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Publication numberUS3891013 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 24, 1975
Filing dateAug 20, 1973
Priority dateAug 20, 1973
Publication numberUS 3891013 A, US 3891013A, US-A-3891013, US3891013 A, US3891013A
InventorsFolk Kenneth Foster, Ross Milton Dean, Shatto Jr Walter Clifton
Original AssigneeAmp Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other
US 3891013 A
Abstract
Leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires are positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other by a wire separating mechanism which utilizes a template having a generally planar surface with a primary groove defined therein capable of substantially accommodating a trailing portion of each of the wires in a bunched together condition and a plurality of secondary grooves defined therein which emanate from the primary groove along separate, spaced apart paths, each of the secondary grooves capable of substantially accommodating therein the leading portion of only one of the wires. A clamp on the mechanism located near one end of the primary groove holds the trailing portions of the wires within the primary groove in their bunched together condition. A roller element mounted on the mechanism and having a cylindrical surface is moved by the mechanism into engagement with the trailing portions of the wires so as to introduce compressive forces thereon. Alternatively, a slide element may be utilized in place of the roller element. The mechanism continues the application of the compressive forces simultaneously along the wires by rolling the roller element along the planar surface of the template such that the application of the compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of the wires from the trailing portion toward the leading portion of each of the wires whereby the leading portions of the wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves in the planar surface of the template and thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.
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United States Patent 11 1 Folk et al.

1 June 24, 1975 APPARATUS FOR POSITIONING LEADING PORTIONS OF INDIVIDUAL WIRES OF A PLURALITY OF WIRES IN SPACED APART RELATIONSHIPS WITH RESPECT TO EACH OTHER [75] Inventors: Kenneth Foster Folk; Milton Dean Ross; Walter Clifton Shatto, Jr., all of Harrisburg, Pa.

[73] Assignee: AMP Incorporated, Harrisburg, Pa.

[22] Filed: Aug. 20, 1973 [21] Appl. No.: 389,924

[52] US. Cl. 140/147; 29/203 DT; 29/630 B [51] Int. Cl B2lf 1/02; H0lr 43/00 [58] Field of Search... 29/203 D, 203 DT, 203 DTS, 29/203 P, 203 J, 203 MW, 461, 628, 630 B; 140/147; 81/951 OTHER PUBLICATIONS IBM Technical Disclosure Bulletin, Vol. 6, No. 4, Sept. 1973, Expandable Terminal Insert Strip, Byrnes et al.

Primary E.\'aminer-C. W. Lanham Assistant Examiner-E. M. Combs Altorney, Agent, or FirmWilliam .l. Keating; J. L. Seitchik; F. W. Raring [57] ABSTRACT Leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires are positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other by a wire separating mechanism which utilizes a template having a generally planar surface with a primary groove defined therein capable of substantially accommodating a trailing portion of each of the wires in a bunched together condition and a plurality of secondary grooves defined therein which emanate from the primary groove along separate. spaced apart paths, each of the secondary grooves capable of substantially accommodating therein the leading portion of only one of the wires. A clamp on the mechanism located near one end of the primary groove holds the trailing portions of the wires within the primary groove in their bunched together condition. A roller element mounted on the mechanism and having a cylindrical surface is moved by the mechanism into engagement with the trailing portions of the wires so as to introduce compressive forces thereon. Alternatively, a slide element may be utilized in place of the roller element. The mechanism continues the application of the compressive forces simultaneously along the wires by rolling the roller element along the planar surface of the template such that the application of the compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of the wires from the trailing portion toward the leading portion of each of the wires whereby the leading portions of the wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves in the planar surface of the template and thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

15 Claims, 29 Drawing Figures PATENTEDJUN24 ms 3.891, 013

SHEET 1 PATENTEDJUH 24 1975 a sum PATENTED JUN 24 I975 SHEET SHEET PATENTEDJUH 24 1975 PATENTEDJUH241915 3.891; 0 1 a SHEEI 1O APPARATUS FOR POSITIONING LEADING PORTIONS OF INDIVIDUAL WIRES OF A PLURALITY OF WIRES IN SPACED APART RELATIONSHIPS WITH RESPECT TO EACH OTHER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field Of The Invention The present invention relates generally to the assembly of electrical connecting devices to individual conductor wires of a plurality of wires and more particularly is concerned with a method and apparatus for positioning leading portions of the individual wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other to allow simultaneous assembly of the connecting devices to the individual wires.

2. Description Of The Prior Art Heretofore, the assembly of electrical connecting devices, such as terminals, etc., to individual conductor wires of a plurality of wires, for example, wires bunched together and enclosed by an insulation sheath, has been predominately carried out by inherently expensive and slow hand operations which include separating one at a time the portions of individual wires which freely extend from the bunched together plurality of wires and positioning these wire portions one at a time into appropriate applicator tools for assembly of the connecting device thereto.

The present invention eliminates the inherent limitations of the aforementioned hand operations by providing automated separating and positioning of these indi vidual wire portions in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other to allow simultaneous assembly of the connecting devices thereto.

OBJECTS AND SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An object of the present invention, therefore, is to provide a method and apparatus which significantly automates the assembly of electrical connecting devices to pluralities of conductor wires.

Another object of the present invention, accordingly, is to provide a method and apparatus which simultaneously separates and positions the leading portions of the wires into spaced apart relationships and thereby allows for the simultaneous occurrence of subsequent operations which result in the assembly of the connecting devices to the wires. 7

These and other objects of the invention are achieved in a preferred embodiment thereof wherein method and apparatus achieve positioning of leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other. First and second surface means are provided with the first surface means having a primary groove defined therein capable of substantially accommodating a trailing portion of each of the wires in a bunched together condition and a plurality of secondary grooves defined therein which emanate from the primary groove along separate, spaced apart paths, each of the secondary grooves capable of substantially accommodating therein the leading portion of only one of the wires. Holding means positions the trailing portions of the wires in their bunched together condition in the primary groove of the first surface means. Force-applying means introduces an application of compressive forces on the wires at their trailing portions by bringing the secondsurface means and the primary groove of the first surface means into close proximity to each other while the trailing portions are so positioned in the primary groove of the first surface means by the holding means. The force-applying means then continues the application of compressive forces simultaneously along the wires by moving at least one of the first surface means and the second surface means relative to the other such that the application of the compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of the wires from its trailing portion toward its leading portion whereby the leading portions of the wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves of the first surface means and thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

Other objects and attainments of the invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon a reading of the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the drawings in which there is shown and described illustrative embodiments of the invention; it is to be understood, however, that these embodiments are not intended to be exhaustive nor limiting of the invention but are given for purpose of illustration in order that others skilled in the art may fully understand the invention and the principles thereof and the manner of applying it in practical use so that they may modify it in various forms, each as may be best suited to the condition of a particular use.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the course of the following detailed description reference will be frequently made to the attached drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a wire separating mechanism comprising the apparatus of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged front elevational view of the wire separating mechanism of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged perspective view of one form of the template utilized in the apparatus of FIG. 1 also showing a clamp positioned next to an end of the primary groove in the top surface of the template;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view similar to that of FIG. 3 now showing a plurality of wires emanating from an insulation sheath and being positioned in the primary groove by the clamp;

FIG. 5A is a perspective view similar to that of FIG. 4 now showing a roller element of the mechanism of FIG. 1 in an initial position aligned above trailing portions of the wires;

FIG. 5B is a perspective view similar to that of FIG. 5A but showing the roller element in an alternative initial position aligned slightly above the top surface of the template and rearwardly of the trailing portions of the wires;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view similar to that of either FIG. 5A or FIG. 58 showing the roller element having been moved from either of the respective initial positions thereof into engagement with the trailing portions of the wires so as to apply compressive forces to the wires;

FIG. 7 is a perspective view similar to that of FIG. 6 now showing the roller element continuing to apply compressive forces on the wires while being rolled leading portions of the wires into respective secondary grooves in the top surface of the template;

FIG. 9 is a perspective view similar to that of FIG. 7 but showing a slide element which may be utilized, in place of the roller element, in the apparatus of FIG. 1 to carry out substantially the same operations as the roller element;

FIG. 10 is a perspective view similar to that of FIG. 9 now showing the slide element after it has forced the leading portions of the wires into respective secondary grooves in the top surface of the template;

FIG. 11 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the primary groove of the template taken along line 1l11 of FIG. 3 showing a step formed in the primary groove;

FIG. 12 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the primary groove of the template of FIG. 3 taken along line 1212 of FIG. 4 showing the trailing portions of the wires positioned therein;

FIG. 13 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the primary groove of the template of FIG. 3 taken alone line 1313 of FIG. 6 showing the roller element in cross-section engaged with the trailing portions;

FIG. 14 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the primary groove and the secondary grooves of the template of FIG. 3 taken along line 1414 of FIG. 7 showing the roller element in cross-section engaged with the trailing portions and having forced the trailing portions into side-by-side dispositions with respect to each other in a shallower portion of the stepped primary groove;

FIG. 15 is an enlarged perspective view similar to that of FIG. 3 showing an alternative form of the template in that the primary groove thereof now has a ramp and smaller step formed therein instead of the larger step as shown in FIGS. 3 and 11;

FIG. 16 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view similar to that of FIG. 12 but showing the alternative form of the template of FIG. 15;

FIG. 17 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view similar to that of FIG. 13 but showing the alternative form of the template of FIG. 15 and showing the roller element engaging and applying compressive forces to the forward end of the insulation sheath to effect initial flattening of the sheath and spreading of the wires enclosed therein on the ramp of the primary groove;

FIG. 18 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view similar to that of FIG. 17 not showing further flattening of the insulation sheath on the ramp of the primary groove and spreading of the trailing portions of the wires on the step of the primary groove into side-byside dispositions with respect to each other;

FIG. 19 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view similar to that of FIG. 14 but showing the alternative form of the template of FIG. 15;

FIG. 20 is an enlarged perspective view similar to that of FIGS. 3 and 15 showing yet another alternative form of the template in that a depressable plunger element is mounted into the primary groove thereof adja-' cent to its juncture with the plurality of secondary grooves of the template;

FIG. 21 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the plunger element mounted at the juncture between the primary groove and the plurality of secondary grooves taken along line 21-21 of FIG. 20 showing the plunger element in its normal rest position;

FIG. 22 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view similar to that of FIG. 21 now showing the trailing portions of the wires positioned in the primary groove and extending upwardly and forwardly through a wireconfining notch defined in the upper end of the plunger element;

FIG. 23 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view similar to that of FIG. 23 now showing the roller element engaging and applying compressive forces to the trailing portions of the wires to cause spreading and arrangement of the trailing portions into side-by-side dispositions within the wire-confining notch of the plunger element;

FIG. 24 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view similar to that of FIG. 23 now showing the roller element after it has forceably moved the plunger element downwardly into the forward end of the primary groove to its depressed position which has caused the leading portions of the wires which extend in a forwardly direction from the wire-confining notch of the plunger element to be deposited individually into respective rearward ends of the secondary grooves;

FIG. 25 is another enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the primary groove of the template of FIG. 3 taken along line 25-25 of FIG. 4; and

FIGS. 26 through 28 are enlarged fragmentary views similar to that of FIG. 25 further showing reciprocatory movement of the roller element, shown in enlarged fragmentary form, in a transverse relationship to the longitudinal extent of the trailing portions of the wires and the primary groove simultaneously as the roller element is engaging and applying compressive forces to the trailing portions of the wires.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION As a preferred or exemplary embodiment of the method and apparatus of the present invention, FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate a wire separating mechanism 10 and FIGS. 3 through 8 schematically illustrate the basic sequence of operations performed by the mechanism 10 for positioning leading portions L of individual wires W of a plurality of wires W in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

The wire separating mechanism 10 utilizes a novel template 12 having a generally planar upper surface 14 with a primary groove 16 defined therein capable of substantially accommodating a trailing portion T of each of the wires W in a bunched together condition (see FIG. 4) and a plurality of secondary grooves 18 defined therein which emanate from the primary groove 16 along separate, spaced apart paths and are each capable of substantially accommodating therein the leading portion L of only one of the wires W (see FIG. 8). After a plurality of wires W are manually located in the primary groove 16 of the template 12, a clamp 20 on the mechanism 10 located near one end of the primary groove 16 holds the trailing portions T of the wires W within the primary groove 16 in their bunched together condition (see FIG. 4). Although the wires W at the rearward ends of their trailing portions T, as illustrated in the drawings, are enclosed by an insulation sheath S, the trailing portions T may just as readily be held in the primary groove 16 by the clamp 20 without the assistance of the insulation sheath S. Positioning of the leading portions L of the wires W is achieved when a carriage 22 of the mechanism 10 moves a roller element 24 rotatably mounted thereon across the template 12 into engagement with the trailing portions T of the wires W so as to introduce compressive forces on the trailing portions T. Alternatively, a slide element 26, as shown in FIGS. 9 and 10, may be utilized in place of the roller element 24. Continued movement of the carriage 22 across the template 12 causes continuation of the application of compressive forces simultaneously along incremental lengths of the wires W by the roller element 24 such that the application of the compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of the wires W from the trailing portion T toward the leading portion L of each of the wires W such that the leading portions L are forced individu ally into respective secondary grooves 18 in the planar surface 14 of the template 12 and thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other. The wires W have a predetermined length greater than that of the template 12 so that the free ends of the leading portions L will extend beyond the forward ends of the secondary grooves 18 of the template I2 (see FIG. 8) and be appropriately aligned for a suitable applicator mechanism A, such as a crimping press (shown in block outline form in FIG. 1), to simultaneously apply articles, such as electrical connecting devices, to the free ends of the wires W.

Referring now in greater detail to FIGS. 1 and 2, the wire separating mechanism has a base 28 on which is securely mounted a table-like frame 30 having a generally horizontal top plate 32 with a tracking groove 34 defined in its underside 36 along each of its two opposing longitudinal edges 38 from its rearward end 40 to its forward end 42. A recessed region 44 is formed in an upperside 46 of the top plate 32 for snugly receiving and holding the template 12 therein. The clamp has a unmovable part 48 securely fixed to the upperside 46 of the top plate 32, and a pivotal part 50 coupled to the plate 32, adjacent to one side of the recessed region 44 which is located near the rearward end of the primary groove 16 when the template 12 is positioned into the recessed region 44. The adjacent ends of the clamp parts 48, 50 define a wire-confining channel 52 for securely holding the wires W in their desired bunched together condition. It is readily apparent that rotation of the pivotal clamp part 50 either toward or away from the unmovable clamp part 48 allows for either securing or releasing the hold of the clamp 20 on the plurality of wires W as desired.

The carriage 22 is mounted on the top plate 32 of the frame and includes a pair of opposing leg members 54 being separated from each other through a distance slightly greater than the width of the top plate 32 and a body member 56 which connects with the leg members 54 at their upper ends.

More particularly, the carriage 22 is mounted on the horizontal top plate 32 for movement therealong by a cylindrical roller 58 which is journalled to each of the leg members 54 on the side thereof which faces the opposing one of the leg members 54 and a pair of bevelled rollers 60, 62 which are journalled to each of the leg members 54 also on the side thereof which faces the opposing one of the leg members 54 but below, and respectively offset from, the cylindrical roller 58. The pair of bevelled rollers 60, 62 on each leg member 54 of the carriage 22 are vertically displaced below the cylindrical roller 58 through a distance-slightly less than the thickness of the top plate 32 in order that the top plate 32 may be received between the cylindrical rollers 58 and the pairs of bevelled rollers 60, 62 with the cylindrical rollers 58 respectively engaging the upperside 46 of the top plate 32 near its longitudinal edges 38 and with each of the pairs of bevelled rollers 60, 62 at a continuous bevelled peripheral edge 64 on each roller 60, 62 engaging one of the tracking grooves 34 on the underside 36 of the top plate 32. By such mounting arrangement of the carriage 22 on the top plate 32 of the frame 30, the carriage 22 is only permitted to move along a linear path between the rearward and forward ends 40, 42, and parallel to the upperside 46, of the top plate 36.

An air cylinder 66which is securedly mounted by an upstanding support brace 68 of the frame 30 may be appropriately actuated in a conventional manner to cause movement of the carriage 22 along its horizontal linear path via a linkage assembly 70 which couples the carriage body member 56 to a piston rod 72 which extends from the air cylinder 66. Accordingly, movement of the roller element 24 mounted by the carriage 22 is achieved through actuation of the air cylinder 66.

The carriage 22 further includes a U-shaped member 74 fixedly mounted on the carriage body member 56 which defines a vertically-directed channel 76 within which is slideably mounted a piston block 78 which is coupled at its upper end by another piston rod 80 to another air cylinder 82 securely mounted on the top end of the U-shaped member 74 by a bracket 84. Another bracket 86 slideably coupled to the lower end of the block 78 rotatably mounts the roller element 24. Selected actuation of the air cylinder 82 in a conventionally known manner will cause movement of the block 70 and thus the roller element 24 either toward or away from the top plate 32 as desired.

Reciprocatory movement of the roller element 24 in a transverse relationship to the linear path of movementof the carriage 22 and also to the longitudinal extent of the primary groove 16 and the wires W when positioned therein is caused by selective rotation of a head 88 on the end of a rotatable cable connected to a suitable drive means (not shown) which head 88 extends from the end of a cable sheath 90 mounted by a bearing/bracket assembly 92 to the U-shaped member 74. The rotatable cable head 88 is coupled to the slideable bracket 86 which mounts the roller element 24- via linkage arms 94, 96.

Referring now to FIGS. 3 through 8 and 11 through 14, in one form of the template 12 which may be utilized in the schematically illustrated sequence of operations carried out by the mechanism 10, the primary groove 16 is defined by a recessed step, generally designated 98, formed in the planar surface 14 of the block of resilient material, such as steel, comprising the template 12. A rearward region of the primary groove 16 which is capable of substantially accommodating therein a rearward trailing portion RT of each of the wires W in a randomly bunched together condition, as illustrated in FIG. 12, comprises a lower tread of the step 98. A forward region of the primary groove 16 which is capable of substantially accommodating therein a forward trailing portion FT of each of the wires arranged in a side-by-side bunched together condition, as illustrated in FIG. 14, comprises an upper tread 102 of the step 98. The lower and uppertreads 100, 102 are interconnected by a riser 104.

Referring now to FIGS. 15 through 19, in another form of the template 12 which also may be utilized in the schematically illustrated sequence of operations carried out by the mechanism 10, the primary groove 16 has a ramp 106 and short riser 108 interconnecting the upper and lower treads 102, 100 of the step 98 instead of the longer riser 104.

Referring now to FIGS. 20 through 24, a preferred form of the template 12 is illustrated wherein a plunger element 110 is yieldably mounted by a suitable spring 1 12 in a forward end of the primary groove 16 contiguous to rearward ends of the secondary grooves 18. The plunger element 110 has an upper wire-confining notch 114 defined therein which forms a region capable of substantially accommodating the forward trailing portions FT of the wires W when arranged in a side-by-side bunched together condition, as illustrated in FIG. 23. Side nibs 116 which define the notch 114 are inclined toward the forward end of the template 16 and extend above the surface 14 of the template when the plunger element 110 is in its normal rest position. Further a forward lip 118 of the notch 114 is aligned above the rearward ends of the secondary grooves 18 when the plunger element 110 is in the normal rest position. When the roller element 24 is brought by the mechanism into engagement with the plunger element 110 either by vertical descent of the block 78 or by forward movement of the carriage 22 where the roller element 24 was previously aligned for engagement with the top surface 14 of the template 12, the forward trailing portions FT of the wires W are forced by the compressive forces being introduced thereupon to become rearranged from their random bunched together condition of FIG. 22 to their side-by-side bunched together condition of FIG. 23. Further movement of the roller element 24 along the wires W, as caused by forward movement of the carriage 22 of the mechanism 10 along its linear path, engages the roller element 24 with the inclined surface of the nibs 116 and causes forced movement of the plunger element 110 against the' action of the spring 112 to a depressed position, as shown in FIG. 24, in which the wire-confining notch 114 is now aligned with the rearward ends of the secondary grooves 18 and the leading portions L of the wires W are individually deposited into respective rearward ends of the secondary grooves.

Referring now to FIGS. 25 through 28, there is illustrated the reciprocatory movement of the roller element 24 which preferably occurs simultaneously as the roller element 24 is being brought into close proximity or actual engagement with the top surface 14 of the template 12 at the forward end of the primary groove 16. This transverse movement aids in the rolling of the wires W into side-by-side dispositions in order to insure and facilitate the subsequent forcing of individual leading portions L of the wires into respective secondary grooves 18.

We claim:

1. Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual detached flexible wires ofa plurality of relatively movable wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other, said apparatus comprising:

first surface means having a primary groove defined therein capable of substantially accommodating a trailing portion of each of said wires in a bunched together condition and a plurality of secondary grooves defined therein which emanate from said primary groove along separate, spaced apart paths, each of said secondary grooves being capable of 8 substantially accommodating therein said leading portion of-only one of said wires;

holding means for positioning said trailing portions of said wires in said bunched together condition in said primary groove of said first surface means;

second surface means; and

force-applying means for introducing an application of compressive forces on said wires at said trailing portions thereof by bringing said second surface means and said primary groove of said first surface means into close proximity to each other while said trailing portions of said wires are so positioned in said primary groove of said first surface means by said holding means and for continuing said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires by moving at least one of said first surface means and said second surface means relative to the other such that said application of said compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of said wires from said trailing portion toward said leading portion of each of said wires whereby said leading portions of said wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves of said first surface means and thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

2. Apparatus as defined in claim 1 wherein:

said force-applying means being also for moving at least one of said first surface means and said second surface means relative to the other with the direction of movement being in a transverse relationship to the longitudinal extent of said trailing portions of said wires and said primary groove, simultaneously as said application of compressive forces is being introduced on said trailing portions of said wires by said force-applying means, to thereby cause arrangement of said trailing portions of said wires in side-by-side dispositions with respect to each other within said primary groove and facilitate subsequent forcing of individual leading portions of said wires into respective secondary grooves by said continuation of said application of compressive forces simultaneously along said wires.

3. Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other, said apparatus comprising:

a template having a generally planar surface with a primary groove defined therein capable of substantially accommodating a trailing portion of each of said wires in a bunched together condition and a plurality of secondary grooves defined therein which emanate from said primary groove along separate, spaced apart paths, each of said secondary grooves capable of substantially accommodating therein said leading portion of only one of said wires;

holding means for positioning said trailing portions of said wires in said bunched together condition in said primary groove of said first surface means;

a slide element having a generally planar surface; and

force-applying means for introducing an application of compressive forces on said wires at said trailing portions thereof by bringing said planar surface of said slide element and said primary groove of said template into close proximity to each other while said trailing portions of said wires are so positioned in said primary groove of said template by said holding means and for continuing said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires by sliding at least one of said slide element and said template relative to the other such that said application of said compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of said wires from said trailing portion toward said leading portion of each of said wires whereby said leading portions of said wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves of said template and thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

4. Apparatus as defined in claim 3 wherein: said force-applying means being also for moving at least one of said slide element and said template relative to the other with the direction of movement being in a transverse relationship to the longithereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

6. Apparatus as defined in claim 5 wherein: said force-applying means being also for moving said slide element relative to said template with the direction of movement being in a transverse relationship to the longitudinal extent of said trailing portions of said wires and said primary groove, simultaneously as said application of compressive forces is being introduced on said trailing portions of said wires by said force-applying means, to thereby cause arrangement of said trailing portions of said wires in side-by-side dispositions with respect to each other within said primary groove and facilitate subsequent forcing of individual leading portions of said wires into respective secondary grooves by said continuation of said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires.

7. Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other, said apparatus tudinal extent of said trailing portions of said wires and said primary groove, simultaneously as said application of compressive forces is being introduced on said trailing portions of said wires by said forceg g sg i having a generally planar Surface with a t t f applying means to hereby Cause arrangemen 0 primary groove defined therein capable of substansaid trailing portions of said wires in side-by-side dispositions with respect to each other within said primary groove and facilitate subsequent forcing of individual leading portions of said wires into respective secondary grooves by said continuation of said application of compressive forces simultaneously along said wires.

5. Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other, said apparatus comprising:

a stationarily-positioned template having a generally planar surface with a primary groove defined therein capable of substantially accommodating a trailing portion of each of said wires in a bunched together condition and a plurality of secondary grooves defined therein which emanate from said primary groove along separate, spaced apart paths, each of said secondary grooves capable of substantially accommodating therein said leading portion of only one of said wires;

holding means for positioning said trailing portions of said wires in said bunched together condition in said primary groove of said first surface means;

a slide element having a generally planar surface; and

force-applying means for introducing an application of compressive forces on said wires at said trailing portions thereof by bringing said planar surface of said slide element into close proximity to said primary groove in said planar surface of said template while said trailing portions of said wires are so positioned in said primary groove by said holding means and for continuing said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires tially accommodating a trailing portion of each of said wires in a bunched together condition and a plurality of secondary grooves defined therein which emanate from said primary groove along separate, spaced apart paths, each of said secondary grooves capable of substantially accommodating therein said leading portion of only one of said wires;

holding means for positioning said trailing portions of said wires in said bunched together condition in said primary groove of said first surface means;

a roller element having a cylindrical surface; and

force-applying means for introducing an application of compressive forces on said wires at said trailing portions thereof by bringing said cylindrical surface of said roller element and said primary groove of said template into close proximity to each other while said trailing portions of said wires are so positioned in said primary groove of said template by said holding means and for continuing said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires rolling said roller element relative to said template as caused by moving at least one of said roller element and said template relative to the other such that said application of said compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of said wires from said trailing portion toward said leading portion of each of said wires whereby said leading portions of said wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves of said template and thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

8. Apparatus as defined in claim 7 wherein:

said force-applying means being also for moving at by sliding said slide element along said planar surface of said template such that said application of said compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of said wires from said trailing portion toward said leading portion of each of said wires whereby said leading portions of said wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves in said planar surface of said template and least one of said roller element and said template relative to the other with the direction of movement being in a transverse relationship to the longitudinal extent of said trailing portions of said wires and said primary groove, simultaneously as said application of compressive forces is being introduced on said trailing portions of said wires by said forceapplying means, to thereby cause arrangement of tively movable wires in spaced apart relationship with respect to each other, said apparatus comprising:

surface means having a elongated of elongted grooves, each groove being capable of receiving only a single detached flexible wire, and one end of the grooves being in spaced apart relationships to each other; positioning means; and means operable to cause said positioning means to be 1 1 said trailing portions of said wires in side-by-side dispositions with respect to each other within said primary groove and facilitate subsequent forcing of individual leading portions of said wires into respective secondary grooves by said continuation of 5 said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires. 9. Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual wires of a plurality of wires in spaced apart relaof only one of said wires;

holding means for positioning said trailing portions of a roller element having a cylindrical surface; and force-applying means for introducing an application of compressive forces on said wires at said trailing portions thereof by bringing said cylindrical surface of said roller element into close proximity to said primary groove in said planar surface of said template while said trailing portions of said wires are so positioned in said primary groove by said holding means and for continuing said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires by rolling said roller element along said planar surface of said template such that said application of said compressive forces simultaneously progresses along each of said wires from said trailing portion toward said leading portion of each of said wires whereby said leading portions of said wires are forced individually into respective secondary grooves in said planar surface of said template and thereby positioned in spaced apart relation ships with respect to each other.

10. Apparatus as defined in claim 9 wherein: said force-applying means being also for moving said roller element relative to said template with the direction of movement being in a transverse relationship to the longitudinal extent of said trailing portions of said wires and said primary groove, simultaneously as said application of compressive forces is being introduced on said trailing portions of said wires by said force-applying means, to thereby cause arrangement of said trailing portions of said wires in side-by-side dispositions with respect to each other within said primary groove and facilitate subsequent forcing of individual leading portions of said wires into respective secondary grooves by said continuation of said application of said compressive forces simultaneously along said wires.

11. Apparatus as defined in claim 10 wherein: said movement of said roller element relative to said template in said transverse directional relationship occurs in a reciprocatory fashion.

tionships with respect to each other, said apparatus 10 moved relative to said surface means in a path gencomprising: erally parallel to the elongated grooves towards a stationarily-positioned template having a generally said one end of the grooves from the other end of planar surface with a primary groove defined the grooves to cause the positioning means to protherein capable of substantially accommodating a gressively force incremental lengths of the leading trailing portion of each of said wires in a bunched l5 portion of each of said plurality of wires into positogether condition and a plurality of secondary tion in said plurality of grooves whereby those porgrooves defined therein which emanate from said tions of said relatively movable wires which are primary groove along separate, spaced apart paths, forced into said one end of the grooves are posieach of said secondary grooves capable of substantioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to tially accommodating therein said leading portion each other.

13. Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual detached flexible wires of a plurality of relatively movable wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other, said apparatus comprising:

template means having a plurality of spaced apart grooves, each groove being capable of receiving only a single wire;

means operable to hold a portion of a plurality of wires adjacent one end of said grooves from relative movement thereto; and

positioning means operable to position leading portions of said plurality of wires into position in said plurality of grooves, said positioning means initially applying a compressive force on said wires adjacent said one end of said plurality of grooves, and said positioning means subsequently continuing the application of compressive force along each of the wires from those portions which are being held toward said leading portions of each of said wires, whereby said leading portions of said wires positioned in said grooves extend from one end of the grooves to the other end and are thereby positioned in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other.

14. Apparatus for positioning leading portions of individual detached flexible wires of a plurality of relatively movable wires in spaced apart relationships with respect to each other, said apparatus comprising:

first surface means having a plurality of grooves defined therein which extend along separate, spaced apart paths, each of said grooves being capable of substantially accommodating therein said leading portion of only one of said wires;

means operable to dispose portions of said wires adjacent one end of said plurality of grooves; second surface means; and

force applying means for introducing an application of compressive forces on said wires by bringing said second surface means and said first surface means into close proximity to each other while portions of said wires are being disposed adjacent one end of said plurality of grooves and for continuing said application of compressive forces simultaneously along the length of said wires by moving at least one of said first surface means and said second surface means relative to each other such that said application of compressive forces simultaneously pro- 1 3 14 gresses along each of said wires from those portions tionships with respect to each other. of Said which are bemg held toward Said lead 15. The apparatus as set forth in claim 12 wherein the ing portions of each of said wires whereby said leading portions of said wires are forced individually into respective grooves of said first surface ased towards the Surface meansmeans and thereby positioned in spaced apart relapositioning means includes a force applying means bi- UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE QETIFICATE ()F CORRECTION PATENT NO. 3,891,013 DATED June 2M, 1975 INVENTOR(S) Kenneth Foster Folk; Milton Dean Ross; Walter I Clifton Shatto, Jr, It IS certrfred that error appears In the above-rdentlfled patent and that sard Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:

Column 12, line 3, delete the word "elongated",

after having a and insert the word "plurality".

Signed and Scaled this twenty-sixth D ay Of August 1975 [SEAL] A ttest:

RUTH C. MASON C. MARSHALL DANN Arresting Officer Commissioner uj'Parents and Trademarks UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION PATENT NO. 3 891, 013 DATED June 2 1975 INVENTOR(S) Kenneth Foster Folk; Milton Dean Ross; Walter Clifton Shatto, Jr, I It IS certrfred that error appears m the above-rdentrfred patent and that sad Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:

Column 12, line 3, delete the Word "elongated",

after having a and insert the word "plurality".

Signed and Sealed this twenty-sixth D ay Of August 1 9 75 [SEAL] A ttes t:

RUTH C. MASON C. MARSHALL DANN Arresting Officer Commissioner oj'PaIents and Trademarks

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Referenced by
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Classifications
U.S. Classification140/147, 29/872, 29/749, 29/874
International ClassificationH01R43/052, H01B13/00, H01R43/04, H01B13/012
Cooperative ClassificationH01B13/012, H01R43/052
European ClassificationH01R43/052, H01B13/012