United States Patent  [ii] Patent Number: 5,322,451
Guss, III et al.  Date of Patent: Jun. 21, 1994
An electrical coupling (10) adapted for connection to a complementary connector includes an elastomeric insert (16) having a plurality of inner cylindrical conductive contacts forming a socket and disposed within a cylindrical molded body (14) from which a multi-conductor cord (12) extends. The electrical coupling (10) further includes a coupling nut (22) disposed about the insert (16) and having inner threads (22a) for engaging and drawing the complementary connector into secure engagement with a first surface (26a) of an annular flange (26) disposed about the periphery of the insert. In one embodiment, the coupling nut (22) includes an annular, inner flange having a plurality of spaced, symmetrical detents (36). A washer (24) disposed intermediate a second, opposed surface (266) of the insert's peripheral flange (26) and the coupling nut's inner flange (34) includes first projections on a first surface thereof which engage the annular flange's second surface when the coupling nut (22) is tightened. The washer (24) further includes second projections (50) on a second, opposed surface thereof which are each positioned within a respective detent (36) of the coupling nut (22) to provide a locked connection. An outer sheath (18) may be assembled to the coupling nut (22) to permit the coupling nut to be rotated for tightening until a predetermined torque is reached, whereupon the sheath freely rotates about the tightened coupling nut. Other embodiments include the combination of a split washer (96) engaging an inner ratchet surface of the coupling nut (86) and a combination of spaced outer bosses (122a, 1226, 122c and 122d) around the insert (116) engaging either a circular (142) or an undulating (128) inner flange of the coupling nut to provide a locking feature with a tactile indication of connector tightening and locking.
10 Claims, 3 Drawing Sheets