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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by scabrider
    actually, i'm 15...
    Some people forget they were once kids & now they are all growed up & know every thing. The rumor has been going around for a tad now about Stratos closing the doors, really sux. Cathrine at Stratos helped me out a coupple times, very understanding of what you are asking for. Hate to see or hear about good people getting scewed like that from a dirt bag corporation.

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  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by scabrider
    the funny part is that stratos has made suspension for years, much unlike specialized.
    FYI, Specialized had their own line of suspension forks many years before Stratos came into being. Granted they were just rebadged Rock Shox with a few mods, but the fact remains that SpecialEd has been in the suspension game longer than most anybody.

  3. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by singletrack
    FYI, Specialized had their own line of suspension forks many years before Stratos came into being. Granted they were just rebadged Rock Shox with a few mods, but the fact remains that SpecialEd has been in the suspension game longer than most anybody.
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  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by singletrack
    FYI, Specialized had their own line of suspension forks many years before Stratos came into being. Granted they were just rebadged Rock Shox with a few mods.
    read below:
    way back in the day, specialized sued rockshox because the name was too similar to rockhopper. they settled with rochshox manufacturing the specialized line of forks.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zonk0u
    I'll stick with replacing $10 chains, rather than multi-100 dollar drive shafts.

    What in the HELL are you talking about?

  6. #56
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    Upset The Facts about Evil Empire,

    I will clear this up for both the supporters and doubters of Scabrider. Send Stratos an E-mail at Sales@stratosusa.com and you will get the same answer. I was forwarded this thread yesterday so I called Mike, to see where this was at.

    YES Specialized has Sued him into submission, he is not out of business just yet but has had to scale way down, as the ID product line was what they had been spending all the money on $Hundred of thousands.
    The issue is very basic. In 2003 Mike Licensed exclusivly 18 us and international patents from the company that invented flow controlled inertia valve technology in the eairly 90’s and Specialized wants this technology for the 2007 product line they just released, and it is more in their style to sue some body than to do the morally right thing and pay the miniscule licensing fees, the Attorneys make more money that way. Here is the history as I wrote about it about a year ago in this forum.

    In 1998 every suspension company had the opportunity to license this technology but only OnSport/Stratos did. In 1998 RockShox was looking at this too, McAndrews the so called “inventor” of the brain shock was the head of R&D at RockShox. See US patent #6105987 by Paul Turner assigned to RockShox for proof of this. In 1997 Ricor, the company that OnSport licensed from, put inertia valve shocks on a Specialized bike and then showed every body the future, but no non discloure agreements as they had patents, thus they are the true inventors not Specialized or McAndrews. See past posts from Shocknerd for verification. In 1999 McAndrews filed a patent on the “brain” and then had to have a team of attorneys do their dammedist to get it patented because there is so much prior art. Specialized did get a patent for a non co-axial inertia valve design but it is so limited as to not be manufacturable.

    Here in lies the Rub, they now have a patent though it is arguably not valid, I have looked into this as this is what I do, it is in the prosecution history of the patent, and then they use that patent to say that Stratos is infringing them. Stratos now has to prove that they are not infringing the patent that has 6 of the Stratos licensed patents as prior art, is not for a front fork part, does not have a reservoir, that they are not infringing. If you know anything about patent defense cost, the company I work for uses this tactic too, a small company even when it is right as in this case can not afford to defend itself. According to Mike the head S at Specialized then calls him and says give me the your licensing agreement or we will sue you and for 100K I will bankrupt you and then get the patents that way. That was back in January of 2005, the same time they started working on the 2007 product line which once you understand that they have ditched Fox on the belief that they would have these patents all of this make perfect sense now. “ the Grand Plan”

    Stratos then has another company, that shall remain nameless, defend them as they want to license it too. This other company tries in vain to get Specialized to negotiate a deal where they both could use the technology of these patents, but no go the big S is too greedy. After a large $$six figures they give up leaving Mike to defend it himself.
    Stratos then stops all sales, promotion, and support of the ID product line but Specialized will still not back off.
    So back to the way this started YES specialized is attempting and may succeed in driving Stratos out of business in an attempt to get the licensing agreement. Mike is out of money for the defense but even if they win in court they still have the lengthy process of trying to collect. Specialized sells over $80Million of brain related bikes a year, you would think that for a couple hundred grand a year they could afford to pay the licensing fees, as their latest product is a direct infringement of the patents that they are attempting to steal go check their website.

    My take on Specialized is that it is only a few bad apples need to be squished to make this right.

  7. #57
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    Bastards! I have a good friend who is now a top engineer at SHOWA USA owuldn't it be too bad if SHOWA was sold the licensing for the original patente form Startos and took over the fight???? Specialized would fail...........
    That would teach S a lesson no.
    If only Honda would hurry up and make that frame availible.
    btw he said they would probabley sell it with the Showa fork and shock if they made it! Pass this on to whoever you need man!

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by mothahucker
    What in the HELL are you talking about?
    I think I was stoned, drunk, and tired and got threads mixed up.

    I love my specialized enduro.. but damn...I hate owning a specialized. At least I bought used and specialEd didnt get my duckets.
    Last edited by Zonk0u; 09-13-2006 at 06:21 PM.
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  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5823305
    I will clear this up for both the supporters and doubters of Scabrider. Send Stratos an E-mail at Sales@stratosusa.com and you will get the same answer. I was forwarded this thread yesterday so I called Mike, to see where this was at.

    YES Specialized has Sued him into submission, he is not out of business just yet but has had to scale way down, as the ID product line was what they had been spending all the money on $Hundred of thousands.
    The issue is very basic. In 2003 Mike Licensed exclusivly 18 us and international patents from the company that invented flow controlled inertia valve technology in the eairly 90’s and Specialized wants this technology for the 2007 product line they just released, and it is more in their style to sue some body than to do the morally right thing and pay the miniscule licensing fees, the Attorneys make more money that way. Here is the history as I wrote about it about a year ago in this forum.

    In 1998 every suspension company had the opportunity to license this technology but only OnSport/Stratos did. In 1998 RockShox was looking at this too, McAndrews the so called “inventor” of the brain shock was the head of R&D at RockShox. See US patent #6105987 by Paul Turner assigned to RockShox for proof of this. In 1997 Ricor, the company that OnSport licensed from, put inertia valve shocks on a Specialized bike and then showed every body the future, but no non discloure agreements as they had patents, thus they are the true inventors not Specialized or McAndrews. See past posts from Shocknerd for verification. In 1999 McAndrews filed a patent on the “brain” and then had to have a team of attorneys do their dammedist to get it patented because there is so much prior art. Specialized did get a patent for a non co-axial inertia valve design but it is so limited as to not be manufacturable.

    Here in lies the Rub, they now have a patent though it is arguably not valid, I have looked into this as this is what I do, it is in the prosecution history of the patent, and then they use that patent to say that Stratos is infringing them. Stratos now has to prove that they are not infringing the patent that has 6 of the Stratos licensed patents as prior art, is not for a front fork part, does not have a reservoir, that they are not infringing. If you know anything about patent defense cost, the company I work for uses this tactic too, a small company even when it is right as in this case can not afford to defend itself. According to Mike the head S at Specialized then calls him and says give me the your licensing agreement or we will sue you and for 100K I will bankrupt you and then get the patents that way. That was back in January of 2005, the same time they started working on the 2007 product line which once you understand that they have ditched Fox on the belief that they would have these patents all of this make perfect sense now. “ the Grand Plan”

    Stratos then has another company, that shall remain nameless, defend them as they want to license it too. This other company tries in vain to get Specialized to negotiate a deal where they both could use the technology of these patents, but no go the big S is too greedy. After a large $$six figures they give up leaving Mike to defend it himself.
    Stratos then stops all sales, promotion, and support of the ID product line but Specialized will still not back off.
    So back to the way this started YES specialized is attempting and may succeed in driving Stratos out of business in an attempt to get the licensing agreement. Mike is out of money for the defense but even if they win in court they still have the lengthy process of trying to collect. Specialized sells over $80Million of brain related bikes a year, you would think that for a couple hundred grand a year they could afford to pay the licensing fees, as their latest product is a direct infringement of the patents that they are attempting to steal go check their website.

    My take on Specialized is that it is only a few bad apples need to be squished to make this right.
    wow.......that truely sucks
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  10. #60
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    I don't know all the details, but as an anonymous engineer involved in early id stuff, there is much truth to this thread. It sucks, and it won't be the last time it happens

  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by dogonfr
    Some people forget they were once kids & now they are all growed up & know every thing. The rumor has been going around for a tad now about Stratos closing the doors, really sux. Cathrine at Stratos helped me out a coupple times, very understanding of what you are asking for. Hate to see or hear about good people getting scewed like that from a dirt bag corporation.


    Whatever. Do YOU believe everything that is told to you by a 15 kid on forums?


    I will admit I was wrong, But I have heard my best friends dad's brother is a so and so and he says......
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  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chicodude01
    Whatever. Do YOU believe everything that is told to you by a 15 kid on forums?


    I will admit I was wrong, But I have heard my best friends dad's brother is a so and so and he says......
    I have 15 & 16 year old sons, i was once there age also. The rumor of Stratos having a possible problem is not new news. Specialized making money or gaining patent off of others is not new news either.
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  13. #63
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    Upset Unreal - Big S GO BLOW!

    That does s*ck!

    I still have my Stratos S8 fork and anyone who's ever rode one knows that Stratos knows their sh*t! This is bad news for the whole industry! Big S has gotten worse than Trek. I hope they all burn in H*LL!

    G MAN

  14. #64
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    so admittedly I ride a specialized but as I understand it, and I've actually researched it quite a bit, I dont think Specialized is exactly trying to make money off patents of others. What they're doing is BS to be sure, but I dont think they're trying to make money off the patent directly.

    What they are trying to do is be the ONLY company in the bike industry with rights to the technology. Which is in effect the same thing, but Let me explain. Heres a sequence of events as I understand it...

    1. Some guy (goes by the name Shocknerd on here, worked for Ricoh industries) patents a general stable platform/brain/whatever you want to call it shock. His patent was for all uses, cars, motorcycles, etc.
    2. He tries to sell it to various shock companies in the bike industry. Stratos is the only one who buys the liscensing rights from him. Maybe Specialized and others see his work and say "Hmmm we can do that ourselves" rather than buy it from him.
    3. Specialized comes out with the brain shock and patents it SPECIFICALLY for bikes. Changed a few things too. This is actually fairly common in the patent industry... to take an existing patent, make it more specific and repatent it.
    4. Since Specialized now has a valid patent for bike-specific shocks they tell Stratos, which is using the general patent to stop making the shocks or pay them.



    Anyway so my point is that specialized did something that happens all the time in patent law. Is it BS? yes, but unfortunately patent law sucks and companies do this all the time. I'm surprised frankly that the guy who has the more general patent didn't sue specialized or challenge their patent. But anyway if you're complaining about this crap and how comapnies get around patents... think again about other stuff like for example how you can get generic drugs so cheap, etc.

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhsavery
    But anyway if you're complaining about this crap and how comapnies get around patents... think again about other stuff like for example how you can get generic drugs so cheap, etc.
    Generic drugs typically hit the market when the original patent expires. Big difference.

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    I used to be with it. Then, they changed what "it" is, and now what I'm with is no longer "it". And whatever "it" is, is strange and confusing.

  16. #66
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    I've been studying this situation because I have an interest in how this all turns out. I've gone to the LA court basement and read all the documents. Because I invent for a living, it's important to learn a much as I can on how the system works. Because Specialized is using some of the best patent lawyers in the US, it's an opportunity to learn from the best. I have have learned how to get patents on things I thought were already invented. I have credit were credit is due, I didn't think of this myself. I'll do my best to pass on what I have learned on how the system works. First thing is do research, search patents, check out automotive applications, call companies working on bicycle applications of flow control inertia valves ie:12/09/98 and hope they're not taking detailed notes of the conversation. File a patent 6 months later but be sure not to mention what you learned in your research, that would make it almost impossible to get a patent. Fight for a patent even if it means you have to convince the examiner that it's so narrow and undesirable , it's virtually worthless. Now, let's say you go to a convention and see another device that's not covered by your patent, you get your attorney to argue to the patent office that version was in the original disclosure, you make the claims broader in some ways to cover the newly discovered device in what's called a continuation patent. You now have patents that on the surface appear to be virtually worthless because they are so narrow. They're not, they now can be used as "tickets" to get into court. That makes them valuable. You can now use the "patents" to drag companies into extremly expensive litigation, even if they are selling devices that were offered for sale before your inventor even worked for you. Once in court it's very important to change your position relative to the one you took at the patent office. Some call it "taking contradictory positions in differant venues", I call it being creative. You argue to the judge that he's not supposed to look at the file history were you take a differant position to overcome rejections. You argue that he's to take the most liberal dictionary definition of key words in the claims from and again don't look into he file history. If you get the judge to buy into the liberal dictionary definition, you've got the industry by the tail. Congratulations, you can now charge infringement on inertia valve systems literally going back to 1913 (Goodyear). By following cases like this in great detail, I have been able to learn a great deal on how the system works, if you are able to afford the big law firms. I hope this online education experience is helpful. I'm assuming/representing that the big firms are not breaking any laws, just being aggressive.
    Last edited by Shocknerd; 09-15-2006 at 11:03 AM.

  17. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by #1ORBUST
    Scabrider may be a young whiper snapper but I believe him. And what up with you avitar AZ saint??
    Yeah that shizz izz nasty!

  18. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shocknerd
    I've been studying this situation because I have an interest in how this all turns out. I've gone to the LA court basement and read all the documents. Because I invent for a living, it's important to learn a much as I can on how the system works. Because Specialized is using some of the best patent lawyers in the US, it's an opportunity to learn from the best. I have have learned how to get patents on things I thought were already invented. I have credit were credit is due, I didn't think of this myself. I'll do my best to pass on what I have learned on how the system works. First thing is do research, search patents, check out automotive applications, call companies working on bicycle applications of flow control inertia valves ie:12/09/98 and hope they're not taking detailed notes of the conversation. File a patent 6 months later but be sure not to mention what you learned in your research, that would make it almost impossible to get a patent. Fight for a patent even if it means you have to convince the examiner that it's so narrow and undesirable , it's virtually worthless. Now, let's say you go to a convention and see another device that's not covered by your patent, you get your attorney to argue to the patent office that version was in the original disclosure, you make the claims broader in some ways to cover the newly discovered device in what's called a continuation patent. You now have patents that on the surface appear to be virtually worthless because they are so narrow. They're not, they now can be used as "tickets" to get into court. That makes them valuable. You can now use the "patents" to drag companies into extremly expensive litigation, even if they are selling devices that were offered for sale before your inventor even worked for you. Once in court it's very important to change your position relative to the one you took at the patent office. Some call it "taking contradictory positions in differant venues", I call it being creative. You argue to the judge that he's not supposed to look at the file history were you take a differant position to overcome rejections. You argue that he's to take the most liberal dictionary definition of key words in the claims from and again don't look into he file history. If you get the judge to buy into the liberal dictionary definition, you've got the industry by the tail. Congratulations, you can now charge infringement on inertia valve systems literally going back to 1913 (Goodyear). By following cases like this in great detail, I have been able to learn a great deal on how the system works, if you are able to afford the big law firms. I hope this online education experience is helpful. I'm assuming/representing that the big firms are not breaking any laws, just being aggressive.

    wow.
    even if your ideas are protected, they can still be stolen "legally".

  19. #69
    Now, THAT'S gonna hurt!
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    There are 3 sides to the story, Party A's, Party B's, and then the real story. None of you know either so why don't you all quit cappin' on either side, sit down, and have a nice big cup of shut the f*** up!

  20. #70
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    I make it sound hopeless, it's not. Fortunately there is the reexam option. It was created for this exact situation. All you have to do is file a reexam request with the patent office. It's given top priority status. In a case like this they would look at the contradictory position taken in the court room. They would reexamine the patent relative to same prior art used in the original application and new prior brought to their attention. They also take into consideration published articles (12/'96), websites ('97), and published advertisements (12/'96). From what I've learned about the system, I think taking advantage of the reexam option is very efficient.

  21. #71
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    Specialized Blows !!!!!

    Not that they even care about what I have to say. But I think I will just stop by the local ......no, make that 2 local bike shop that carries Specialized. I'll make sure that I do so on a day that I am driving home from a ride with my Ellsworth Dare in full view in the back of my truck. ( yea, he's a serious rider and has the $$ to back it up). I'll strike up a conversation with the "Owner" of the shop and pick the most expensive bike that Specialized carries to discuss a great price. In the end, I'll just cut him short and tell him, I don't want to support a company that "fu-ks" other bike companies and decide against it. Hoping he and a few other shops tells the sales rep. Think that will make them take notice??

  22. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by YaMon
    ( yea, he's a serious rider and has the $$ to back it up).Think that will make them take notice??
    The dealers have nothing to do with the suite, they sell a product that makes them money. There is a differance, they can get screwed by Spec just as quickly as anyone else.
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  23. #73
    CURB HUCK!!!!!!
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    specialized=mcdoe,homedepot,wallmart, etc
    messed up
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  24. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5823305
    I will clear this up for both the supporters and doubters of Scabrider. Send Stratos an E-mail at Sales@stratosusa.com and you will get the same answer. I was forwarded this thread yesterday so I called Mike, to see where this was at.

    YES Specialized has Sued him into submission, he is not out of business just yet but has had to scale way down, as the ID product line was what they had been spending all the money on $Hundred of thousands.
    The issue is very basic. In 2003 Mike Licensed exclusivly 18 us and international patents from the company that invented flow controlled inertia valve technology in the eairly 90’s and Specialized wants this technology for the 2007 product line they just released, and it is more in their style to sue some body than to do the morally right thing and pay the miniscule licensing fees, the Attorneys make more money that way. Here is the history as I wrote about it about a year ago in this forum.

    In 1998 every suspension company had the opportunity to license this technology but only OnSport/Stratos did. In 1998 RockShox was looking at this too, McAndrews the so called “inventor” of the brain shock was the head of R&D at RockShox. See US patent #6105987 by Paul Turner assigned to RockShox for proof of this. In 1997 Ricor, the company that OnSport licensed from, put inertia valve shocks on a Specialized bike and then showed every body the future, but no non discloure agreements as they had patents, thus they are the true inventors not Specialized or McAndrews. See past posts from Shocknerd for verification. In 1999 McAndrews filed a patent on the “brain” and then had to have a team of attorneys do their dammedist to get it patented because there is so much prior art. Specialized did get a patent for a non co-axial inertia valve design but it is so limited as to not be manufacturable.

    Here in lies the Rub, they now have a patent though it is arguably not valid, I have looked into this as this is what I do, it is in the prosecution history of the patent, and then they use that patent to say that Stratos is infringing them. Stratos now has to prove that they are not infringing the patent that has 6 of the Stratos licensed patents as prior art, is not for a front fork part, does not have a reservoir, that they are not infringing. If you know anything about patent defense cost, the company I work for uses this tactic too, a small company even when it is right as in this case can not afford to defend itself. According to Mike the head S at Specialized then calls him and says give me the your licensing agreement or we will sue you and for 100K I will bankrupt you and then get the patents that way. That was back in January of 2005, the same time they started working on the 2007 product line which once you understand that they have ditched Fox on the belief that they would have these patents all of this make perfect sense now. “ the Grand Plan”

    Stratos then has another company, that shall remain nameless, defend them as they want to license it too. This other company tries in vain to get Specialized to negotiate a deal where they both could use the technology of these patents, but no go the big S is too greedy. After a large $$six figures they give up leaving Mike to defend it himself.
    Stratos then stops all sales, promotion, and support of the ID product line but Specialized will still not back off.
    So back to the way this started YES specialized is attempting and may succeed in driving Stratos out of business in an attempt to get the licensing agreement. Mike is out of money for the defense but even if they win in court they still have the lengthy process of trying to collect. Specialized sells over $80Million of brain related bikes a year, you would think that for a couple hundred grand a year they could afford to pay the licensing fees, as their latest product is a direct infringement of the patents that they are attempting to steal go check their website.

    My take on Specialized is that it is only a few bad apples need to be squished to make this right.
    Wow, I never knew what happened to Stratos.I used their shocks and liked them. It's to bad that happened to them, it would have been nice to see what products they had out by now. Does anyone know what the owner is doing now?
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  25. #75
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    not to say its not true, that what he said was what he said, but sounds like BS, most companies wont waste that much money on a full blown sewt of this nature without first sending a cease and assist letter from there legal team. unless this company was to be made an example of, but with this economic climate, hardly the chance. on top of the fact that he did take someone elses technology and used it on his own. that was a "i told you so" moment

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