US 3644873 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
 Feb. 22, 1972 United States Patent Dalton et al.
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS [541 ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR FOR A RADIO RECEPTACLE  Inventors: Wayne D. Dalton; Stanley C. Mackzum;
h Mann, P I F. Se b Sparkes..............................200/51.09 anofanchbmgy 3,348,116 10/1967 .320/2  Assignee: General Electric Company Freeman et al.
Primary Examiner-Joseph H. McGlynn Attorney-James J. Williams, Frank L. Neuhauser, Oscar B. Waddell and Joseph B. Forman 22 Filed: Oct. 22,1970
21] Appl.No.: 83,064
 ABSTRACT 339/ 9, -0 00/ 153 LA, An electrical device is provided with a receptacle for receiving 7 3 186 R a radio. A lever carrying one or more contacts is pivotally M11011 13/54 positioned on one wall of the receptacle so that when the radio 339/-791 is inserted in the receptacle, the lever is pivoted and its con- 339/91, 186; ZOO/51.09, 51.12, 61.59, 153 LA;
 U. S.  Int. (I  Field of Search tacts brought into engagement with contacts on the radio.
4 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures PATENTEUFEB 22 I972 SHEET 1 OF 2 ML UN NZNU ZOKAA ST B MMA .A S M N HE W W mM m YME A U wmmA s P BY TH RATTORNEY,
PATENTEDFEB 22 I972 SHEET 2 BF 2 FIGA mvsmons: WAYNE D.'DALT0N,
, STANLEY c. MACKZUM,
FRIEDRICH H. MANN, PAUL F. SENS'BAUGH,
TH IR ATTORNEY.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Our invention relates to an electrical connector, and particularly to an electrical connector for use in battery chargers or other devices having a receptacle for receiving a radio whose battery is to be charged, or for receiving a radio which is to continue operating while in the receptacle.
Many government, industrial, transportation, and service personnel carry a portable and personal radio receiver or radio transmitter-receiver to increase their effectiveness and usefulness. Typically, such radio equipment contains small batteries which power the equipment, and which periodically require recharging, leads from the battery, and other parts of the radio circuit, if desired, are connected to terminals on the outside of the radio equipment case for connection to the battery charger or to other components if desired.
Accordingly, a relatively specific object of our invention is to provide a new and improved electrical connector for a battery charger that permits a radio to be inserted in the charger and that provides good electrical connections between the charger or other components and the terminals on the radio case.
A general object of our invention is to provide a new and improved electrical connector for a radio receptacle.
Another object of our invention is to provide a novel electrical connector that permits a good and reliable electrical connection between two points to be easily made, and that also permits that connection to be easily broken.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Briefly, these and other objects are achieved in accordance with our invention by a connector having a lever that is pivotally mounted between its ends on one wall of a radio receptacle. The wall has a front opening adjacent the front end of the lever, and a rear opening adjacent the rear end of the lever. Mechanical means are provided to urge the front end of the lever away from the front opening. A contact is attached to the front end of the lever, and an operating cam is attached to the rear end of the lever and projects through the rear opening. When a radio is inserted in the receptacle, a surface on the radio case engages the operating cam and causes the lever to pivot so that its contact moves inwardly through the front opening to engage an appropriately positioned terminal on the radio case. A stop surface on the Wall of the receptacle stops the radio at the proper point of insertion. When the radio is withdrawn, the mechanical means cause the lever to pivot back to its normal position with the contacts away from the wall. Thus, our connector provides an electrical connection that is easily and reliably made, and that can be easily broken when desired.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The subject matter which we regard as our invention is particularly pointed out and distinctly claimed in the claims. The structure and operation of our invention, together with further objects and advantages, may be better understood from the following description given in connection with the accompanying drawing, in which:
FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of a radio which is to be inserted in a receptacle which may be provided with an electrical connector is accordance with our invention;
FIG. 2 shows an exploded perspective view of an electrical connector in accordance with our invention which can be used on the receptacle of FIG. 1; and
FIGS. 3 and 4 show cross-sectional views taken along the line 3--4 of FIG. 1 for illustrating the operation of our electricul connector of FIG. 2 as used in the receptacle of FIG. I.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT In FIG. 1, we have shown a radio receiver 10 which is to be inserted in the direction indicated by the arrow into a receptacle 12. The receptacle 12 may include, by way of example, a battery charger for charging the batteries in the radio receiver 10. As shown, the receiver 10 carries a separate, detachable compartment or case 14 which holds the batteries for operating the receiver 10. However, the receiver and battery compartment may be contained in one unit. Leads from the batteries in the case 14 are brought out on terminals 16 positioned on one side of the receiver 10. In addition, additional terminals may be provided on the receiver 10 so as to provide a connection to an external antenna in case the receiver batteries must be recharged in a charger located in an automobile or some other space enclosed by metal which would reduce the efficiency of the receiver 10. The receptacle 12 may take any suitable form, but typically is provided with a source of electrical power, such as 1l5-volt, 60-cycle alternating current, which is rectified and reduced to the appropriate voltage, and with other connections, such as to an antenna, so that the receiver 10 can continue operating while in the receptacle 12. The receptacle 12 is provided with a suitable hole or opening 18 which has the same configuration as the battery case 14 so that the radio receiver 10 and the battery case 14 fit snugly and properly in the receptacle 12. We have shown the receiver 10, the battery case 14, and the opening 18 as being generally rectangular in configuration. However, it is to be understood that other shapes and configurations may also be provided. The battery case 14 is provided with a groove or keyway 20 positioned along one wall or along two opposite walls so as to fit in appropriately shaped projections on the wall or walls forming the opening 18, and thus ensure the proper insertion of the battery cases 14 and a relatively snug fit between the battery case 14 and the opening 18.
When the radio receiver 10 and the battery case 14 are inserted in the opening 18, connections are made from the receptacle 12 to the terminals 16 by a connector in accordance with our invention and as shown in FIG. 2. In FIG. 2, we have shown a portion of the structure forming the opening 18 in FIG. 1. This structure comprises a wall 2211, two parallel walls 22b, 22c, and a fourth wall (not shown) which would be opposite and parallel to the wall 220. A from opening 23 is positioned near the front edge 24 of the wall 220. and a smaller rear opening 25 is positioned toward the rear of the wall 22a. With respect to FIG. 1, the front edge 24 of the wall 22a would be positioned at the upper surface of the receptacle 12, and the rear of the wall 22a would be positioned at a lower point down within the receptacle 12. A pivot is provided outside and adjacent the wall 220 this pivot being provided by a pin 26. The pin 26 is positioned in two holes or openings 27 located in walls or supports 28 adjacent the wall 22a. The pin 26 provides a pivot axis which is generally parallel to the inner surface of the wall 220, and which is transverse to the longitudinal dimension of the wall 22a. This longitudinal dimension extends in the direction along which the receiver 10 and the battery case 14 are moved when placed in the receptacle 12. A keying projection 31 is positioned on the inner surface of the wall 22a and extends from the opening 25 towards the rear of the wall 22a. A depression or groove 32 is provided in the outer surface of the wall 22a for receiving a compression coil spring 33. The structure comprising the walls 22a, 22b, 220, the other wall opposite the wall 22a, the supports 28, and the projection 31 can be formed of a single, integral piece of insulating material, such as a thermosetting plastic.
A lever 36 is provided from a single, integral piece of insulating material such as a thermosetting plastic. The lever 36 is shaped so that it can be positioned between the supports 28, so that its front end 37 is positioned near the opening 23, and so that its rear end 38 is positioned near the opening 25. A pivot hole 39 extends across the lever 36. One or more electrical contact springs 40 are fastened on the lever 36 by any suitable means, such as a threaded screw 41. The front end of the contact spring 40 is provided with a projecting contact 42 which passes through a suitable opening 43 in the lever 36. The rear of the contact spring 40 is arranged to be connected to a suitable wire 44 which goes to an appropriate part of the battery charging circuit. The contact spring 40 is made of a metallic, resilient material so as to provide suitable spring action for reasons that will be indicated hereinafter. The lever 36 is provided with an operating cam or projection 45 at its rear end 38, this projection 45 being shaped to project through the opening 25 beyond the inner surface of the wall 22a. The lever 36 is also provided with a suitable hole or depression (not visible in FIG. 2) for receiving the upper end of the spring 33. With'the spring 33 positioned in the depression 32, the lever 36 (with its plurality of contact springs 40) is mounted by moving the lever 36 downward as viewed in FIG. 2 until is pivot hole 39 is aligned with the two holes 27 in the walls 28. The pin 26 is pushed through the first hole 27, the hole 39 in the lever 36, and the second hole 27. When the lever 36 is so mounted, the contacts 42 are over the opening 23, and the projection 45 extends through the opening 25.
FIG. 3 shows a cross-sectional view taken along the line 3-4 of FIG. 1, and shows the lever 36 mounted in the proper position for engaging one of the contacts 16 on the radio receiver 10. FIG. 3 also shows the receiver and its battery case 14 positioned partially in the opening 18 in the receptacle 12. In
FIG. 3, it will be noted that the projecting contact 42 on the spring 40 is positioned in the opening 23, but does not extend to a point within the inner surface of the wall 22a. It will also be noted that the operating cam 45 does project to a point within the inner surface of the wall 22a, but does not project beneath the innermost surface of the keying projection 31. As the receiver 10 and the battery case 14 are inserted, the groove or keyway permits the battery case 14 to clear or pass beyond the operating cam 45 and the keying projection 31. However, once the groove 20 passes by the operating cam 45, the surface 20a at the end of the groove 20 engages the operating cam 45 and, as viewed in FIG. 3, pushes the cam 45 to the right and causes the lever 36 to pivot about its pin 26 in a counterclockwise direction. At this time, the terminal 16 on the receiver 10 is opposite the contact 42 on the lever 36.
Pivoting of the lever 36 continues until, as shown in FIG. 4, 1
the lever 36 is in its maximum counterclockwise position with the spring 33 compressed, and with the contact 42 on the lever 36 in firm engagement with the terminal 16 on the receiver 10. Travel of the radio receiver 10 is halted when the surface 20a on the receiver 10 engages a front surface 31a on the keying projection 31. It will be apparent to persons skilled in the art that the resilient characteristics of the contact spring 40 permit the spring 40 to move away from the lever 36 at the front end 37 to accommodate dimensional tolerances between the receptacle 12 and the radio 10.
When the battery has received sufficient charge, the radio receiver 10 may be removed. When the receiver 10 is removed, the spring 33 causes the lever 37 to pivot clockwise, the operating cam 45 moves into the groove 20, and the contact 42 moves outward from the terminal 16, thus permitting the radio receiver 10 and the battery case 14 to be easily removed.
It will thus be seen that we provide a new and improved connector, which is useful for radio receptacles, and particularly battery chargers. While we have shown only one embodiment of our connector, persons skilled in the art will appreciate that modifications may be made. For example, the lever 36 may have a number of shapes, depending upon design preference, so long as it is pivoted along an axis between its front and rear ends, and is suitably dimensioned so that its projecting contact registers with the appropriate terminal when the operating cam is engaged and the lever pivots. Additional levers, with the structure described, may be provided on other walls forming the opening 18. Other samples of modification may be different types of springs for urging the lever to take a clockwise position as viewed in FIGS. 3 and 4, and different types of contact configurations positioned on the lever. Different types of electrical connections may be provided in addition to or in place of connections for charging a battery, such as a connection between the radio and an antenna. And finally, the contact 42 on the contact spring 40 may, when it engages the terminal 16, cause actuation such as moving a lever from one contact to a separate contact on the radio receiver. Therefore,
while our invention has been described with reference to a particular embodiment, it is to be understood that modifications may be made without departing from the spirit of the invention or from the scope of the claims.
What we claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent of the United States is:
1. An improved device for providing electrical connections between an electrical device having a generally rectangular receptacle and between a radio having a generally rectangular shape for fitting into said receptacle, said device comprising:
a. at least one wall forming one side of a receptacle, said wall having an inner surface and an outer surface;
b. said inner and outer surfaces extending from a front edge of said wall in a selected direction toward the rear of said wall;
0. a keying'projection positioned on said inner surface, said keying projection having a stop surface located at a selected point on said inner surface between said front edge and said rear, and extending from said stop surface toward said rear in a direction substantially parallel to said selected direction;
d. said wall having a front opening between said inner and said outer surfaces, said front opening being located to the rear of said front edge;
. said wall having a rear opening between said inner and outer surfaces, said rear opening being located to the rear of said front opening and to the front of said stop surface;
f. a lever pivotally mounted on said outer surface for pivoting about the axis that extends parallel to said inner surface and transversely to said selected direction, and that is located to the rear of said front opening;
g. said lever having a front and a rear respectively positioned adjacent said front and rear openings;
h. means engaging said lever for urging said front of said lever away from said outer surface and said front opening, and for urging said rear of said lever toward said outer surface and said rear opening;
. at least one electrical contact mounted on said front of said lever and extending therefrom toward said front opening;
. and an operating cam positioned on said rear of said lever and extending therefrom through said rear opening and inwardly of said receptacle beyond said inner surface so as to be engaged by a surface of a radio to cause said lever to pivot about said axis so that said front of said lever moves toward said outer surface, and its contact passes through said front opening sand engages a corresponding terminal on said surface of said radio;
k. said radio having a corresponding shape for being guided by said keying projection when inserted in said receptacle, and for being stopped during insertion by said stop surface on said keying projection.
2. The improved device of claim 1 wherein said electrical contact is resiliently mounted on said lever.
3. The improved device of claim 1 wherein said urging means comprise a compression coil spring positioned between said lever and said outer surface.
4. The improved device of claim 3 wherein said electrical contact is resiliently mounted on said lever.
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3,644, 873 Dated Februarv 22, 1972 Inventor) W.D. Dalton; S.C. Mackzum; F.H. Mann; P.F. Sensabaugh It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
Col. 1, line 16 cancel"recharging, leads" and insert recharging. Leads Col. 3, line 15 v cancel "until is" and insert until its Col. 4, line 39, cancel "about the" and insert about an Signed and sealed this 6th day of March 1973.
EDWARD M.FLETCHER,JR. ROBERT GOTTSCHALK Attesting Officer v Commissioner of Patents ORM PO-lOSO (10-69) USCOMM-DC 60376-P89 f1 u.s. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: I969 o-- 306-334 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3,644,873 Dated Februarv 22, 1972 lnventofls) W.D. Dalton; S.C. Mackzum; F.H. Mann; P.F. Sensabaugh It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
Col. 1, line 16 cancel"recharging, leads" and insert recharging. Leads Col. 3, line 15, cancel "until is" and insert until its Col. 4, line 39, cancel "about the" and insert about an Signed and sealed this 6th day of March 1973.
EDWARD M.FLETCHER,JR. ROBERT GOTTSCHALK v Attesting Officer Commissioner of Patents 'ORM I'D-1050 (10-69) USCOMM-DC 603764 69 U45v GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: I969 O- 1 ,6434