|Publication number||US3736652 A|
|Publication date||Jun 5, 1973|
|Filing date||Mar 6, 1972|
|Priority date||Mar 6, 1972|
|Publication number||US 3736652 A, US 3736652A, US-A-3736652, US3736652 A, US3736652A|
|Original Assignee||Boeing Co|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (3), Referenced by (3), Classifications (5)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent [191 Fletcher, J r.
 METHODS FOR FORMING WIRE BUNDLES AND AN APPARATUS FOR CARRYING OUT THE METHOD  Inventor: Ralph P. Fletcher, Jr., Everett,
 Assignee: The Boeing Company, Seattle,-
 Filed: Mar. 6, 1972  App]; No.: 231,925
A Related U.S. Application Data  Continuation of set. No. 55,502, July 16, 1970,.
, U.S. CL, ..29/429, 29/200 D, 29/203 R, 29/203 MW  Int. Cl. .....B23p 19/00, HOSk 13/00, HOSk 3/32  Field of Search ..29/429, 200 D, 203 R, 29/203 MW  References Cited UNITED'STATES PATENTS 2,462,816 2/1949 Schner, Jr. et al ..225/54 X 2,765,205 10/1956 Capella et al ..225/99 X 3,491,426 1/1970 Grassauer ..29/203 J Primary Examiner-Thomas H. Eager Attorney-Lee E. Johnson -571 t ABSTRACT Two methods are disclosed for forming wire bundles, one method for forming an elongated wire bundle longer than the conventional working table and a second method for forming a shorter wire bundle, An apparatus for carrying out both methods comprises an endless canvas belt stretched between two rollers mounted at the ends of an elongated table, a drawing [451 June 5, 1973 on rollers at each end of the table and overlying and supported by the belt for moving therewith, and a plurality of wires from reels at one end of the table for being positioned over the drawing and held in precise position with detachable brackets during the forming of the wire bundle. Then after completion of the wire bundle, or portion thereof, the endless belt is started moving and as the completed wire bundle winds on to a storage reel, the brackets are released by a trigger device to permit the drawing to separate from the' endless belt and wind up on a storage roller.
For carrying out the former method, as the first portion of the drawing for which the wire bundle has been completely assembled, is wound on the storage roller, it pulls the second portion of the drawing and the wire related to that portion out over the table for being clamped to the endless belt so that the rest of the bundle may be formed thereover. This continuous forming and storing of the wire bundle portionsis carried on until all of the elongated wire bundle is coiledon its storage reel before the next wirebundle is begun,
.Forcarrying out the latter method, as a complete wire bundle is formed over the drawing, the finished wire bundle is disconnected from the drawing and the endless belt, and wound on the storage reel as the drawing is wound on its storage roller. Then the drawing is reversed and rewound back on the table for permitting the forming of another wire bundle like the first.
For ease of working on the wire bundles by human beings working over the drawing, the portion including the drawing and its rollers, the supporting endless belt and its rollers, the clamping brackets attaching all together, and the wires extending over the drawing may be tilted to a convenient angle.
A quick opening bracket with a plurality of clamps thereon is disclosed which opens instantly upon contact with a trigger device at the end of the work table.
PATENTED JUH 5 I975 'SHEET 1 OF 2 I N VE N TOR.
K/M/D/Z/ FLETCHER METHODS FOR FORMING WIRE BUNDLES AND AN APPARATUS FOR CARRYING OUT THE METHOD This application is a continuation of a copending application Ser. No. 55,502, filed July 16, 1970, now abandoned.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Two methods and an apparatus for carrying out the methods are disclosed for forming wire bundles.
For forming both an elongated wire bundle which is longer than the convenient or conventional working table and a short wire bundle, the disclosed apparatus was invented. This includes an endless canvas belt mounted on two rollers at opposite ends of a table for being driven in either direction, a drawing overlaying the belt and moveablein either direction on rollers likewise at the opposite ends of the table, a plurality of wires fed from reels at the supply end of the table, extendable over the drawing for being formed into wire bundles, and wound onto a storage reel at the storage end of the table, and detachable brackets and clamps for holding together the wires, drawing, and endless belt during assembly.
For carrying out the first method, as the completed wire bundle for the first portion of the drawing is wound on its storage reel and as that first portion of the drawing is wound on its roller, the second portion of the drawing is pulled out thereby and positioned over the endless belt, clamped thereto, the second portion of the wires is pulled out from their supply reels, as by the completed. first portion, and the second portion of the wire bundle formed thereover. As this second portion is completed, it is wound on the storage reel as is the drawing, both unrolling the third portion as the secend portion is stored. This process is repeated until the whole elongated wire bundle is completed.
For carrying out the second method of forming a short wire bundle, i.e., one being the length of the working table, the drawing is reversed after the completed wire bundle and drawing portion therefor are wound on their respective storage reel and roller. After the same drawing portion has been repositioned intermediate the rollers on the table and under the new wires which may have been pulled out by the preceding and receding completed wire bundle, a new wire bundle is formed over the same drawing portion.
If so desired, a duplicate drawing may be connected to and pulled out by the former receding drawing portion instead of reversing the drawing.
A novel bracket disclosed has clamps for securing the drawing to the endless belt at the edges of each and additional clamps are positionable along the length of the bracket for securing the wires in the desired precise position over the drawing. Further, upon contact with a trigger device at the end of the table, all clamps on the bracketinstantly releaseto wide open position.
Accordingly a principal object of this invention is to provide a method for forming wire bundles longer than the work table on which they are made, and a method for forming table length or shorter wire bundles.
A further object of this invention is to reduce time and effort in forming wire bundles by completing the assembly of the wire bundle continuously and not requiring assemblers to route each wire end to and on the board and back again with repeated trips from end to end of the board.
A still further object of this invention is to reduce the assembly time and motion by a substantial amount.
Another object of this invention is to provide an assembly procedure readily adaptable to a numerically controlled automated system for wire bundle fabrication.-
Still another object of this invention is to provide a quick release bracket and clamping device that, while securely clamping sheets at the edges and clamping wires which are spaced at various positions between the edges, instantaneous release of all clamping is easily accomplished where and when desired.for forming wire bundles and an apparatusfor carrying out the methods will be apparent from the following detailed description, together with the accompanying drawings, submitted for purposes of illustration only and not intended to define the scope of the invention, reference being made for that purpose to the subjoined claims.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The drawings diagrammatically illustrate by way of example, not by way of limitation, one form of the invention wherein like reference numerals designate corresponding parts in the several views in which:
Another principal object of this invention is to pro- I in floor space.
FIG. 1 is a schematic and perspective view of thenew wireforming apparatus with the table in titled position;
FIG. 2 is a schematic and slightly exploded, perspective view of the apparatus of FIG. 1, with the working surface lowered to horizontal position;
FIG. 3 is a schematic and perspective view of the new bracket assembly for clamping the: drawing to the flexible belt and holding the wires in the correct position over the drawing,
FIG. 4 is a top view ofone end of the bracket assembly of FIG. 3; I
FIG. 5 is a side view of the bracket assembly of FIG. 4; and 1 FIG. 6 is a schematic and perspective view of the bracket assembly immediately after it has been triggered to released position. I
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS The invention, the scope of which being defined in the appended claims, is not limited in its application to the details of construction and arrangement of parts shown and described, since the invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced or carried out in various other ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology or terminology employed herein is for the purpose of description and not of limitation.
This invention comprises two methods and one apparatus for carrying out the methods of forming wire bundles.
One method for forming an elongated wire bundle longer than the forming table on which it is assembled comprises the steps of:
a. extending or supporting a first portion of a wire bundle forming drawing over a work area as a table having the conventional length of 8 feet;
b. simultaneously pulling out a plurality of wires from supply reels and laying them over the drawing for forming a wire bundle for that portion of the drawing as by connecting the wires to the beginning of the drawing and pulling out the wires and forming the wire bundle as the drawing is unrolled from its supply roller;
c. moving the completed wire bundle portion to a storage area as by rolling the wire bundle on a storage reel;
d. simultaneously separating the drawing from the completed wire bundle and moving the drawing to a storage area as by rolling the drawing on a storage roller;
e. simultaneously extending a second portion of the drawing over the work area as by having the second portion of the drawing integral with the first portion and pulled in position as the first portion is wound up on its roller; and
f. simultaneously with rolling the first portion of the wire bundle on the storage reel, new wires still connected to the wire bundle, for example, are pulled out from their reels and laid over the second portion of the drawing whereby a second portion of the wire bundle is formed, and the process repeated until all portions of the wire bundle are completed on the single wire forming apparatus before a 'new wire bundle is begun thereon. Each wire is precut to correct length or they are cut off at the end of the bundle. Likewise, the wires may be wound on their individual supply reels so that they unwind relative to each other by the amount required for the wire bundle. The second method of making wire bundles wherein the wire bundles are only the length of the work table or shorter starts with and comprise the first four steps (a), (b), (c), and (d) of the above method. The fifth and subsequent method steps are as follows: r
e. unrolling the drawing from the storage roller back on to the supply roller;
-f. attaching the wires to the beginning of the drawing and pulling them out from the wire supply reel by moving and drawing across the table for forming of the second wire bundle on the drawing, and the process repeated for each wire bundle. The size or length of each wire bundle may be small or up to table length. 7
FIGS. 1-6 disclose an apparatus for carrying out the above methods for making wire bundles.
FIG. 1, a perspective view of the wire forming apparatus 10 shows a four legged table 11 with a surface or drawing 12 stretched between two rollers, supply roller 13, FIG. 2, and storage roller and motor 14, both rollers shown in FIG. 1 as being tilted by tilt support 15 for ease of assembly of the wire bundles of the drawing. Detachable brackets 16, 17, 18, 19, and 20, between FIGS. 1 and 2, described in more detail hereinafter, are illustrated, each having clamps, as clamps 21 and 22 on bracket 19, FIG. 2, for example, moveably mounted on the brackets for clamping the wires in position for being tied into wire bundles precisely positioned over the drawing.
A wire supply cabinet 24, FIG. 1, is positioned in juxtaposition to the supply end of the table 11, and positioned adjacent to the storage end of the table is storage reel 25 for winding up the completed wire bundle elements or portions of wire bundle elements 26.
FIG. 2 illustrates a schematic, exploded perspective view of the wire bundle forming mechanism 10 with'the table 11 deleted for clarity of disclosure illustrating drawing 12 clamped to an endless canvas belt 27 at the edges thereof, and which belt is mounted around combination reversible motor and roller 28 and roller 29 of substantially equal width with bracket 19. Illustrative clamps 21 and 22 on bracket 19 secure the wire bundles over the proper location on the drawing. The wire bundle storage reel 25 includes a reversible motor.
Cabinet 24, is illustrated as containing two supply reels 31 and 32 for the wire bundles and suitable guide rollers 34 and 35.
One of the brackets 19, FIG. 3, is illustrated as clamping the edges of drawing 12 and of the canvas belt 27 so that the drawing is pulled over the table by the endless canvas belt. Clamp 21 for holding a wire bundle 26 in position over the drawing is likewise shown. The bracket comprises a parallel bar base 39, FIG. 3, having two leaves and 41 spring biased to flat open position by springs 42a, 42b, 42:: (FIG. 4) coaxial with the piano hinges 43 and 44, FIG. 4, for the respective leaves. An elongated slot 45 is formed between the leaves 40 and 41 for the full length of the bracket for receiving the clamp 21.
Clamp 21, FIG. 3, clamps wire bundle 26 to the bracket 19 over the desired precise position on, the drawing.
Clamp 21 comprises an inverted U-shaped housing 46 with a block of rubber-like flexible material 47, such as but not limited to, a silastic rubber compound adhesively secured to the internal surfaces of the U-shaped member. An inverted T-shaped hook member 48 is fixed at one end of clamp 21 for forming a detachable pivot. Rotatable spring biased, releasable, inverted T- shaped catch 49 with handle 50 hold the clamp down to releasably secure the wires at any desired position along the slot 45 in the bracket 19. To move the wires relative to the bracket, only the releasable T-catch 49 need be rotated and released, and the clamp 21 tilted up about T-hook 48 and slid to the desired point on the bracket and then the releasable T-catch 49 secured back in the slot 45. An important feature is that this clamp 21 may be removed and reclamped with only the use of one hand. Further, clamp 21 is instantly released when bracket lever 38 releases leaves 40 and 41 which fly open due to prings 42a-c and literally toss the clamp 21 up and away from the wire bundle overlying the brackets as described hereinafter.
Bracket lever 38, FIGS. 3-6, comprises a D-shaped, trigger lever rotated to stand on its straight side, and spring biased toward its pivot pin 51, FIG. 3, by spring 52 slideable on rod 53 which pivots on pin 51, the spring tension being adjustable with nut 54.
Trigger lever pivot pin 51, FIG. 3, is mounted on clamp 55 which in turn is pivotally mounted on pivot pins 56 and 57 on the ends of the parallel bar base 39.
FIG. 4, a top view of a portion of the bracket 19 shows the two leaves 40 and 41 held down by bracket lever 38 with clamp 21 mounted in slot 45.
FIG. 5, a side view of the bracket of FIG. 4, illustrates the bracket 19 being clamped to the drawing 12 and canvas belt 27 with clamp lever 55.
FIG. 6, a perspective view of the storage end of the table, illustrates, the bracket trigger device 37 secured to the end of the table for contacting the bracket release lever 38 as the endless belt 27 moves to the left. Thus, as the endless belt, 27, drawing 12, bracket 19, and completed portion of the wire bundle (not shown in FIG. 6) secured in the bracket approaches the storfree falls by gravity, to broken line position illustrated,
FIG. 6, and clamp lever 55 likewise swings freely to substantially vertical position. With this actuation, spring biased leaves 40 and 41 fly open to throw clamp 21 up off the wire bundle (not shown) that it was bolding down, and clamp lever 55 is immediately released to separate the bracket from the belt and drawing, and likewise, the belt is instantly separated from the drawing. At this point of separation, the wire bundle passes straight to the wire bundle storage reel 25, FIGS. 1 and 2, the drawing is wound on its storage roller 14, FIG. 2, the endless belt 27 passes around its roller 28 as controlled by switch 30, and the bracket 19 may be either removed manually or one end may be connected to the endless belt for being carried back to the front end or supply end of the table 11 for the forming of the next bundle or bundle portion.
METHODS To carry out the aforedescribed methods, the disclosed apparatus is operated as follows:
The wire or wire segment sub-assemblies for the particular type of wire bundles are previously wound on spools and loaded or stored in the wire supply cabinet 24, FIGS. 1 and 2. While the wires are preferably precut to proper length, if so desired, they may be cut of later on the table.
The wire bundle drawing 12, FIG. 2, contains all information required by the assembler to accomplish fabrication of the wire bundle. The drawing is previously wound on the drawing supply roller 13. One end of the drawing is pulled out and clamped or detachably secured at the edges to the canvas belt 27, such as with the first bracket 16, FIG. 1, extending from edge to edge of the drawing and belt. This bracket has clamps similar to clamp 21, FIG. 3, insertable in the bracket, adjustable, and positionable along the length of the bracket for clamping the wires precisely over the drawing for forming the beginning of the wire bundle. The belt, with the drawing, bracket, and first completed portion of the wire bundle attached thereto, are driven forward a short distance until the second bracket 17 with its plurality of clamps is required.
Since the assembly process is a planned single. direction laydown sequence, once fabrication of forming of a portion of the wire bundle is completed at the supply end of the table there is no need to return that portion. After the assembler clamps down the second portion of wire bundle, he advances the belt toward the storage end of the table until the next portion comes into reach, the wire bundle is formed and moved on until the whole wire bundle portion is completed on the table.
It may be noted that the brackets and clamps position the wires at any precise point on the XY axes of the drawing.
Alternatively, after the first bracket and clamps are precisely attached and the first portion of the wire bundle formed, the belt may be advanced to the full length of the table, pulling the wires out over the drawing. Then the succeeding brackets are added and the succeeding portions of the wire bundle are formed before the whole table length wire bundle portion is moved toward the storage area.
In this case, as one table length or large portion of wire bundle is formed and moved to the storage area,
the rest of the drawing is unrolled from the drawing supply roller 13, FIG. 2, and the remaining wires unrolled from the wire supply cabinet 24 for forming the next wire bundle portion. This process may be repeated until the total wire bundle is completed, before the next bundle is started.
Further, the wire bundles may be formed or assembled on the table with the canvas belt and drawing in a flat position as illustrated in FIG. 6, or in a tilted position as shown in FIG. 1.
As the assembled wire bundle approaches the storage end of the table, the bracket and clamp removal trigger device 37, FIGS. 1 and 6, contacts the bracket release lever 38 causing instantaneous release of the bracket from the drawing and belt and instantaneous release of the wire bundle portion from the clamp and drawing. The completed portion of the wire bundle is then wound onto wire bundle storage reel 25, FIG. 2, and drawing storage roller 14 receives and rolls up that portion of the drawing. As each portion of the wire bundle is completed, the bundle is wound on its storage reel 25 and as the drawing portion is rolled onto its storage roller 14 the new portion of the drawing is pulled out on the canvas belt until the entire wire bundle is completed.
For forming or assembling a wire bundle having a length equal to or less than the work table or distance between the canvasbelt rollers, the apparatus is operated differently.
After the complete shorter wire bundle formed on the table is wound on the wire bundle storage reel 25, FIG. 2, either by portions or all at one time, and after the drawing is wound on'its storage roller 14, then the latter roller is reversed and the same drawing is rolled back on to supply roller 13. The second short wire bundle is started by pulling out the beginning of the same drawing for fastening to the canvas belt with the first bracket and pulling out the wires for fastening over the drawing with the clamps and forming that portion of the wire bundle prior to forming the next and succeeding portions of the wire bundle.
Accordingly, it will be seen that the present two methods and a device for performing the methods of forming wire bundles are disclosed in a-manner which meets each of the objects set forth hereinbefore.
While only two methods and one embodiment for carrying out the methods have been disclosed, it will be evident that various other modifications are possible in the arrangement and construction of the disclosed apparatus for forming wire bundles and two methods performed by the apparatus without departing from' the scope of the invention, and it is accordingly desired to comprehend within the purview of this invention such modifications as may be considered to fall within the scope of the appended claims.
1. A method for forming an elongated wire bundle comprising the steps of:
a. extending a portion of a wire bundle drawing from a supply area to a storage area,
b. laying a plurality of wires from a supply area over the drawing for forming a complete wire bundle for that portion of the drawing,
c. moving the completed wire bundle portion to a storage area,
d. simultaneously moving that portion of the drawing to a storage area, and
e. simultaneously extending a second portion of the drawing connected to the first portion of the drawing from the supply area to the storage area whereby a second wire bundle portion may be formed over the second portion of the drawing.
2. A method for forming an elongated wire bundle as recited in claim 1 including the additional steps of:
a. supporting said drawing portion between the sup ply area and the storage area with support means,
b. detachably connecting said drawing portion and said wires to said support means so that a wire bundle maybe formed on said drawing portion, and
c. detaching said completed wire bundle from said drawing portion and said support means as said completed wire bundle is moved to its storage area.
3. A method for forming an elongated wire bundle comprising the steps of:
a. extending a portion of a wire bundle drawing from a supply roller to a storage roller,
b. laying a plurality of wires from storage reels over the drawing for forming a complete wire bundle for that portion of the drawing,
c. rolling the completed wire bundle portion on a storage reel,
(1. simultaneously rolling that portion of the drawing on a storage roller, and
e. simultaneously extending a second portion of the wire bundle drawing from the supply roller to the storage roller so that a second wire bundle may be formed over the second portion of the drawing.
4. A method for forming a wire bundle comprising the steps of: g
- a. unrolling a wire bundle drawing from a supply roller to a storage roller,
b. laying a plurality of wires from a supply area over the drawing for forming a complete wire bundle,
c. rolling the completed wire bundle on a storage reel,
d. simultaneously rolling the drawing to a storage roller, and then e. unrolling said drawing from the storage roller back to the supply roller whereby a second wire bundle may be formed thereover the same drawing.
5. A wire bundle forming apparatus having a supply end and a storage end comprising:
a. a moveable elongated sheet of flexible material supported between said two ends,
b. at leasta portion of a wire bundle drawing overlaying said elongated sheet, and said drawing being supplied from said supply end of the device and stored at the storage end of the device,
c. means for supplying a plurality of wires at said supply end of the device, and
d. storage means for completed wire bundles at said storage end of the device whereby after said wires are laid over said portion of the drawing and a wire bundle formed thereon, the moveable sheet and the drawing are moved from the supply end to the storage end and the wire bundle completed for that portion of the drawing is supplied to the storage means.
6. A wire bundle forming apparatus having a supply end and a storage end comprising:
a. a moveable elongated wire bundle drawing,
b. means for supplying said drawing at said supply end of the device,
c. means for storing said drawing at said storage end of the device so that at least a portion of said wire bundle drawing extends between the ends of said device,
d. means for supporting said portion of the drawing between the ends of said device,
e. means for supplying a plurality of wires at said supply end of the device, and
f. means for storing completed wire bundles at said storage end of the device whereby after said wires are laid over the portion of the drawing and a wire bundle formed thereover, the drawing is moved from the supply end to the storage end, and the wire bundle completed for that portion of the drawing is supplied to the storing means.
7. A wire bundle forming apparatus as recited in claim 6 wherein:
a. said drawing supply means and said drawing storing means comprises roller means at the respective ends of said device for rolling said drawing therebetween, so that after a wire bundle is formed over that portion of the drawing between the rollers, that portion of the drawing is rolled onto the roller at the storage end and a new portion of the drawing is unrolled from the roller at the supply end simultaneously with moving of the completed wire bundle to the storing means.
8. A wire bundle forming apparatus as recited in claim 6 wherein:
a. said drawing support means comprises an endless elongated sheet stretched over two rollers at the respective ends of said device for positioning said sheet immediately under said wire bundle drawing portion for supporting the drawing portion as the wire bundle is formed on top of the drawing.
9. A wire bundle forming apparatus as recited in claim 8 wherein:
a. bracket means is provided for said wire forming device for detachably clamping said drawing portion to said drawing support means, and
b. clamping means on said bracket means forholding said wires over said drawing as the wire bundle is formed.
10. A wire bundle forming apparatus as recited in claim 6 wherein:
a. said means for supporting said drawing portion being tiltable for ease of forming said wire bundles on said drawing.
11. A wire bundle forming apparatus as recited in claim 6 wherein:
a. said wire supplying means comprises means for supporting a plurality of reels of wires and for feeding these wires over the drawing at the supply end of the wire forming device.
12. A wire bundle forming apparatus as recited in claim 6 wherein:
a. said completed wire bundle storing means comprises a reel means at the storage end of said device for rolling on the finished wire bundle.
* t I III I
|Cited Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US2462816 *||Aug 10, 1946||Feb 22, 1949||Sentinel Products Inc||Dispensing cabinet|
|US2765205 *||Oct 12, 1954||Oct 2, 1956||Capella Primo J||Label dispensing system|
|US3491426 *||Apr 5, 1968||Jan 27, 1970||Raychem Corp||Wire holding fixture|
|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US3829950 *||Apr 4, 1973||Aug 20, 1974||Goodrich Co B F||Deicer|
|US6272387||Nov 6, 1998||Aug 7, 2001||The Boeing Company||Wire harness system|
|US9488297||Aug 12, 2015||Nov 8, 2016||The Boeing Compnay||Guides for and methods of forming a wire harness|
|U.S. Classification||29/429, 140/1|