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Top-loading pad mount connector

Imported: 24 Feb '17 | Published: 13 Jan '04

Robert De France

USPTO - Utility Patents

Abstract

A top-loading pad mount electrical connector is provided with swing-away pressure pads for securing secondary conductors to the connector body. The swing-away pressure pads are frictionally engaged with threaded fasteners to pivot with the fastener between a clamping position where a jaw is aligned with and over a conductor lay-in groove and an open position which clears a conductor lay-in opening above the lay-in groove. A split insulating cover permits the top-loading pad mount connector to be installed and the connections with secondary conductors established prior to electrically insulating the assembly to ensure code compliance.

Description

These and other objects, features and advantages of the invention will become readily apparent to those skilled in the art upon reading the description of the preferred embodiments in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a side perspective view of a top-loading pad mount connector in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates three top-loading pad mount connectors of FIG. 1 installed in a pad mount transformer enclosure;

FIG. 3 is an overhead view of the pad mount connectors and enclosure shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a side perspective view of a clamshell insulating cover appropriate for use in conjunction with the top-loading pad mount connector of FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view through the top-loading pad mount connector of FIG. 1 surrounded by a clamshell insulating cover in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 6 is the sectional view through the top-loading pad mount connector and insulating cover of FIG. 5 with the clamshell cover opened; and

FIG. 7 is a side sectional view, partly in phantom, through a top-loading pad mount connector and clamshell insulating cover assembly in accordance with the present invention.

Claims

1. An electrical connector comprising:

2. The electrical connector of claim 1, wherein said conductor lay-in grooves extend across the width of said body substantially perpendicular to said longitudinal axis.

3. The electrical connector of claim 1, wherein said body comprises a guide wall projecting away from said longitudinal axis adjacent at least one conductor lay-in groove, said guide wall having at least one surface extending from said at least one conductor lay-in groove.

4. The electrical connector of claim 1, wherein said at least one pressure pad and clamping means are conductive.

5. The electrical connector of claim 1, wherein said clamping means comprises a steel screw.

6. An electrical connector comprising:

7. The electrical connector of claim 6, wherein said clamping means comprises a fastener and said pressure pad defines a bore substantially perpendicular to said clamping surface, said fastener passing through said bore to threadably engage said body.

8. The electrical connector of claim 7, wherein said fastener comprises a torque-receiving head and application of torque to said head to rotate said fastener in a first direction moves said pressure pad toward said body and application of torque to said head to rotate said fastener in a second direction moves said pressure pad away from said body.

9. The electrical connector of claim 8, comprising a lock washer between the fastener head and the pressure pad.

10. The electrical connector of claim 8, comprising means for transmitting a portion of the torque applied to said head to said pressure pad such that said pressure pad is rotated with said fastener over an arc toward said first position when said fastener is rotated in said first direction and toward said second position when said fastener is rotated in said second direction.

11. The electrical connector of claim 10, wherein said body comprises a pressure pad guide surface substantially parallel to said fastener, said pressure pad guide surface with said pressure pad guide surface limiting movement of said pressure pad along said arc at said first position while said fastener is permitted continued rotation in said first direction and said pressure pad guide surface limiting movement of said pressure pad along said arc at said second position while said fastener is permitted continued rotation in said second rotational direction.

12. The electrical connector of claim 11, wherein said fastener and pressure pad guide surface are oriented at an oblique angle relative to the connector body such that said conductor lay in path narrows as it approaches the lay in groove.

13. An electrical connector and cover assembly comprising:

14. The assembly of claim 13, wherein said cover comprises hinge means for flexibly connecting said first and second portions.

15. The assembly of claim 13, wherein said cover comprises latch means for maintaining a connection between said first and second portions.

16. A method of establishing a secondary electrical connection with a pad-mount transformer comprising the steps of:

17. The method of claim 16, wherein said step of surrounding comprises closing hinged first and second cover portions over said electrical connector and secondary conductor.

18. An electrical connector comprising:

19. The electrical connector of claim 18, wherein said jaw comprises a concave clamping surface which extends over said conductor lay-in groove when said pressure pad is in said first position.

20. An electrical connector comprising:

21. The electrical connector of claim 20, comprising means for transmitting a portion of the torque applied to said head to said at least one pressure pad such that said at least one pressure pad is rotated with said fastener over an arc toward said first position when torque is applied in said first rotational direction and toward said second position when torque is applied in said second rotational direction with said pressure pad guide surface limiting movement of said at least one pressure pad along said arc at said first position while said fastener is permitted continued rotation in said first rotational direction and said pressure pad guide surface limiting movement of said at least one pressure pad along said arc at said second position while said fastener is permitted continued rotation is said second rotational direction.

22. The electrical connector of claim 20, wherein said first rotational direction corresponds to tightening said fastener and wherein said second rotational direction corresponds to loosening said fastener.