EB: Metallizing Engineering Co., Inc. v. Kenyon Bearing & Auto Parts Co., Inc., 153 F.2d 516 (1946)

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The Situation

  • Mendua invents a process for "building up the worn medal parts of a machine" - process consisting of preparing the metal surface by delivering a preliminary metal layer by means of the "McQuay-Norris"
  • Defendants are appealing the decision that the patent was valid and they infringed it
  • Primary question is whether the invention was in public use two years before it was filed on august 6, 1942.

The Decision

The patent is invalid.

The Reasoning

  • If a product is sold, even though the process of its manufacutre is not known, it must still be considered in public use.
    • The inventor, although not revealing his secret is gaining a competative advantage in his art, thus this constitutes a public use - if he want's those benefits he must file for a legal patent promptly.
    • "He must content himself with either secrecy, or legal monopoly."