- Where would I have a tool manufactured?
Do you have a drawing you can send someone to make it? Or is it just an idea? Either way look locally for precision engineering companies, or ask around locally for recommendations.Posted 5 years ago
Once you’ve found someone, just go and talk to them. I know a few locally to me (Cambridge) but you need to find someone close to you.
How about a 3d one printed 1st before getting one machined (if necessary)
Just because you can make one using a 3d printer doesn’t mean you can make it with ‘real’ methods. If it’s a tool it’s unlikely to be usable if made with a 3d printer.
I’ve got nothing yet, and no idea how to get my idea out of my head and into my hands
Well, you’ll have to if you want to get it made. Do you know anyone with an engineering background? You’ll have to sketch something so you can explain what you want. You don’t know yet if it’s possible to make it.Posted 5 years agolegendMember
paulosoxo – Member
I’ve got nothing yet, and no idea how to get my idea out of my head and into my hands, but I’m pretty sure it’s a something that could work.
Start with simple sketches and take it from there. You’ll need a very friendly machine shop to make it if you cant hand them a drawing, but the quality of drawing they’ll need will depend on how complex the tool is. Also need to have a think about the level of precision (tolerances) you’ll needPosted 5 years ago
It’s possible to make it, it’ll work and I’ve worked as a gas man most of my working life, so I know it has a use. . My worry is my idea is either great, and someone will nick it, or it’s rubbish and I’ll not get anywhere with it. I could draw it as a rough sketch, but would that be enough?Posted 5 years ago
+1 on what stavromuller said.
If it is a commercially viable product get it protected before showing any drawings or disclosing it to anyone. Go see a patent or design attorney (first consultations are usually free) before you start making mock ups / disclosing it to public.
I work as a Patent Illustrator for many large Patent Attorneys and companies around the world. If you want any further pointers my personal email is profile.Posted 5 years agopolyMember
1. How you make a prototype will depend on the job its going to do – a spanner and a screwdriver are not necessarily going to be the same; moving parts like pliers would be a difference again. If the material needs to be hardened etc, or if for a proto it doesn’t matter. Then if you are going to make lots – it needs to be designed for manufacture.
2. Even if its the best thing since the molegrip you will need a plan to commercialise it and exploit it if you will make any money from it. You might need prototypes to test this – but if you don’t have contacts it can be a real uphill struggle.
3. Most machine shops doing specialist work will be used to signing non-disclosure agreements. This is quite normal. As will any credible designer who will commit your thoughts to paper.
4. If the function is really clever it might actually be more appropriate to file a Patent rather than a registered design. A registerred design will not protect the function only the ‘form’, so I could take your concept and produce something that does the same job but which visually is a bit different and I won’t be infringing your rights.
5. It will take months as a minimum for the Patent Office to respond to your application. Even then it won’t really tell you how protectable your idea is, or that someone can’t walk all over what you’ve written. Patents are one of the areas where amateurs CAN do there own filings, but if you ever needed it you’ll almost certainly have missed things or left gaps.Posted 5 years ago
I can help with a template non disclosure agreement if you need it (i’ve signed bloody loads over the years haha) So you can get the ball rolling with prototypes.
What have you applied for at the IPO? I would be wary of writing a specification with the claims for a patent yourself without seeking the help of a Patent Attorney/agent first. As if you have missed anything in this description or wrongly worded anything then this can be exploited by people and still steal your idea (Writing a spec is an art in itself). I can put you in contact with pocket friendly attorney to give you guidance if need be.
Also if you need help with drawings give me a shout, i can either knock them up for you or give you pointers (lots of rules to formalise Patent drawings).Posted 5 years ago
Agree with footflaps. If it is a commercially viable product with the intention of selling it, get patented. As you wont have a leg to stand on if the product is disclosed without protection.
The whole patenting process can be costly in itself. But it can be done on the cheap with the right direction / contacts.Posted 5 years agoFuzzyWuzzyMember
I’m curious what actual protection do NDA’s offer, especially in an invention-copying scenario? Seems to be genuine experts on here recommending them but if you break one what are the consequences? Is it just a case of you can be sued and if so how are the damages determined? The only NDAs I’ve signed are when beta testing games (the consequence of breaking them is just your account is closed) and with suppliers like Dell giving us future direction briefings and showing us prototype servers – I’ve not bothered to ask them what happens if I break it though…Posted 5 years ago
Paulosoxo – here is a link to an example of a one way non disclosure agreement from the IPO, use this as a template. http://www.ipo.gov.uk/nda-agreement.pdf
FuzzyWuzzy – No idea what happens if you do break an NDA, I have never felt inclined too! haha. But I am guessing its a case of being sued for damages of some sort you would need to ask a Patent attorney with real world experience of this. I have got to see some cool stuff over the years though, always nice to see products come to life or even use a product that I did the patent work for.Posted 5 years agobencooperMember
I have got to see some cool stuff over the years though
Me too – though also some absolutely barking stuff. One (I’m safe telling you about this one I think) was someone who had spent over £25,000 on his remarkable new invention which no-one had ever, ever thought of before and it was going to change the world: It was a license plate holder for the back of a bike rack.
I signed the 20-page NDA, he showed me the prototype, I suggested as nicely as possible that before he spent another penny he should stroll down to Halfords…Posted 5 years ago
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