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Publication numberUS3778565 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 11, 1973
Filing dateOct 5, 1972
Priority dateOct 5, 1972
Publication numberUS 3778565 A, US 3778565A, US-A-3778565, US3778565 A, US3778565A
InventorsLewandowski R, Markison W
Original AssigneeOak Industries Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Power rated pushbutton switch with slide bar and washer type blockout interlock structure
US 3778565 A
Abstract
A plurality of pushbuttons are mounted in a switch frame, with each button being arranged to move contacts between open and closed positions. A pair of slide bars are positioned for movement in the frame in a path generally perpendicular to the paths of movement of the buttons. There are followers, which move in response to actuation by the slide bars, for opening and closing the contacts. Washers are positioned between adjacent pushbuttons for performing a blockout function.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 Lewandowski et al.

POWER RATED PUSHBUTTON SWITCH WITH SLIDE BAR AND WASHER TYPE BLOCKOUT INTERLOCK STRUCTURE Inventors: Raymond F. Lewandowski, Mount Prospect; William C. Markison, Crystal Lake, both of 111.

Assignee: Oak Industries Inc., Crystal Lake,

Ill.

Filed: Oct. 5, 1972 Appl. No.: 295,185

U.S. Cl 200/5 E, 200/5 EA, 200/5 EB, 200/50 C Int. Cl. H0lh 9/26 Field of Search 200/5 R, 5 E, 5 EA, 200/5 EB, 50 C, 17 R, 18; 73/483 PB References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 9/1966 Wirsching 200/5 EA Dec. 11, 1973 3,445,610 5/1969 Lind 200/5 EA 3,671,686 6/1972 Sadogierski 200/5 EA 3,432,624 3/1969 Martin r 200/5 EB 3,551,611 12/1970 Fechner 200/5 EA Primary Examiner-J. R. Scott AttorneyAlfred H. Plyer, Jr. et al.

[57] ABSTRACT A plurality of pushbuttons are mounted in a switch frame, with each button being arranged to move contacts between open and closed positions. A pair of slide bars are positioned for movement in the frame in a path generally perpendicular to the paths of movement of the buttons. There are followers, which move in response to actuation by the slide bars, for opening and closing the contacts. Washers are positioned between adjacent pushbuttons for performing a blockout function.

27 Claims, 13 Drawing Figures PATENTED DEC 1 1 I975 SHEET 2 OF 4 III llll Ill PAIENI'EBUEC 11 I975 3.778.565

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POWER RATED PUSHBUTTON SWITCH WITH SLIDE BAR AND WASHER TYPE BLOCKOUT INTERLOCK STRUCTURE SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to an improved pushbutton switch and in particular to a pushbutton switch in which a pair of slide bars are effective to perform a number of different switching functions.

Another purpose is a pushbutton switch or the like suitable for use in small appliances such as blenders.

Another purpose is a simply constructed reliably operable pushbutton switch construction.

Another purpose is a pushbutton switch construction in which a pair of sliders are effective to cause operation of a number of sets of contacts, with each set of contacts being connected, through followers, to the sliders.

Another purpose is a pushbutton switch construction of the type described using washers as blockout members.

Another purpose is a pushbutton switch construction of the type described in which blockout members function as a link in the operable chain between the buttons and the contacts.

Another purpose is a pushbutton switch construction utilizing a pair of sliders, with one slider operating one group of contacts and the other slider operating another group of contacts.

Other purposes will appear in the ensuing specification, drawings and claims.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The invention is illustrated diagrammatically in the following drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a plan view of a pushbutton switch construction,

FIG. 2 is a front view of the switch construction of FIG. 1,

FIG. 3 is a section along plane 3-3 of FIG. 1,

FIG. 4 is a side view of a follower,

FIG. 5 is a section along plane 5-5 of FIG. 1,

FIG. 6 is a section, similar to FIG. 3, showing a modified form of the invention,

FIG. 7 is a section along plane 7-7 of FIG. 6,

FIG. 8 is a top view of a pushbutton,

FIG. 9 is a top view of the lower portion of the switc construction illustrating the blockout members,

FIG. 10 is a plan view of a slide bar,

FIG. 11 is a partial enlarged plan view of the slide bar of 10,

FIG. 12 is a plan view of a second slide bar, and

FIG. 13 is a partial enlarged plan view of the slide bar of FIG. 12.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The present invention has application in the appliance field and particularly those appliances in which a series of pushbutton switches are positioned in a frame, with each of the buttons effecting a different type of operation for the appliance. A blender is one example of a suitable application for the invention. The operation of a particular pushbutton switch is effective to cause the opening or closing of one or more sets of contacts. Normally, only one pushbutton can be operated at a time, as there are blockout members positioned between adjacent pushbuttons.

There are a pair of slide bars positioned within a frame, with each of the slide bars having cam surfaces which cooperate with the cam surfaces on the pushbuttons. In addition, there are followers which form an effective link between the slide bars and the contacts. Operation of the pushbuttons moves the slide bars, with movement of the slide bars in turn causing the followers to open and close the various sets of contacts. There are two slide bars, one being effective to move one contact in each set and the other slide bar being effective to move the other contact in each set.

In FIG. 1, a plurality of pushbuttons 10 are mounted in a frame 12. One side of the frame 12 has a plurality of generally vertical walls 14 which define pockets 16. The front of the frame is indicated at 18 and there are openings 20 which receive those portions of each pushbutton which are used to operate the sliders and blockout members described hereinafter.

Within each of the pockets 16 there are contacts 22 and 24. Contact 24 has a generally upwardly-extending rim 26 and contact 22 hasa generally downwardlyextending rim 28, as indicated in FIG. 1, with the rims being positioned to make mechanical contact and thus complete an electrical connection.

The contacts 22 and 24 may be joined to the frame as at 30 and 32. As shown in FIGS. 3,5 and 6, the upper contact 22 may have a terminal portion 34 and the lower contact 24 may have a terminal portion 36. The terminal portions 34 and 36 may be connected in a suitable electric circuit.

Each pocket 16 may have a vertical wall portion 38 which separates the contacts 22 and 24 and provides means for mounting the sections of the contacts in cooperation with the fastening means 30 and 32. FIG. 3 shows the two positions of upper contact 22, with FIG. 5 showing the two positions of lower contact 24. FIG. 6 shows the two positions of upper contact 22 of a modified form of the invention.

In FIG. 3 the button 10 has a front portion 40 which will be accessible in the appliance. The button has a rear portion 42 which extends within the frame 12. As shown particularly in FIGS. 3 and 8, the top of the button has a cam portion 44, generally centrally located, which extends upwardly from that portion 42 of the button which moves in and out of the openings 20. The cam portion 44 is shaped to pass through the openings 20 and to effect operation of slide bars 56 and 58 within the frame. The bottom of the button, on the opposite side from the cam portion 44, has a cam portion 46, illustrated in dotted lines in FIG. 8 and in side view in FIG. 3. The portion 46, which is generally wedgeshaped, as shown in FIG. 9, is effective to cause operation of the blockout members.

The frame 12 has a top 48 which defines the bottom of each of the pockets 16 and a bottom plate 50. There is a front wall 18, as described, and a rear wall 52. The four described walls define a chamber 54 which mounts the slide bars and the blockout members. As shown particularly in FIG. 3, there is an upper slide bar 56 and a lower slide bar 58. The blockout members are indicated at 60, with the inwardly-projecting portion 42 of each button separating the blockout members from the slide bars within the chamber 54.

FIG. 9 shows the relationship between adjacent blockout members 60 and the cam portions 46 on each of the buttons. The blockout members 60 are arranged in a row, there being a blockout member 60 between adjacent pushbuttons.

Inward movement of one of the pushbuttons will cause the cam portion 46 thereof to separate the blockout members one from another. The outside pushbuttons in the row of pushbuttons wil prevent the blockout members from slipping out of the frame. As soon as one button is moved in an inward direction, the separation of the adjacent blockout members will prevent any other pushbutton from being simultaneously depressed. As soon as a second pushbutton is moved in an inward direction, the blockout members will cause the first pushbutton to be moved back to its original out position.

The top slide bar 56 is illustrated in FIGS. and 11. At the front of the slide bar 56 there are series of wedge-shaped openings 62 which may vary in configuration. Note the broken lines 1-8, which lines are equally spaced and define the paths of movement of the eight pushbuttons in the switch array. The use of eight pushbuttons is only for purposes of illustration, and the invention should not be limited in this respect. The point of the wedge-shaped openings 62 for buttons 1, 2, 3 and 8 are on the actual centerline of movement of the button. The point of the wedge-shaped openings for buttons 4, 5, 6 and 7 is not on the centerline of button movement. Thus, inward movement of any one of buttons 4, S, 6 or 7 will cause the slide bar 56 to slide to the left or to the right, depending upon where the point of the wedge-shaped opening lies relative to the centerline of button movement. The cam surfaces 44 on the buttons cooperate with the wedge-shaped openings 62 to cause movement of the slide bar. The openings for buttons 4, 5, 6 and 7 are slightly different, thereby causing different degrees and direction of movement of the slide bar 56. Thus, each button may cause a different movement for the slide bar 56 or, in the alternative, several buttons may be arranged to cause the same movement, depending upon how the contacts are connected in circuit. The position of the opening 62 for each button, will vary with the particular application. The openings may be arranged in a variety of combinations.

Slide bar 56 has a plurality of openings 64, there being such an opening between the path of movement of adjacent buttons. Note that each of the openings 64 have two areas. A first area 66 is generally rectangular in shape and is generally the same for each opening. A second area 68 is irregularly shaped and is closer to the front of the slide bar. The particular configuration of the opening areas 68 determines the operation of the followers associated with slide bar 56. In FIG. 3, the followers is indicated at 70 and is shown in detail in FIG. 4. The followers 70 have a lower wedge-shaped area 72 which is received in the opening areas 68 of the slide bar 56. Sidewise movement of the slide bar 56 will permit the followers to fall in a downward direction to lower contacts 22, as shown in FIG. 3. Shoulder 73 on the followers 70 prevents the followers 70, biased downwardly by spring-loaded contacts 22, from passing through the slide bars. Each of the followers have a cross shaped cross section and there is a similar shaped opening 74 in the top 48 of the frame. Thus, the followers 70 are confined by the opening in the frame, and by the opening area 68 in the slide bar, for reciprocal movement caused by the slide bar, and in a path which is generally perpendicular to the slide bar. Movement of the followers is effective to raise and lower contacts 22, as illustrated in FIG. 3.

Slide bar 58 is indicated in FIGS. 12 and 13. Again, there are wedge-shaped openings 76 in the front of the slide bar for cooperation with the cams 44 on the pushbuttons. The wedge-shaped openings 76 may all be different, or some may be similar, and the apex of the openings may be on the centerline of the path of movement of the pushbutton, or it may be to the right or left. The particular shape of the wedge-shaped opening 76 determines what action is caused by operation of a particular button. Any button may cause movement of the slide bar to the right or left and in varying amounts, or there may be no movement of the slide bar at all. The particular programming of the wedge-shaped openings 76 on the slide bar 58 and the openings 62 on slide bar 56 determines which sets of contacts are operated from any one or more pushbuttons.

Slide bar 58 also has openings 78 for operation of the followers. The openings 78 each have two parts. There is an area 80 which is rectangular in shape and the same for each opening. There is a second area 82 which is irregularly shaped and which is effective to cause operation of followers 84 shown particularly in FIG. 5. Again, the shape of the areas 82 will determine which followers and hence which contacts are operated by each button. Note that followers 84, which is similar in shape to followers 70, passes through the rectangular open area 66 of the slide bar 56 so as to be placed in position to be operated by movement of slide bar 58. Each of the slide bars 56 and 58 have openings, with a portion of each opening being rectangular to permit positioning of the followers for the other slide bar. Also, each opening has a cam portion which is effective to cause operation of the followers. FIG. 5 shows the two positions of contact 24 as controlled by the followers 84.

In operation, slide bar 56 will cause contact 22 to move from its upper position, as shown in FIG. 3, to its lower position, again as shown in FIG. 3, when a button is depressed. The slide bar 58 will cause contact 24 to raise up, when a button is depressed. The contacts may be moved toward each other when there is to be mechanical and electrical contact therebetween, although normally the upper contacts are lowered or the lower contacts are raised.

The interrelationship of the slide bars, the followers, and the pushbuttons, can be effective to cause various different sets of contacts to be opened and closed. For example, the operation of the number 4 pushbutton may be effective to cause several different sets of contacts to open or close. In like manner, the operation of another pushbutton may be effective to cause only one set of contacts to close. The entire array of pushbutton switches may be programmed so that different pushbuttons cause the operation of different sets of contacts, with not all of the operated contacts being mechanically directly adjacent the particular button which is operated.

FIG. 6 shows a modification of the invention in which the slide bars are not used to cause operation of the contacts, but instead the blockout members 60 perform this function. Followers have the same cross shape of the followers 70 and 84. The followers 90 are somewhat elongated, or are longer than the followers 70 and 84, as they extend down to the blockout members 60. Each member 90 has outwardly-extending wings 91 which, in the down position, are supported on rails 93 on the projection 42 of the button. The wedgeshaped portion 92 of each follower extends between adjacent blockout members. The upper end of the follower 90 is in position for contact with contact 22, as shown in FIG. 6, and thus is effective to raise contact 22 to mechanically break contact with the lower contact. In the modification of FIGS. 6 and 7, the lower contact (1065 not IIIOVC, but the upper contact moves toward and away from it. In its normal position contact 22 will be in the open up position of FIG. 6. However, movement of another button causes separation of adjacent blockout members 60 and this is effective to lower one of the followers 90 to thus lower one selected contact 22 to move to the down or closed position.

As indicated above, the invention has particular application in small appliances such as a blender. In such an application, the various buttons control the speed of the blender motor. Different buttons may effectively cause the motor to operate at different speed and therefore the programming of the relationship between the pushbuttons and the sliders and the sliders and the followers is controlled to determine which contacts are opened and closed.

In some applications there may be two sliders and blockout members. In other applications there may be a single slider and blockout member, whereas, in other applications there may be only the blockout members which, through the followers, are effective to cause opening and closing of the contacts.

Of particular importance is the fact that operation of all contacts can be effected with no more than two sliders. In many similar prior pushbutton configurations it was necessary to have substantially more than two sliders to perform the same switching functions accomplished herein. These sliders have been eliminated by the programming of the cam surfaces and the interrelationship between the pushbuttons, sliders and followers.

Whereas the preferred form of the invention has been shown and described herein, it should be realized that there may be many modifications, substitutions and alterations thereto.

We claim:

1. In a pushbutton switch, a frame, a plurality of plungers mounted for reciprocal movement in the frame, a plurality of sets of contacts, each set being movable between open and'closed positions, said sets of contacts being mounted on the frame,

a slide bar positioned in said frame for movement in a path generally perpendicular to the paths of movement of said plungers, cooperating cam means on each plunger and said slide bar for providing movement of the slide bar in response to movement of the plungers,

and a plurality of followers, at least one for each set of contacts, said followers being positioned in the frame for contact by said slide bar, cooperating means on the slide bar and each follower, with sliding movement of the slide bar causing movement of the followers in a path generally perpendicular to the path of movement of said slide bar to effect opening and closing of said sets of contacts.

2. The structure of claim 1 further characterized in that there is a follower associated each contact.

to cause movement of the 3. The structure of claim 1 further characterized by cam means on the slide bar and followers cooperating followers away from the slide bar.

4. The structure of claim 1 further characterized by cam means on the slide bar and followers cooperating to cause movement of the followers toward the slide bar.

5. The structure of claim 1 further characterized by and including a plurality of openings in the slide bar, said followers being positioned, relative to the slide bar, to drop through the openings upon movement of the slide bar.

6. The structure of claim 1 further characterized in that movement of said slide bar is effective, through the followers, to cause opening and closing movement of the contacts in each set in a path generally perpendicular to movement of the slide bar.

7. The structure of claim 1 further characterized by and including a second slide bar positioned in the frame for movement in a path generally perpendicular to the paths of movement of said plungers cooperating cam means on each plunger and said second slide bar for providing movement of said second slide bar in response to movement of the plungers.

8. The structure of claim 7 further characterized in that said second slide bar is positioned adjacent the first slide bar.

9. The structure of claim 7 further characterized by and including followers positioned in the frame for contact by said second slide bar to cause movement of said followers in a path generally perpendicular to the path of movement of said second slide bar.

10. The structure of claim 9 further characterized by and including cooperating cam means on said second slide bar and said followers associated therewith.

11. The structure of claim 10 further characterized by and including openings in said second slide bar, with said followers associated therewith being positioned to move in and out of said second slide bar openings.

12. The structure of claim 7 further characterized in that there is a first set of followers and a second set of followers, with said first set of followers being positioned for movement by said first slide bar and said second set of followers being positioned for movement by said second slide bar.

13. The structure of claim 12 further characterized by and including cooperating cam means on the first slide bar and the first set of followers, and cooperating cam means on the second slide bar and second set of followers.

14. The structure of claim 13 further characterized by and including openings in the first slide bar with the followers in said second set of followers being arranged to pass through said first slide bar openings.

15. The structure of claim 7 further characterized by and including a plurality of blockout members positioned between adjacent plungers.

16. The structure of claim 15 further characterized in that each of said blockout members is in the shape of a round disc.

17. The structure of claim 15 further characterized in that said slide bars are positioned adjacent each other with said blockout members being spaced from said adjacent slide bars.

18. The structure of claim 17 further characterized by and including cam means on each of said plungers positioned to contact adjacent blockout members to cause said adjacent blockout members to separate, one

from another, when a plungers is moved in an inward by and including cooperating cam means on each plunger and the first and second slide bars, with said cooperating cam means being on the opposite side of the plunger as the cam means cooperating with the blockout members.

21. The structure of claim 1 further characterized by and including a plurality of blockout members positioned within the frame, each blockout member being positioned between adjacent plungers.

22. The structure of claim 21 further characterized in that each of said blockout members is in the shape of a round disc.

23. The structure of claim 21 further characterized by and including cooperating cam means on each of the plungers and blockout members such that inward movement of a plungers causes said blockout members to separate, one from another.

24. The structure of claim 23 further characterized in that said blockout members are aligned in a row, on one side of the plungers with the slide bar being on the opposite side of the plungers.

25. In a pushbutton switch, a frame, a plurality of plungers mounted for reciprocal movement in the frame, a plurality of setsof contacts, each set being movable between open and closed positions,

a plurality of blockout members positioned in the frame, with each blockout member being arranged between adjacent plungers,

a plurality of followers, at least one for each set of contacts, said followers being positioned in the frame for contact by said blockout members cooperating means on each follower and blockout members, with movement of a blockout member causing movement of the followers in a path generally perpendicular to the path of movement of the blockout members to effect opening and closing of said sets of contacts.

26. The structure of claim 25 further characterized in that each of said blockout members is a round disc.

27. The structure of claim 26 further characterized in that each of said discs have a generally central opening, with said followers moving in and out of said blockout member openings.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3271530 *Jan 12, 1965Sep 6, 1966Bell Telephone Labor IncPushbutton switch with latching, lockout and indicator lamp structure
US3432624 *Aug 11, 1967Mar 11, 1969Clare Pendar CoShock resistant multiple switch assembly
US3445610 *Sep 20, 1967May 20, 1969Automatic Elect LabPushbutton dialing mechanism
US3551611 *Jan 21, 1969Dec 29, 1970Fechner Gerald ASwitch mechanism
US3671686 *Nov 9, 1970Jun 20, 1972Guardian Electric Mfg CoPush button switch assembly with improved discrete and identical geometric shaped interlocking slider means
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3952175 *Sep 18, 1974Apr 20, 1976Oak Industries Inc.Pushbutton switch mechanism having block out members with common mounting and discrete latch bar
Classifications
U.S. Classification200/5.00E, 200/5.0EA, 200/5.0EB, 200/50.36
International ClassificationH01H13/70, H01H13/74
Cooperative ClassificationH01H13/74
European ClassificationH01H13/74
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 27, 1989ASAssignment
Owner name: ZENITH ELECTRONICS CORPORATION, A CORP OF DELAWARE
Free format text: LICENSE;ASSIGNOR:OAK INDUSTRIES, INC.,;REEL/FRAME:005284/0010
Effective date: 19881102
Jan 31, 1989ASAssignment
Owner name: ZENITH ELECTRONICS CORPORATION, GLENVIEW, IL A COR
Free format text: LICENSE;ASSIGNOR:OAK INDUSTRIES, INC.;REEL/FRAME:005164/0006
Effective date: 19881102