eg123 wrote:Hi James,
I feel that apart from big companies, there are many individuals like me, that are "in the basement of the science building" working towards
making their printer to work like the Carbon 3d, no PDMS. If anyone finds some kind of product or a way that works, how would you recommend
going about it?
Patents are a long process and can become expensive.
A friend of mine says that "They are worth as much money as you are willing to spend defending it"
What is your thought about that?
If some one were to come up with some innovative way for printers to work like the Carbon 3d, what would you recommend?
To go through a patent? Or bring it to market because nonstick surfaces is rudimentary?
The first step is to NOT do any work on your invention with any of the computers that you use to get online. There is a lot of cyber warfare going on these days and also a lot of industrial espionage too. If you're well known, then you need to go even farther and do your computing in a Faraday cage to prevent patterns from being assemble from your computer's EM emissions. I would even advise that if it is something super important that one not even use a computer at all. Just do everything the old fashion way if possible.
Get a registered patent attorney and then have then draw up a provisional patent. This will cost around $500. Your invention is then considered patent pending and you then have one year to file for an utility patent. You would ask your attorney how long it would take to prepare and file the utility patent and then subtract that from a year and that's about as much time as you have to shop the invention around. When it comes to 3D printers, if you have something spectacular then you'll easily find investors to throw in all kinds of money to help you move forward. If your invention wasn't that great or you just weren't lucky enough to make some kind of a deal then you would be stuck having to file for an utility patent with your own money which could cost anywhere's from $5000 to $8000.
If you didn't have that kind of money to file for an utility patent you could go down the open source hardware route. There is plenty of money to be made in the area of open source hardware so that's always an option to keep in mind.
One thing about patents are they scare people. Even if your flat broke and you cannot afford to pay an attorney to litigate infringement proceedings in a court of law, you still have the scare factor of a patent. Look at Apple. They just lost a couple hundred million dollars by infringing on somebody's patent. With these kinds of stories floating around in the air people tend to be very careful when it comes to patent infringement.
Although nonstick surfaces are rudimentary when it comes to SLA 3D printing, I wouldn't let that hold you back from pursuing your putative invention.