US 3329928 A
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July 4, 1967 BROSKE 3,329,928
ADJUSTABLE wEDCE-TYPE ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR Filed oct .l 1,- 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 IN VEN TOR.
July 4, 1967 w. F. BRSKE 3,329,928
lADJUSTABLE WEDGE-TYPE ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR Filed oct. 1, '1964 2 sheets-Sheena INVNTOR. 92 \)\\.L\AM T'. BEOSKE .BYMAWW #SWL United States Patent O 3,329,928 ADJUSTABLE WEDGE-TYPE ELECTRICAL CONNECTOR William F. Broske, Camp Hill, Pa., assignor to AMP Incorporated, Harrisburg, Pa. Filed Oct. 1, 1964, Ser. No. 400,830 2 Claims. (Cl. 339-247) In the art of makin-g a splice between two electrical cables, one technique employs a C-shaped body member and a wedge which is driven into the body member. This is useful for utility cables where a tap must be made into the middle of the line and the end of the cable is not accessible. In such application, the C-shaped member may be hung onto the middle of the cable, the tap wire inserted into the C-shaped member, and the wedging means driven between the two wires. Such an arrangement is set forth in the patent application, Ser. No. 172,183, filed Feb. 9', 1962, and now U.S. Patent No. 3,235,944, in the names of William F. Broske, Henry W. Demler, William H. Knowles, Jr., and lFrederick W. Wahl.
It is an object of this invention to provide such a connector that will automatically compensate for a range of different sized wires to be used in the splice.
It is also an object of this invention to employ such a connector that has a propellant or explosive charge contained in the wedge for purposes of making the connection.
One form of these connectors involves a two-piece V-shaped wedging means. The tapered surface on the outside of the wedging means permits a wide range of cable sizes to be employed. A large range of wire sizes may be employed without changing connectors since the wedge means will be driven into the C-shaped member more deeply on smaller-sized wires and less deeply on larger-sized wires. Thus, the compensation is achieved by the depth of penetration rather than a change in the size of the connector. This reduces the number of parts necessary in forming the connector and provides a connector of greater versatility.
One species of the invention involves the -use of a spongy, metallic material, such as foam aluminum, so that a larger-sized wire will oder more resistance whereby the material is capable of greater deformation. Another species of the invention relies upon the design of the wedge; eg., using a hollow, sheet-metal member, rather than the employment of a compressible material.
Additionally, the wedge member may be hollow, thereby making it possible to place the propellant or explosive charge used in making the connection within the wedge itself, rather than in a separate cartridge as shown in the previously-filed application.
Other objects and attainments of the present invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon a reading of the following detailed description when taken in con-junction with the drawings in which there are 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 purposes 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 conditions of a particular use.
In the drawings:
FIGURE 1 is an exploded, perspective view of the preferred embodiment of this invention;
FIGURE 2 is a sectional view of the device of FIG- URE 1 prior to final assembly;
FIGURE 3 is a view similar to FIGURE 2 illustrating 3,329,928 Patented July 4, 1967 the device assembled on wires (shown in phantom lines);
FIGURE 4 illustrates another embodiment of the invention wherein the wedge is made of highly compressible material;
FIGURE 5 is a view of another embodiment of the invention illustrating a one-piece, hollow wedge;
FIGURE 5A is a sectional view taken through plane 5A-5A of FIGURE 5;
FIGURE 6 is an illustration of another type of wedge similar to FIGURE 5;
FIGURE 7 is a sectional view illustrating the use of a propellant within a wedge of the type shown in FIG- URES 1-3; and
FIGURE 8 is a sectional view illustrating the use of I a propellant in combination with the type of wedge shown in FIGURE 4.
As shown in FIGURE l, the first species includes a three-piece connector having an outer wire-gripping member A, an inner wire-gripping member B, and a locking wedge member C.
The outer wire-gripping member A includes a wall portion 10 having one end 12 curled to form a wirereceiving surface 14. As shown in FIGURE 1, the inner wire-receiving surface 14 and the curled portion 12 taper from a smaller section at one end to a larger section at the other end.
A similar, curled portion 16 projects from the opposite end of the wall 10 toform a second inner surface 18, and is adapted to receive a cable of wire in the same manner as wire-receiving surface 14. The second wirereceiving member 18 and curled portion 16 taper in the same fashion as described above. This construction permits the outer wire-gripping portion A to be hooked onto the mid-section of a thru-cable 20 (see FIGURE 2) and a tap wire 21 to be inserted therein.
The inner wire-receiving member B (FIGURE 1) is `generally V-shaped and has an arcuate surface 22 forming one outside surface and a second arcuate surface 24 on its opposed outer surface. The inner surfaces 26 and 28 of the V-shaped member are planar. These surfaces form leg portions which are secured together at one end by nose portion 30. It is observed that the inner surfaces 26 and 28 taper in the same manner as the outer surfaces 22 and 24 (FIGURE 2).
The locking wedge C is comprised of a block 32 having opposed side surfaces 34 and 36 which form a matching taper with the inner surfaces 26 and 28 of the inner wire-gripping member B.
When it is desired to splice a pair of cables 20 and 21 (FIGURE 2), the outer wire-gripping member A is hooked onto the wire so that the arcuate, inner surface 14 engages the wire. The tap wire 21 is then inserted into the other arcuate surface 16 of the member A. The inner wire-gripping member B, and locking wedge C are driven between the wires 20 and 22 (FIGURE 3).
The shape of the inner wire-gripping member B causes it to be flexible and adapts itself to a range of wire sizes. The locking wedge C is driven inwardly to a depth that accommodates the diameters of the particular wires used. If the wires are smaller than those shown in FIG- URE 3, then the locking wedge C will be driven more deeply into the inner wire-gripping member to cause it to snugly engage the smaller wires. Alternatively, if larger wires are used, the locking wedge 32 penetrates to a lesser depth, thereby automatically compensating -for the larger wires.
The device shown in FIGURE 4 constitutes a second embodiment, whereby the locking wed'ge 40 is constructed from a spongy, metallic substance, such as foamed aluminum, which is highly compressible. The wedge 40 has tapered surfaces 42 and 44, and is `designed to be used with a C-member in the same manner as FIG- URES 1-3. Because of the compressibility of the material, the wedge will be driven into the wire-gripping member to a degree whereby it will accommodate a range of wires. If the wires are smaller in diameter, the wedge is driven-in more deeply. If the wires are larger in diameter, the wedge is driven-in less deeply. It is seen that, in this embodiment, the material of the wedge provides the compensating feature previously designed into the structure of the embodiment shown in FIGURES 1 3.
A third embodiment of the invention is illustrated in FIGUR-ES 5 and 5A. The locking wedge 46 is of a onepiece construction having an axial aperture 47 extending longitudinally through the wedge. Wire-gripping surfaces 48 and 48' are formed on the wedge in the same manner as the wire-gripping surfaces 22 and 24 of the device shown in FIGURE 1. It is noted that the forward end of the wedge 46 has a greater angle of taper than the rear end of the Wedge.
The device of FIGURES 5 and 5A is applied to the conductors in the same manner as the previously-described embodiments. However, the aperture 47 renders the wire-gripping surfaces 48, 4S sufficiently elastic to accommodate the conductor and retain it in the connector by residual gripping force. The greater angle of taper at the front end of the wedge permits easy insertion of the conductor without damaging it. The smaller angle of taper at the rear end provides higher locking forces in the iinal connection.
A fourth embodiment, as disclosed in FIGURE 6, is similar to the embodiment of FIGURES 5 and 5A. The wedge and wire-gripping means are combined into a single unit S0, which is of sheet-metal and is internally hollow. The upper wire-gripping surface 52 and lower wire-gripping surface 54 correspond to the surfaces 22 and 24, respectively, of the device shown in FIGURE 1. T-he sides of the wedge are inwardly directed at 56, 58 to preform the wedge for greater resiliency. Again, the design of the wedge-shaped member compensates for the thickness of the wire.
FIGURE 7 represents a variation in the device of FIGURE l whereby the explosive charge is formed into the locking wedge rather than being provided in a separate cartridge. The locking wedge 60 is hollow and has a cup-shaped casing 62 located along its central axis. An explosive c-harge 64 is located in the casing 62', and a plug 66 is fitted into the casing with a friction-fit to retain the charge 64. A primer 68 is seated in the internal surface of the plug 66 adjacent the charge 64. An inwardly-protruding, detonating member 70 extends from the inner surface of the casing toward the primer 68.
When it is desired to actuate the device shown in FIGURE 7, a suitable ram 72 is driven into the casing 62 to drive the plug 66 toward the protruding member 70. This causes the protruding member to detonate the primer 63, thereby activating the explosive charge 64.
The ram 72 is caused to remain stationary so that the reaction force drives the locking wedge 60 and the wire-gripping member B forwardly to splice a pair of .4 wires in the same manner disclosed with regard to FIG- URES 2 and 3.
FIGURE 8 illustrates how the internally-contained charge with a locking wedge may combine the teaching of FIGURES 7 and 4. As shown in FIGURE 8, t-he casing 82, explosive charge 84, plug 86 and primer 88 are located within the compressible, one-piece member 80. Since the primer is exposed to the outer surface of the plug 86, it is not necessary to include a detonating member similar to 70. A tool 92 detonates the primer 88 and explosive charge 84 to splice a pair of connectors in the same manner set forth in the description of FIG- URE 7.
Changes in construction will occur to those skilled in the art and various apparently different modifications and embodiments may be made without departing from the scope of the invention. The matter Set forth in the foregoing description and accompanying drawings is offered by way of illustration only. The actual `scope of the invention is intended to be defined in the following claims when viewed in their proper perspective against the prior art.
1. A device for connecting electrical wires comprising in combination: a C-shaped body member, a wire-gripping member, and a wedge member, said body member comprising a wall portion, with converging side portions extending axially along two opposing edges, said wire-'gripping member having a pair of spaced legs, including a irst surface on one of said legs disposed adjacent to the inner surface of one side portion, and a second surface on the other of said legs disposed adjacent to the inner surface of the second side portion, said legs being connected together at one end by a connecting bridge portion, said connecting lbridge portion being narrower than the legs, whereby the connecting bridge portion constitutes an axis of bending, and said wedge member adapted to be driven between the legs of the wire-gripping member to spread the legs of said wire- :gripping member and lock said device to electrical wires disposed between the inner surfaces of the wire-gripping member and the respective surfaces of the sides.
2. The device of claim 1 wherein the wedge means deforms the wire-gripping member when it is driven between the surfaces.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 421,328 2/1890 Strohbach 24-136 1,801,277 4/1931 Kelly 287-75 X 3,257,499 6/1966 Broske 24-136 X FOREIGN PATENTS 102,125 11/ 1923 Switzerland.
CARL W. TOMLIN, Primary Examiner.
A. V. KUNDRAT, Assistant Examiner.
Citations de brevets