembled together the said male combination contact and latching member will yield slightly in the said flexible, resilient body of the said other one of said intermediate components and will yieldably engage the said female combination contact and latching member in electrically contacting and latching engagement therewith; and

b. an enlarged combination electrical contact and latching head at one of the said longitudinally extending shaft portions thereof; and

c. the said enlarged combination electrical contact and latching head yieldably engaging the said female combination electrical contact and latching member when the said male combination electrical contact and latching member is inserted into the said female combination electrical contact and latching member;

6. the said female combination electrical contact and latching member being in the form of a hollow tubular member and including a. a sidewall portion having therein 1. a slot for the reception of the said enlarged contact and latching head portion on the said longitudinally extending shaft portion of the said male combination electrical contact and latching member.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2823364 *Dec 16, 1950Feb 11, 1958Thermo Electric Co IncThermocouple connector panel
US2824290 *Sep 23, 1954Feb 18, 1958Pyle National CoMulti-contact duplicate engaging connector
US2869094 *May 1, 1957Jan 13, 1959Gen ElectricAdjustable panel mounting for cord connector
US3246278 *Sep 18, 1962Apr 12, 1966Electro Nite Engineering CoPolarized latching electrical coupling
FR1011629A * Title not available
GB319905A * Title not available
SE91486A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5334035 *Jun 8, 1992Aug 2, 1994Richard Hirschmann GmbhPlug connector
US7097469 *May 5, 2003Aug 29, 2006R.A. Phillips Industries, IncContact insert cartridge for plugs of tractor/trailer jumper cables
Classifications
U.S. Classification439/246, 439/593, 439/346
International ClassificationH01R13/20, H01R13/502, H01R24/00, H01R13/02, H01R24/10
Cooperative ClassificationH01R13/5025, H01R13/20
European ClassificationH01R13/502A