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first invention what to do

julianames's Avatar

Hello I recently created a tool that will make installing flooring A LOT easier. As a flooring installer I see the value of this tool and if it was in the store there would be no way I'd leave without buying it! my product fixes 3 problems. And it works! I have built many prototypes out of various materials and I realize now it will probably need to be constructed of plastic.

Not really to sure what direction to go in now probably provisional, than cad drawings, and than 3d printing? 

When I get to this point is that when I can start to talk to licensees / someone to fund production?

John Davis
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magurn's Avatar

Hi Julian!

If you are interested in submitting your idea concept to Edison Nation, you are welcome to do so in our Open Search. To have an idea considered for licensing, we do not require patent protection or a prototype. 

If you are interested in pursuing the licensing path on your own, I'll defer to others in the community to offer guidance.

Best of luck!

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countofmontecristo's Avatar

Hi Julian-

You have entered the inventors 'zone'.  You have identified a problem or need, come up with a rough prototype and now things get real interesting.  I am named inventor on 5 patents now myself (and counting) so I know a little about the process.

Before you even 'think' about filing your provisional have you:

- Completed a very thorough patent search?  Remember, new applications will  not show up until they publish.  So while you may not find anything in the current here and now, that does mean someone didn't beat you to the USPTO, or foreign patent office first.

- Scoured the existing trade catalogs, websites and new product literature for your exact innovation?I cannot tell you how many times I (and others here) have had the Eureka! moment fizzle when we saw our vision sitting on a store shelf when we were sure it did not exist. Chances are if it is a common problem someone else may have noticed, but didn’t take the time to solve the problem like you did. The race is on!

- Performed a cost analysis to see if the market would permit a innovation such as yours to thrive? This is where you really need to push the limits of your prototype to see if it can be made smaller, lighter, less parts, less expensive, etc …This famous quote applies- “Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius—and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.” ~ 

E. F. Schumacher or Albert Einstein (source unclear).

- Sure you have invented something, but have you re-invented it?This is a crucial step many inventors miss or overlook in their excitement.You are so sure that your mousetrap is it, and then someone comes along and improves your invention drastically…because you didn’t.You really, really have to push the design limits yourself first to see if in fact it can be done. If you don’t do it NOW someone else will later. 

- Materials selection for prototyping is not always the same for production. What you think may be strong enough in plastic may be better suited to a light metal like aluminum.You really need to research this. How many Newton ft pounds will be exerted on your innovation? Will it stand up to the test of time and rigorous or harsh use? Think of everything that can go wrong and then think again!

- As far as Licensing goes, if you really want to know more on the subject, here are just a few of the books I own and approve of:

“One Simple Idea – Turning your dreams into a licensing Goldmine while letting others do the work”

“One simple idea – For startups and Entrepreneurs – Live your dreams and create your own profitable company”

Both of the above books are by bestselling author Stephen Key and I strongly recommend them.

Another is:

The Four Steps to the Epiphany – Steven Gary Blank

All of the above will answer many, many questions for you. Good luck and welcome to ‘The inventors Zone’. There is no going back now…

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