The days are passé when all inventors had to present a functional prototype of their inventions at the time of submitting patent application to the US patent office.
Today you can get your invention idea patented without submitting your invention prototype to the USPTO.
However it never means the prototype has lost its importance and you now need not get it done.
In fact, prototyping an idea is one of the most important parts of the invention process.
It is what gives life to your idea and makes it presentable and saleable to the prospective consumers and companies.
There are two key ways you can adopt to get your idea prototyped; the first is doing it on your own, and the second is getting it developed by a prototype design and development company.
Though both the ways are good, getting it developed by a professional design and development company may be the wisest one. In case, you do it on your own, you may not be able to find out the hidden complexities.
On the contrary, when you hire prototype designing and development services, you get rid of all these and get almost perfect replication of your invention idea.
In the article below, I will walk you through both the ways. But at the end of the day, it is only you who has to decide.
Thus, only your decision will make or mar the success of your invention.
Let’s have a look at them and find out the best recourse to have your invention idea prototyped.
Making it on your own
- One of the first steps in this process is to make a drawing(s) of your invention and keep all your invention related sketches in your logbook. It will be better if you use the drawing or details from your inventor’s logbook.
- There are simple CAD (computer aided design) programs you can use to create a CAD drawing of your invention idea.
- You can also make a non-functioning prototype of your invention using cardboard, foam, wood, metal, and paper. This will help you in testing the size and form of your invention.
- Based on your invention, you can cast in metal or plastic.
- Pen down the details of all materials, supplies and tools you may need and ensure the necessary steps to accomplish your prototype.
- If you need simple to complicated engineering drawings for any electronics, you can choose either a book or a kit for your idea’s prototyping.
- You can also go for the professional help if you are not sure of the charges of having a prototype developed.
- Do research on your own using the new methods. For examples; plastic injection molds can cost you high; choosing the techniques like Rapid Prototyping and CAD (computer-aided design) would be the most affordable and best recourse to go with.
- If you find your own prototype creation is going to cost you more than expected, choose the option of virtual prototype production. Today’s advanced computer programs can replicate an invention in 3D and test it at the same time.
- Though the cost of getting a virtual prototype built will cost you a thousand or more, the professionals involved in it use their experience and enhanced skill to create a CD or video animation of your invention.
- Remember if a licensee or buyer asks for a real working model of your invention, then you will have to do it.
Get your prototype built by professional prototype makers, designers, engineers
Another option to get your idea prototyped is by hiring the services of the professional prototypes makers, designers and engineers.
When you hire a professional prototype maker for your invention, do a meticulous discussion about your project.
It will be better if you can communicate well with the one who you are going to assign your prototype development work.
Clear all the points in terms of total project completion fees as much as possible to avoid any further dispute.
The charges of prototype makers are per hour based. Tell whoever you hire clearly and in detail what you want to be added in the production of your idea prototype.
It is good if you include virtual prototype drawings and files. Do make sure to get a non-disclosure agreement signed with anyone you want to get your invention idea prototyped before making any disclosure of your invention.