US 3840198 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 11 1 11 1 3,840,198 Moore 1 Oct. 8, 1974 1 SPRING-LOADED EXPANDABLE REEL 2,501,515 3/1950 Hood 242/118.6X
 Inventor: Joseph oo e, 1142 S 16th t" 3,659,799 5/1972 Ceruttl et 242/7l.9
Blair, Nebr. 68008  Filed: Aug. 9, 1972 Primary Examiner-George Mautz [211 p No 279 256 Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Hiram A. Sturges 52 U.S.C1 242/1184, 242/719, 242/116 1511 1111.131 B65h 75/24, B65h 75/14 1 1 B R 58 FieldofSearch ..242/118.4,1l8.5,118.6,
242/1186], 118.62, 118.7, 118.8, 115, 116, A reel having inner and outer telescoping tubular- 71.9, 73, 75, 75.4, 76, 71.8, 118, 195, flanged hub portions pulled toward each other by h 128, 129 springs spaced around an axial opening through the reel.  References Cited 869,871 ll/l907 Barnes 242/719 '0 74 m 2 /A i 200 200 7" 1 7 13o I J\ l 1 1511711;
1 SPRING-LOADED EXPANDABLE REEL FIELD OF THE INVENTION This invention is in the field of reels upon which electrical wire can be stored.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PRIOR ART In the prior art electrical wire has been delivered on coils of various thicknesses and it is desirable to be able to place such coils on a reel having a central opening for receiving an axle around which the wheel can turn as the wire is pulled off and in which the total width of the reel is adjustable to accommodate the width of the coil of wire to be received.
The present practice in the prior art is for a coil of wire, having no reel on it, to be delivered from the factory in a cardboard box. There is no reel in the cardboard box to protect the wire from coming out of its place in the coil in which it is delivered by damage occurring from blows against the cardboard box during shipping or working at construction sites where damage can easily occur.
In the present practice, wire is drawn from the coil in the box through a hole in the cardboard box.
However, when the box has been damaged, the coil will have changed its shape and the wire cannot be pulled out through the hole in the box since it can become tangled from the damage and lost its symmetrical coiled relationship leading to high labor costs in untangling wire and handling it.
A further disadvantage of the prior art has been the need to carry many boxes full of wire coils, both new and partially used, from one construction site to another, each box being lifted individually and carried in: dividually without benefit of any mechanization.
It is, therefore, a further object to make it possible to achieve an end which would have been desirable in the prior art which is to be able to mount a coil of wire on a reel having an axial opening which can receive an axle so that the coil can be placed on a carrier containing multiple coils, the carrier having wheels and being easy to move from construction site to construction site.
It may seem that this desirable end should be easily achieved, but first one must realize that these coils are already coiled and the problem is how to place an already coiled wire configuration onto a reel without going through the long, costly and tedious step of unwinding from the coil and winding onto the reel.
It is important that a reel for holding these wire coils do more than simply hold its end flanges in a fixed position. I have perceived that the end flanges must continually press against the sides of the coil. Without such pressing, as the wire is removed from a coil, the coil configuration becomes of smaller width along its axis of rotation and the fixed position end flanges cannot adjust to this change which would, therefore, result in a displacement of the wire from its ideal position in the coil and, therefore, entanglement of the wire leading to need for time-costly disentanglement.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION A reel having inner and outer telescoping tubularflanged hub portions pulled toward each other by springs spaced around an axial opening through the reel.
' The reel further having its springs attached by means of having hooks at the ends thereof extending through passages in the respective flanges and then booked through first and second openings in holder plates disposed outside the respective flanges and larger than will pass through the passages, each holder plate having one of its openings large enough to receive the entire hook therethrough so that the hook can be first passed through the large opening preparatory to inserting the terminal end of the hook back through the other opening in the plate or holder.
The reel further having flanges made from thermoplastic material for economy of manufacture, but for strength, the thermo-plastic material being reinforced by ribs larger at the center and tapering toward the outer circumference of the reel, all formed of the same piece of the integral plastic material with the remainder of the respective flange, the hub portion attached to each respective flange likewise being formed of plastic and from the same piece of material as the respective flange for high production low-cost manufacture.
The hub portions each tapering to a narrower terminal end from larger portions adjacent the respective flange to which they are attached whereby the net effect of the overlapping hub portions is to provide an external composite surface for receiving wire thereagainst which is a surface as nearly cylindrical as is practically possible inasmuch as the interfitting of the hub portions telescopically is necessary.
A particular object is to provide a reel with springs drawing the two basic reel sections together in which the springs are, first of all, contained within hub portions where they do not interfere with wiring stored on the reel, and yet can be connected and disconnected from operational relationship for drawing the end flanges toward each other, the connection being possible after the two basic reel sections are placed in telescoping relationship by inserting a button hook or other tiny hook into the interior of the reel through a passage in an end flange of the reel at a time when the button hook has already been passed through one of the openings of a spring holder or spring holder plate whereby the button hook can engage a hook at the end of a spring so that it can be drawn through the adjacent passage in an end flange and then pulled up through the opening in the spring holder, after which, the spring hook is twisted into a position so that its terminal end can be received through another opening in the spring holder, after which, the button hook can be disengaged since the spring holder, by engaging the outer surface of the disc, will hold the spring in operational relationship. This operation is done three times for three springs in a very short space of time for the quick assembly of the springs into operational position after a coil of wire has been stored on the basic reel sections.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a sectional view taken along the line 1-1 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 2 is a side elevation of the reel of this invention.
FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along the line 3-3 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a detail of a spring holder as seen in a side elevation.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT In FIG. 1 the reel of this invention is generally indicated at 20 and has right and left end flanges 22 and 24, each having attached to its inner side a substantially cylindrical tubular hub portion 30 and 32 respectively.
Each tubular hub portion projects toward the opposite one of the end flanges 22 or 24, which latter are generally in parallelism.
Each end flange 22 or 24, with its hub portion 30 or 32 respectively forms a basic reel section, of which latter there are two, 36 and 38 respectively.
The basic reel sections 36 and 38 form the equivalent of a drum of an ordinary reel, which latter would have a single cylindrical drum surface.
The end discs 22 and 24 are urged toward each other by attached springs 70 which can be three in number spaced in a triangle equidistantly about the axis 130 of the reel, which latter extends axially through the cylindrical hub portions 30 and 32, as seen in FIG. 1.
Each spring 70 has convolutions 74 intermediate its ends and at its ends has a pair of hooks 82 formed integrally with the rest of the spring to form a spring and hook assembly generally indicated at 90. Each-hook has two sides, one side 96 being adjacent the terminal end of the spring and hook assembly 90, and the other side 98 being parallel thereto and being connected to the convolution section 74 of the spring.
A hook holder 100 is provided having a first opening 104 therethrough for receiving the side 96 of the hook. The holder 100 has a second opening 106 therethrough receiving therethrough the other side 98 of the hook 82.
The second opening 98 is large enough to receive therethrough at the same time both sides of the hook 82.
Each flange 36 and 38 of the reel has a plurality of spring-receiving passages 120 therethrough extending substantially parallel to the axis 130 of the reel and large enough to receive therethrough both sides of the hook 82 at the same time.
In operation, a coil of wire, not shown, having a large center opening of approximately cylindrical configuration is placed on the cylindrical hub portion 32, which is the outer one, at a time when the opposite basic reel section 36 is removed therefrom.
Next, the reel section 36 is put in place with its cylindrical hub portion 30 inserted into the hub portion 32.
Next, the operator extends a hook, not shown, which is substantilly like a button hook, through the larger second opening 106 of one of the holders I and then through one of the spring-receiving passages 120 of the flange 22 of the reel section 36. Next, the button hook is hooked to the hook 82 of the adjacent one of the springs 70 and the button hook is used to pull the hook 82 of the spring through the passage I20 and through the second opening 106. Thereafter, the respective hook 82 is twisted so that its terminal end side 96 is allowed to enter and slide through the first opening 106 of the respective holder 100. Thereafter, the button hook can be removed and the respective spring will draw the holder against the flange 22 pulling it toward the opposite flange.
All of the above is done at a time when all three springs have their opposite ends secured to the other flange 24 in the same manner by other hook holders 100. By a repetition of this button hook process, each spring is thereby attached to a holder for causing it to pull on the flange 22.
Thereafter, the reel is complete and assembled and not only receives the coil of wire, not shown, but continually presses against its sides for effectively preventing its collapse while it is being unwound.
The finished reel has a centralopening 200 therethrough along the axis for receiving an axle.
Each flange has ribs on its outer side 300 extending radially from an outwardly projecting reinforcing ring or rib 310, whereby each basic reel section 36 and 38 can be molded of one piece out of thermoplastic material without waste of material because of the ribs 300 and 310.
The periphery of each flange 22 and 24 is slightly out-turned for a minimum of wear and friction on wire that is being unreeled.
1. A reel having inner and outer telescoping tubular hub portions having lapping inner ends, spaced right and left end flanges attached to outer ends of said hub portions respectively, said end flanges and their attached hub portions forming right and left basic reel sections, spring means attached to said basic reel sections and urging said flanges towards each other, and in which said spring means comprises at least one spring attached to said flanges, said spring having convolutions intermediate its ends and having a hook on at least one of its ends and formed integrally with the rest of said spring to form a spring-and-hook assembly, said hook having two sides one being adjacentthe terminal end of said spring-and-hook assembly, a holder having a first opening therethrough receiving said one side of said hook, said holder having a second opening therethrough spaced from said first opening and receiving therethrough the other side of said hook, said second opening being large enough to receive therethrough at the same time both sides of said hook, one of said flanges having a spring receiving passage therethrough extending substantially parallel to said axis and large enough to receive therethrough both sides of said hook at the same time, said holder being disposed on an outer side of said passage, said holder being larger than said passage for preventing the hook disposed therein from passing inwardly of the respective flange.