Name some things that have been copied in this industry

rob allen

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I found it interesting that people got upset over Rotovac introducing the Bonzer. Yes it has some similarities to the Zipper tool. It is not built to the degree of a Zip and obviously its not intended for such. Its seems it's targeted for mass "affordable" residential use as the Zip is "mainly" a HWE commercial tool. It will be interesting to see how that turns out. Rotovac has said they are selling the 1st prototypes for field testing and feedback gathering.

They have said they will gather the info, implement and then market the unit. So at present, we don't know how good this unit will be. Knowing Rotovac though, I must admit they do take cleaners feedback into consideration and implement them. Proof is the Rotovac XL. Many cleaners wanted a larger, stronger more durable yet still retain the versatility of the 360i. And they did it. How good the Bonzer will be only time will tell. It will be very interesting regardless.

Now back to the OP point. The introduction of the Bonzer sparked an outcry, namely by end users, that they have issue with a "copy" of the tool. End users are not always a fair representation of products because sometimes they create hype saying their new tool, their new machine, their new chemical is the holy grail of cleaning. Then as the hype builds many go out and buy things that do not fit their business model, their cleaning style or budget. That is why we have seen a number who buy accessories, tools and or machines turn around and put them up for sale. Careful consideration and ideally, testing, of anything is the best route.


So with that out of the way lets make a list of things that have been copied in this industry over the last 100 years or so. I'll start;


1) Glides.

Glides were invented by Canadian Ken Harris. He shared his idea with Jeff (Greenie) and Jeff took it ran with it. Much to Ken's chagrin. Eventually him and his wife split and Lisa took it to what it is now, GreenGlides. Now everyone is making and selling glides. Truckmount, wand, portable, trinket manufacturers and many suppliers are making them. Where is the outcry? Really, this is why I say be careful who you share any ideas with. Make sure you have a NDA signed. Get a patent. But remember, a patent is only as good as the amount of money you have to defend it. So trade carefully.


2) Inline filters

Butler was one of the 1st companies to introduce inline filters to the best of my research. Feel free to correct me if you know differently. Regardless, many companies have copied and improved upon them starting with pool filters. Now look at Blueline, Mytee and Sapphire for example. Then came the Devastator which led to the cheaper imitation, the bullet. I presently use the Devastator filters but they are hard to get and harder to get parts for. So I will probably make my own. That is something I have always done, take current products on the market and modify them to perform to my business model and cleaning style. I've taken some heat for this, but its worth the price.


3) Door Guards

Now here is a doozy. We probably all remember or have used the old door sealers called the Door Guards that have been around for decades. They are still available at https://shop.truckmountforums.com. And they work good. Over the last decade many TMF cleaners have made their own. Take Grant for instance. He made one his now door guard that looks eerily similar to the one called Seal Door. The Seal Door is a canvas full enclosure on PVC pipes and springs. It is good. But me personally I did not like the weight or lack of visibility of it. So I made my own that I called Shield a Door that is half the weight and cost that we use on our trucks now. I started to offer them but due to end user outcry and mob mentality that followed I backed off. Which really makes no sense if you think about it because it works against our own interests. Anything that stifles growth or innovation will only hurt us, not help us. That is the beauty of free enterprise system working. The best products and services win. We win by having the opportunity to use the best product possible.



4) Hose Cuffs


Push and pull hose cuffs adjoined by barbs were taken from another industry almost a century ago. But around a decade ago a patent was sent in by a Washington cleaner for a screw on type cuff. It is debated whose idea it was but like I mentioned before, be careful who you share your ideas with, because the patent was awarded to the guy who sent in the patent. This guy could have ruled the cuff world but because of being so difficult to work with Mytee and Bridgepoint made their own versions that swivel. So we now have several cuffs to choose from. That's the beauty of free American enterprise.


5) Chemicals

Grand Slam, Traffic Slam, Citrus Slam, UltraSlam and the list goes on and on. Every year a new chem comes out and other formulators try and copy them. It is not a 100% representation even when they have the list of ingredients. How can I say that? Well look at cooking and baking contests. Most have the same ingredients but some taste ok and others taste incredible. Why is that? Because the formulator and the exact recipe makes all the difference. Like anything, its the little things that make the big differences. Isn't that the case with us as cleaners? Most cleaners have the same things available to them but its the application of the little things that make the biggest difference. We set out to copy the best tile & grout cleaner and actually ended up surpassing the original with Groutmaster. We can barely make it fast enough.


Well here is only 5. I know there are a ton more because look at all the wands, rotary's and machines on the market today These are proof that the copying of other products works out to cleaners advantage. Better products, like cream, rise to the top and we all benefit. Its worth saying again we all benefit when we don't stifle innovation and progress. Also if you have an idea be careful and have a NDA signed. I have had numerous cleaners come up with ideas to improve upon a current design or a whole new idea and want to share it with me. I tell them I can help them but I insist that they send me a NDA first. So here is to the future of the cleaning industry. Let change come. May it better us all.
 

rob allen

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Reserved for further listing and pictures.
 

Omar

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Lets not use the word "copied", how about "stolen". Is this the case, do people feel it was "stolen"? If it was just copied then i think its ok because for instance, the 175 is round, then they added suction to it and spray jets. Does that mean that a rotovac is a copy of a 175? Then there is the rx 20, mytee trex etc...

Upholstery tools...

Beds....

Jackets...


But if something is "stolen", then thats different in a way, untill everyone gets over it.

Just my thoughts as i stand here waiting for sprint to open.
 

keep it clean

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All tools eventually get cloned. And sometimes it's for the better. Improvements to original design are made along the way.

Ocilating tool for instance
Originally
Made by Fein
Nice tool can undercut door trim easy
Problem can only use blades made by Fein
d0e476fb6e9275bdd7ff598506cca974.jpg


Same tool works fine
Harbor frieght uses Fein blades, harbor blades, demel blades......
de3699500ffca2f323696e47f20bbba4.jpg

Know who else uses this similar saw?
The doctor that cuts off a cast on a broken arm. Stolen no. Copied and re purposed yes.


Sent from my SM-G900T using TMF Forums mobile app
 

matt30577

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I found it interesting that people got upset over Rotovac introducing the Bonzer. Yes it has some similarities to the Zipper tool. It is not built to the degree of a Zip and obviously its not intended for such. Its seems it's targeted for mass "affordable" residential use as the Zip is "mainly" a HWE commercial tool. It will be interesting to see how that turns out. Rotovac has said they are selling the 1st prototypes for field testing and feedback gathering.

They have said they will gather the info, implement and then market the unit. So at present, we don't know how good this unit will be. Knowing Rotovac though, I must admit they do take cleaners feedback into consideration and implement them. Proof is the Rotovac XL. Many cleaners wanted a larger, stronger more durable yet still retain the versatility of the 360i. And they did it. How good the Bonzer will be only time will tell. It will be very interesting regardless.

Now back to the OP point. The introduction of the Bonzer sparked an outcry, namely by end users, that they have issue with a "copy" of the tool. End users are not always a fair representation of products because sometimes they create hype saying their new tool, their new machine, their new chemical is the holy grail of cleaning. Then as the hype builds many go out and buy things that do not fit their business model, their cleaning style or budget. That is why we have seen a number who buy accessories, tools and or machines turn around and put them up for sale. Careful consideration and ideally, testing, of anything is the best route.


So with that out of the way lets make a list of things that have been copied in this industry over the last 100 years or so. I'll start;


1) Glides.

Glides were invented by Canadian Ken Harris. He shared his idea with Jeff (Greenie) and Jeff took it ran with it. Much to Ken's chagrin. Eventually him and his wife split and Lisa took it to what it is now, GreenGlides. Now everyone is making and selling glides. Truckmount, wand, portable, trinket manufacturers and many suppliers are making them. Where is the outcry? Really, this is why I say be careful who you share any ideas with. Make sure you have a NDA signed. Get a patent. But remember, a patent is only as good as the amount of money you have to defend it. So trade carefully.


2) Inline filters

Butler was one of the 1st companies to introduce inline filters to the best of my research. Feel free to correct me if you know differently. Regardless, many companies have copied and improved upon them starting with pool filters. Now look at Blueline, Mytee and Sapphire for example. Then came the Devastator which led to the cheaper imitation, the bullet. I presently use the Devastator filters but they are hard to get and harder to get parts for. So I will probably make my own. That is something I have always done, take current products on the market and modify them to perform to my business model and cleaning style. I've taken some heat for this, but its worth the price.


3) Door Guards

Now here is a doozy. We probably all remember or have used the old door sealers called the Door Guards that have been around for decades. They are still available at https://shop.truckmountforums.com. And they work good. Over the last decade many TMF cleaners have made their own. Take Grant for instance. He made one his now door guard that looks eerily similar to the one called Seal Door. The Seal Door is a canvas full enclosure on PVC pipes and springs. It is good. But me personally I did not like the weight or lack of visibility of it. So I made my own that I called Shield a Door that is half the weight and cost that we use on our trucks now. I started to offer them but due to end user outcry and mob mentality that followed I backed off. Which really makes no sense if you think about it because it works against our own interests. Anything that stifles growth or innovation will only hurt us, not help us. That is the beauty of free enterprise system working. The best products and services win. We win by having the opportunity to use the best product possible.



4) Hose Cuffs


Push and pull hose cuffs adjoined by barbs were taken from another industry almost a century ago. But around a decade ago a patent was sent in by a Washington cleaner for a screw on type cuff. It is debated whose idea it was but like I mentioned before, be careful who you share your ideas with, because the patent was awarded to the guy who sent in the patent. This guy could have ruled the cuff world but because of being so difficult to work with Mytee and Bridgepoint made their own versions that swivel. So we now have several cuffs to choose from. That's the beauty of free American enterprise.


5) Chemicals

Grand Slam, Traffic Slam, Citrus Slam, UltraSlam and the list goes on and on. Every year a new chem comes out and other formulators try and copy them. It is not a 100% representation even when they have the list of ingredients. How can I say that? Well look at cooking and baking contests. Most have the same ingredients but some taste ok and others taste incredible. Why is that? Because the formulator and the exact recipe makes all the difference. Like anything, its the little things that make the big differences. Isn't that the case with us as cleaners? Most cleaners have the same things available to them but its the application of the little things that make the biggest difference. We set out to copy the best tile & grout cleaner and actually ended up surpassing the original with Groutmaster. We can barely make it fast enough.


Well here is only 5. I know there are a ton more because look at all the wands, rotary's and machines on the market today These are proof that the copying of other products works out to cleaners advantage. Better products, like cream, rise to the top and we all benefit. Its worth saying again we all benefit when we don't stifle innovation and progress. Also if you have an idea be careful and have a NDA signed. I have had numerous cleaners come up with ideas to improve upon a current design or a whole new idea and want to share it with me. I tell them I can help them but I insist that they send me a NDA first. So here is to the future of the cleaning industry. Let change come. May it better us all.
I don't care if it's copied or stolen. That's not my fight. If it does a good job, then send it my way.

My problem with it is, he's SELLING it to be Field Tested. I don't care about any promise about a money back guarantee. He should know enough people now to have it tested before it's worth selling. We shouldn't have to buy a tool that's not fully tested yet.

I can give you several things in our industry that were copied and made better. I can also give you a few things in our industry that were copied and made a carpet cleaner's life Hell while he was on the job.
 

MikeGaure

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I don't care if it's copied or stolen. That's not my fight. If it does a good job, then send it my way.

My problem with it is, he's SELLING it to be Field Tested. I don't care about any promise about a money back guarantee. He should know enough people now to have it tested before it's worth selling. We shouldn't have to buy a tool that's not fully tested yet.

I can give you several things in our industry that were copied and made better. I can also give you a few things in our industry that were copied and made a carpet cleaner's life Hell while he was on the job.

Maybe by having folks front money on the prototype he'll be getting cleaners that are busy enough to give him true field tested data. Obviously to purchase a prototype is up to the buyer.

We purchased two titans from challenger when we first started. Lol that was a disaster no money back, they wanted a 17" to offer in addition to the 15" model. Didn't go to well I kept breaking shafts and it always had a problem with the stationary switch
 

MikeGaure

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Remember PDA's and the original Palm Pilots lol.

Innovative yes but they obviously didn't have what it took to take they're dreams to the next level.

Now you have cheapo cell phones that can do all and more
 
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shane deubell

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The really niche products annoys me, like a duk guard or seal a door. I mean c'mon....

But the bigger categories like wands, tms, tools etc the market is so big you cant sell everyone anyway.
 

rob allen

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Buyers always benefit from sellers competing.

Rotovac sponsored/pushed thread? LoL
Sorry just crossed my mind, no offense

Business is business.
No. Just for the record Rotovac has not advertised with us for awhile.
 

rob allen

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The really niche products annoys me, like a duk guard or seal a door. I mean c'mon....

But the bigger categories like wands, tms, tools etc the market is so big you cant sell everyone anyway.
Who owns the "niches"? Do we allow a monopoly because its a "niche"? Glides and cuffs are niches too per se. So who determines the line of demarcation of where "niche" and "bigger" begins and ends? Usually its because someone is an end users who buy or are paid shills by the manufacturer. Not the most reliable source.
 

barefoot

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never thought about "a patent is only as good as the amount of money you have to defend it."

Makes sense. Just thougt you automatically won if it was patented.

Thanks for a jolt of reality.
 

admin

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Buyers always benefit from sellers competing.

Rotovac sponsored/pushed thread? LoL
Sorry just crossed my mind, no offense

Business is business.
Rotovac has not been an sponsor of TMF for almost a year now. Rotovac is a great company and has helped out thousands of cleaners worldwide, we to use their equipment as well.
 
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dmreed4311

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Wow a complete knock off of the zipper, I bet Erik is pissed. I know I would be. I assume rotovac found some loop hole to be able to make that without being sued.
 
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Allied

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Wow a complete knock off of the zipper, I bet Erik is pissed. I know I would be. I assume rotovac found some loop hole to be able to make that without being sued.


Slight derail...the "demonstration" in Atl turned me off the Zip...that CGD looked like shite the next day on the side cleaned with it. I am now taking off the list of tools and saving for an Orbot type CGD tool.
 

Allied

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And i don't care about copying...every industry does it...every one! So long as they make the copy affordable and reliable...hurry up and take my money.
 

emeraldclean

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Wow a complete knock off of the zipper, I bet Erik is pissed. I know I would be. I assume rotovac found some loop hole to be able to make that without being sued.
Wouldn't call it a complete knockoff David.
Similar design . The Bonzer looked awkward to run judging on the vids.
I can see Rotovac tweaking the design. Agree on the maker of the Zipper being pissed ( Eric).
The Bonzer was no where to be found when they brought out the Zipper to be demoed at Ice Atlanta from my understanding.
I guess my take on copies is leave the little guy alone, but hey capitalism is alive and well.