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Thread: Has any CC succeeded in obtaining a wheelchair mod patent?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Tim C.'s Avatar
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    Has any CC succeeded in obtaining a wheelchair mod patent?

    I'm an engineer type, just not a design, or draft table kind. I've had this idea for a wheelchair upgrade that's been burning a hole in the side of my head for the past two months but I just don't know what direction I should take it.
    Are those on-line patent checks reliable to see whether the technology is already spoken for?
    Are those on-line DYI kits any good?
    Is it worth inquiring with a patent attorney?
    Speak to a friendly DME guy who up to date with the latest wheelchair technology, or trade show, etc.
    Any comments are appreciated.

  2. #2
    US Patent's only are valuable if you have the means to sue a company for selling a product that violates your patent. The patent office is searchable, knowing what to search for is the tricky part. After doing extensive research I decided patents are not worth the effort for my designs at this time.

    I would suggest working with local folks to help you prototype your design, test it thoroughly, then decide if you want to set up manufacturing and sales or if you want to sell the design. A functional, well tested prototype is worth far more than a good idea in your head. A non-disclosure agreement wouldn't hurt when discussing the idea with those you work with.

    Good luck, hope you re-invent the wheel!

  3. #3
    you can do your own prior art search on google or at USPTO.gov but it will be good to know the Class / Sub-Class the protected elements of design are listed under.

    if your idea is an improvement upon existing patented elements then find those patents and they each will have the Class / Sub-Class as well as a list of cited patents of similar design.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Tim C.'s Avatar
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    Thank you Cripp, sounds like sound advice .
    Rick, thanks for giving me something to study.
    It's just that when you ride these things day in/ out things jump out at you and you're helpless to do anything about it.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Tim C.'s Avatar
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    I see my wheelchair Permobil is manufactured abroad.

  6. #6
    you may want to partner w/a small w/c company not owned by a parent corp as they will be more able to integrate outside design tech to their existing line.

    good luck

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