In a recent legal action against Griffin Armament (Hearing Protection LLC), Patriot Ordnance Factory (POF) has asserted that the Griffin Armament SR-RIGID barrel nut design infringes on POF’s heat sink barrel nut patent which has similar design characteristics to the 1928 Thompson Machine gun barrel. In a press release provided to us by Griffin Armament, the company explains that they feel that the litigation against them is meritless and also unfairly reduces free-market competition. The full press release is below but we’d like to hear your thoughts and comments on this subject as always.
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Griffin Armament Sued over SR-RIGID rail Series by Patriot Ordnance Factory
Griffin Armament has been sued over its SR-RIGID™ rail series by market competitor Patriot Ordnance Factory. POF has alleged in its Federal court filing that Griffin Armament has infringed on their heat sink barrel nut patent, which features radial fins similar to a 1928 Thompson machine gun barrel. Griffin Armament believes that this claimed infringement is without merit. Griffin’s barrel nut has no radial fins nor does it have a design intent for cooling. Griffin’s barrel nut was engineered around the M16 barrel nut print geometry from the mid 1960s in order to utilize the popular A1 armorers’ tool and other AR15 barrel nut wrenches prevalent on the market, while allowing similar gas tube clearance and convenient, shim-less installation.
“We feel that POF’s claims are without merit and will vigorously defend our position. We feel that this meritless litigation is designed to unfairly reduce free market competition.” Austin Green, former Army sniper, combat veteran, and owner of Griffin went on to state, “We will continue manufacturing our great products and will vigorously defend our designs against any meritless litigation. Our customers deserve nothing less from a great American brand. I believe there are some companies in this industry that don’t understand where intellectual property protection begins and ends. Additionally, when a company changes its design and departs from its patent claims and drawings, that may now be a new product and may need its own new patent to be protected.”
Griffin Armament is proud of its 16 year commitment to American made products and to the American free market. Griffin’s products support recreational and law enforcement end users all over the country. Griffin Armament respects the intellectual property process provided by the US Constitution, whenever appropriately enforced, but will defend itself vigorously against meritless claims.
At the time of writing, it appears that Griffin Armament will continue to manufacture and sell the SR-RIGID rail system complete with its barrel nut. The product is still available on the website in 7 different configurations. Photos of both the POF patent drawing and the SR-RIGID barrel nut can be seen above. Is this a sensible legal action by POF or do you feel like Griffin Armament is being unfairly targeted?