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Making a custom Alpa-Hasselblad V film adapter. Can you take some measurements for me please?

jodad

Member
Hi All
I’m having someone make me a Hasselblad V back to Alpa adapter with a function that “pins” the back to allow it to advance (just as happens when the back is attached to a Hasselblad body).

I need a few measurements of the regular alpa to Hasselblad v adapter but I don’t have one. Is anyone that owns An alpaHasselblad V adapter able totake the following measurements for me please? A ruler is good enough for now but if you have a calliper, even better. And in mm preferably. I’ve numbered the required measurements 5,6,7 & 8 (there are others but these are based on the camera body which I was able to provide 😬D8F9A021-7425-46DC-B718-5E8C6537B683.jpeg38D6249A-D857-4BE2-8B4F-898F4EC4B794.jpeg
 

cjb

New member
IMO what you are asking for may be entering a slippery slope ethically. Alpa recently won a case against a Chinese manufacturer that made counterfeit Alpa parts

Some photographers may argue it is not wrong, but to photographers that support Alpa and their R&D expenses by purchasing their products may feel otherwise. Personally I never like it when people feel they can copy or take others intellectual or artistic property to save money or try to manufacture. But that is just me, a working photographer that has had to chase after those that feel they could steal my work and use it for their own personal gain.
 
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buildbot

Active member
IMO they don’t sound like they are planning on selling this design, plus it’s added functionality + reverse engineering, doesn’t seem that unethical to me. Counterfeiting is pretty different.

IMO what you are asking for may be entering a slippery slope ethically. Alpa recently won a case against a Chinese manufacturer that made counterfeit Alpa parts

Some photographers may argue it is not wrong, but to some of us that support Alpa and their R&D expenses by purchasing their products might feel different.

Just buy a cheap knockoff and have it customized if you choose to not support Alpa.
 

f8orbust

Active member
A bit of a grey area I suspect - does your design add enough to differentiate it significantly from the original, and thus not infringe any patent (if such a patent exists). My guess is, no it probably doesn't.

What you could do, is buy this one from eBay, and then when you receive it file a claim with eBay/PayPal for counterfeit goods. You get a cheap mount that you can machine and your money back, and the real counterfeiters get hit where it hurts most, in the wallet.
 

tcdeveau

Well-known member
A bit of a grey area I suspect - does your design add enough to differentiate it significantly from the original, and thus not infringe any patent (if such a patent exists). My guess is, no it probably doesn't.

What you could do, is buy this one from eBay, and then when you receive it file a claim with eBay/PayPal for counterfeit goods. You get a cheap mount that you can machine and your money back, and the real counterfeiters get hit where it hurts most, in the wallet.
Or OP could buy one from Alpa and modify it., thereby supporting the company. Or even ask Alpa for their blessing . .

Whatever OP decides to do I don't think there's too much of an issue unless op plans to make a bunch and sell them/offer to sell them....if it's just one for personal use not such a big deal in my book.
 

darr

Well-known member
The OP sent me a PM request for the measurements which I will not supply. He said the custom camera manufacturer mentioned in another post regarding this exact modification was requesting the measurements because that is who is making it for him. I don’t know if this is for a personal build once a custom camera manufacturer gets involved. 🤷‍♀️
 

jodad

Member
Guys... I just want to use modern Hassy film backs (than need “pinning” ) on my alpa so, I asked a maker if he could make me a back. Just for me to use myself. How is that infringing on Alpa’s IP? We needed the measurements to see if it was possible to put a pinning mechanism in something that would fit within the space where the back or back adapter would go on the camera. We aren’t trying to copy Alpa’s products like the Chinese did but rather make a custom piece just for me and wanted measurements of the actual Hassy back adapter to (if it will actually work as mentioned above) make something that will fit right and be light tight... 🤦‍♂️

I’ve seen pictures of people with strange self made or commissioned things stuck on their alpas. Is this IP infringement? I don’t think so. My request was for the same. I just wanted to save $500 or whatever on buying a back adapter just to measure it on the off chance that it’s dimensions mean we could make something that would fit the camera with a pinning mechanism. Whether it’s feasible or not, that $500 adapter would be useless to me because if it’s doable, I wouldn’t need it and if it’s not doable I’ll forget the 6x6 idea because I don’t want to use old (and hard for me to find) backs that need to be overhauled.
 

tcdeveau

Well-known member
Guys... I just want to use modern Hassy film backs (than need “pinning” ) on my alpa so, I asked a maker if he could make me a back. Just for me to use myself. How is that infringing on Alpa’s IP?
OP, just so you are aware and understand the concerns of others, the activity you are proposing could constitute patent infringement in the US under US law (codified under 35 USC 271 if you want to look it up) if Alpa has a patent in the US....even if your use is personal. Not sure about copyright or trademark but the activity you are proposing could create issues under copyright and/or trademark as well. Cant speak to the law in other countries though.
 

jodad

Member
OP, just so you are aware and understand the concerns of others, the activity you are proposing could constitute patent infringement in the US under US law (codified under 35 USC 271 if you want to look it up) if Alpa has a patent in the US....even if your use is personal. Not sure about copyright or trademark but the activity you are proposing could create issues under copyright and/or trademark as well. Cant speak to the law in other countries though.
Ok well thanks tcdeveau for putting it very clearly. In that case, I’ll forget about 6x6 on alpa.
 

f8orbust

Active member
This is info supplied by Alpa to someone on GetDPI / LuLa (IIRC) (and used to be on their old website too I think - but could be wrong) so I'm just re-presenting something already in the public domain. Anyway, as long as the stated dimensions are preserved, anyone could come up with their own design for '2' without necessarily infringing anything:

ALPA_FocalPlaneDistance.jpg
 

jodad

Member
This is info supplied by Alpa to someone on GetDPI / LuLa (IIRC) (and used to be on their old website too I think - but could be wrong) so I'm just re-presenting something already in the public domain. Anyway, as long as the stated dimensions are preserved, anyone could come up with their own design for '2' without necessarily infringing anything:

View attachment 184020
It’s very kind to point this out to me, thank you f8.
 

buildbot

Active member
I really doubt you are infringing on any patent BTW, it looks as though Alpa only holds a few patents in the USA and none of them are for a 6x6 hasselblad v adapter with a pin, which it would need to be for you to be risking infringement (you’d also need to have a device that replicates _every_ claim in the patent to be infringing).

For example, if you cloned an iPhone you are infringing on several apple design patents, as you are trying to replicate every aspect of the design. If you measure someone’s iPhone and make a case for it, well, the dimensions themselves aren’t protected. I’m working on a few 3D printed cameras with a mamiya 645 compatible mount, I measured a lens and drew up a design that would interface with it. If that’s patent infringement, so is any lens adapter out there not made by the original company.

Not a lawyer though. I’m kinda surprised how much drama asking for measurements has generated.
 

Godfrey

Well-known member
... I’m kinda surprised how much drama asking for measurements has generated.
Yeah, seems a lot of folks have a lot of time on their hands. Sheesh.

Any company that's going to sue someone nipping some dimensions from their products in order to make a one-off device for that person's own use is really really just wasting their money and time. I'd have been in jail for decades if companies were doing to do that, because I've made dozens of one-off things based on the dimensions of successful products that did a similar job over the years.

Patents are not copyrights. :D

G
 

tcdeveau

Well-known member
I really doubt you are infringing on any patent BTW, it looks as though Alpa only holds a few patents in the USA and none of them are for a 6x6 hasselblad v adapter with a pin, which it would need to be for you to be risking infringement (you’d also need to have a device that replicates _every_ claim in the patent to be infringing).

For example, if you cloned an iPhone you are infringing on several apple design patents, as you are trying to replicate every aspect of the design. If you measure someone’s iPhone and make a case for it, well, the dimensions themselves aren’t protected. I’m working on a few 3D printed cameras with a mamiya 645 compatible mount, I measured a lens and drew up a design that would interface with it. If that’s patent infringement, so is any lens adapter out there not made by the original company.

Not a lawyer though. I’m kinda surprised how much drama asking for measurements has generated.
A lot of this isn’t accurate. No, Alpa wouldn’t have to have exactly what you mentioned for infringement, and no, an infringing device doesn’t have to read on every claim - only every element of at least on claim.

Yes, the dimensions in a design patent are not protected themselves, but using those dimensions to make a case could infringe if using those dimensions led you to make something that had the same visual impression as a case that was covered by a design patent....and dimensions can be protected in utility patents.

Yes your activity could also be infringement depending upon what is out there, the type of IP (trademark, copyright, patent - utility or design)...and without knowing the IP landscape, you can’t make a broad statement like “any lens adapter. . .”

I’m not expert at patent infringement, but I am a patent agent registered with the USPTO - my day job is patent drafting and pros - and I’m currently in law school, so I do know more than the average bear in this area.
 

tcdeveau

Well-known member
Yeah, seems a lot of folks have a lot of time on their hands. Sheesh.

Any company that's going to sue someone nipping some dimensions from their products in order to make a one-off device for that person's own use is really really just wasting their money and time. I'd have been in jail for decades if companies were doing to do that, because I've made dozens of one-off things based on the dimensions of successful products that did a similar job over the years.

Patents are not copyrights. :D

G
Yes Godfrey you are right, most companies as not going to go after people like OP for patents. It’s not cost effective - the amount of $$ in damages in situations like this would just about break even with attorney fees to even send a cease and desist and it doesn’t make sense. Other areas of IP, like copyright, have statutory damages and is a different story. Trademarks are also a different story because generally companies have to enforce trademarks or they become invalid.

As I mentioned, I personally don’t see a big deal in tinkering with things for personal use...but it could constitute infringement. Alpa is a small company, the sponsor of the forum is a dealer, and Alpa is a friend of many GetDPI users. You can’t blame them for not wanting to help OP.

OP could always buy a V mount adapter from Alpa and modify it, or at least talk to them about the project...maybe they’d work with him even or give their permission.
 

Godfrey

Well-known member
I've asked various companies for the dimensions of their adapters/what have you quite often over the years, and even explained why I was asking in most cases. All the good companies just send the specifications without even batting an eye ... They know that a one-off that I or some other hobbyist is building to suit a situation that their device does not is not a threat to the intellectual property rights. It's a matter of common sense.

And it's almost never the case that I could personally make something that was actually as well finished or as cleanly machined as some legitimate company's product might be. It just has to work for my purposes, nothing else, so what it looks like, how it's finished, and how it might fail are completely inconsequential. Why on earth would anyone spend the time and trouble to make an adapter if Alpa or any other company already had a perfect product ready for use? That's just a waste of time, to me, and rarely costs less (in time and dollars) than buying the 'real thing' in the first place to get on with doing the work.

Sheesh again. Alpa and any other vendor of products should be producing stuff that does the job, is well made, and is sensibly priced—otherwise they deserve to have competitors trying to take their business away. It's kinda like the situation of the guy who needs a shim to snug up their bicycle or motorcycle handlebars. They can buy a .2mm thick shim from BMW or Ducati or Specialized, but they can also cut a .2mm thick shim out of a beer can that is, in use, absolutely identical presuming they cut it to the appropriate dimensions. Why on earth should anyone buy that shim from BMW or others at some absurd price vs the cheap and free piece of a beer can cut with a pair of tin snips?? (See Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance for a more extensive philosophical discussion of this notion. ;) )

G
 

tcdeveau

Well-known member
I've asked various companies for the dimensions of their adapters/what have you quite often over the years, and even explained why I was asking in most cases. All the good companies just send the specifications without even batting an eye ... They know that a one-off that I or some other hobbyist is building to suit a situation that their device does not is not a threat to the intellectual property rights. It's a matter of common sense.

And it's almost never the case that I could personally make something that was actually as well finished or as cleanly machined as some legitimate company's product might be. It just has to work for my purposes, nothing else, so what it looks like, how it's finished, and how it might fail are completely inconsequential. Why on earth would anyone spend the time and trouble to make an adapter if Alpa or any other company already had a perfect product ready for use? That's just a waste of time, to me, and rarely costs less (in time and dollars) than buying the 'real thing' in the first place to get on with doing the work.

Sheesh again. Alpa and any other vendor of products should be producing stuff that does the job, is well made, and is sensibly priced—otherwise they deserve to have competitors trying to take their business away. It's kinda like the situation of the guy who needs a shim to snug up their bicycle or motorcycle handlebars. They can buy a .2mm thick shim from BMW or Ducati or Specialized, but they can also cut a .2mm thick shim out of a beer can that is, in use, absolutely identical presuming they cut it to the appropriate dimensions. Why on earth should anyone buy that shim from BMW or others at some absurd price vs the cheap and free piece of a beer can cut with a pair of tin snips?? (See Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance for a more extensive philosophical discussion of this notion. ;) )

G
Sheesh again? Perhaps you missed my multiple suggestions that OP just reach out to Alpa?

...was merely pointing out a legitimate legal reason in the US as to why some people take issue with helping with requests such as OPs as this is the thing that some people don’t see a problem with and some do, especially since OP raised the question of “how is this infringement.”
 
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