|Publication number||US3868836 A|
|Publication date||Mar 4, 1975|
|Filing date||Mar 1, 1974|
|Priority date||Mar 1, 1974|
|Also published as||CA1015973A, CA1015973A1, DE2507049A1|
|Publication number||US 3868836 A, US 3868836A, US-A-3868836, US3868836 A, US3868836A|
|Inventors||Roche Louis A La|
|Original Assignee||Ford Motor Co|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (4), Referenced by (29), Classifications (5)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
States Patent [191 La Roche Mar. 4, 1975 DECK LID LATCH AND LOCK ASSEMBLY  Assignee: Ford Motor Company, Dearborn,
22 Filed: Mar. 1, 1974 21 Appl. No.: 447,447
Prinmry Iiruminer-Albert G. Craig, Jr. Attorney. Agent, or Firm-John J. Roethel; Keith L. Zerschling  ABSTRACT A deck lid latch and lock assembly having a latch mechanism and a key operated lock mechanism for operating the latch mechanism mounted, respectively, on inner and outer panels of the deck lid. The inner and outer panels are connected by a bridging panel. The bridging panel and the inner and outer panels form a pocket receiving the latch and lock mechanisms. The latch and lock mechanisms are spaced from one another and coupled by a coupling means.
The improvement comprises a bracket-shield mounted on the bridging panel and supporting the inner end-the end within the pocketof the lock mechanism. A first retention clip locks the lock mechanism to the bracket-shield to resist twisting movement of the lock mechanism relative to the outer panel and longitudinal withdrawal of the lock mechanism from the bracket-shield and the outer panel. A second retention clip also has interlocking engagement with the lock mechanism and mainly assures sealing between the lock mechanism and the outer surface of the outer panel. The shield portion of the bracketshield prevents in-line access to the latch mechanism by means of a tool used to punch a hole adjacent the lock mechanism through the outer body panel.
6 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures DECK LID LATCH AND LOCK ASSEMBLY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Law enforcement agencies and automobile insurance companies have been exerting pressure on the automobile manufacturers for improved trunk or deck lid latch and lock assemblies that are more theft-proof or theftretardant than conventional production latch and lock assemblies. In the conventional assembly, the lock mechanism for actuating the latch mechanism is held in place on the sheet metal outer panel of the deck lid by a spring retention clip. It has been found to be a relatively simple matter either to drive the lock mechanism through the sheet metal panel of the deck lid or to use a slam puller tool to pull the lock mechanism out of the sheet metal panel. With the lock mechanism displaced to leave a hole in the deck lid panel, a long screwdriverlike tool may be inserted through the hole to actuate the latch mechanism. Another alternative is to first use the screwdriver-like tool to punch a hole through the sheet metal alongside of the lock mechanism in substantial alignment with the latch mechanism, next to displace the shaft coupling the lock mechanism to the latch mechanism, and then to actuate the latch mechanism by inserting the tool into the latch mechanism lever slot vacated by the coupling shaft.
No matter which means of forced entry is used, an important criteria as far as the would-be thief(s) is concerned is that it should take no longer than five minutes to accomplish the break-in. The risk of being caught in the act obviously greatly increases with every moment spent on the break-in.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a deck lid latch mechanism and lock mechanism assembly which is more theft-proof than conventional assemblies.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to a deck lid latch and lock assembly for a vehicle deck lid having inner and outer spaced panels connected by a bridging panel forming a pocket in which a latch mechanism and a lock mechanism are housed in spaced relation to each other. The latch mechanism is mounted on the inner panel with its latch element projecting through an aperture in the bridging panel in a keeper device engageable position. The lock mechanism has an elongated flanged housing at one end which is mounted so as to extend inwardly into the deck lid pocket through an aperture in the outer panel to a depth permitted by abutment of its flange with the outer surface of the outer panel.
A key cylinder mechanism is mounted in the housing having at its outer end the key receiving slot facing outwardly of the outer panel. With the proper key inserted in the key cylinder mechanism, the latter may be rotated. The rotation is transmittable by a coupling means operatively connecting the key cylinder mechanism at its inner end to the latch mechanism within the deck lid pocket.
The improvement to the foregoing structure embodying the present invention comprises a combination bracket-shield that is mounted on the bridging panel and has an aperture through which the end of the lock mechanism housing opposite its flanged end projects.
A first retention clip has interlocked engagement with the end of the housing projecting through the bracket-shield. The first retention clip is positioned to prevent twisting movement of the housing relative to the outer panel and longitudinal withdrawal of the latter from the support bracket aperture and the outer panel aperture. A second retention clip has interlocked engagement with the lock mechanism housing between the bracket-shield and the outer panel, the second retention clip abutting the inner side of the outer panel to provide seal pressure between the lock mechanism housing flange and the outer surface of the outer panel.
Preferably, the bracket-shield has a shield portion adapted to extend to either side of the lock mechanism housing a sufficient distance to prevent access to the latch mechanism by a screwdriver inserted through a hole punched through the outer panel.
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 fragmentary perspective view of a portion of a vehicle deck lid having a latch mechanism and lock mechanism assembly as used during recent model years;
FIG. 2 is a view in partsimilar to FIG. 1 illustrating the latch mechanism and lock mechanism assembly embodying the present invention;
FIG. 3 is an exploded view of the latch mechanism and lock mechanism assembly components; and
FIG. 4 is a vertical section substantially on the line 4-4 of FIG. 2.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Referring now to the drawings and more particularly to FIG. 1, there is shown a fragmentary portion of a vehicle deck lid structure generally designated 10. The deck lid structure comprises an outer panel 11 having a depending flange portion 12. The outer panel 11 overlies an inner panel 13 having a depending flange 14 in spaced, substantially parallel, relationship to the depending outer flange portion 12. The outer and inner panel flanges l2 and 14 are bridged by a substantially horizontally stepped bridging panel 15. The panel 15 is shown as an integral extension of the inner panel 13 and as having a pinch weld flange connection at 16 to the outer panel flange 12 at the lower edge of the latter. The panel flanges 12 and 14 and the bridging panel 15 form a pocket 17 closed at the top by the horizontal portion of the outer panel 11.
The latch mechanism, generally designated 18, and the lock mechanism, generally designated 19, are housed in the pocket 17. The latch mechanism 18 is bolted to a right angle reinforcing plate 20 welded to the flange 14 of the inner panel 13. The latch element 21 of the latch mechanism 18 projects through an aperture 22 in the reinforcing plate 20 and the bridging panel 15 in position to engage a keeper device (not shown).
The lock mechanism 19 has a longitudinally extending housing 23 having a flange 24 atone end. The housing 23 extends inwardly into the deck lid pocket through an aperture 25 (see FIG. 4) in the outer panel flange 12.
A key cylinder mechanism 26 is mounted in the housing 23 and has at its outer end a key receiving slot 27 facing outwardly of the outer panel flange 12. The key receiving slot 27 is adapted to receive a key 28. The inner end of the key cylinder mechanism 26 is coupled to the latch mechanism by an extension shaft 29. The shaft 29 is held on the inner end of the key cylinder mechanism by a flexible spring coupling 31 and is received in a pivot rivet 32 coupled to the actuating lever (not visible) of the latch mechanism 18.
The locking mechanism 19 is held on the panel flange 12 by a spring clip (not visible in FIG. 1) of the type shown in FIG. 3. In current production latch and lock assemblies, the locking mechanism is supported and stabilized by a free standing L-shaped bracket 33, the base 34 of which is mounted on the bridging panel 15. The housing 23 of the lock mechanism 19 is cradled intermediate its ends in an aperture 35 of the bracket 33.
In the current production assembly both retention and sealing of the lock mechanism housing flange 24 to the panel 12 sheet metal are achieved through a single retention clip, such as the clip 36 of FIG. 3. The strength of the retention, i.e., the resistance against pushing or pulling the lock mechanism 23 through the panel sheet metal, depends on the vehicle body sheet metal strength.
Referring not to FIGS. 2 to 4, inclusive, an important feature of the improved latch mechanism and lock mechanism assembly embodying the present invention is a dual-function bracket-shield 37. As best seen in FIG. 4, the bracket-shield 37 is substantially L-shaped having a upstanding leg 38 and a base leg 39 embossed at their intersection to provide stiffener ribs 41. The bridging panel is formed with an elongated rectangular aperture 42 and the bracket-shield is mounted with its base leg 39 positioned beneath the panel 15 and its upstanding leg 38 projecting upwardly into the pocket 17. The base leg 39 of the bracket-shield 37 is shown held by bolts 43 to the panel 15, but it may be welded or otherwise secured.
A substantially L-shaped spring clip 44 coacts with the bracket-shield to retain the lock mechanism 19a in position. The spring clip 44 as best seen in FIG. 3 has a base portion 45 adapted to stradle the aperture 42 in the panel 15 and to be fastened as by bolts 46 to the panel. The upstanding leg 47 terminates in a bifurcated retention portion or spaced retention legs 48.
The lock mechanism 19a housing, herein designated 49, has a pair of diametrically opposed, outwardly extending, lugs 51 on a cylindrical body portion. The lugs abut the opposing surface ofthe bracket upstanding leg 38 as the inner end of key cylinder 52 is inserted through a centrally located aperture 53 in the bracketshield leg 38.
The key cylinder inner end is also provided with a pair of diametrically spaced lugs 54 adapted to abut the spaced legs 48 on the leg 47 of the spring clip 44. When the clip 44 is in place, the key cylinder 52 and thereby the housing 49 cannot be withdrawn from the bracketshield 37 and the panel 12.
The relationship of the retention legs 48 of the clip 44 to flats (not visible) on a shoulder portion of the housing 49 inhibits twisting of the lock mechanism 49 in the panel 15.
The second spring clip, previously identified at 36, is a bifurcated clip having leg portions 55 adapted to straddle the housing 49 immediately beneath the panel 12. It retains the lock cylinder relative to the outer skin or panel 12 and assures a tight seal between the flange 24 and the outer surface of the panel 12. It does not have, as in the conventionalproduction latch and lock assembly as shown in FIG. 1, the additional function of resisting pulling or punching forces exerted on the lock mechanism. It will be noted that the upstanding leg 38 of the bracket-shield 37 appears to be longer than necessary. Its length is such that any attempt to punch a hole through the panel 12 substantially in alignment with the pivotrivet 32 of the latch mechanism 18 will be blocked by the leg 38 acting as a shield.
The foregoing construction and arrangement will noticeably slow down any attempt at forceable entry into the luggage compartment. The latch and lock mechanism assembly resists punching or pulling of the lock mechanism to dislodge it from the panel 12 or the punching ofa hole in the panel within the area in which a tool could be aligned with the latch mechanism actuator to cause release of the latch mechanism.
It is to be understood that this 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 follow-ing claims:
1. A deck lid latch and lock assembly for a vehicle deck lid having inner and outer spaced panels connected by a bridging panel forming a pocket in which a latch mechanism and a lock mechanism are housed in spaced relation to each other,
the latch mechanism being mounted on the inner panel with its latch element projecting through an aperture in the bridging panel in a keeper device engageable position,
the lock mechanism having an elongated and flanged housing at one end,
the housing extending inwardly into the deck lid pocket through an aperture in the outer panel to a depth permitted by abutment of its flange with the outer surface of the outer panel,
a key cylinder mechanism mounted in the housing having at its outer end a key receiving slot facing outwardly of the outer panel,
and coupling means operatively connecting the key cylinder mechanism at its inner end to the latch mechanism within the deck lid pocket,
wherein the improvement comprises:
a combination bracket-shield mounted on the bridging panel and having an aperture through which the end of the lock mechanism housing opposite its flanged end projects,
a first retention clip having interlocked engagement with the end of the housing projecting through the bracket-shield,
the first retention clip engaging the lock mechanism to prevent twisting movement of the housing relative to the outer panel and having abutting relation to the bracket-shield to prevent longitudinal withdrawal of the housing from the support bracket aperture and the outer panel aperture,
and a second retention clip having interlocked engagement with the lock mechanism between the bracket-shield and the outer panel,
the second retention clip abutting the inner side of the outer panel to provide seal pressure between the lock mechanism housing flange and the outer surface of the outer panel.
2. A deck lid latch and lock assembly according to claim 1, in which:
the bridging panel has a rectangular aperture therein, and the bracket-shield has an elongated base portion straddling the aperture beneath the bridging panel and an upstanding support-shield portion extending through the bridging panel aperture, the upstanding support-shield portion containing the aperture through which the lock mechanism housing projects. 3. A deck lid latch and lock assembly according to claim 2, in which:
the support-shield portion extends to either side of the lock mechanism a sufficient distance to prevent access to the latch mechanism by a screwdriver through a hole punched through the outer panel. 4. A deck lid latch and lock assembly according to claim 2, in which:
the first retention clip has an elongated base portion straddling the aperture beneath the bridging panel and an upstanding bifurcated portion extending through the bridging panel aperture straddling the lock mechanism. 5. A deck lid latch and lock assembly according to claim 4, in which:
the support-shield portion extends to both sides of the lock mechanism in position to block access to the latch by a screwdriver through a hole punched through the outer panel. 6. A deck lid latch and lock assembly according to claim 5, in which:
the retention clips are formed from spring steel.
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|U.S. Classification||70/240, 70/370|