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I've designed a whole lot of different parts and products in my time: Plastic, metal, lighting products, electrical products and automotive parts. I generally can look at a product and figure out why did they do that. Here's one that has me baffled.

Its the bottom of a consumer grade vacuum cleaner. Molded in the plastic is a slot (which I'd generally refer to as a bayonet mount). I can see that the mount definitely is out of normal die draw (large undercut) and requires a slide (and that tooling is definitely not cheap...) I can't figure out what that mount is for. It doesn't seem to match the cord or any of the accessories that I can see.

Vacuum cleaner mystery mount

Any ideas on what that 'bayonet mount' is for? Why would the manufacturer spend real investment dollars for tooling something so obtuse?

Possible

  • Something they use in their manufacturing process?
  • Something to ensure the part control during the molding ejection process from the die? Note: I've seen molded parts get stuck in the wrong half of the tool and that can be quite ugly... The other side of the part is heavily engineered, with lots of ribs and other details.
  • Could it be for planting a sales/marketing sign when the product is sitting in a sales display?

Any ideas?

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  • $\begingroup$ Does the cleaning head have a matching male bit - usually for storage of the head / pipe assembly $\endgroup$ – Solar Mike May 22 '17 at 4:57
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This was an unexpected surprise. The slot is for a mating element on the lower tube extension. I totally missed this. When stowed this way:

  • the storage footprint is small and stable
  • you can easily move the entire assembly in and out of a storage closet with one hand (by grabbing the handle on the base unit.)

Thanks to Solar Mike and Zimano for their responses. Separate answer posted here to enable a photograph of the assembly.

vacuum cleaner hose storage slot

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