Weber Elec. Co. v. Freeman Elec. Co. - 256 U.S. 668 (1921)
U.S. Supreme Court
Weber Elec. Co. v. Freeman Elec. Co., 256 U.S. 668 (1921)
Weber Electric Company v. Freeman Electric Company
Argued April 21, 1921
Decided June 6, 1921
256 U.S. 668
1. A patented device for fastening together the metal cap and sleeve of an incandescent electric lamp socket, consisting of corresponding recesses and protrusions in the inner surface of the cap and the outer surface of the sleeve, respectively, formed by slitting the metal transversely and stamping it, which lock, against longitudinal movement only, by an automatic snap action when the sleeve is thrust longitudinally into the cap (Patent No. 743,206, Claims 1 and 4, November 3, 1903), is not infringed by a construction providing the cap with inwardly extended riveted studs and the sleeve with bayonet slots which lock with the studs by a longitudinal followed by a rotative movement, and an additional stud in the cap which snaps into a hole in the sleeve, as the rotation is completed, preventing reverse rotative movement. P. 256 U. S. 675.
2. The patent in suit having made no provision for a lock against rotative movement between the cap and sleeve, cannot be aided by resort to a later patent to the same patentee providing a slot and projection to overcome the deficiency. P. 256 U. S. 675.
3. In view of the prior art, the patentee's concessions made in the patent office, and his later patent, held that the words "telescopically received" and "telescopically applied," as used in the patent in suit, must be restricted to a direct longitudinal movement or thrust of the sleeve into the cap. P. 256 U. S. 676.
4. One who has specifically narrowed his claim in the Patent Office in order to secure his patent may not afterwards, by construction or resort to the doctrine of equivalents, give to it the larger scope it might have had if not so amended. P. 256 U. S. 677.
262 F. 768 affirmed.
The case is stated in the opinion.