If you are interested in receiving a patent grant, then you need to keep in mind that only about 55% of people who apply for patents actually receive them. In order to increase your chances of actually getting one is to create your initial prototype. The U.S. Patent Office doesn’t have this as a requirement but it does show that you’ve thoroughly thought about your idea in great deal which makes it more worthy of being considered.
We will now look at 4 steps that you can take to build your own prototype and create your own patented product.
Start With Making A Concept Sketch
When you have an idea for a product, you should start by trying to draw it on paper. This will help you to visualize better and add more details. Even though you may want to start with a digital drawing, it is best to start with paper initially. This is because at this stage, you’ll have many ideas and conflicting thoughts in competition. So, by quickly drawing out all of these ideas you will be able to quickly look at different possibilities as oppose to trying to make a perfect digital sketch.
You should have a sketchbook that acts as documentation when you’re read to submit your patent. This can also help you to defend your intellectual property if necessary. When you have a hand drawn sketch, this actually is considered more heavily in comparison to digital drawings in court.
Create Your Own Virtual Prototype
You will need to eventually make a digital drawing of your particular idea. It is best to use AutoCAD to do so since it is the standard tool used by the majority of professionals and engineers. This tool can help you to create both 2D and 3D drawings.
When you have a 3D rendering, you will be able to look at your sketch from different angles and even animate it. This helps you to see how your idea would look in a three dimensional space. There are additional software tools that you can use to make your 3D render look more realistic such as CATIA Live Rendering, NVIDIA Iray, Quadro etc. This will give you the best idea on how your product would actually look in reality. In the event that you’re not familiar with these tools, there are many prototype designers that you can hire to help you with this particular step.
After you have completed the digital prototype, you’ll now be ready to move onto the next step which is actually building it. It is possible to build it on your own if you have the correct skills. Use CNC machining for rapid prototyping. If you don’t, then there are many resources that you can access to get started on this step. You can hire a prototype designer or even an engineer. If you don’t have the money to hire any of these professionals, you can simply find a handyman to help you build your prototype or even see if you can get a student at an industrial design college to assist.
After the initial prototype is created, you will typically find numerous issues and flaws that will have to be fixed before you apply to get a patent. Chances are high that you’ll have to end up building multiple prototypes before you get one that you’re satisfied with. In most cases, early prototypes are usually constructed from cheaper materials to save money while fixing the issues that would inevitably come up. When you have a better design you can then create your prototype with the correct materials that would make up your final product.
Get A Manufacturer
After you have a fully functional prototype, you should be able to put in your application for a patent. However, it may be best that you find a manufacturer first that can create your product for you at a low cost. If you’re committed to creating a profitable product, then you need to be able to manufacture it at a low cost that will enable you to pay off your expenses while making a healthy profit.
There are lots of manufacturers that do 3D printing and give free samples. This can help a great deal in reducing your expenses during your test and production stages. One example of this is Apple Rubber which is a manufacturer that actually gives o-ring samples that are fully customized so that you can test out your product. This also enables you to figure out how you can create it at an effective price point. Make sure that you check out as many manufacturers and suppliers as you can so that you can get different quotes. This will help you to find the cheapest way to take your idea from a prototype to an actual product that can be profitably produced.