Patents

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by RockyMtnMT, May 12, 2010.

  1. RockyMtnMT

    RockyMtnMT Official LRH Sponsor

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    Hey all,

    My partner and I have completed what I believe is our final prototype rifle. I think that we need to protect our product with a patent, but I am not sure how to go about it. Any of you that have done the patent process, please chime in. What is the cost, and how long does it take, etc? Is there other ways to protect the project?

    Thanks for any input.

    Steve
     
  2. BountyHunter

    BountyHunter Writers Guild

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    Ok, what is "'new" that warrants a patent, you just said its a rifle. Assume it has a barrel, chamber and shoots bullets. Doubt you will find that will get a patent.

    Not sure since Rick Jamison got away with his 300 WSM fiasco, that anything like that is going to not be challenged today in the firearms arena.

    However, google patent attorneys and start there and be prepared to spend big bucks to actually get a patent and then at least $100K each time you want to defend it.

    BH
     
  3. Jrigby

    Jrigby <strong>SPONSOR</strong>

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    Steve,
    best bet is to contact a good patent attorney for consultation. they can research your product and get back to on it. you may not be able to papent the whole thing but parts and pieces. I now if you have sold any you have up to 1 year to protect it before it is free game. also hang on to your wallet because it going to cost. my last patent not firearm related was just shy of 10,000 when it was all said and done. it took just shy of 4 years to get it threw.I can tell you from past experience patents do not mean much when it comes to companies copy product, it comes down to who has the deeper pockets and were you/they will throw in the towl. Patents only keep the honest people honest.
    Jrigby
     
  4. RockyMtnMT

    RockyMtnMT Official LRH Sponsor

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    BH,

    The rifle is constructed out of polymers, shoots ceramic projectiles, and uses a variation of nitroglycerin for the propellant. So it is a bit different.:rolleyes:

    Seriously, it is a simple variation on the rifle. So, I guess that I am not looking to patent the rifle, but the variation.

    It sounds like you guys are saying that it is too much hassle and money to go through the process. That I should just produce them and sell them, and see how it goes.

    Is there something other than a patent that keeps my idea mine? Let's say Remington decides that they want to use it, how do I get my dues? It may be just another firearms thing that never gets any traction, but I do believe it has merit.

    Thank you guys for your responses.

    Steve
     
  5. bigbuck

    bigbuck Well-Known Member

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    Steve, I would consult with an attorney like mentioned above except I would get atleast two or three different attorneys prices. I did this just the other day , I met with two different attorneys one wanted 2,000 dollars and explained that if he had to go to court over the case than it would be an additional 200.00 in court and 200.00 out another words he could aventually charge whatever he wants. The next attorney I let him know up front that I had already gotten an estimate and he tells me that he could do it all for 750.00 I then ask is that a flat rate and he said yes. So I walked out with 1,250.00 in my pocket . Now I guess I'll see how true the ole "get what you pay for" sayings is...

    I kind of agree with the patent not being to concrete. I want a NF scope because of the zero stop but it is supposedly patented well now i recently found out that huskemaw makes their scope with this option but they had to achieve the same goal utilizing a differemt method . So one might ask could your patened idea be legally side stepped like this has been done . it would suck to spend your hard earned money and then later on someone go around your patened .

    BigBuck
     
  6. ilscungilli

    ilscungilli Well-Known Member

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    Patents can be easy to file, but costly to maintain and defend. If you wanted to license the invention to a large company, they may want to know that they have an intellectual property (IP) position that they can defend before investing a large sum of money. To this end, the patent must be properly written, so I wouldn't go with the lowest bidder and would find someone with a knowledge of patent writing, preferably in the firearms area. Have a look at the Shaw patent on spiral fluting for example.

    Based on what you wrote above, it sounds like your invention is novel, and you could probably patent the system. I am a co-inventor on around 40 patents or so (I haven't checked lately) related to drug discovery. The patent field is constantly changing, driven largely by court cases so how you write patents can change over a fairly short period of time. Also, don't expect to lock up the whole field, but focus on protecting the core of your invention and what you really care about.
     
  7. RockyMtnMT

    RockyMtnMT Official LRH Sponsor

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    Thank you for the info.

    You do realize that I was kidding about the polymer, ceramic, and glycerin? After reading your reply I was afraid that I was sounding like an April fools joke. What I have done is a variation of the conventional rifle that increases strength, stability, and accuracy.

    Steve
     
  8. Chas1

    Chas1 Well-Known Member

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    +1 w/jrigby on patents do not mean much when it comes to companies copying product, it comes down to who has the deeper pockets and were you/they will throw in the towl.
     
  9. ilscungilli

    ilscungilli Well-Known Member

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    We'll sort of. The above still applies. The "invention" must be novel, and not an "obvious" extension of something that already exists. This is a term of art to describe what a person who is an expert, practiced in the field would judge as being obvious. Just because you haven't seen it before doesn't mean its novel, in filing patents.

    Basically, you write an file a patent with the US patent office. Then, you have about 18 months before the patent is "published". At this point, your patent (as submitted) will be available for all to see, and possibly comment on (this is where people list patent pending). After this, a patent agent will then go over the claims in your patent and decide if your claims are novel, and should be protected with a patent. The agent will scour the literature to find closely related inventions to judge how novel your patent is. If they find an example of the same thing that is already known (i.e., some internet post of the same idea), or a magazine article suggesting your could do the same thing, then you are done and probably won't get all of your claims or even your patent. BUT, most of the time, people spend debating about what is novel. We are constantly fighting with the patent agents about novelty.

    Your patent attorney will also do the literature search to make sure (I they are any good). You need to ask them about this, and you should do it yourself. When you file your patent, you will have to provide references to closely related "prior art".

    One last thing. If you want to patent your invention, you can't talk about the specifics in public before the patent is published. That would be considered prior art, even though you were the one making the statements.

    Okay, one more last thing: In my mind, the main reason you would want to patent your invention is to be able to license the technology to a large firm, where they can be assured that they will recoup their investment.
     
  10. RockyMtnMT

    RockyMtnMT Official LRH Sponsor

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    Thank you visigoth,

    That is the help I was looking for.

    Steve
     
  11. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    +1

    I have 3 patent,s and it means nothing. one was stolen during the process and one other is
    being made in Korea.

    My advice is to make as many as you can and sell them as long as the demand is there and
    at least you will have the satisfaction of being the first. Besides royalty's don't pay much if
    you do get one and don't protect you from theft If someone wants to steal your idea because
    if they get sued they just go belly up and get off Scott free.

    I'm not bitter just wiser.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  12. groper

    groper Well-Known Member

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    i filed a provisional patent once. It cost me about $3k for a patent attorney to edit what i had written, do all the searches and file the provisional. Most patent attorneys will read into your initial 'idea' and within a few weeks, tell you whether the idea is patentable or not.

    A provisional patent lasts for one year and allows the inventor for a small cost to develop the idea and test things, make changes etc. It can be renewed after one year if needed. Once youve tested and further developed the idea and are happy to proceed with it, you can then file a full patent on it. If the idea doesnt fly, then the provisional patent lapses and you move on with your life only wasting a small anount of money, as opposed to a full patent.

    Call a patent attorney for more details, most should talk to you free of charge for an initial consulatation.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2010
  13. silvertip-co

    silvertip-co Well-Known Member

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    If you are going to patent anything, I woudlnt discuss it with anyone except a patent attorney that YOU are paying. And I dang sure wouldnt put even a hint of the idea on an internet forum of any kind. Good luck.