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Publication numberUS3831406 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 27, 1974
Filing dateJun 21, 1973
Priority dateJun 21, 1973
Also published asCA999617A, CA999617A1, DE2427134A1
Publication numberUS 3831406 A, US 3831406A, US-A-3831406, US3831406 A, US3831406A
InventorsH Gebhard, A Keller
Original AssigneeFord Motor Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Remote control latch release mechanism
US 3831406 A
Abstract
A remote control latch release mechanism comprising a handle assembly slidably journalled in a support means and having a cable coupler means receiving a pair of cable elements for movement by the handle assembly in latch releasing direction. One of the cable elements is connected to a release lever of a latch mechanism located remotely from the handle assembly and the other cable element is coupled to a locking device operable to hold it and thereby the handle assembly against movement in latch releasing direction. A disabling means renders the handle assembly inoperative against latch releasing actuation upon the other cable element being severed between the coupler means and the locking device.
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United States Patent [191 Gebhard et a1.

REMOTE CONTROL LATCH RELEASE MECHANISM Inventors: Harold C. Gebhard, Livonia; Alfred M. Keller, Dearborn, both of Mich.

Assignee: Ford Motor Company, Dearborn,

Mich.

Filed: June 21, 1973 Appl. No.: 372,444

US. Cl 70/ 1.5, 70/241, 70/257 Int. Cl. B60r 25/04, EOSb 65/19 Field of Search 70/238, 239, 240, 241,

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2/1929 Pinkerton 70/239 12/1940 Gill 70/238 10/1956 Kremer 70/239 9/1973 Westerdale 70/ 1.5

[4 Aug. 27, 1974 3,797,287 3/1974 Iba et a1 70/239 Primary Examiner-Albert G. Craig, Jr.

Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Keith L. Zerschling; John J. Roethel [57] ABSTRACT A remote control latch release mechanism comprising a handle assembly slidably joumalled in a support means and having a cable coupler means receiving a pair of cable elements for movement by the handle assembly in latch releasing direction. One of the cable elements is connected to a release lever of a latch mechanism located remotely from the handle assembly and the other cable element is coupled to a locking device operable to hold it and thereby the handle assembly against movement in latch releasing direction. A disabling means renders the handle assembly inoperative against latch releasing actuation upon the other cable element being severed between the coupler means and the locking device.

12 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures REMOTE CONTROL LATCH RELEASE MECHANISM BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION US. Pat. No. 3,572,790, the locking device is keyoperable by either a separate key or by the ignition lock key which must first be removed from the ignition lock before it can be used to unlock the hood latch release cable.

It also has been proposed to couple the handle assembly for actuating the release lever of the latching mechanism-to a pair of cable elements, one of which connects the handle assembly to the'release lever and the other of whichconnects the handle assembly to a locking device. Preferably, the locking device would be correlated with the vehicle ignition lock so that when the latter is in a locked condition, .the cable extending from the locking device to the handle assembly isimmobilized whereby the handle assembly cannot be actuated to release the latch mechanism.

It is an object of the present invention to provide a disabling means capable of rendering the handle assembly inoperative against latch releasing actuation upon the cable element extending between the handle assembly and the locking device being severed in an attempt to destroy the efficacy of the locking system.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention embodies a remote control latch mechanism comprising a handle assembly slidably journalled in a support means and having cable coupler means receivinga pair of cable elements for coordinated movement by the handle assembly in latch releasing direction. One -of the cable elements is connected to a release lever of a latch mechanism located remotely from the handle assembly and the other cable element is coupled to a locking device operable to hold this other cable element against movement in latch releasing direction and thereby the handle assembly against latch releasing actuation. A disabling means renders the handle assembly inoperative against latch releasing actuation upon the cable element extending between the coupling means and the locking device being severed.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Further features and advantages of the present invention will be made more apparent as this description proceeds, reference being had to the accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a schematic diagram of a portion of a vehicle passenger compartment-and adjoining engine compartment disclosing the environment in which the mechanism embodying the present invention is particulary adapted for use;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged perspective view of the exterior of the handle assembly for releasing the latch mechanism;

FIG. 3 is an exploded view of the components of the handle assembly and the locking device for immobilizing the Bowden cable element;

FIGS. 4, 5 and 6 are enlarged vertical section views through the handle assembly illustratingthe relationship of various parts of the mechanism in several different operative positions; and

FIG. 7 is an enlarged fragmentary view of a portion of FIG. 6 illustrating the relationship of the disabling means in cable severed condition.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Referring to FIG. 1, there is diagramatically shown the environment in which the preferred embodiment of the present invention is adapted to be used.,More particula'rly, FIG. 1 shows the side panel 11 and an instrument panel or dash structure 12 partly defining the side and forward boundaries of a vehicle passenger compartment. A fender apron 13 and a front wall 14 of the vehicle engine compartment is shown forward of the passenger compartment. Also shown in a steering column 15 having anignition lock 16 and agear shift lever 17 projecting laterally from the upper end of the column. The steering column 15 is held beneath the 'd ash structure 12 by a split clamp having a lower clamping member 18 and anupper clamping member 19.

A conventional hood latch mechanism '21 is positioned at the front end of the engine compartment. The latch mechanismv is adapted to have latching engagement with a keeper device (not shown) carried on an engine compartment closure or hood (not shown). The latch mechanism 21 has a release lever 22 to which one end 23 of themovable wire element 24 of a conventional Bowden wire or cable 25 is adapted to be coupled. The Bowden wire or cable 25 is routed within the engine compartment over the fender apron 13 through the vehicle fire wall beneath the dash structure 12 to a handle assembly, generally designated 26, mounted on the side panel 11 of the passenger compartment.

Extending longitudinally above the steering column 15 is a vehicle ignition switch activation rod 27. The rod 27v extends between the column-mounted ignition lock 16 and a multi-contact switchbox 28 supported on a mounting plate 29 positioned on the upper surface of the upper clamping member 19. Movement of the rod 27 longitudinally of the steering column 15 and the consequent effect on the switch contacts contained within the switchbox 28 determines the mode of operation for the vehicle, i. e., whether or not the accessories are energized and whether or not the ignition circuit is de-energized or in a vehicle start or run mode.

The handle assembly 26 comprises a hand grip 31 mounted on one end of a rod 32 that has secured to its other end a coupler means 33. The coupler means 33 is a substantially elongated box-like member having rectangular sides. The coupler means. 33 is slidably journalled in an elongated rectangular housing formed of two symmetrical half-sections 34 and 35. The upper housing section 35 is integral with or welded to a bracket 36 which is adapted to be bolted or otherwise fastened to a vehicle body structural member beneath the instrument panel 12.

A pair of cable elements are connected to the coupler means 33 for coordinated movement by the handle assembly 26 in latch releasing direction. As described above, one of the cables is a Bowden cable 25 having a cable element-24 connected at one end 23 to the release lever 22 of the latch mechanism 21. Cable element 24 may be referred to as the operating cable element. The other end 37 of the cable element 24 is connected to a cylindrical appendage 38 adapted to be received in the cylindrical recess 39 in one end 41 of the coupler means 33.

The second cable, which may be referred to as the locking cable, is a Bowden cable 42 having a cable element 43 which is coupled at its one end 44 to a rectangular member 45 hereinafter referred to as a slide plunger. The slide plunger 45 under prescribed conditions is slidable longitudinally of the coupler means 33 within a rectangular chamber 46 in the latter.

A compression spring 47 encompasses the end 44 of the cable element 43 and exerts a force on the slide plunger 45 urging the latter to the left, as viewed in the drawings, i. e., in cable element retracting or latch mechanism releasing direction.

The second cable element 43 and the associated slide plunger 45 form components of a mechanism for locking or holding the handle 31, its rod 32, the coupler means 33 and the cable element 24 against movement in a direction to actuate the release lever 22 of the latch mechanism 21. ln'the preferred embodiment, the lock ing function of the cable element 43 occurs when the vehicle ignition lock is in locked condition. This is accomplished by taking advantage of the movable ignition switch activation rod 27. An auxiliary, substantially cylindrical, housing 48 is mounted on the mounting plate 29 in alignment with the switchbox 28. The sleeve of the second Bowden cable 42 is connected to the one end 49 of the housing 48. The housing 48 is formed with a longitudinally extending cylindrical chamber therethrough, the wall of which functions as a guide means for a cylindrical slug 51 secured to the end 52 of the movable cable or wire element 43 of the second Bowden cable 42.

On its other end the housing 48 has an extension 53 which houses a compression spring 54. The spring 54 is trapped between abutment washers 55 carried on the extreme end of the movable wire element 43 within the housing extension 53. Under ordinary circumstances, the spring 54 is strong enough to overcome the force being exerted on the other end of the cable element 43 by the spring 47 within the handle assembly 26, as will be more fully explained.

When the housing 48 is mounted on the mounting plate 29, it functions to guide the slug 51 on the wire element end 52 for movement in a direction normal to the direction of movement of the activation rod 27. The rod 27 is movable through a slot 56 that communicates with the cylindrical chamber within the housing 48. The activation rod 27 carries an upstanding tab or abutment 57 movable across the path of the slug 51.

The slidable plunger 45 is coupled to the coupler means 33 by a pawl 58. The pawl 58 is supported on an integral shaft 59 seated in recesses 61 in the upstanding walls of the coupler means. Pawl 58 has a downwardly angularly inclined appendage or hook portion 62 adapted to engage a notched wall 63 of a recess 64 in the upper surface of the slidable plunger 45 (see FIG. 7).

At its forward end, the end toward the cable element 43, the recess 64 has an upwardly sloped wall or cam surface 65 which in normal operative position underlies a cam surface 66 on the underside of the pawl 58. The pawl 58 also has projecting upwardly from its upper surface a rib or an abutment 67 adapted to coact with the edge walls 68 of lateral recesses 69 in the upper housing half-section 35.

As emphasized in the enlarged FIG. 7, the rear section 71 of the floor of the chamber in the coupler means 33 is downwardly angularly inclined providing a step 72 against which the front edge of the slid plunger 45 is adapted to abut, under certain conditions. The slide plunger 45, the pawl 58 and the various coacting cam surfaces 65-66 and abutments 67-68 and 72 together comprise elements of a disabling means for preventing operation of the latch release mechanism under certain conditions, as will be more fully explained.

OPERATION In latched and locked condition of the closure, the parts of the handle assembly 26 are in a relationship to each other as shown in FIG. 4. That is, the pawl 58 has interlocking engagement with the slide plunger 45, the operating cable element 24 exerts no force in unlatching direction on the release lever 22 of the latch mechanism 21, the locking cable element 43 is under spring tension exerted by the spring 54, and the slug 51 is in alignement with the slot 56 in the housing 48. With the key cylinder device in at least ignition locked position, the tab 57 on the ignition switch activation rod 27 lies in abutting relation to the slug 51 on the locking cable element 43.

If it is desired to actuate the closure latch mechanism 21, it is first necessary to turn the key cylinder in the ignition lock 16 to a position other than the ignition locked position, thereby moving the tab 57 on the ignition switch activation rod out of the path of the slug 51 on the locking cable element 43. This release the locking cable element 43 for retraction. If the handle 31 then is pulled in latch mechanism release direction, its movement is transmitted through the rod 32 to the coupler means 33 thereby causing the latter to be moved from its FIG. 4 position to the left. As the coupler means .33 is retracted its movement is transmitted through the pawl 58 to the slide plunger 45 thereby causing the locking cable element 43 to be retracted. Since the locking cable element 43 is freely retractable, the slug 51 on its other end bypassing the tab 57 on the activation rod 27, no resistance is exerted to the movement of the coupler means 33 and therefore the operating cable element 24 moves in a direction to release the latch mechanism 21. Upon release of the handle 31 all of the parts are restored from the FIG. 5 position, which is the operated position of the handle assembly, to the FIG. 4 position.

Again, referring to FIG. 4, if the handle assembly and the relationship of the ignition activation rod tab 57 to slug 51 on the locking cable element 43 are in locked condition it appears that the locked condition could be violated by cutting the wire element 43. It is a feature of the present invention that the cutting of the wire element 43 results in the handle assembly 26 becoming disabled so that it cannot be manipulated to release the latch mechanism.

If the locking cable element 43 is cut, the spring 54 exerting a force on the cable in locking direction hecomes ineffective. lnstead the preloaded or precompressed spring 47 forces the slide plunger 45 from its FIG. 4 position to the left into the position shown in FIG. 6. As the slide plunger 45 moves to the left, its cam surface 65 abuts the cam surface 66 on the pawl 58 lifting the latter to a position in which the abutment 67on its upper surface is in alignment with an edge 68 of either of the recesses 69 in the upper section 35 of the housing, as shown in FIG. 6. It will be readily apparent that any attempt to retract the operating cable element 37 will be prevented. since the engagement of the pawl with the housing prevents retraction movement of the coupler means 33.

Upon the slide plunger 45 being forced to the left by the spring 47, it drops fully onto the inclined surface 71 of the floor of the chamber in the coupler means 33 and the forward edge of the slide plunger 45 abuts the edge 72 of the step in the floor of the chamber. Thus, any attempt to grasp the severed end of the wire element 43 would be ineffective as a means to cause the slide plunger 45 to be moved to the right. If it could be moved to the right, the pawl 58 then would drop to a position in which its abutment 67 was out of alignment with an edge or abutment 68 of the housing and permit the handle 31 to be manipulated to retract the wire element 24. It will be readily apparent that thisis prevented by the tilted position of the slide plunger 45.

It is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the exact construction illustrated and described above, but that various changes and modifications may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the following claims:

We claim:

1. A remote control latch release mechanism comprising:

a handle assembly slidably journalled in a support means and having cable coupler means,

a pair of cable elements connected to the coupler means for coordinated movement by the handle assembly in latch releasing direction,

one of the cable elements being connected to a release lever of a latch mechanism located remotely from the handle assembly and the other cable element being coupled to a locking device operable to hold the other cable against movement in latch releasing direction and thereby the handle against latch releasing actuation,

and disabling means rendering the handle assembly inoperative against latch releasing actuation upon the other cable element being severed between the coupler means and the locking device.

2. A remote control latch release mechanism according to claim 1, in which:

the disabling means comprises a slide plunger to which the other cable element is connected,

the slide plunger being housed within the coupler means and coupled to the latter by a pawl member,

and spring means operable to retract the other cable after the latter is severed and to move the slide plunger relative to the pawl member,

and coacting cam means on the slide plunger and pawl member,

the coacting cam means being operative upon movement of the slide plunger relative to the pawl memher to wedge the latter into abutting relation to an abutment on the handle assembly support means,

the pawl means when abutting the abutment preventing movement of the handle assembly in latch releasing direction. 7 3. A remote control latch release mechanism according to claim 2, in which:

the slide plunger when fully retracted engages an abutment in the coupler means to prevent movement of the slide plunger in nomretracted direction and thereby to lock the pawl member against movement out of engagement with the support means abutment. 4. A remote control latch release mechanism according to claim 3, in which:

the locking device comprises a guide means mounted on a support structure, the end of the other cable opposite its slide plunger connected end being received in the guide means,

an abutment on the other cable within the guide means,

a blocking means slidably guided within the guide means for movement into and out of abutting relation to the abutment means,

and a key-operated means operable to shift the blocking means into abutting relation to the other cable abutment thereby to immobilize the other cable.

5. A remote control latch release mechanism according to claim 4, in which:

the blocking means is an ignition switch activation rod, 3

the rod having an. abutment engaging portion positioned to engage the other cable abutment in at least ignition locked position of the ignition switch.

6. A remote control latch release mechanism comprising:

a housing mounted within a vehicle passenger compartment,

a handle assembly having a cable coupler means slidably journalled within the housing,

an operating cable extending between the cable coupler means and. a release lever of a hood latch mechanism for transmitting retraction movement of the handle assembly to the release lever to unlatch the hood latch mechanism,

a slide plunger slidably mounted in the cable coupler means,

a locking cable coupled to the slide plunger,

pawl means latching the slide plunger to the handle assembly to transmit movement of the latter to the locking cable upon the handle assembly being operated to unlatch the latch mechanism,

and a locking means,

the locking cable extending from the slide plunger to the locking means,

the locking means being operable to immobilize the locking cable to prevent movement of the handle assembly in latch mechanism unlatching direction,

and disabling means rendering the handle assembly inoperative to move in latch mechanism unlatching direction upon the locking cable being severed between the slide plunger and the locking means. 7. A remote control latch release mechanism according to claim 6 in which:

the locking means comprises a guide means mounted on a vehicle steering column,

an abutment means on the locking cable within the guide means,

a blocking means slidably guided within the guide means for movement into and out of abutting relation to the abutment means,

and a key-operated means operable to shift the blocking means into abutting relation to the abutment means thereby to immobilize the locking cable.

8. A remote control latch release mechanism according to claim 7, in which:

the blocking means is an ignition switch activation rod extending longitudinally of the steering column,

the rod having an abutment engaging portion positioned to engage the abutment means in at least ignition locked position of the ignition switch.

9. A remote control latch mechanism according to claim 8, in which:

the disabling means comprises the slide plunger and a spring means operable to retract the slide plunger in a locking cable retracting direction,

and coacting cam means on the slide plunger and pawl means wedging the pawl means into abutting relation to an abutment on the housing upon re tracting movement of the slide plunger,

the pawl means when engaged with the housing abutment preventing movement of the handle assembly in latch mechanism unlatching direction. 10. A remote control latch mechanism according to claim 9, in which:

the slide plunger when fully retracted engages an abutment in the coupler means preventing movement of the slide plunger in non-retracted direction and thereby locking the pawl means against movement out of engagement with the housing abutment. 11. A remote control latch mechanism according to claim 6, in which:

the disabling means comprises the slide plunger and a spring means operable to retract the slide plunger in a locking cable retracting direction, and coacting cam means on the slide plunger and pawl means wedging the pawl means into abutting relation to an abutment on the housing upon retracting movement of the slide plunger, the pawl means when engaged with the housing abutment preventing movement of the handle assembly in latch mechanism unlatching direction. 12. A remote control latch mechanism according to claim 11, in which:

the slide plunger when fully retracted engages an abutment in the coupler means preventing movement of the slide plunger in non-retracted direction and thereby locking the pawl means against movement out of engagement with the housing abutment.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1700989 *Jun 30, 1926Feb 5, 1929Peter C PinkertonAutomobile locking device
US2227253 *Sep 13, 1938Dec 31, 1940Gill Thomas HowardAutomatic gas cap and hood locking device
US2766607 *Jun 16, 1954Oct 16, 1956Carolyn M KremerVehicle lock assembly
US3760617 *May 8, 1972Sep 25, 1973Ford Motor CoAnti-theft cable retractor for hood latch release
US3797287 *May 1, 1972Mar 19, 1974Toyota Motor Co LtdSteering system lock for diesel powered motor vehicles
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4595903 *Apr 4, 1985Jun 17, 1986Arlasky David FTamper resistant automotive anti-theft device
US4875350 *Aug 4, 1988Oct 24, 1989Abc Auto Alarms, Inc.Push lock actuable anti-theft vehicle device
US4917418 *Dec 12, 1988Apr 17, 1990Babcock Industries Inc.Fuel filler door release system
US8152232 *Sep 8, 2009Apr 10, 2012P.I. Inc.Handle for motion activated furniture
US8528441 *Jan 14, 2011Sep 10, 2013Avibank Manufacturing, Inc.Handle for latching mechanism
US9044095 *Apr 4, 2012Jun 2, 2015P.I., Inc.Activation device for motion activated furniture
US9139280Oct 9, 2014Sep 22, 2015Messier-Bugatti-DowtyControl box
US9193434 *Feb 7, 2013Nov 24, 2015Messier-Bugatti-DowtyControl box
US20100060043 *Sep 8, 2009Mar 11, 2010P.I. Inc.Handle for Motion Activated Furniture
US20120180595 *Jan 14, 2011Jul 19, 2012Zeljko BaicHandle for Latching Mechanism
US20120280556 *Apr 4, 2012Nov 8, 2012P.I. Inc.Activation device for motion activated furniture
US20130200212 *Feb 7, 2013Aug 8, 2013Messier-Bugatti-DowtyControl box
EP1964462A1 *Feb 28, 2008Sep 3, 2008CNH Belgium N.V.Cable actuated pin latching mechanism
WO1997010976A1 *Jun 2, 1996Mar 27, 1997Mul-T-Lock Technologies Ltd.Locking system for vehicle
Classifications
U.S. Classification70/1.5, 70/241, 70/257
International ClassificationF16C1/12, E05B53/00, E05B65/19, B60R25/00
Cooperative ClassificationE05B83/24, E05B53/005, F16C1/12
European ClassificationE05B83/24, F16C1/12