U.S. Supreme Court
Hoffheins v. Russell, 107 U.S. 132 (1883)
Hoffheins v. Russell
Decided January 22, 1883
107 U.S. 132
1. Claims 1, 8, 9, 11, 12, 14, 16, and 19 of reissued letters patent No. 2224, granted April 10, 1866, to Reuben Hoffheins for an "improvement in Harvesters," the original, No. 35,316, having been granted to him May 20, 1862, and claims 1, 2, 6, 7, and 9 of reissued letters patent No. 2490, granted Feb. 19, 1867, to him, for an "improvement in harvesters," the original, No. 40,481, having been granted to him Nov. 3, 1863, and reissued in two divisions, one, No. 1888, Feb. 28, 1865, and the other, No. 2102, Nov. 7, 1866, and No. 2490 having been issued on the surrender of No. 2102, considered, and the difference between the specifications and the drawings of No. 35,315 and those of No. 2224, and that between the raking apparatus and rake support of No. 2224 and those of the defendants pointed out.
2. There is no warrant in No. 85,315 for locating the rake support, or any part of it, on the finger beam, and as each of the above-named claims of No. 2224 has, as an element, either a rake, or a rake and reel, mounted on or attached to the cutting apparatus or the finger beam, No. 35,315 could not lawfully be reissued with those claims.
3. The defendants devised a new arrangement of rake, which made it possible to mount a rake support on the heel of the finger beam, where the rake support of No. 2224 could not be mounted. The difference between the yielding belt tightener of No. 2224 and their arrangement for driving the chanroblesvirtualawlibrarychanroblesvirtualawlibrary
raking apparatus pointed out, and the latter held not to be a mechanical equivalent for the former.
4. No. 40,481 negatives the idea of mounting the rake post on the finger beam, while an element in claim 1 of No. 2490 is the mounting of the raking mechanism on the finger beam. In No. 2490, a driver's seat mounted on the main frame, so as to enable the driver to ride on the machine while the rake is in operation, is an element in claims 1 and 9, while the driver's seat in No. 40,481 is not, and cannot be, in such a position that the driver can ride on the seat while the rake is in operation.
5. The raking apparatus is an element in claims 2, 7, and 9 of No. 2490, and in view of the differences between the two machines in the construction of the raking mechanism and the arrangement and location of the rake post, the rake of claims 2, 7, and 9 is to be construed to be such a rake, and one so arranged, on a rake post so mounted, as is shown and described in the specification, and thus does not include the defendants' raking mechanism or rake post.
6. The driving device in claims 6 and 7 of No. 2490 held not to include the defendants' driving device, the former being an extensible tumbling shaft and the latter a chain belt with open links, and patentability or invention inhering only in the device and not in its location.
7. No cause of action is established against the defendants on either of the patents sued on.
The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.