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Патент USA US2135371

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NOV- 1, 1938.
2,135,371
c. J. WERNER
CIRCUIT CONTROL DEVICE
Original Filed Sept. 6, 1934
I26
90
24
/ 42
INVENTOR
Call/1}? J h/erner
BY
ATTORNEYS
Patented Nov. 1, 1938
UNITED STATES
2,135,371
PATENT OFFICE
2,135,371
CIRCUIT CONTROL DEVICE
Calvin J. Werner, Dayton, Ohio, assignor to Gen
eral Motors Corporation, Detroit,\ltiich., a cor
poration of Delaware
Original application September 6, 1934, Serial
No. 742,941, now Patent 2,095,579, dated Octo
ber 12, 1937. Divided and this application
September 5, 1935, Serial No. 39,293. Renewed
March 7, 1938
10 Claims. (Cl. 200-113)
This invention relates to circuit control devices and disengagement of the contacts in response
and more particularly to circuit control devices
that are responsive to a thermal-responsive ele
ment.
$1
This application is a division of my copending
application, Serial No. 742,941, ?led September 6,
1934, which became Patent No. 2,095,579 October
12, 1937.
An object of this invention is to provide a
thermal-responsive circuit control device that is
inexpensive to build, durable and efficient, and
quiet in operation.
Another object of this invention is to provide
a circuit control device having more than one set
of contacts controlled by a single controlling elee
ment, so that a plurality of electrical circuits are
controlled in a predetermined sequence in re»
sponse to said element.
Another object of this invention is to provide
Eli a circuit control device that is adapted to con»
trol the starting and running circuits of an elec
tric motor, as well as providing overload protec»
tion for the motor, said circuit control device
being so constructed and arranged that it is
25 } responsive to current flow through a thermal re
sponsive element, and not appreciably affected in
operation by changes of ambient temperature.
Another object of this invention is to provide
a circuit control device for controlling an elec
to said movement of the auxiliary support mem
ber.
Further objects and advantages of the present
invention will be apparent from the following de—
scription, reference being had to the accompany
ing drawing wherein a preferred embodiment of
the present invention is clearly shown.
In the drawing:
Figures 1, 2 and 3 are side, front, and opposite 10
side views respectively of a preferred form of cir
cuit control device embodying the present in
vention.
Figures ‘1, 5 and 6 are sectional front views of
the circuit control device shown in Figures 1, 2
and 3, and show different operating positions of
the circuit control device.
Figures 7 and 8 are enlarged fragmentary views
of a portion of the circuit control device shown
in the previously mentioned ?gures, and show 20
different stages of the operation of the circuit
control device illustrated.
Figure 9 is a fragmentary back view of a cir~
cuit control device embodying a preferred form
of the present invention.
With particular reference to Figures 1 to 6 in
elusive, a main support it comprises a front por
tion it’, a side portion it and a back it, which
front portion, side portion and back are prefer~
30 trical circuit, which circuit control device is actu
ably integrally formed. The front portion 52 30
preferably has ears l8 punched therefrom, and
integral therewith, for securing the circuit con
means for effecting a substantially snap make"
and-break of the contacts.
From the disclosed embodiment of this inven
tion, it will be apparent that in one aspect of
the invention these objects are accomplished by
a circuit control device comprising, in combina
tion, a main support, an auxiliary support mem
All) ber movably pivotally mounted to the main sup
port, resilient means biasing the auxiliary sup—
trol device to a suitable housing or support, not
shown.‘ Ears 2d are preferably provided at one
end of the front portion l2 and at the same end 35
of the back portion 5 6, which ears extend through
suitable openings in a plate 22 and are bent or
twisted to secure the plate 22 to the end of the
ated by a thermal-responsive element responsive
to current flow through said element, and has
port in one direction, a plurality of movable con
tacts pivotally mounted to the auiiiliary support
member and movable therewith and relative
4 Di
thereto, said movable contacts being disposed at
diirerent angles with respect to the auxiliary sup
port member, cooperating stationary contacts in
alignment for engagement with each of the mov
able contacts, which stationary contacts arrest
movement of the movable contacts in one direc
tion and are adjustably mounted with respect
to the movable contacts, stop means secured to
the stationary contacts and adjustable therewith
for arresting movement of the movable contacts
in the other direction, a thermal-responsive ele
ment having one end anchored to the auxiliary
support member and the. other end adjustably
secured to the main support for controlling the
movement of the auxiliary support member, and
60 resilient means for e?ecting snap engagement
support 50.
A movable auxiliary support member 24 that
is preferably substantially U-shaped, having side
portions 25 and 28 and a connecting portion 38,
is pivotally mounted intermediate the front por
tion l2 and the back portion it of the support
on a pivot shaft 32. The pivot shaft 32 extends 45
through openings such as 34 in the side portions
26 and 28, and is insulated therefrom by insu
lating collars 36. Shoulder portions, such as 38,
on the insulating collars 36, insulatingly space
the auxiliary support member 24 from the main 50
support ill. A spring 40 has one end anchored
to a connecting portion 52 of the auxiliary sup
port member 24 by a hook portion 44 that passes
through a hole 46 in the connecting portion 132;
and has its other end anchored to a plate 48 by 55
a hook portion 50 that passes through a hole 52
in the plate 48. The plate 48 is secured to the
main support ID by lugs such as 54 that extend
through suitable slots in the plate 48 and are
bent or twisted to clamp the plate in place. The 60
2
9,185,871
lugs 54 are preferably integral with the front I2
and the back I6 of the main support. The plate
48 is preferably made of insulating material.
The spring 40, being a tension spring, biases or
urges the auxiliary support member in one di
rcction about the pivot shaft 32.
A thermal-responsive element 56, that prefer
ably comprises a wire having a relatively high
temperature coe?icient of expansion, has one end
10 connected to a lug 58 on the auxiliary support
member 24, that is preferably located near the
end of that member and on the opposite side of
the pivot shaft 32 from the spring 40. The end
of the thermal-responsive element 56 passes
15 through an opening 60 in the lug 58, and is pref:
erably secured thereto by twisting, as at 62. The
other end of the thermal-responsive element ex
tends through an opening 64 in an externally
threaded member 66, and is preferably bent, as
20 at 68, to anchor the end thereof and prevent the
member 68 from slipping off of the wire. The
main support I0 and thermal-responsive element
56 preferably have substantially the same tem
perature coefficient of expansion within reason
26 able limits, so that changes of temperature of
the entire switch will not effect operation thereof
or appreciably affect the operation. This pre
vents appreciable change in the operating char
acteristics of the switch due to changes of am
80 bient temperature. The externally threaded
member 66 is mounted in an aperture ‘I0 in the
plate 22, and is provided with a cooperating nut
‘I2, threaded thereon, to provide an adjustable
anchor for the end of the thermal-responsive
35 element so that the effective length of the ther
mal~responsive element is adjustable.
Insulating stationary contact support members
‘I4 and ‘I6 are secured to the back I6 of the main
support I0 by screws ‘I8 and 80 respectively, which
40 screws are preferably provided with washers 82
tend through holes I40 and I42 in lugs I44 and
I46, respectively, which lugs are preferably inte—
gral with the side portion 20 of the auxiliary
support member, so that the springs are anchored
thereto.
.
In Figures 7, 8 and 9, the reference numerals
similar to those previously used refer to similar
parts that perform similar functions.
In the preferred form of the circuit control
device shown in Figures 1 to 9 inclusive, the aux 10
iliary support member 24 and the stationary con
tact-carrying members 14 and ‘I6, as well as the
notches I06 and I08, are so disposed that the
angular relations of the contacts H0 and H2 to
the auxiliary support member 24 and the action 15
lines of the springs I20 and I22 differ when the
contacts H0 and H2 are in their normal engaged
or disengaged positions. This difference in angu
lar relations effects operation of the contacts H0
and H2 at different times in response to the 20
movement of the auxiliary support member 24
about the pivot shaft 32. The springs I20 and
I22 urge the contacts H0 and H2 respectively,
into engagement with their respective notches I06
and I08 and also are so disposed that the center
lines of_ action of these springs cross the pivotal
axes of the contact to effect engagement and dis
engagement of the contacts with a snap action.
In the particular form shown, the angular rela
tion of the movable contact H2 to the auxiliary 30
support member 24 and the action line of the
spring I22 is such that the action line of the
spring I22 crosses the pivotal axis of the contact
I I 2 before the action line of the spring I20 crosses
the pivotal axis of the contact H0. Hence, in 35
this form, it takes a lesser movement of the aux
iliary support member 24 to effect actuation of
the contact H2 than it does to effect actuation
of the contact H0. When the contacts H0 and
H2 move toward the stationary contacts 90 and 40
and 84 respectively, intermediate the screw heads
and the back I8. As best shown in Figure 9, the
92 respectively, the stationary contacts arrest the
motion of the movable contacts in that direction.
screws 78 and 80 preferably extend through elon
When the movable contacts move in the opposite
gated openings 86 and 80 respectively, in the back
45 I6, so that the stationary contact support mem
bers ‘I4 and ‘I6 are adjustable laterally as viewed
in the ?gure. Stationary contacts 90 and 92 are
secured to portions 94 and 96 of the contact sup
port members ‘I4 and ‘I6 respectively, so that they
are insulated from the back I6, and screws 98
and I00 are threaded into the contacts ‘I4 and
‘I6 respectively, to provide means for making elec
trical connections to the contact. Insulating
stock portions I02 and I04 are preferably inte
55 gral parts of the contact support members ‘I4
and ‘I6 respectively, and are spaced from the con
tacts 50 and 92 respectively.
Substantially V-shaped notches I06 and I08
are provided in the ends of the side portions 26
60 and 28 of the auxiliary support member 24, which
notches provide pivotal supports for movable
contacts H0 and H2 respectively, having sub
stantially knife edges, such as H4, that rest in
the notches. Contact points H6 and H8 are
65 secured to the movable contacts H0 and H2 re
spectively, in alignment for engagement with the
stationary contacts 00 and 92 respectively.
Springs I20 and I22 have their ends disposed in
notches I32 and I34 in the movable contact mem
70 bers H0 and H2 respectively, and their respec
tive ends have hook portions I24 and I26 that
are anchored in holes I28 and I30 in the mov
able contact members H0 and H2 respectively.
The other ends of the springs I20 and I 22 have
75 hook portions I36 and I38 respectively, that ex
direction, the motion thereof is arrested by the
stop portions I02 and I04.
The spring 40 biases the auxiliary support
member 24 in a counterclockwise direction, as
viewed in Figures 4 to 6 inclusive. When the
auxiliary support member moves in that direction
under the in?uence of the spring 40, disengage 50
ment of the contacts 92 and H8 is ?rst effected,
and then the contacts 90 and H6 are disengaged.
However, the position and motion of the auxiliary
support member 24 are controlled by the thermal
responsive element 56. The effective length of 55
that element is preferably so adjusted that the
contacts are normally engaged, so that when the
thermal-responsive element expands due to a
change of the temperature thereof the force of
the spring 40 moves the support member 24 to 60
effect disengagement of one or both sets of con
tacts, depending upon the degree of expansion of
the thermal-responsive element 56. Upon return
of the temperature of the thermal-responsive ele
ment to normal, the contraction of the element
actuates the auxiliary support member 24 in the
opposite direction to effect engagement of the
contacts.
~
As best shown in Figures 7 and 8, it is impor
tant to note that since the pivotal axes of the 70
contacts H0 and H2 are moved, the substan
tially spherical surface of the movable contacts
rolls on the surface of the stationary contacts
before disengagement of the contacts is effected.
Although the force utilized to actuate the corn 76
3
areas?!
tacts is relatively small, a very large force is
eil'ected to break any welds that might occur
and that would tend to hold the contacts or cause
them to stick. The reason tor the large force
that is e?ected by the contacts for breaking
such welds is, of course, the leverage or mecha
nical advantage that is bene?cially utilized.
From the aforegoing description of the con
struction and mode of operation of the present
10 switch it is apparent that the switch comprises a
support III carrying stationary contact stops 00
and 92, an auxiliary support or plate 28 pivoted
at a point 32 remote from the stationary contact
stops 90 and 92. The switch has contact arm
15 members I“! and H2 carrying respectively con
tacts H6 and H8 which are engageabie with the
contact stops 90 and 92 respectively. Spring
members I20 and I22 are connected respectively
with the contact arm members H0 and III near
their contacts. Each contact arm member and
its companion spring member are hingedly con
nected with the plate 28 at spaced points,_ one
point being substantially nearer to the plate pivot
32 than the, other. For example, the contact
arm Ho and its companion spring member I20
are hingedly connected with the plate 2! at
spaced points with the fulcrum IN and the
spring eye I“, respectively, the latter being sub
stantiaily nearer ‘to the plate pivot 32 than the
30 former. The action line of force of each spring
member makes a relatively small acute angle
with the companion arm member and this action
line
force lies normally on the side or‘ the arm
on which its companion stationary cone
tact stop is located. For example, the action line
of
1' ‘ n line
the lflil
contact
lies makes
normally
arm
a relatively
member
on the small
ll
sideand
of
acute
tllls a ~
member lie on which its companion stationary
contact stop
ls located. As shown
Figs. 4
and '3’, the action line of spring we is on the left
contact arm members which normally make the
smallest acute angle with each other.
The contact stops I02 and I“ operate to limit
movement of the contact arms H0 and I I2 away
from the ?rst mentioned contact‘ stops 80 and
92 when the bias of the springs I20 and I22 is
reversed. These stops I02 and I“ are so lo
cated that a similar relation between the con
tact arms and their respective cooperating
springs will exist when the contact arms are en
10
gaged with these last mentioned stops I02 and
I“ as existed when these contact arms engage
the first mentioned stops 9|! and 92. This is done
in order that the contact arm I I2 which separates
itself ?rst from its contact 92 during counter 15
clockwise relation of plate 24, will likewise. sep
arate itself grst from its contact stop lIil during
clockwise rotation of the plate 28, which is due
to contraction of the wire 56. It is obviously
within the scope of the present invention to locate 20
the stops I02 and I“ so that both contact arms
H0 and H2 will be restored to normal condition
simultaneously, or contact arm H0 ahead of
contact arm II2 if desired. However, for the
control of the starting and running circuits of
an electric motor it is desirable to have the con
tact iI2 return to its contact 92 at least by the
time contact arm IIIi has returned into engage
ment with contact 90. In order to assure this,
the present switch is constructed so that contact -
I I2 will reengage contact 92 ahead of the engage
merit of contact arm III! with contact Bil.
Some of the advantages of this circuit control
device are as follows:
1. It is relatively easy and inexpensive to ‘solid. -
curable
compact.
2. it is very quiet in operation.
3. A plurality of sets of contacts
be con»
‘trolled by a single thermal-responsive element to
operate in predetermined sequence.
4;. The operation of the device is not appre
clahly a?ected by changes of ambient tempera
the
sideleft
of the
sidecontact
oi the fulcrum
arm member
l Ml of the
M9 contact
alsoarm
The angle between one
one contact spring members is less
of arm
the
angle
members.
leetvveen the
angle
other
between
pair ofthe
arm
action
and llne
spa oi
spring 1122
contact M2 is less than the angle
between the action line of spring sec and cone
tact
Mil.
The switch has means for moving
ancillary
support or plate 28 which includes the coil spring
dill for moving the plate
in one direction and
the Wire
for moving the plate in the other ell»
rectlon. As the plate begins to move counterclockwise as shown in Fig. 4, as the wire 5t? ex
65
5. The contacts make and break with snap ace
tlon responsive to the control of the thermal
.responslve element.
6. It is easily adapted to different uses and
applications by changes of a very few parts.
7. ‘it is e?lclent, because of the direct heating \
feature of a thermal element that does not re~
oolre much energy for operation.
While the embodiment of the present inven
tlon as herein disclosed, constitutes a preferred
form, it is to be understood that other forms
might be adopted, all ccmlng within the scope
of the claims which follow. ‘
panels, the contact points H6 and Hit remain in
What is claimed is as follows:
i. A swltch comprising, in combination, a main
until
engagement
the biaswith
effected
the bycontact
the springs
stops llll
to and
and i222
support, an auxiliary support member electrically
insulated from and pivotally connected to the
is reversed. As the plate ‘Bil moves counter
clockwise the action line of spring l
shifted
from the ‘left-hand side of contact arm ill. and
its pivotal connection with the plate 28 toward
main support, means resiliently urging the aux
iliary support member in one direction about its
pivotal connection to the main support, a movable
contact electrically and pivotally connected to the
auxiliary support member, a cooperating station—
any contact insulatingly secured to the main sup-‘
port in alignment for engagement with the mov
able contact, means effecting snap engagement
and disengagement of the contacts in response
the right-hand side thereof, whereupon contact
H8 is separated from contact stop 92 and moves
against contact stop I04. Further movement of
plate 28 in a counter-clockwise direction causes
the action line of spring IZI) to be shifted from
the left—hand side of contact arm till and its
pivotal connection with the plate 28 to the right
hand side ‘thereof, whereupon the contact H5 is
separated from contact stop 90 and engages the
stop I02. Thus the reversal of bias takes place
?rst with respect to that pair of spring and
55
to movement of the auxiliary support member,
and a thermal-responsive element for controlling 70
the movement of the auxiliary support mem
ber, said thermal-responsive element comprising
a substantially straight wire adjustably anchored
at one end to the main support and having its
other end electrically and mechanically connected
75
4
2,185,871
to the auxiliary support member, said wire hav
ing a temperature coefilcient of expansion suffi
ciently similar to that of the main support that
change of temperature within reasonable limits
of the entire switch will not be detrimental to the
control of the contacts by the thermal-respon
sive element.
2. A switch comprising, in combination, a main
support, an auxiliary support member movably
10 pivotally mounted to the main support, resilient
means biasing the auxiliary support in one di
rection, a plurality of movable contacts pivotally
mounted to the auxiliary support member and
movable therewith and relative thereto, said mov
15 able contacts being disposed at different angles
with respect to the auxiliary support member,
cooperating stationary contacts in alignment for
engagement with each of the movable contacts,
which stationary contacts arrest movement of
20 the movable contacts in one direction and are
adjustably mounted with respect to the movable
contacts, stop means secured to the stationary
contacts and adjustable therewith for arresting
other pair of arm and spring members, means
for moving the plate, while the pairs of contacts
remain in engagement, in a direction to shift the
spring lines of action to the opposite sides of the
arms in order to reverse the bias by the springs
upon the arms whereby the movable contacts are
moved away from said contact stops, the bias by
the spring making the lesser acute angle with
its contact arm being reversed before reversal
of the bias by the other spring, whereby one con 10
tact arm is moved before the other, the other
stops for limiting said movement of the contact
arms away from the ?rst mentioned stops in
order that restoration of the contact arms to
normal position may be effected by reversal of ll
movement‘ of the plate.
5. An electric switch according to claim 4 in
which the means for moving the plate includes a
thermal responsive element.
6. An electric switch according to claim 4 in 20
which the means for moving the plate includes
a spring biasing the plate for movement in a
direction to separate the contacts from the first
movement of the movable contacts in the other mentioned contact stops, and a thermal respon
25 direction, a thermal-responsive element having
sive element opposed to the spring for restraining
one end anchored to the auxiliary support mem
movement of the plate thereby and for moving
ber and the other end adjustably secured to the the plate in a direction in opposition to the
main support for controlling the movement of' spring.
the auxiliary support member, and resilient
'7. An electric switch according to claim 4 in
means for effecting snap engagement and disen
which each spring is a helically coiled spring con
gagement of the contacts in response to said nected with the plate at a point between the plate
movement of the auxiliary support member.
pivot and the arm connection with the plate.
3. A switch comprising, in combination, a
8. An electric switch according to claim 4 in
main support, an auxiliary support member, pivot which the last mentioned stops are so located as
85 means movably connecting the auxiliary sup
to permit the arms to move into such relative
port member to the main support, means resili
positions that the ~spring, which exerted the
ently urging the auxiliary support member in greater bias upon its arm before its reversal of
one direction about the pivot means, a movable
bias, exerts the greater bias after reversal where—
contact pivotally connected to the auxiliary sup
by the arm which moved first upon reversal of
40 port, a cooperating stationary contact in align
spring bias will be restored first to original posi
ment for engagement with the movable contact, tion.
means effecting snap engagement and disengage
9. A circuit controller comprising two toggle
ment of the contacts in response to movement of switches providing for rapid separation and clos
the auxiliary support member, and a thermal-re
ing of contacts; each switch having a contact arm
sponsive electrical resistance element anchored carrying a contact movable between stops, a
to the main support and to the auxiliary sup
biasing spring for urging the arm toward one or
port member for controlling the movement of the other of said stops, and a movable toggle ful
the auxiliary support member, the length of the crum which can be shifted relative to the ac
thermal-responsive element being practically tion lines of the spring to change the bias of the
spring; a movable member common to both
50 equal to the distance between the place of an
choring the thermal-responsive element to the switches and carrying the toggle fulcrums of said
main support and the pivot meanspand said switches; means for actuating the movable mem
main support member and thermal-responsive ber; and means for adjusting at least one of the
element having substantially similar temperature
55 coefficients of expansion so that the operation of
the switch is not appreciably aifected by changes
of ambient temperature.
4. An electric switch comprising a support
carrying two stationary contact stops, a plate
60 pivoted upon the support at a point remote from
the stationary contact stops, contact arm mem
bers each carrying a contact engageable with a
stationary contact stop, spring members each
connected with a contact arm member near its
65 contact, each contact arm member and its com
panion spring member being hingedly connected
with the plate at spaced points, one being sub
stantially nearer to the plate pivot than the other,
and the action line of force of each spring mem
70 ber making a relatively small acute angle with
the companion contact arm member and lying
normally on the side of the arm member on which
its companion stationary contact stop is located,
the angle between one pair of arm and spring
members being less than the angle between the
contact stops in order that, by differing the spring
bias of the springs of each of the toggle switches,
the switches function separately in a predeter
mined sequence.
10. A circuit controller comprising two toggle
switches providing for rapid separation and clos
ing of contacts; each switch having a contact arm
carrying a contact movable between stops, a bias
ing spring for urging the arm toward one or the
other of said stops, and a movable toggle fulcrum
which can be shifted relative to the action lines
of the spring to change the bias of the spring; a
movable member common to both switches and
carrying the toggle fulcrums of said switches:
means for actuating the movable member, said
movable member providing one of the toggle
members for each switch, the other toggle mem 70
ber of each switch being a contact arm; and
coiled springs connected with said movable mem
ber and each of the contact arms on opposite
sides of the fulcrums for each of the arms.
CALVIN J. WERNER. 75
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