Attachment device

Abstract

An attachment device for connection to a construction member with at least one connection slot or recess is disclosed. Contact ends of two connection members of the device are inserted into the recess separately and then moved into an opposing or back-to-back relationship in the recess. At least one of the connection members has a contact end that is angularly offset from its body. The intersection between the body and contact end defines a pivot point. Once the connection members are placed in the recess, bodies of the connection members outside of the recess are disposed towards each other. The angularly offset contact end pivots about the pivot point moving the contact ends in the recess apart pressing contact surfaces against interior sidewalls of the recess. The outward pressure of the contact surfaces with the interior sidewalls locks the two connection members into place in connection recess.

Claims

What is claimed is: 1 . An attachment device comprising: a rail having a recess along a portion of its length, said recess having first and second surfaces that are at least partially opposing; first and second connection members each having: a generally planar body section having a bottom surface and a top surface; and a contact end section having a lower surface disposed at an angle relative to a bottom reference plane defined by said bottom surface, wherein said contact end section includes an upper contact surface that extends above top reference plane defined by said top surface; wherein when said contact end sections of said connection members are disposed in an opposing relationship in said recess and said bottom surfaces of said first and second connection members are juxtaposed, said contact surfaces apply an expansive force between said first and second surfaces of said recess. 2 . The device of claim 1 , wherein each planar body section further comprises: an aperture extending through said body section between said bottom surface and a top surface. 3 . The device of claim 2 , further comprising: a bolt, wherein said bolt is disposed through said apertures of said connection members and compresses said bottom surfaces together, when said contact ends of said connection members are disposed in said recess. 4 . The device of claim 1 , wherein said contact surface is parallel to said bottom surface. 5 . The device of claim 4 , wherein said first and second surfaces of said recess are parallel. 6 . The device of claim 1 , wherein each said contact surface is a textured surface. 7 . The device of claim 1 , wherein each connection member further comprises: a second end section, wherein at least a portion of said second end section is recessed from said bottom reference plane. 8 . The device of claim 7 , wherein when said first and second connection members are in said opposing relationship and said bottom surfaces are juxtaposed, said recessed ends collectively define a clamp. 9 . The device of claim 1 , wherein said first and second connection members are physically identical. 10 . The device of claim 1 , wherein: said first connection member comprises a first body section with a generally planar first bottom surface and a first end section disposed at a first angle relative to said first bottom surface; and said second connection member comprises a second body section with a generally planar second bottom surface and a second end section disposed at a second angle relative to said second bottom surface. 11 . The device of claim 1 , wherein said first and second angles are different. 12 . The device of claim 1 , wherein, when said contact ends are disposed in said recess and said bottom surfaces are juxtaposed, a distance between said contact surfaces is greater than a corresponding distance between said first and second surfaces of said recess prior to application of said expansive force. 13 . The device of claim 1 , wherein said recess has at least one lip extending from one of said first and second surfaces toward a centerline axis of said recess. 14 . The device of claim 13 , wherein said contact end of at least one of said connection members has a groove adapted to engage said lip. 15 . A method for engaging an attachment device within a recess of a rail member, where the recess has a first side surface and a second side surface that are at least partially opposing, comprising: inserting a first contact end of a first connection member into the recess, wherein said first contact end is disposed at an angle to a generally planar bottom surface of a body section of said first connection member; inserting a second contact end of a second connection member into the recess, wherein said second contact end is disposed at an angle to a generally planar bottom surface of a body section of said second connection member; at least partially aligning the first and second contact ends in the recess, wherein said bottom surfaces of said connection members are facing one another and wherein a first contact surface of said first contact end faces the first side surface of the recess and a second contact surface of the second contact end faces the second side surface of the recess; compressing said bottom surfaces said first and second connection members toward one another, wherein said first and second contact surfaces of said first and second contact ends expand outward and contacting said first and second sides surfaces of said recess and apply an expansive force there between. 16 . The method of claim 15 , wherein compressing comprises tightening a bolt extending though said body sections. 17 . The method of claim 15 , further comprising: clamping an element between free ends of said connection members, wherein said free ends are on opposite sides of said body sections from said contact ends. 18 . An attachment device comprising: a rail having a recess along a portion of its length, said recess having first and second surfaces that are at least partially opposing; a first connection member having a first body section with a generally planar first bottom surface and a first end section disposed at a first angle relative to said first bottom surface; a second connection member having a second body section with a generally planar second bottom surface and a second end section disposed at a second angle relative to said second bottom surface; said first and second end sections having first and second contact surfaces, respectively, wherein said first and second contact surfaces are adapted to contact said first and second surfaces of said recess, respectively; wherein when said first and second contact ends of said connection members are disposed in an opposing relationship in said recess and said bottom surfaces of said first and second body sections are juxtaposed, said first and second contact surfaces apply an outward force between said first and second surfaces of said recess.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS [0001] This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/871,259, filed Aug. 28, 2013, the entire contents of which is incorporated herein by reference. BACKGROUND [0002] In many areas, there is a continuing need for attachment mechanism that allows a quick and easy but strong connection of two or more parts. It is particularly desirable to have an attachment mechanism that allows the attachment of metal items together without welding. This is due both to the cost and difficultly of doing welding and/or bonding, the difficultly in inspecting such joins and the weakness the joins can induce in the material. This is particularly true with aluminum products and/or connecting items of dissimilar materials together. [0003] One particular area where it is desirable to connect metal components together is in solar panel assemblies/racks. Typically, solar panels are mounted at an angle to enhance their receipt of solar energy. Further, such solar panels are often mounted on an angled surface. Commonly, racking systems having various rails are utilized to build supports for solar panels. The rails of the racking system may be aluminum and/or include one or more recesses or channels. [0004] The foregoing example of the related art and limitations related therewith are intended to be illustrative and not exclusive. Other limitations of the related art will become apparent to those of skill in the art upon a reading of the specification and a study of the drawings. SUMMARY [0005] One aspect of the presented inventions is to use of angled levers that allow for expanding two connection surfaces of an attachment device outward to expand into contact with opposing surfaces of a connection space such a recess or channel. [0006] According to one aspect, an attachment device is provided. Generally, the attachment device may be utilized with a rail or other construction member having a recess with at least first and second partially opposing surfaces. The attachment device is operative to engage the recess and provide an outward force on the opposing surfaces of the recess. This outward force may work to attach the attachment device relative to the rail/construction member. Generally, the attachment device includes first and second connection members. These connection members may be generally in the form of a plate having a bent end, though other configurations are possible. In one arrangement, each connection member includes a planar body section having a bottom surface and a top surface. These surfaces define top and bottom reference planes, respectively. An end section of the connection member forms a contact section for contacting the recess in the rail or construction member. This contact end section may also be referred to as a connection head. The contact end section has a lower surface that is disposed at an angle relative to the bottom reference plane defined by the bottom surface. In this regard, the contact end section/connection head is disposed at an angle relative to the planar bottom surface of the connection member. The intersection between the lower surface of the connection head and the bottom surface of the connection member generally defines a pivot. The contact end section also includes an upper contact surface that is disposed above the top reference plane. When the first and second connection members are disposed in an opposing relationship (e.g., back to back) with their connection heads in the recess, the bottom surfaces of these connection members may be disposed towards one another (e.g., juxtaposed). This results in the contact surfaces of the connection heads rotating about the pivot point. That is, the contact surfaces expand outward. Accordingly, the connection heads and contact surfaces may be sized such that, when the body sections of the connection members are juxtaposed, an outward force is applied on the opposing surfaces of the recess. [0007] In one arrangement two largely identical connection members are provided. In another arrangement the first and second connection members may be differently configured. Likewise, the contact surfaces of the connection members may be disposed at different angles to account for different angular orientations of the side surfaces of a recess of a specific construction member. [0008] In a further arrangement, a second end of each connection member may be a connection end. That is, when the body sections of connection members are juxtaposed, an object may be held between the connection ends of the two connection members. These connections may have various configurations. [0009] In a further arrangement, the connection members may have connection ends on both ends. In such an arrangement, the connection members may be utilized interconnect first and second construction members. For instance, first and second rails each having a recess may be connected by one or more of the connection members to form a strut. [0010] In another aspect, a method is provided for interconnecting an attachment device within recess of the construction or rail member where the recess includes at least first and second partially opposing surfaces. Initially, a first connection head or contact end of a first connection member is disposed into the recess. The first connection head is disposed at an angle to a body of the first connection member. The connection head of a second connection member is also disposed within the recess. The first and second connection heads are at least partially aligned within the recess such that the first and second connection members are disposed back to back. [0011] In this regard, contact surfaces of each of the contact heads are facing the first and second side surfaces of the recess. Once aligned, the body sections of the first and second connection members are compressed toward one another such that the angled connection head(s) pivots outward forcing the contact surfaces of the connection heads into contact with the first and second side surfaces of the recess. [0012] In addition to the exemplary aspects and embodiments described above, further aspects and embodiments will become apparent by reference to the accompanying drawings forming a part of this specification wherein like reference characters designate corresponding parts in the several views. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS [0013] FIG. 1 is a perspective view two connection members of an attachment device disposed in an attachment slot. [0014] FIG. 2A is a side elevation view of two connection members in an attachment slot in the insertion position. [0015] FIG. 2B is a side elevation view of two connection members is an attachment slot in the attached position. [0016] FIG. 3A is a side elevation view of an exemplary connection member. [0017] FIG. 3B is a side elevation view of an alternative embodiment of the connection member where the connection surface has a roughened surface. [0018] FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the steps to insert and then attached two connection members into an attachment slot. [0019] FIGS. 5A and b are side elevations views of two connection members being installed in an alternate embodiment of an attachment slot. [0020] FIGS. 6A and 6B are side elevations views of an alternate embodiment of the connection members being installed in an attachment slot. [0021] FIGS. 7A and 7B side elevations views of two connection members being installed in an alternate embodiment of an attachment slot. [0022] FIGS. 8A and 8B are side elevation views of a two headed version of the connection member. [0023] FIG. 8C is a side elevation view of the two headed version of the connection member after being tighten into place. [0024] FIGS. 8D is a perspective view of two construction members with attachment slots attached together with a series of locked in place connection members. [0025] FIGS. 9A is a side elevation view of a connection member that is designed to be at an angle between two construction members. [0026] FIGS. 9B is a perspective view of two construction members attached together with two straight connection members and a X configuration of connection members. [0027] FIGS. 10A and 10B are side elevation views of an additional embodiment of the connection members with a clamping member formed into the ends holding a panel. [0028] FIGS. 11A , 11 B and 11 C are side elevation views of an additional embodiments of the connection members. [0029] FIGS. 12A and 12B are side elevations views of two connection members being installed in an alternate embodiment of a construction member. [0030] Before explaining the disclosed embodiment of the present invention in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of the particular arrangement shown, since the invention is capable of other embodiments. Exemplary embodiments are illustrated in referenced figures of the drawings. It is intended that the embodiments and figures disclosed herein are to be considered illustrative rather than limiting. Also, the terminology used herein is for the purpose of description and not of limitation. DETAILED DESCRIPTION [0031] Presented herein is an attachment device 20 that is adapted for disposition within and fixed positioning relative to a recess 12 of a construction member or rail 10 . See FIGS. 1 , 2 A, 2 B and 3 A. More specifically, the attachment device 20 includes a first connection member 30 a and a second connection member 30 b each having an end portion/section that is adapted for insertion into the recess 12 of the rail 10 . Once these end sections 40 a, 40 b are inserted into the recess 12 , the connection members 30 and 30 b are at least partially aligned (e.g., opposing back to back) and body portions of the connection members are juxtaposed such that contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b of the end sections 40 a, 40 b expand outward (e.g., rotate) and contact at least partially opposing side surfaces of the recess. In the illustrated embodiment, the first and second connection members 30 a and 30 b are identical (though this need not be the case) and similar components of the first and second connection members utilize the same reference numeral with an appended letter ‘a’ or ‘b’ depending on the specific connection member being referenced. For purposes of discussion, if a connection member or component of one of the connection members is being generally referenced, the appended letter is omitted. [0032] As best shown in FIG. 3A , each connection member 30 includes a body section 32 , a contact end section or connection head 40 and, optionally, a connection end 50 . As shown, the body section 32 is an elongated section (i.e., in cross-section) that forms a leverage member as more fully described herein. In the illustrated embodiment, the body section 32 is generally planar having a flat top surface 34 and a flat bottom surface 36 . The top surface 34 defines a first reference plane T-T′ and the bottom surface 36 defines a second reference plane B-B′. The contact end section/connection head 40 has an upper contact surface 42 that extends above the top reference plane T-T′. In the illustrated embodiment, the contact surface 42 is substantially parallel to the reference plane, though this is not a requirement. A lower surface 44 of the connection head 40 is disposed at an angle relative to the bottom reference plane B-B′. In this regard, the lower surface 44 of the connection head 40 and the bottom surface 36 of the body section 32 meet at an angle that forms a pivot point 60 . Stated otherwise, the connection head is not in axial alignment with the body section 32 . As will be appreciated, the angular offset of the connection head 40 allows the body section 32 to be used as a leverage member to lift the connection head 40 when the pivot point 60 is disposed against a supporting surface. [0033] FIG. 3B is a side view of an alternate embodiment of the contact surface 42 of the contact end section 40 . In this embodiment, the contact surface 42 has textured elements 48 designed to cut into the interior walls of the connection recess. The textured elements 48 can create a grounded connection between the construction member and the attachment device if both are made of metal or other conductive materials. The textured elements 48 also increase the coefficient of friction between the interior walls and the contact surface, which increases the holding capacity on the connection members against being pulled out of the connection slot/recess. [0034] Referring first to FIGS. 1 , 2 A and 2 B, the insertion of the connection members 30 a, 30 b of the attachment device 20 into a recess 12 of a rail is more fully discussed. In the illustrated embodiment, the attachment device 20 is inserted into a rail 10 having a single recess 12 . The recess 12 of the illustrated rail 10 has two partially opposing sidewall surfaces 14 and 16 . In this specific embodiment, the opposing sidewall surfaces are parallel and the lower end of each sidewall surface includes a retaining lip 18 . Thus, the opening of the recess is narrower than the interior of the recess. Though depicted as a being a rail, it will be appreciated that the attachment device may be attached to any construction member having an appropriately configured recess. Further, it is not intended to limit the ‘rail’ to the particular embodiment depicted. For instance, the rail or other construction member may have any number of connection slots. The connection slots could be the open ended channels as shown in the depicted embodiment, or a fully contained groove with end walls (not shown). It is to be further understood that both the rail/construction member 10 and the connection members 30 can be made of any material that is rigid enough to hold its shape under the stresses of intended use. What level of rigidity will depend on the application the device being used with, determining this is well within the skill of one skilled in the art. No limitation of materials or uses is intended or should be inferred. [0035] As seen in FIG. 1 , the contact end sections 40 a, 40 b of the two connection members 30 a, 30 b are inserted into the recess 12 separately. In this regard, the width of each connection head is less than the width of the opening of the recess 12 . Once the first and second connection heads 40 a, 40 b are inserted into the recess 12 , the connection members 30 a and 30 b are then moved towards each other as shown by arrows A. That is, the connection members 30 a and 30 b are juxtaposed in the recess 12 back-to-back or opposing as illustrated in FIG. 2A . As will be appreciated, the angled lower surface 44 allows disposing the connection heads 40 a, 40 b toward one-another such that their collective width is less that the width of the recess 12 . That is, the angular offset of the connection heads 40 a, 40 b permits rotating the lower ends of the connection member 30 a, 30 b outward to permit the two connection members to be disposed back-to-back while their connection heads 40 a, 40 b are disposed in the recess 12 . [0036] As shown, the connection heads 40 a, 40 b are placed in the connection recess 12 such that their contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b face away from each other toward the sidewall surfaces 14 , 16 of the recess 12 . Once so disposed, the pivot points 60 of the connection members 30 a, 30 b are substantially abutting. That is, each connection member forms a support surface for the pivot point 60 of the other connection member. The two connection members rotate relative to each other at the pivot point 60 , moving the contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b either towards or away from the interior side walls 14 , 16 of the recess. Once in a desired location, the body sections 32 a, 32 b are pressed towards each other as shown in FIG. 2 b . That is, the bottom surfaces 36 a, 36 b of the body sections 32 a, 32 b are disposed toward one another moving the two the connection heads 40 a, 40 b (i.e., disposed on the opposing side of the pivot point 60 ) apart and pressing the contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b against the interior walls 14 , 16 . In this regard, will be appreciated that the connection heads 40 a, 40 b may be sized such that their collective width is slightly greater than the corresponding interior width of the recess 12 . Accordingly, the contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b may apply an outward force to the recess. This outward force may alone affix the attachment device 20 within the recess. Further, it will be appreciated that the body sections 32 a, 32 b of the connection members each effectively form a lever that allows for applying leverage to the connection heads 40 a, 40 b. [0037] In the illustrated embodiment, each connection head 40 includes an engaging groove 46 adjacent to the contact surface 42 . See FIG. 3A . This groove 46 is adapted to engage the lip 18 on the lower end of the sidewall surfaces of the recess. See FIGS. 2 a and 2 b . In this arrangement, the combination of the outward force/pressure of the contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b with the interior sidewalls 14 , 16 the engagement of the grooves 46 a, 46 b with the lips 18 a, 18 b locks the two connection members 30 a, 30 b into place in connection slot/recess 12 , preventing the two connection members from being pulled out in the direction arrow B. In the depicted embodiment the two connection members 30 a, 30 b are held together with nut and bolt 52 , 54 . The bolt extends through apertures 38 a, 38 b in the body sections 32 a, 32 b of the connection members. Other attachment mechanism may be used and no limitation is intended or should be inferred. [0038] In the embodiment depicted in FIGS. 1 to 2B the pivot point 60 is located such that it is about at the opening of recess 12 . It is believed this configuration helps to maximize the torque created by the rotation of the two connection members 30 a, 30 b at the pivot point 60 , maximizing the force that the contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b exert on the interior sidewalls 14 , 16 . However, this location of the pivot point is not required for functioning; the pivot point can be moved either up or down and have the device still function. [0039] In the embodiment depicted in FIG. 1 , 2 A, 2 B and 3 A the connection members 30 a , 30 b each have a connection end 50 a, 50 b. In the illustrated embodiment, the connection end is semi-circular such that two mating connection ends 50 a, 50 b to clamp on to a circular profile 70 . As will be discussed below, the connection end of the connection members can be designed to clamp a large number of shaped objects, no limitation of the shape of the attachment locations is intended or should be inferred. Further, the connection end may be omitted entirely and an object may be attached to the attachment device 20 via, for example, a nut and bolt extending through one or both of the body portion(s) of the connection device 20 . [0040] FIG. 4 shows one of the possible set of assembly steps for inserting a set of alternate embodiment connection members 30 a, 30 b into an alternate embedment of a construction member/rail 10 . The alternate embodiment connection members 30 a, 30 b have body sections without any connection end and with an elongated fastening opening 62 . The two connection members 30 a and 30 b are slid into the recess 12 as indicated by arrow C. Connection member 30 a is then slid alongside connection member 30 b as indicated by arrow D. The two connection members do not have to be fully overlapped as shown in FIG. 4 . The fastening openings 62 could be offset such that the connection members 30 a, 30 b only partially overlap when the device is fully installed (not shown). Once the two connection members 30 a, 30 b are in the desired location in the connection slot, the body sections of the connection member are pressed towards each other as shown by arrows E and F, moving the contact end section apart as discussed above. A fastener 52 inserted through fastening openings 62 to lock the two members 30 a, 30 together. The force to push the two members 30 a, 30 b together could also be applied by the fastener. In the depicted embodiment the fastener is a nut and bolt, but any other suitable fastening devices or methods could be uses as well, including but not limited to clamps, welding, clamps, rivets, bands, studs, crimping, the fastening opening being threaded for inserting of a bolt, adhesive or other known possible fastenings. [0041] FIGS. 5A and 5B show another embodiment of the attachment device 20 . In this embodiment the recess 12 has substantially parallel interior walls 14 , 16 , but no lower lip as in the prior embodiment. The connection members 30 a, 30 b work as discussed above with a connection head 40 a, 40 b disposed at an angle to the body sections 32 a, 32 b to define a pivot point 60 . Again, once the connection members 30 a, 30 b are in a desired location, the body sections 32 a, 32 b are pressed towards each other as shown in FIG. 5B , moving the connection heads 40 a, 40 b apart and pressing the contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b against the interior walls 14 , 16 with sufficient force to prevent the two connection members 30 a, 30 b from being pulled out in the direction arrow B. Additionally, the contact end sections in any of the embodiments can have a protrusion perpendicular to the body that seats in a groove or slot in the sidewall of the construction member to increase holding capacity. Such a groove can also be of mating dove tail type design or any number of other designs to increase holding capacity and strength in relation to gravity and minimize excessive spreading of the joint. [0042] FIGS. 6A and 6B depict another embodiment of the connection members 130 , 30 where the two members are not largely identical as in the embodiments depicted above. In this embodiment a first connection member 30 is generally shaped as above, with a connection head 40 , contact surface 42 , pivot point 60 , and body section 32 . The second connection member 160 has a contact end section 140 having a lower surface that is generally in axial alignment with the bottom surface of the body section 132 . There is no pivot point feature on this connection member. However, the pivot point 60 of the other connection member 30 pivots when the two connection members 30 , 130 are disposed back-to-back in the recess 12 . In this regard, the angularly offset connection heads 40 of the ‘bent’ connection member applies the outward force that expands the contact surfaces 142 , 42 against the inside surfaces of the recess. See FIG. 6B . Accordingly, the two differently configured connection members function as described above to lock into the recess 12 . [0043] Referring next to FIGS. 7A and 7B , a construction member/rail 110 is depicted with a connection slot 112 with interior sidewalls 114 , 116 that are not substantially parallel. In the depicted embodiment the interior sidewalls are angled outward from the opening of the recess to the closed end of the rail. Though non-parallel, the sidewalls are at least partially opposing such that an expansive force may be applied there between. Other configurations of the sidewalls are possible as well. The two connection members 30 a, 30 b function as described above. However, in the embedment, the angular offset between the connection heads 40 a, 40 b and their respective body sections 32 a, 32 b may be altered to account for angled interior sidewalls 114 , 116 . In such an arrangement, the contact surfaces 42 a, 42 b are typically non-parallel with the planar bottom surface of the connection members 30 a, 30 b. [0044] Referring next to FIGS. 8A , 8 B, 8 C and 8 D another embodiment of the attachment device 20 is disclosed device having connection members 30 a, 30 b with two connection heads 40 a, 40 aa and 40 b, 40 bb , respectively. The connection members 30 a, 30 b each have first and second body sections, 32 a, 32 aa and 32 b, 32 bb , respectively. Each body second connects to a corresponding connection head such that each connection member had two pivot points 60 a and 60 b. The two body sections of each connection member are connected at a middle point 90 at an angle θ to each other in the starting configuration seen in FIG. 8A . This angle typically ranges between 1 to 10 degrees, with larger angles working in other embodiments. When the two connection members 30 a, 30 b are installed in two rail 10 a, 10 b (e.g., as discussed above) the angle between the two members creates a diamond shaped space there between as best seen in FIG. 8 . As best seen in FIG. 8B , a nut 52 and bolt 54 , or other compression method, is used to compress the two middle points 90 towards each other, causing the connection heads to pivot outward at the pivot points locking the connection heads into their respective connection slots substantially as described above. In the depicted embodiment if FIG. 8B , the two connection members 30 a, 30 b are shown with the angle completely flattened. This is not necessary for the proper functioning of the device. A space could be left between these members. FIG. 8C illustrates a side view of the attachment device 20 connecting the two rail members 10 a, 10 b . FIG. 8D shows a series of attachment devices 20 used to connect two construction members/rails together to form a vertical joist. This allows such joists to be built on a construction site with minimal tools. This allows for easier shipping, as the disassembled parts take up less space. [0045] Another embodiment of the double headed version is shown in FIGS. 9A and 9B where the connection heads 40 a, 40 aa are angled relative to the body sections 32 a, 32 aa , respectively, forming a connection member 30 that is at an angle other than 90 degrees to the construction members 10 a and 10 b. In all other respects this embodiment functions identically to the other described embodiments. FIG. 9B shows a configuration of a vertical joist with X bracing that can be formed with the embodiment of FIG. 9A . [0046] In the embodiment depicted in FIGS. 10A and 10B , the connection members 30 a, 30 b have connection ends 50 a, 50 b that are shaped to clamp on a flat panel 58 . The shaped connection ends 50 a, 50 b may be lined with pads 66 a, 66 b in the depicted embodiment. These pads can be designed to add to the coefficient of friction between the shaped members and the panel, prevent damage to the panel, provide insulation for the panel such that it is electrically isolated from the connection members or any number of other desired functions. [0047] Referring next to FIGS. 11A , 11 B and 11 C, it is noted that the body section and or connection end of the connection members may have a number of the possible configurations. The depicted embodiments merely some of the possible configurations and, no limitation on the shape of the body sections and or connection ends is intended or should be inferred. [0048] FIGS. 12A and 12B show additional embodiments of the attachment device 20 as engaging a standard strut 100 . In this embodiment the recess 12 again has substantially parallel interior walls 14 , 16 with a rolled edge forming the lip 18 . The connection members 30 a, 30 b work as discussed above. As shown, the connection heads 40 a, 40 b may be modified to fit any appropriate strut/rail/construction member 100 . In a further alternate embedment shown in FIG. 12B , the connection heads 40 a, 40 b each have an extension 41 a, 41 b, respectively that engages with the recess formed behind lip 18 . The interaction between these extensions 41 a, 41 b and the recesses further locks the connection members 30 a, 30 b into place. [0049] While a number of exemplary aspects and embodiments have been discussed above, those of skill in the art will recognize certain modifications, permutations, additions and sub-combinations therefore. It is therefore intended that the following appended claims hereinafter introduced are interpreted to include all such modifications, permutations, additions and sub-combinations are within their true spirit and scope. Each apparatus embodiment described herein has numerous equivalents. [0050] The terms and expressions which have been employed are used as terms of description and not of limitation, and there is no intention in the use of such terms and expressions of excluding any equivalents of the features shown and described or portions thereof, but it is recognized that various modifications are possible within the scope of the invention claimed. [0051] Thus, it should be understood that although the present invention has been specifically disclosed by preferred embodiments and optional features, modification and variation of the concepts herein disclosed may be resorted to by those skilled in the art, and that such modifications and variations are considered to be within the scope of this invention as defined by the appended claims. Whenever a range is given in the specification, all intermediate ranges and sub ranges, as well as all individual values included in the ranges given are intended to be included in the disclosure. When a Markush group or other grouping is used herein, all individual members of the group and all combinations and sub combinations possible of the group are intended to be individually included in the disclosure. [0052] In general, the terms and phrases used herein have their art-recognized meaning, which can be found by reference to standard texts, journal references and contexts known to those skilled in the art. The above definitions are provided to clarify their specific use in the context of the invention.

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