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Automatic uncocking shaft sensing coupler

Image Number 7 for United States Patent #5779385.

A coupling for axially fixing a hub on a shaft has locking members slidable in slots of the hub and which are engaged in recesses in the shaft by a collar which holds the locking members in the recesses so as to fix the hub axially on the shaft. In a released position, a shoulder on the collar catches behind a ledge formed on the hub, but only when the shaft is removed from the hub. When the shaft is in the hub, it cams against uncocking members in the form of balls which prevent the collar from being tilted so as to engage the collar shoulder with the ledge on the hub. One embodiment for a larger application has a collar biasing spring radially inside of the collar and axially between the locking members and the shaft entry end of the hub. An embodiment for a smaller application has the spring radially outside of the hub and on the opposite axial side of the locking elements. A shield is provided in this embodiment to enclose the spring chamber.

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