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Posts Tagged ‘Gibbz Arms’

Magpul and Gibbz Arms Settle Patent Infringement Lawsuit

Wednesday, December 14th, 2016

December 14, 2016 — Magpul Industries Corp. announced today that has settled its patent infringement lawsuit against Gibbens Engineering Group, LLC, a/k/a Gibbz Arms, which was pending in the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas.

Magpul’s initial complaint asserted that Gibbz Arms infringed three Magpul utility patents by selling the “Gibbz Arms Modular Attachment (GAMA) System.” Magpul’s amended complaint reasserted those utility patents and sought a preemptive declaration that Magpul’s M-LOK® system did not infringe any Gibbz Arms patents. Gibbz Arms’ answer to Magpul’s amended complaint asserted as a defense that the GAMA System did not infringe Magpul’s patents.

The companies settled their dispute on confidential and mutually agreeable terms. Under the terms of the settlement, Gibbz Arms agreed to assign patent rights related to the dispute to Magpul. Adopters and licensees of Magpul’s M-LOK® system continue to have complete freedom to operate without interference, and M-LOK adoption will continue to be available via free license to interested parties.

Magpul Files Amended Complaint for Patent Infringement and Declaratory Judgment of Non-Infringement Against Gibbz Arms in Federal Court

Wednesday, March 16th, 2016

After Gibbz Arms sent letters to licensees of Magpul’s M-Lok early this month, Magpul filed an amended complaint asking for a judgment that the M-Lok design does not infringe on the Gibbens brothers’ patent for their GAMA system. To catch you up, Gibbz Arms released their patent pending GAMA system in late February along with copies letters they planned to send to brands that license other, similar weapon accessory attachment systems. The goal of these letters was to assert their patent and to persuade these firms to adopt their device, alleging that it pre-dated the other systems on the market. This was quickly followed by statements of reply from both Magpul and Gibbz Arms. Eventually, Magpul filed suit on March 4, 2016.

In a press release posted to Magpul’s website earlier today, they said this:

Magpul has drawn a firm line in the sand with this expanded lawsuit. “Magpul will take all necessary action against Gibbz Arms, including challenging its patents in Federal District Court, to ensure that adopters of the M-LOK system have complete freedom to operate without concern” said Duane Liptak, Director of Product Management and Marketing for Magpul Industries. Mr. Liptak further stressed that “Magpul will make certain that its M-LOK system can be implemented under its free license without interference from Gibbz Arms.” 

Much of the issue at hand revolves around the types of T-nuts used in the design of each attachment system. This image from the Magpul filing illustrates the two types. The Gibbz Arms design is it the left and Magpul’s to the right.

 

Magpul has petitioned the Court for the following relief:

That Gibbz Arms has infringed the ‘236, ‘209, and ‘210 Patents;

That Gibbz Arms has knowingly and willfully infringed the ‘236 Patent;

That Plaintiff be awarded damages for patent infringement according to proof and ordering that such damages be multiplied up to treble their amount;

Preliminarily and permanently enjoining Gibbz Arms and all others acting in concert with Gibbz Arms from making, using, selling, or offering to sell the infringing firearm accessory mounting interface or any other product that infringes the ‘236, ‘209, and ‘210 Patents without permission or license from Plaintiff;

That Gibbz Arms be ordered to deliver up to Plaintiff all products infringing the ‘236, ‘209, and ‘210 Patents within its ownership, possession, or control for destruction by Plaintiff;

That the making, using, selling, offering for sale, and/or importing of the M-LOK T-Nut, or any component of the M-LOK system, does not infringe the ’D661 Patent, directly or indirectly, literally or under the doctrine of equivalents;

That the Court declare this to be an exceptional case pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 285, and award reasonable attorney’s fees;

That Plaintiff be awarded its costs of suit, and pre- and post-judgment interest on any money judgment; and

For such other relief as the Court deems proper.

You can read the complaint below which offers additional details on the matter including a disclosure that this has been brewing since August 215 when Gibbz initially contacted Magpul. But, it was not until patents were issued and letters of solicitation were sent to M-Lok licensees that the situation escalated.


(Click on Image to download PDF)

Manticore Arms Clarifies Their Current Situation Regarding the GAMA / M-Lok Controversy

Friday, March 11th, 2016

Manticore Arms President Sven Jonsson contacted us regarding our initial article on the Gibbz Arms Modular Attachment system where we mentioned them.

“There is also the Manticore Arms ARC LOK system so perhaps Gibbz Arms is going after them as well. “

He offered us this statement:

For the record, the Manticore Arms ARC LOK system was initially issued a Provisional Patent on April 5th, 2014. In late April 2014 Drake Clark of Magpul contacted me directly via phone to discuss a possible patent infringement issue by Magpul on our ARC LOK system patent. After discussion, we agreed that a lawsuit would not benefit either party and that the market itself would benefit from options. Drake Clark and Magpul have been nothing but courteous with us in this regard.

Gibbz Arms has not contacted us in regards to patent issues or infringements or any other issue, nor had we even heard of their company until the article was posted on Soldeir Systems on March 1st, 2016. In point of fact, the ARC LOK system is functionally different from the design of the Magpul and Gibbz mounting systems in that the rotation limitation of the locking tab on the ARC LOK system is actuated by extended lugs machined or molded directly into the accessory itself, and not by the sides of the slot as is done by the Magpul and Gibbz mounting systems. This allows the ARC LOK system to work with thinner or thicker materials than the Magpul (and presumably the Gibbz) systems can accommodate.

Sven Jonsson
President
Manticore Arms

The GAMA / M-Lok Battle Heats Up As Magpul Files Suit Against Gibbz Arms In Federal Court

Monday, March 7th, 2016

In late February Gibbz Arms released their patent pending GAMA system along with letters to brands that license other, similar weapon accessory attachment systems to adopt theirs, alleging that it pre-dated the other systems.

This was quickly followed by statements of reply from both Magpul and Gibbz Arms.

But now, the situation has taken a different direction. According to documents obtained by SSD, Magpul has filed suit in Federal District Court in Austin, Texas against Gibbz Arms.

Specifically, Magpul claims that Gibbz Arms has violated three of their patents (8,925,236 B1; 9,239,209 B2 and 9,239,210) and they are suing for treble damages, attorney fees, delivery of all infringing items produced by Gibbz Arms to Magpul for destruction, and a permanent injunction against producing, selling or offering products that infringe upon Magpul’s patents.


(Click cover to view pdf.)

Gibbz Arms Statement Clarifying Their Position Regarding The GAMA System Patent

Friday, March 4th, 2016

Earlier this week, Gibbz Arms released their GAMA attachment system along with their patent data as well as letters to potential licensees.  They sent us this statement to clarify that they have so far, not filed any legal actions regarding their IP.

Recent chatter within the firearms industry, related blogs and social media, has suggested that Gibbz Arms has filed a civil action against various manufacturers who produce and market accessory mounting systems which are covered by Gibbz Arms’ pending patent applications for its GAMA System. To date, Gibbz Arms has not initiated any legal action against any manufacturer. Nor has Gibbz Arms threatened litigation against any manufacturer for infringement.  

Although Gibbz Arms made its initial patent filings in January of 2013, the company had developed and began producing and selling its GAMA System products by late 2012. GAMA System Handgaurds and accessories were displayed at both Shot Show 2013 and Shot Show 2014. Since that time, Gibbz Arms has produced and sold thousands of GAMA System components, including hand guards and rails.

As a superior alternative MIL-STD-1913 and other rail accessory mounting systems, demand for the GAMA System has increased. In an effort to maintain continuity and to ensure quality production of its patent pending design, Gibbz Arms began offering a license agreement to manufacturers currently producing, and to those seeking to produce the GAMA System technology on March 1, 2016.

Best Regards,

Kevin Gibbens

Gibbz Arms

Magpul Responds to Gibbz Arms GAMA Letters To M-LOK Licensees

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2016

Yesterday, we published a story about Gibbz Arms’ new GAMA attachmemt system and their contact with licensees of Magpul’s M-Lok attachment, soliciting them to license their product.  This is Magpul’s response.

It has come to our attention that Gibbz Arms claims to have a utility patent application pending for an accessory attachment system for firearms, which they refer to as the “GAMA” system, and that they have recently issued a press release implying that companies that use the M-LOK system will need to pay for a license. However, we also note that this patent application wasn’t filed until September of 2015, which was long after Magpul filed for and obtained its own utility patents for the M-LOK system, and long after Magpul released its own M-LOK products to the market. Gibbz Arms appears be trying to impermissibly backdate its untimely utility patent application based on a prior design patent application that Gibbz filed in early 2013 for an ornamental design directed to a left-handed T-Nut. This 2013 design patent application was not publicly available until earlier this year.

Magpul expects that this attempted back-dating will be unsuccessful over the long run, and that Gibbz Arms will not be able to establish that its utility patent application was timely filed. The Gibbz utility patent filing includes broad proposed claims directed towards functions that are outside the scope of what is disclosed in its prior application for an ornamental design. Regardless, the pending claims in this utility application should not be assumed to be granted—the merits of the patent still need to be determined by the U.S. Patent &Trademark Office. Magpul fully expects that Gibbz Arms will not be successful in obtaining and maintaining a valid utility patent that will pose a concern for users of the M-LOK system. Magpul is also committed to taking whatever action is necessary, including challenges before the Patent & Trademark Office and in Federal District Court, to ensure that users of the M-LOK system continue to have complete freedom to operate without interference from, or the need to obtain a license demanded by, Gibbz Arms.

GIBBZ Arms Modular Attachment (GAMA) Goes After Magpul’s M-Lok Patent

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

During SHOT Show there were murmurs about a looming patent confrontation between Gibbz Arms and Magpul. It seems that Gibbz Arms had developed an accessory attachment system for firearms that they were about to release under the name of GAMA, for GIBBZ Arms Modular Attachment. Below are the components of GAMA.

 

Granted, Gibbz hasn’t publicly used the word ‘Magpul’ but the primary similar design to what we see here is M-Lok. There is also the Manticore Arms ARC LOK system so perhaps Gibbz Arms is going after them as well.  But regardless, Magpul M-LOK has been mentioned to me more than once in connection with this move by Gibbz Arms.

Yesterday, Gibbz not only formally announced the product, but we are told they also started sending out notices to licensees of Magpul’s M-Lok attachment system. Below is an example. No word yet on whether they’ve contacted Magpul or Manticore Arms directly as well.

Gibbz is looking for its own licensees and at this point, we don’t know what the terms of that license looks like. However, we do know that licensees of M-Lok don’t pay any fees and that they entered into their agreements with Magpul in good faith. It will be interesting to see how recipients of these letters react.


(Click to download PDF)

This is the Gibbz patent application.  Don’t let the dates lull you into just dismissing this off hand.  Although you notice a filing date of 21 September, 2015 and a publication date of 14 January, 2016, it’s a continuation of an application filed 26 January, 2013. And therein lies the rub. Who did what, when, and what are the claims? It sounds like Gibbz Arms and the companies with similar systems already on the street are going to have to work this one out.

 

(Click to download PDF)

Update: Below are PDFs of the original patent drawings for the GAMA System from 2013, as well as the revised drawings from 2015. Click the images to view the full document.

Original – 2013

Original

Revised – 2015

Revised