Browse Prior Art Database

Self-Storing Build Board System for Automated Harness-Cable Assembly

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000060894D
Original Publication Date: 1986-May-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-09
Document File: 3 page(s) / 48K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Moore, BE: AUTHOR

Abstract

Many present manual harness-cable assembly systems use a dedicated build board for each cable part number comprised of a sheet of plywood, a full scale drawing of the cable, and nails driven into the board to retain the wire in its path. Described below is an automated cable assembly system essentially consisting of a robot and a "universal" programmable build board. Wire path information in an automated system resides in the robot controller or the cable manufacturing cell processor. The robot is used to set up the cable path wire guide for a specific cable (Fig. 1). In addition, the build board must accommodate all fixtures and hardware required to build a harness cable. The build board consists of several elements: a planar board 1with a grid of holes 2, wire guides 3, wire holders 4, and fixtures for connectors 5.

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Self-Storing Build Board System for Automated Harness-Cable Assembly

Many present manual harness-cable assembly systems use a dedicated build board for each cable part number comprised of a sheet of plywood, a full scale drawing of the cable, and nails driven into the board to retain the wire in its path. Described below is an automated cable assembly system essentially consisting of a robot and a "universal" programmable build board. Wire path information in an automated system resides in the robot controller or the cable manufacturing cell processor. The robot is used to set up the cable path wire guide for a specific cable (Fig. 1). In addition, the build board must accommodate all fixtures and hardware required to build a harness cable. The build board consists of several elements: a planar board 1with a grid of holes 2, wire guides 3, wire holders 4, and fixtures for connectors 5. A critical element in automated harness cable assembly is the wire guide or peg 3. Its function is to provide temporary retention of the wire bundle until the bundle is tied and formed into a permanent assembly. The peg described in this invention meets all the above-listed requirements. In addition, its unique design allows for wire holding, mounting of connector holders, and storage; all functions are in one device. The peg shown in Fig. 2 and Fig. 3 basically consists of ashaft 6 that travels in and out of a sleeve
7. To prevent rotation during travel, a pin on the end of the shaft rides in one of several axial grooves radially spaced on the inside of the sleeve. An insert at the top and retaining ring at the bottom serve as travel stops. A recess at the bottom of the sleeve allows the pin to clear the grooves so that the peg shaft may be angularly positioned to the desired groove, as required, for board set-up. Three ball plungers 8, mounted perpendicular to the shaft axis, contact the inside of the sleeve to provide controlled axial friction to positively locate the shaft in various travel positions. Two slightly curved spring wires 9 are symmetrically fitted into two contoured axial slots in the shaft 6. The end of the spring is held firmly in the base of the shaft by the spring retainer, while the remainder of the spring is free to deflect in the slot. The spring and associated deflection are central to the stringing and wire- holding functions, as will be explained. The peg is mounted on the build board 2 in a matrix hole by holding the sleeve fixed with a retaining nut. Fig. 2 shows the three functional set-up positions. The peg is manipulated by the robot for set-up by gripping the top of the shaft, as illustrated with the stored peg. In the stored position 10 of Fig. 2 the peg shaft is bottomed in the sleeve. The springs 9 fold into their slots to allow the shaft to be pushed into the sleeve 7. This position serves two purposes. First, it serves to get the peg out of the way if that peg is not needed for a particular cable.

The second pur...