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United States Patent [w]
tii] 4,436,971  Mar. 13, 1984
 SNAP-IN SWITCH MOUNTING STRUCTURE
 Inventor: Syng N. Kim, Hoffman Estates, 111.
 Assignee: Wico Corporation, Niles, 111.
 Appl. No.: 371,513
 Filed: Apr. 23, 1982
 Int. C1.3 H02B 5/00
 U.S. CI 200/295; 200/283;
 Field of Search 200/295, 296, 159 A,
200/153 L, 153 LA, 283, 6 A, DIG. 46, 153 K, 293; 74/471 XY; 361/426
 References Cited
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
2,856,492 10/1958 Heyhal 200/284
2,885,517 5/1959 Carmichael et al 200/295 X
2,956,139 10/1960 Paddock 200/283 X
3,085,139 4/1963 Wright 200/292
3,223,792 12/1965 Strother, Jr 200/6 A
3,244,941 4/1966 Maynard et al 200/295 X
3,681,552 8/1972 Bailey 200/295
3,749,873 7/1973 Harper et al 200/293
3,790,733 2/1974 Pohl 200/283
3,974,352 8/1976 Pite et al 200/293
4,016,387 4/1977 Aberer 200/303
4,032,739 5/1977 Nicolaisen et al 200/283
4,055,734 10/1977 Hayden 200/159 A X
4,070,559 1/1978 Pibier 200/296
4,105,883 8/1978 Hastings et al 200/296
4,181,827 1/1980 Diepeveen 200/6 A
4,348,556 9/1982 Gettig 200/6 A X
FOREIGN PATENT DOCUMENTS
1145689 3/1963 Fed. Rep. of Germany ... 200/159 A 543364 7/1965 Fed. Rep. of Germany ... 200/159 A 1239385 4/1967 Fed. Rep. of Germany 200/283
Primary Examiner—Stephen Marcus
Assistant Examiner—Ernest G. Cusick
Attorney, Agent, or Firm—Dithmar, Stotland, Stratman
The mounting structure includes a pair of side abutments, upper and lower abutments, and front and rear abutments into which a rectangular parallelepiped body of a leaf spring switch is snap fit.
13 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures
U.S. Patent Mar. 13, 1984 Sheet 1 of 2 4,436,971
SNAP-IN SWITCH MOUNTING STRUCTURE
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
Leaf spring switches include a plastic body carrying 5 two or more leaf springs. In the past, they have been mounted by attaching them to expensive metal brackets which are in turn attached to the device in which they are used, requiring four screws in all. This is undesirably j0 expensive and time consuming to assemble. These difficulties are multiplied when a device requires several such switches. For example, in a joystick unit, at least four leaf spring switches are required.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION 15
It is therefore an important object of the invention to provide structure for rapidly and inexpensively mounting leaf spring switches.
A further object is to provide such a mounting struc- 20 ture in which the leaf spring switches are snapped into place without the use of fasteners or tools.
Another object is to provide such a mounting structure in which the leaf spring switch is securely mounted, yet is readily attached. 25
In summary, there is provided structure for mounting a leaf spring switch having a body which carries at least two leaf springs, said mounting structure comprising two side abutments spaced apart a distance about equal jQ to the width of the body, upper and lower abutments spaced apart a distance about equal to the height of the body, and front and rear abutments spaced apart a distance about equal to the length of the body.
The invention consists of certain novel features and a 35 combination of parts hereinafter fully described, illustrated in the accompanying drawings, and particularly pointed out in the appended claims, it being understood that various changes in the details may be made without departing from the spirit, or sacrificing any of the ad- 40 vantages of the present invention.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
For the purpose of facilitating an understanding of the invention, there is illustrated in the accompanying 45 drawings, a preferred embodiment thereof, from an inspection of which, when considered in connection with the following description, the invention, its construction and operation, and many of its advantages should be readily understood and appreciated. 50
FIG. 1 is a view in vertical section of a joystick comprising leaf spring switch mounting structure incorporating the features of the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a bottom plan view of the joystick unit of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a view in vertical section of a leaf spring switch and its associated mounting clip taken along the line 3—3 of FIG. 2 but on an enlarged scale;
FIG. 4 is a front view of the leaf spring switch and associated mounting structure;
FIG. 5 is a front elevational view of a clip without the switch in place;
FIG. 6 is a top plan view of the clip;
FIG. 7 is a view like FIG. 3 but with the switch only 65 partly inserted; and
FIG. 8 depicts a subsequent position of the switch as it is being mounted.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED
Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 2 of the drawings, there is illustrated a joystick unit 10, including mounting structure constructed in accordance with the features of the present invention. The joystick unit 10 is adapted to be mounted to a wall panel 11 of an associated device such as an electronic game. The joystick unit 10 includes a generally flat, rectangular top plate 12. Integral with the top plate 12 and depending centrally therefrom is a generally cylindrical wall 13 having four enlarged, equiangularly spaced portions 14 (only one is shown). A recess 15 in the upper surface of the top plate 12 accommodates a washer 16.
The joystick unit 10 also includes an octagonal, plastic mounting plate 20 having four cylindrical bosses 21 extending upwardly therefrom (only two are shown). The bosses 21 are equiangularly spaced and are respectively vertically aligned with the enlarged portions 14. Screws 22 extend through the bosses 21 and the enlarged portions 14 to attach the mounting plate 20 to the top plate 12.
The joystick unit 10 further includes an actuator 30 having a shaft 31 carrying a handle 32 at one end thereof and a contact member 33 at the other end thereof. The actuator 30 is mounted by means of a rubber pivot diaphragm 34 which is molded onto a square metal plate 35. There are holes (not shown) respectively near the corners of the plate 35. The plate 35 is located between the enlarged portions 14 and the bosses 21, the screws 22 extending through such holes, thereby to attach the actuator 30. The actuator 30 is thus pivotal about the diaphragm 34 in order to move the contact member 33 as desired.
On the underside of the switch mounting plate 20 and integral therewith are four one-piece plastic clips 60 located on every other edge of the eight-sided plate and at one end of each such edge. Each clip 60 carries a leaf spring switch 50. Each leaf spring switch 50 includes a plastic body 51 in the form of a rectangular parallelepiped into which are molded two leaf springs 52 and 53. The leaf spring 52 is adapted to be moved toward the leaf spring 53 to close the switch 50 and to be moved away to open the switch. One end of the leaf spring 52 is a tab portion 52a to which electrical connection may be made. Likewise the leaf spring 53 has a tab portion 53a. Finally, the leaf spring switch 50 includes a plastic guard 54 in the form of a strip which is located adjacent to the leaf spring 52.
In operation, the pivot diaphragm 34 accommodates pivotal movement of the shaft 31. Movement of the handle 32 to the right (as viewed in FIG. 2) will cause the contact member 33 to move to the left into engagement with the guard 54 on the lower switch 50 and deflect it sufficiently to move its associated leaf spring 52 into contact with its associated leaf spring 53.
Moving the handle to the right will cause contact member 33 to move to the left and close the switch 50 at the top. Movement of the handle downwardly will cause the switch 50 at the right to close while movement upwardly will cause the switch 50 at the left to close. Movement of the handle in the 45° direction will cause the left and top switches 50 to close. Movement of the handle in the 135° direction will cause the left and lower switches 50 to close.
Referring now to FIGS. 3-6, details of the switch mounting structure will be described. The clips 60 are