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My Caldera Clone
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Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Angry people - Please explain on 01/09/2012 11:37:27 MST Print View

I at least am not upset. I am however concernced with some people's callous dismissal of intellectual property rights (and I find the discourse interesting). Property rights are one of the major underpinnings of our society in the US.

david thomas,

Are you sure that the script would not fall under, "One also commits indirect infringement if he actively and knowingly induces another to infringe, and is liable for that infringement."

I am not an expert to know if the script does or does not infringe. But if it does, then I would have thought that the author could be encouraging others to infringe. Just because a patent is not economical to enforce on a small scale doesn't mean people should have carte blanch to violate imo.

Richard Cullip
(RichardCullip) - M

Locale: San Diego County
Am I stealing? on 01/09/2012 11:45:11 MST Print View

Interesting discussion so far about patents and intellectual property protection. I recently bought a Caldera Cone from Trail Designs for my Evernew 900ml Ti pot. I tried it a couple of times but was unhappy with the difficulty in packing the Caldera Cone into a small compact package and with the entire weight of the system. Heck, the plastic tub that comes with the system weighs more and is bulkier than the 10-12 stove and the Caldera Cone combination. In order to improve the situation, I created by own cone-shaped windscreen for use with a different stove. My stove (a fancee feest stove purchased from Zelph Stoveworks) has a built-in pot stand so the first design change I made was to drop the pot support capability of my cone-shaped windscreen. Seond change is that my windscreen doesn't come all the way up to the rim of my pot rather it stops about an inch short of covering the entire height of the pot. It still touches the pot with a tight fit put doesn't support the weight of the pot. I can now roll up my cone-shaped windscreen (made from Ti foil I purchaed from TiGoat) into a tight tidy package that actually fits inside my stove and the windscreen and stove fit neatly inside my pot. In addition, if I'm planning on using less than 4 fl oz of alcohol on my trip I can even slip my small fuel bottle inside my stove. This lets me pack stove, fuel, windscreen, measuring cup and matches inside my cook pot making my entire cookset a neat little packge no bigger than my cooking pot.

For me, my new cone-shaped windscreen is an improvement over what I purchased from Trail Designs. I still have the Trail Designs Caldera Cone but it sits unused on a shelf in my garage. My stove and MYOG cone-shaped windscreen is giving me the same efficiency (fuel used and time to boil) as the Caldera Cone system but fits into a much smaller space and is a few grams lighter than the combined weight of the 10-12 stove and Caldera Cone windscreen combo.

That's a long rambling set-up to my question, did I steal from Trail Designs by building, what for me, is a better cone-shaped windscreen than the one I bought?

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Am I stealing? on 01/09/2012 12:03:48 MST Print View

Since no one here so far has stated they are a patent attorney, it is all speculation to some degree.

Go back to the "smell test." Does it smell? That is a personal decision that each individual needs to make. No need to post your rationalizations, or seek approval/disapproval from the community.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Re: Re: Angry people - Please explain on 01/09/2012 12:05:53 MST Print View

>"Property rights are one of the major underpinnings of our society in the US."

Michael, Agreed. I think if the West manages to maintain any lucrative economic activity in this century (in light of China's dominance in manufacturing) it will be through IP. Because while China has done everything to facilitate manufacturing and knock-offs, they are doing everything wrong for home-grown IP. They prohibit most international web links and many reference materials, including Wikipedia. Their very long school days (I taught some classes there this summer) focus on rote memorization and not on independent problem solving. And once they finish high school, and get into a "good" university, they coast compared to the US. It will be an interesting few decades.

I'm sure diseminating script does not fall under: "One also commits indirect infringement if he actively and knowingly induces another to infringe, and is liable for that infringement."

Inducing someone to infringe certainly would include hiring someone to make copies. Or if you offered $50 for the first non-TD cone-like thing someone could send you. I wonder if inducement includes knowingly buying a knock-off. It seems like it should. And maybe it's in the law for that reason. You can't go after some off-shore infringers, but you can go after their commercial customers at home.

But to facilitating another's design work, or documenting / discussing something in a patent isn't an inducement. Inducement would have to include some reward or incentive for the behavior.

Since conspiracy to commit a act is always an offense if the act itself is a crime, generating the script could be conspiracy to infringe on a patent IF there was a prior agreement: "you write the script, so I can make an copy that falls under the patent claims." But lacking prior communications, the script might facilitate another's choices, but it doesn't provide incudement. One person can do a lot, but one on their own can never commit conspiracy.

Richard Scruggs
(JRScruggs) - MLife

Locale: Oregon
Re: Re: OK on 01/09/2012 12:18:10 MST Print View

Patents promote dreaming by protecting realized dreams from theft and putting a price on sharing those dreams.

"Well, the doctor interrupted me just about then
Sayin’, 'Hey I’ve been havin’ the same old dreams
But mine was a little different you see
I dreamt that the only person left after the war was me
I didn’t see you around'

"Well, now time passed and now it seems
Everybody’s having them dreams
Everybody sees themselves
Walkin’ around with no one else
Half of the people can be part right all of the time
Some of the people can be all right part of the time
But all of the people can’t be all right all of the time
I think Abraham Lincoln said that
'I’ll let you be in my dreams if I can be in yours'
I said that.' "

Bob Dylan, Talkin' World War III Blues

Mole J
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
It's clearer now - thanks on 01/09/2012 13:41:36 MST Print View

David T Thank You for your thoughts. Liked em.

I myself might consider using the pattern for educational reasons in order to understand how the thing works and what I like about the concept (I like to tinker). If I were looking for a backpacking solution, I would buy a Trail Designs product. (Jon Fong)

Really? Even if what you made turned out better for your backpacking needs (or cheaper)than what TD offer? And it's in your hand right now? Good on you :)

Edited by MoleJ on 01/09/2012 13:43:19 MST.

Mole J
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
clearer now pt 2 on 01/09/2012 13:43:55 MST Print View

Edited by MoleJ on 01/09/2012 13:46:31 MST.

Mole J
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
try again on 01/09/2012 13:47:12 MST Print View

try this instead!

Edited by MoleJ on 01/09/2012 14:03:43 MST.

Mole J
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
! on 01/09/2012 13:47:56 MST Print View

sorry folks - having issues getting forum to accept my text!

Edited by MoleJ on 01/09/2012 14:05:10 MST.

Mole J
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
try again on 01/09/2012 13:53:42 MST Print View

So, if someone starts selling a stove system which utilises ‘a frustumic shape as both pot stand and windscreen, with vents at top and bottom’ (including those based on the script), (in just the US?) then the patent law is being broken and that person should be prosecuted. That seems to be clear.

But that isn't what MYOGers are doing

Smells fine to my 'callous' mind!

Edited by MoleJ on 01/09/2012 13:56:19 MST.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: try again on 01/09/2012 14:25:09 MST Print View

In the U.S. it is a patent violation to make it if you don't own the patent or aren't licensed by the owner. That's pretty cut and dry. The only exception I've found (and I'm certainly no expert) is for research purposes. But it's a narrow provision, and once it is used practically, then it's a violation. (Someone else please correct me if I misread that.)

Whether or not you agree with the law, and how you handle that disagreement is a different matter.

Tim Zen
(asdzxc57) - F

Locale: MI
Re: The Smell Test on 01/09/2012 18:46:22 MST Print View


Edited by asdzxc57 on 01/25/2012 17:05:08 MST.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: The Smell Test on 01/09/2012 19:48:17 MST Print View

Timothy. Jon can answer but it has to do with taking steps to defend it. My understanding has been that if you don't take timely steps to defend it once you realize your patent is being violated, then you are basically saying it is ok for everyone to violate.

Jon Fong
(jonfong) - F

Re: Re: The Smell Test on 01/09/2012 20:10:06 MST Print View

A patent holder must pay a maintenance fee in order to keep the patent active. They have the right to enforce their patent and usually first do so by have a lawyer send a notification of the violation.

With respect to patents, businesses are usually concerned about: staking out a claim that provides them with a competitive advantage and building a branding (trademarking).

Trail Designs have been active in this area: they have requested that people not use the name Caldera Cone™ when referring to their MYOG projects. This is important because if someone copies the MYOG design and it doesn’t work, you can diminish their brand. Given that Trail Designs works hard to help peoples and have given a lot back to their customers, I am surprised that people don’t respect this request.
To take legal action to defend your claim takes time and resources. If I recall correctly, lawyers still charge on 10 minute intervals. You can burn a lot of revenue going after every person that violates your claim. This money is better spent on Marketing, R&D, Sales and Manufacturing. These are value added activities. I would hate to see them divert money from R&D to go after small scale patent violator.

I still stick by the smell test, if it seems wrong it probably is. Also, “what goes around comes around”. I also believe that believe that “you make your own heaven and hell”.

My last comment is that I think that this thread has gone on way too long. Why don’t we (as a group) do something more pro-active like design a better windscreen or a supper fuel efficient stove or a low cost sub-zero quilt.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Moving on on 01/09/2012 21:10:18 MST Print View

>"My last comment is that I think that this thread has gone on way too long. Why don’t we (as a group) do something more pro-active like design a better windscreen or a supper fuel efficient stove or a low cost sub-zero quilt."

Jon, Or at least try to morph back into something that helps our backpacking efforts?

To wit: I've made a jig to bend aluminum flashing into corrugated fins and the J-B Weld is curing right now between the fins and a 24-ounce Rockstar aluminum bottle. Even without the J-B Weld, it took almost 2 minutes off the pint boil time and I'm planning on a compact little windscreen cold welded to the HX fins. That'll be a separate thread in a week or two.

And I got a good price on a closed-cell foam pad recently (that one of you put me on to), ordered one, and am now playing with ways to make it a insulating vest during the day but still be a sleeping pad at night. If it works, it could be a CHEAP way to warm, sleep well, more compact and lighter.

And at some point, I'll finish the painted-unpainted test but with windscreens. I think painting pot bottoms had a definitive answer (DO IT!), but w/o a windscreen, painting the sides was a wash. Time for more actual data.

al b
(ahbradley) - M
Alternative names for MYOG frustums (to help protect Caldera cone trademark) on 01/10/2012 12:25:09 MST Print View

Jon said
"Trail Designs have been active in this area: they have requested that people not use the name Caldera Cone™ when referring to their MYOG projects"

In MYOG descriptions it coould be easy to drop the l in clone, thus inadvertently clashing with Trail Designs trademark, and the word clone in "Caldera clone" seems to often be taken literally, perhaps there is a better phrase for such frustum MYOG projects on this site:

would any of "Caldera-style cone", "Caldera-style clone",
"Caldera-style stove"
"Caldera-cone-style "
"Caldera-cone-style MYOG "
be better.

Leaving Caldera as part of the phrase seems desirable as it points back to Trail Designs, allowing them to pick-up sales from those who aren't interested in MYOG.

Also, perhaps the forum administrators could rename MYOG threads such as this that, possibly inadventantly, are titled "Caldera cone" (missing l): I have always found my thread titles can not be corrected.

Something like a "Commercially available as a "Trail Designs Caldera cone"" (with web link) line on such MYOG posts might be appreciated (reading about MYOG doesn't mean a person wants to/can make the item). Where applicable that phrase could be "Inspired by the "Commercially available Trail Designs Caldera cone""

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Alternative names for MYOG frustums (to help protect Caldera cone trademark) on 01/10/2012 12:35:34 MST Print View

Using "Caldera" risks genericizing the trade name. My recommendation is that if you build your own, keep it to yourself. Posting plans and construction methods can cause financial harm to Trail Designs. I develop a lot of "Service Marked" IP for my company, and our attorneys will be on you like white-on-rice if you use any of it on the Web, unless you say contact this company for XYZ product and you better state or use "SM" in your text.

al b
(ahbradley) - M
RE Re: Alternative names for MYOG frustums (to help protect Caldera cone trademark) on 01/10/2012 12:53:15 MST Print View

Is "Caldera cone tm" not viewed as different from other phrases called "Caldera"?

I had presumed it was the phrase that was trademarked:
If you call the aperture in a Volcano by its name of Caldera are you violating the "Caldera cone" trademark?

If any usage of Caldera other than volcano and Trail Designs calderas is troublesome, then would phrases starting as
"Caldera-Cone-TM-style" be OK?

Ultra Magnus
(Ultra_Magnus) - F
My Apologies on 01/10/2012 13:27:04 MST Print View

This thread has been incredibly informative.

While I disagree with the way the US patent law is written, it is clear to me now that making my own "frustum" windscreen technically infringes on TD's IP. I realize that the costs in both dollar and public relations for TD to take action against myself and other "clone" builder would far exceed the $35 he supposedly lost (debatable) in a potential sale, but it's still wrong by the letter of the law.

I still feel this is unfair for these two reasons. #1- In the case where I know I can make for myself some item that is patented, that is an improvement in function, design, craftsmanship, or whatever, than what the patentholder is offering. #2- I'm financially limited, but have manufacturing resources at my disposal. If I can't afford to purchase such an item as is made by the patent holder, by the letter of the law, I can stare at my tools and materials all day and not permitted to make it. I would have to just do without.

In my own case, both reasons are true. I am financially limited and I konw I can make a product that better fits my needs than what is offered by the patent holder. Though I'm sure I could squeeze $35 out of my budget to by a TD CC, but if I did, that money is taken away from something I need more. And if I did by a TD CC, I would be buying a product that I would be less satisfied with than one I could make for myself. I don't like the dovetail joint, nor do I like the way their fissure connection works. I'm also completely underwhelmed with the 12-10 burner. Here's a picture of one I made back in 2005-stoveI feel the complexity in making it isn't worth the effort- and it's bulky.

My only option would be to call up TD and ask for permission to diy one, and if they told me no, that would be the end of it.

The driving factor for me to make my own gear is mostly for financial reasons. If I had to purchase all the gear I need to hike, backpack, or bikepack, I would not be doing any of those activities. I simply can't afford it. I'm the sole provider for a large family. The problem of purchasing gear is compounded when you consider I have kids who are coming to the age of wanting to go outdoors with me and also need gear.


Ultra Magnus
(Ultra_Magnus) - F
Re: Alternative names for MYOG frustums (to help protect Caldera cone trademark) on 01/10/2012 13:30:25 MST Print View

Perhaps "Cinder Clone"? Especially if you consider that in Volcanoes, the caldera (as I understand it) is in reference to the "caldron" of magma under the ground pushing upwards on the crust forming the "cinder cone"...