Community for Kel-Tec Shooters banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone heard about the Safariland copies of our Stellar Triple and Quad mag pouches. ?

A lot of you guys know our holsters and know many of our products are quite unique. I recently found out that one of our revolutionary designs has been copied by Safariland. I took samples and mold plans to Blade-Tech in Washington in 2009 to see if we could partner up on an Injection molded or CNC mold produced models to improve quality control and create higher volumes of these Triple and Quad mag pouches. The folks at Blade-Tech were very busy with projects of their own but said that we could work out a partnership in the near future.

Since then, one of their key employees went to work for Safariland in the "R&D" Department. I called him on this and he said he knew nothing about it but would pass on my desire for a partnership on my design. That was a month ago.

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Big companies as rich as Safariland don't have to copy custom designs to get even richer. Or maybe they think they are just too big to sue. I know this is a sensitive subject here since Ruger started making the LCP. Feedback from you guys is appreciated.

www.stellarrigs.com/StellarMagPouches.html
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,704 Posts
Do you have a link for the Safariland offering?

What is it specifically that you say they copied? How many mags it holds? Or the actual design and hardware?

It's hard to respond without some kind of link or side-by-side comparison to refer to. In general, I support the smaller guy against the bigger guy. But it has to be something innovative for another's offering to be considered a copy (to me). If it's just that you offer 3 and 4 mag holders and now Safariland is offering a 3 or 4 mag holder, that's not something that I'd call a copy, unless they took the actual design of your pouches and made something that looks identical.

Let us know, with URLs showing the two products if possible, because if they did copy a design and are marketing an identical product, I don't want to do business with them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
462 Posts
The real question is what type of patent you have, if any. If you have an Utility patent, they are violating civil law and you can take them to court. If it's a design patent, or no patent at all, there is no recourse as their design is different enough to not be a direct copy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Do you have a link for the Safariland offering?
What is it specifically that you say they copied? How many mags it holds? Or the actual design and hardware?
It's hard to respond without some kind of link or side-by-side comparison to refer to. In general, I support the smaller guy against the bigger guy. But it has to be something innovative for another's offering to be considered a copy (to me). If it's just that you offer 3 and 4 mag holders and now Safariland is offering a 3 or 4 mag holder, that's not something that I'd call a copy, unless they took the actual design of your pouches and made something that looks identical.
Let us know, with URLs showing the two products if possible, because if they did copy a design and are marketing an identical product, I don't want to do business with them.
Thank you Brewster6514 for the Safariland link.
http://www.safariland.com/DutyGear/product.aspx?pid=775

With my web page [original link] it helps others understand what I am saying here.
www.stellarrigs.com/StellarMagPouches.html

Oh yeah. There is the published release in 2007:
http://www.tactical-life.com/online/combat-handguns/maximum-mag-pouches/

My design was intended to allow the shooter adjustable retention (between the mags) as Safariland has done and "an open top" for faster reloads in competition. The R&D was 3 years in USPSA & IDPA shooting (by me and custom customers along the way) and my goal was to also get some of the Military & LE business. In all three markets - more mags "per inch" on the belt is a big plus. Pointing the bullets out was the best way.

What I am hearing on many forums is "it's a dog eat dog world out there - that's the way the world works. Stop whining" I have been building my brand for many years by designing ideas "out of the box." This is not whining. I will move forward and continue to keep designing new and innovative gear. In this case, the world needs to know that buying at "Big Box" stores like (wal-mart) is not always just cheaper to put the small guy out of business. Sometimes they just plain stole a custom makers goods and repackaged it.

I retail knives and other sporting goods made by many makers as well as my own line of Stellar Rigs. Big Companies are not all the same. Some have "scruples." Columbia River Knife and Tool (C.R.K.T.) has bought many knife makers licenses and have been very honorable in royalties. I have met many of these craftsman myself in the Knifemakers Guild. Other companies (like Microtech) have made the same deal and paid $0 to the designing artist.

Like you haertig; I simply boycotted Microtech from my retail line. I approached the folks at Blade-Tech because they have scruples. I had been using their hardware and reselling their knives for years.Trust is something that is earned. I had that with Blade-Tech. There are many holster manufacturers out there. I just didn't know if they had scruples when I ventured out for a partner.

As for "other copies;" 6 years ago a company in NC started making copies of our Semi-auto Neck Chain Concealment Rigs. They were cheaper - but made poorly. Eventually folks emailed us about things like "life expectancy" and "satisfaction guarantee?" That's what happens with "knock offs."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,704 Posts
If it truely is this: http://www.safariland.com/DutyGear/product.aspx?pid=775
vs. this: http://www.stellarrigs.com/StellarMagPouches.html

... not even close to a copy IMHO. Different materials, different construction, different levels of workmanship. If the claim is that one is a copy because they both hold three mags, that's about as strange as calling one revolver a copy of another based solely on how many rounds it holds. Sorry, I can't agree that Safariland copied anything, unless you're talking about a different one of their offerings than the link Brewster6514 proposed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,567 Posts
I tend to agree that they didn't copy your design. They may have copied your idea or style of holster but they look pretty different to me. It's a nice change from most mag pouches.

Edit: The only bad thing, for LEOs anyway, is the extra weight on your belt. I know you can never have to much ammo but I already carry about 40lbs of gear. That can really make your back sore after 12 hours. Could yours be mounted horizontally on a belt?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,628 Posts
Talk to a patent attorney and know for sure. In life lots of folks can and do come up with close to or the same ideas without even knowing of the other or their work.
So it could be they ripped you. It could be they come up on it on there own. or they saw yours and that got them thinking and they did a version they thought was better???
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
I tend to agree that they didn't copy your design. They may have copied your idea or style of holster but they look pretty different to me. It's a nice change from most mag pouches.

Edit: The only bad thing, for LEOs anyway, is the extra weight on your belt. I know you can never have to much ammo but I already carry about 40lbs of gear. That can really make your back sore after 12 hours. Could yours be mounted horizontally on a belt?
A direct copy of the idea. During 3 years of R&D I had a tough sell convincing folks that "bullet outward" orientation was advantageous enough to retrain their style of mag changes. And yes, most LEOs say they have too much on their belt already. They also say if there were room; the one thing they would add is another mag. Doing it by machine or doing it in another material just slips around patent issues - barely.

You guys have been great on the feedback. Thank you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
660 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Uhhhhhhh.....
Tuff Products has been making your revolutionary 'perpendicular carry' mag pouches for quite some time.
http://www.tuffproducts.com/product.php?productid=16235
And, you may want to call Bianchi as well. I've been wearing one on my duty belt for a few years.
http://www.bianchi-intl.com/product/Prod.php?TxtModelID=7944
So, when did you come up with this design and apply for the patent? Because, it may be you that ends up getting sued. Just sayin'.
Our Stellar Rigs "Maximum Mag Pouches" require no Velcro or snapped flap to secure the mags. Snapped covers get in the way of speed. Nylon and leather are also not nearly as fast on the draw as Kydex and the adjustable tension screws between the Stellar Rigs cells determine how tight or loose the mags stay. "Similar in purpose" and "previously done" are not the case.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,405 Posts
Before talking to a vendor you should probably get a signed nondisclosure agreement. It doesn't cost anything and might give you grounds for a lawsuit.

Patents give you the right to spend 1/2 million or more on lawyers to defend the patent, with no guarantee that you'll win.

But in the end the only winner will probably be the lawyers (on both sides). The system is set up to favor the big guys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Before talking to a vendor you should probably get a signed nondisclosure agreement. It doesn't cost anything and might give you grounds for a lawsuit.
Patents give you the right to spend 1/2 million or more on lawyers to defend the patent, with no guarantee that you'll win.
But in the end the only winner will probably be the lawyers (on both sides). The system is set up to favor the big guys.
NDAs were all signed by key personnel. Yeah. In the end, I think you are right The lawyers are the real winners.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,383 Posts
Definition of a Lawyer:

"Someone who convinces 2 people to strip down for a fight, and then runs away with their clothes."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,879 Posts
Ruger has been copying for years. So has Galco, Walmart, Desantis, S&W, AT&T, China, etc., etc. Sorry for your losses but all you can do is keep making a quality product. If yours is better, you'll keep selling them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,704 Posts
Some things are just so generic in function and design that I don't see how folks claim them to be copies. I frequent a slingshot forum and you should see some of the whining there. It's just a forked stick with rubber bands on it people, nothing new or special about it, the first one was probably built long before any of us were born. I hate to say it, because I don't want to appear insensitive, but I kind of view mag pouches the same way. What is different enough between one and another to warrant a patent, or a claim of copying?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
249 Posts
Stellar, you've been claiming people rip you off for as long as I've known about your products. You did the same thing to us. Of course, when we asked for proof, all of a sudden you shut your mouth.

I've watched a number of people violate a patent in place. IMO, it's dishonest and the violators are just plain unethical.

If you've truly got a patent on this design, take whatever steps necessary to protect the IP. If you don't, well, there's really not much meat to the bone here.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,879 Posts
Stellar, you've been claiming people rip you off for as long as I've known about your products. You did the same thing to us. Of course, when we asked for proof, all of a sudden you shut your mouth.

I've watched a number of people violate a patent in place. IMO, it's dishonest and the violators are just plain unethical.

If you've truly got a patent on this design, take whatever steps necessary to protect the IP. If you don't, well, there's really not much meat to the bone here.
Very well-stated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Stellar, you've been claiming people rip you off for as long as I've known about your products. You did the same thing to us. Of course, when we asked for proof, all of a sudden you shut your mouth.
I've watched a number of people violate a patent in place. IMO, it's dishonest and the violators are just plain unethical.
If you've truly got a patent on this design, take whatever steps necessary to protect the IP. If you don't, well, there's really not much meat to the bone here.
Sorry Kevin. I don't keep up with the forums like I used to. Back in '97 I was all over this forum promoting the P-32 and my holsters too. When I saw your post (here) I was stunned and could not recall "going public" about any of this before. Before responding, I looked all over for such copy cat claims - here and on other forums that we are members. Just could not find a single one. Please post any link at all that supports your "cry-baby" claim.

Then I went to your website. Your site claims 20 years of making holsters. You did your FL LLC in 2003. That doesn't really mean anything. We didn't bother with Incorporating until 2002. I guess we both didn't take this business so seriously - right away. www.sunbiz.org - Kevin A. Manley Enterprises LLC

Your interaction with us on this post make you look like a "Forum Troll." That's a shame. Back when we got started bullies like you were dangerous. Not any more. Stellar has a terrific, well earned reputation. We get calls all the time for "good leather gear" and pass along names of reputable makers. Bashing a competitor in any way for the building of your name is not something to really build on. Even if your products proved great I can't support anybody that tries to build on divisive measures.

I will follow this thread for the elusive links to the "cry-baby" post links you say we posted.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,545 Posts
Ruger has been copying for years. So has Galco, Walmart, Desantis, S&W, AT&T, China, etc., etc. Sorry for your losses but all you can do is keep making a quality product. If yours is better, you'll keep selling them.
Amen, brother.

Paul
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top