Communication outlet


A wall communications outlet having a backplate with a central circular opening; first and second sets of sidewalls ringed about the central opening to act as a storage area for optical fibers or copper wires; and a set of upstanding posts mounted to the backplate with slots therein to accommodate connector panels held in the slots. A variety of connector sleeves can be fitted in a connector panel. Cables can enter the wall outlet through the hole in the backplate or from openings in the side of an outlet cover.


What is claimed is: 1. An outlet comprising: (a) a backplate having first and second sides, the backplate having an opening therein for receiving a cable; (b) a first set of sidewalls mounted to the first side of the backplate, the first set of sidewalls ringed about the opening and having a minimum inner radius equal to or greater than three centimeters; (c) a second set of sidewalls mounted to the first side of the backplate ringed about the first set of sidewalls; and, (d) mounting means for mounting the backplate flush to an exterior surface. 2. An outlet as recited in claim 1, further comprising: (a) a set of posts mounted to the first side of the backplate beyond the second set of sidewalls, each post having at least one slot therein; and, (b) one or more connector panels slideably inserted in the slots between two posts. 3. An outlet as recited in claim 2, further comprising at least one trough mounted to the first side of the backplate for receiving a cable into the wall outlet from a direction lateral to the set of posts. 4. An outlet as recited in claim 3, further comprising a backplate cover which is open adjacent to a face of the connector panels and which has a removable section adjacent to the trough. 5. An outlet as recited in claim 2, further comprising a connector sleeve mounted in one or more of the connector panels.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention. The field of the invention is wall communication outlets. 2. Background of the Invention. Wall outlets are necessary in buildings to provide a convenient area for the attachment of various types of devices to building wiring. If the building cable entering the wall outlet is an optical fiber cable or a composite cable having both copper wires and optical fibers, the outlet should be able to accommodate optical fibers, which have minimum bend radius requirements. Some communications outlets accommodate different types of copper wire jacks and connectors, but do not accommodate optical fibers. Other fiber optic wall outlets have an open backplate and accommodate connector sleeves for optical fibers, but do not accommodate copper systems. A completely versatile outlet is needed which accommodates various different connectors, both for copper and optical fiber, provides an adequate means for storage and retention of optical fibers, and allows both types of cables to enter, from the side and from the backplate. BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The wall outlet according to the invention is designed to accept fiber optic cables, but copper cables can also be accommodated. Cables can enter from the side of the outlet or through an opening in the middle of the backplate. First and second sets of sidewalls concentric with the backplate opening provide a space for storage of optical fibers to ensure that a minimum bend radius for the optical fibers is maintained. A minimum inner radius of two centimeters is sufficient for this purpose. Tabs project from the second set of sidewalls to help keep the fibers in place. The outlet can be attached to a variety of exterior surfaces, such as walls or furniture, in either a horizontal or vertical position. It can be mounted on single or double electrical boxes as well as on brackets designed for open systems furniture. Doubleback adhesive strips and adhesive backed magnetic strips can also be attached to the molded plastic backplate for surface mounting. Upstanding posts are provided on the backwall for mounting of the cover and to hold panels therebetween. Slots are provided in the upstanding posts so that the panels can be slideably removed and inserted. These panels may hold connector sleeves therein for rapid connection and removal of exterior cables, or may be solid panels if no cables are used at that point. Cables may enter the outlet from a wall through a hole in the backplate, or they may enter from the side. If cable side entry is desired, mounting troughs are provided to support the cable free ends, which may be secured to the troughs by means of common cable ties. The outer jacket is removed for a desired length at the cable ends to allow connectorization. The backplate and cover are plastic, which may be injection molded. Connector panels may be metal or plastic. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The detailed description is set out with reference to the drawings, as follows: FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the outlet with the cover in place; FIG. 2 is the view of FIG. 1 with the cover removed; FIG. 3 is the view of FIG. 2 with the cables removed; and, FIG. 4 is a view of isolated connector panels with various connector sleeves being inserted. DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The outlet is enclosed by backplate cover 5, shown in FIG. 1. Backplate cover 5 has removable areas 13, called knockouts, to allow for side cable entry if desired. In FIG. 2, backplate cover 5 has been removed. Connector panels 8 are slideably inserted into slots 18 of side posts 17 and slots 19 of corner posts 16. Clips 25 mounted on the first side of backplate 21 engage slots 26 in connector panels 8 upon insertion. Cable 6 enters from the side and is held in place by cord connector 11, which is mounted in a connector panel 8. Another cable, 7, is not connectorized. The craftsperson strips away a desired end section of its outer jacket and secures the remaining end portion of the outer jacket to trough 15 by use of a cable tie as shown. Cables may also enter through hole 14 in backplate 21. A view of backplate 21 with cables removed is shown in FIG. 3. Holes 20 allow the outlet to be secured to an exterior surface by screws. Holes 20 are arranged to promote fixation to a variety of electrical boxes. First set of sidewalls 22 is concentric with cable opening 14, as is second set of sidewalls 23. Second set of sidewalls 23 have fiber retaining tabs 24 to help secure spare lengths of optical fibers or other communication elements for storage purposes. The radius of first set of sidewalls 22 is at least sufficient to prevent damage to optical fibers placed between the first and second sets of sidewalls due to an excessive degree of bending. FIG. 4 illustrates differing types of connectors 9, 10, 11 and 12 which may be mounted in connector panels 8. Included are 8-wire modular jack 12, cord connector 11, duplex FDDI connector 9, and simplex fiber optic connector sleeve 10.



Download Full PDF Version (Non-Commercial Use)

Patent Citations (7)

    Publication numberPublication dateAssigneeTitle
    JP-S55163508-ADecember 19, 1980Mitsubishi Electric CorpLight terminal block
    JP-S60202407-AOctober 12, 1985Furukawa Electric Co Ltd:TheConnection box of multicore optical unit
    US-4752110-AJune 21, 1988AlcatelCabinet for an optical cable head
    US-4818054-AApril 04, 1989Telephone Cables LimitedDistribution frame for optical fibers
    US-4884863-ADecember 05, 1989Siecor CorporationOptical fiber splicing enclosure for installation in pedestals
    US-4898448-AFebruary 06, 1990Gte Products CorporationFiber distribution panel
    US-4900123-AFebruary 13, 1990Gte Products Corporation1550 nm fiber distribution panel

NO-Patent Citations (2)

    Amp communication advertisement, 1988, Brand Rex ACO outlet advertisement, BRIntec Corporation.
    Siecor Fiber Optic Wall Outlets advertisement, 1986, Levitor Telcon advertisement for Max )Plus, 1988.

Cited By (63)

    Publication numberPublication dateAssigneeTitle
    US-5179618-AJanuary 12, 1993Adc Telecommunications, Inc.Fiber optic connector module
    US-7522806-B2April 21, 2009Ofs Fitel, LlcFiber optic cable distribution box
    US-2008170831-A1July 17, 2008Furukawa Electric North America, Inc.,Wall-mountable optical fiber and cable management apparatus
    US-5724469-AMarch 03, 1998Ortronics, Inc.Adjustable fiber storage plate
    US-5303320-AApril 12, 1994David B. Duffie, Renney E. SennFiber optic signal distribution system and raceway and panel associated therewith
    US-5457764-AOctober 10, 1995Edera; EgistoDiffusor device with extractable semiconnectors, integrated in a plastic card, for the termination of optical fiber ribbon cables
    US-2008273854-A1November 06, 2008Furukawa Electric North America, Inc.Fiber optic cable distribution box
    US-6167183-ADecember 26, 2000Hubbell IncorporatedLow profile communications outlet box
    US-5024498-AJune 18, 1991U.S. Philips Corp.Switch box for producing freely selectable optical plug connections
    WO-2008070445-A3October 02, 2008Adc Telecommunications Inc, James J Solheid, Cindy S Walters, Trevor D Smith, De Leon Oscar BranDispositif interface de réseau
    US-8873926-B2October 28, 2014Corning Cable Systems LlcFiber optic enclosures employing clamping assemblies for strain relief of cables, and related assemblies and methods
    US-5109467-AApril 28, 1992Keptel, Inc.Interconnect cabinet for optical fibers
    US-5717811-AFebruary 10, 1998N.V. Rachem S.A.Optical fiber organizer
    US-5892870-AApril 06, 1999Fiber Connections Inc.Fibre optic cable connector
    US-8270797-B2September 18, 20123M Innovative Properties CompanySplice holder for communication socket
    US-6549693-B2April 15, 2003Adc Telecommunications, Inc.Fiber optic switch package and method of assembling a fiber optic switch package for redirecting fiber path
    US-RE45153-ESeptember 23, 2014Adc Telecommunications, Inc.Fiber optic cable distribution box
    US-RE46255-EDecember 27, 2016Commscope Technologies LlcFiber optic cable distribution box
    US-5741158-AApril 21, 1998The Whitaker CorporationCommunications outlet having termination aid platform
    US-5645449-AJuly 08, 1997The Whitaker CorporationLow profile mixed media information outlet
    US-2010310222-A1December 09, 2010Junsheng Zhou, Pierre Bonvallat, Zhiyong XuSplice holder for communication socket
    US-8867883-B2October 21, 2014Commscope, Inc. Of North CarolinaZero U fiber distributor, MPO fanout
    US-5911027-AJune 08, 1999N.V. Raychem, S.A.Optical fibre organizer having through port extending between opposite faces thereof
    US-2008170824-A1July 17, 2008Furukawa Electric North America, Inc.Fiber optic cabling for multi-dwelling unit (MDU) and commercial building deployments
    US-7546018-B2June 09, 2009Ofs Fitel, LlcFiber optic cabling for multi-dwelling unit (MDU) and commercial building deployments
    US-6069992-AMay 30, 2000Itt Manufacturing Enterprises, Inc.Connector system with precision alignment
    EP-2400330-A1December 28, 2011CCS Technology, Inc.Apparatus for handling optical waveguides
    US-9069151-B2June 30, 2015Corning Cable Systems LlcComposite cable breakout assembly
    US-5436998-AJuly 25, 1995Alcatel Network Systems, Inc.Assembly for routing fiber optic cables across a housing interior
    US-8165443-B2April 24, 20123M Innovative Properties CompanyCommunication socket
    WO-9741475-A1November 06, 1997Mcdonnell Douglas CorporationOptical ribbon cable fanout boxes
    US-9851522-B2December 26, 2017Commscope Technologies LlcFiber drop terminal
    US-7400814-B1July 15, 2008Furukawa Electric North America, Inc.Wall-mountable optical fiber and cable management apparatus
    EP-3093698-A1November 16, 2016OFS Fitel, LLCFiber optic cabling for multi-dwelling unit (mdu) and commercial building deployments
    EP-0844504-A2May 27, 1998RXS Kabelgarnituren Gesellschaft mit beschränkter HaftungAnschlusseinheit für Lichtwellenleiter-Kabel
    US-2013108227-A1May 02, 2013Mark Edward ConnerComposite cable breakout assembly
    FR-2922032-A1April 10, 2009Nexans SaPrise optique pour reseau de telecommunication.
    WO-2008070445-A2June 12, 2008Adc Telecommunications, Inc.Dispositif interface de réseau
    US-5231687-AJuly 27, 1993Bicc Plc, Corning LimitedTermination system for optical fibres
    US-7120347-B2October 10, 2006Corning Cable Systems LlcMulti-port optical connection terminal
    EP-0531628-A1March 17, 1993Walter Rose GmbH & Co. KGDevice for dividing optical fibre cables and wires
    US-8135256-B2March 13, 2012Adc Telecommunications, Inc.Network interface device
    US-8718435-B2May 06, 20143M Innovative Properties CompanyTerminal enclosure with extractable fiber organizer tray
    WO-2010034399-A1April 01, 2010Adc GmbhBoîte de sortie de télécommunication
    WO-02073265-A1September 19, 2002Adc Telecommunications, Inc.Boitier de commutateur optique et son procede d'assemblage
    CN-101221270-BJanuary 11, 2012古河电子北美公司Wall-mountable optical fiber and cable management apparatus
    JP-2008242460-AOctober 09, 2008Furukawa Electric North America Inc, フルカワ エレクトリック ノース アメリカ インコーポレーテッドWall-mountable optical fiber and cable treatment apparatus
    EP-0844504-A3March 31, 1999RXS Kabelgarnituren Gesellschaft mit beschränkter HaftungBoíte de connexion pour des cables optiques
    US-6857790-B2February 22, 2005Lightwave Microsystems CorporationApparatus and method to vertically route and connect multiple optical fibers
    EP-1944635-A3October 08, 2008Furukawa Electric North America Inc. (a Delaware Corporation)Fibre optique montable sur mur et appareil de gestion de câble
    US-2010142899-A1June 10, 2010Junsheng Zhou, Pierre Bonvallat, Zhiyong XuCommunication socket
    US-5838858-ANovember 17, 1998Molex IncorporatedFiber optic connection unit
    EP-0919843-A1June 02, 1999Btr Blumberger Telefon- Und Relaisbau Albert MetzDispositif de raccordement pour guides d'ondes optiques
    EP-2261714-A3July 06, 2011ADC Telecommunications, Inc.Boîtier de distribution pour câbles à fibres optiques
    EP-2045636-A1April 08, 2009NexansOptical socket for telecommunication network
    EP-0840151-A2May 06, 1998Itt Manufacturing Enterprises, Inc.Connector with optic fiber terminal
    EP-2256532-A1December 01, 2010Furukawa Electric North America Inc. (a Delaware Corporation)Câblage de fibre optique pour unité à logements multiples (MDU) et déploiements de bâtiments commerciaux
    DE-102013019645-A1May 28, 2015Dätwyler Cabling Solutions AgTeilesatz zum Herstellen einer Lichtwellenleiter-Anschlussvorrichtung
    US-2005163448-A1July 28, 2005Blackwell Chois A.Jr., Menke Brett A., Reagan Jason B., Strause Kevin L., Smith Kelly J.Multi-port optical connection terminal
    WO-9322695-A1November 11, 1993Egisto EderaA distribution device with demountable connectors, for the termination of optical ribbon cables
    JP-2008171003-AJuly 24, 2008Furukawa Electric North America Inc, フルカワ エレクトリック ノース アメリカ インコーポレーテッド集合住宅(mdu)および商業ビルへの配設のための光ファイバ配線
    EP-0840151-A3November 11, 1998Itt Manufacturing Enterprises, Inc.Connector with optic fiber terminal
    EP-2259115-A3June 22, 2011ADC Telecommunications, INC.Borne de connexion pour câbles à fibre optique