Door electrical connector

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by jcubie, Nov 29, 2015.

  1. jcubie

    Thread Starter New Member

    Nov 22, 2015
    I am trying to find a connector that physically connects two wires when a door closes. I am not not looking for a switch -- but some type of connector that engages and will pass DC current of less than 20 volts and 5 amps from one wire on the door to another wire on the jam.
  2. Dodgydave

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 22, 2012
    Better using a magnetic reed switch with magnet on the door, contact on the frame.
  3. MaxHeadRoom


    Jul 18, 2013
    If wishing to break a conductor leaving the door across the Jamb, why not use a small loop in the conductor between door and jamb and use either the reed sw mentioned or a miniature limit switch to break contact?.
  4. #12


    Nov 30, 2010
    As far as I know, there is no such thing as an electrical connector that can be in-serted and out-serted dozens of times a day, under varying loads and speeds, dealing with small changes in humidity or maybe even the building settling, and stay reliable for more than a few months. You can do a sliding contact, that works pretty well, but Ford stopped using copper and carbon contacts in their steering wheel connections and changed to a coiled cable, like a watch spring, because the sliding contact method isn't reliable. The bottom line is that reed switches, mercury switches, Hall Effect magnetic switches, and micro-switches were invented to provide reliability for this kind of need by separating the mechanical function from the electrical function.

    There you have it. Take your pick according to your needs. Two slats cut out of a tomato can is good enough if you only need it to last a few weeks.
  5. wayneh


    Sep 9, 2010
    Well, yes you are. You want to switch 5A based on the door position. You can sense the door position and perform the switching somewhere else, or use a conventional switch that triggers on door position. Why do you want the door itself to be a switch? I mean, this wheel has been invented. Why do you need something else?

    A plate on a spring that mates up against a conductor on the opposite side might work. You need to compensate for a lot of slop.
  6. MikeML

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 2, 2009
    Most of the door sensors, such as used in alarms, cannot switch 5A directly; more like 100mA or less. You will need a sensitive relay or transistor switch to protect the switch.
    AnalogKid likes this.
  7. bwilliams60

    Senior Member

    Nov 18, 2012
    Nothing more than information but we got away from the slip ring/contact setup and went to the clockspring because of airbags or SRS. It has been a great improvement until you put one on and don't center it properly. Not good when the clockspring gets too tight. They have a tendancy to "snap".
  8. AnalogKid

    AAC Fanatic!

    Aug 1, 2013
    I wondered if anyone else has noticed that.

    Generically, connectors that mate up with one or both haves moving around are called blind-mate. There are lotsa of different kinds. Some are rated to 10's of amps, but for only a few hundred mating cycles.

  9. wayneh


    Sep 9, 2010
    I did. It's why I mentioned separating the sensing from the switching in #5.
  10. strantor

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
    I've seen harting connectors used for this purpose before.


    It was on multibay cardboard stamping/printing presses. The machine is in several "bays" (sections) that are all on rollers on the same track. The bays separate to get inside and change the die patterns. When you're ready to run the press, the bays all slide together and power/signal circuits are completed through the connectors.

    In that application, the plugs are pushed straight into the receptacles. In a swinging door application, it wouldn't be quite straight. Maybe straight enough to plug in/out, but probably also not straight enough to prevent the pins getting bent and the females getting widened.

    I cannot guess why you want to do this, but I suggest if at all possible, you don't.
  11. Whatashame


    Nov 30, 2015
    Edmond's makes a door jam switch mostly use to turn a closet light on. It usually used and made for 120 volt circuits but it can be use for low voltage. Comes with a steel box that must be reset in the door jam. Has momentary normally open contact heavy duty push button switch. Has 1\2" (7\8") knock out for an electrical connector sold separate. This will last a long, long time. I hope you were not asking for a auto door switch. My first reply to help someone. I'm a retired electrician learning electronics and " Arduino".
    wayneh likes this.
  12. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
    The Apple MagSafe connector does essentially what the OP is asking for but slightly less current and, not readily available in non-apple applications. Magnet on the outside positions and the spring loaded gold-plated balls make the contact to gold plated cups on the other side.

    Whatashame likes this.