Graspability of Knobs Considered In Sixth Circuit Trade Dress (Leapers v Sun Optics)

Leapers manufactures adjustable rifle scopes. A terminated manufacturing partner continued to make scopes similar in appearance to those of Leapers. Leapers sued, alleging infringement of its trade dress in the knurling (or texturing) of the knobs in its scopes. The exhibit to its complaint showing many side-by-sides is reproduced below. This is one of its scopes: This is one of defendant’s scopes: Leapers has filed for a federal trademark registration. This is the drawing of the applied-for mark: The description of the mark in the application is: The mark consists of a three-dimensional design configuration that is applied to all relevant cylindrical adjustment surfaces (i.e. the knobs and bells) of an archery or rifle scope or sight. The design is marked by scalloped knurling that is: (1) uniform and proportional in the width of the elevations and depressions on the cylindrical adjustments; and (2) straight, unbroken and running parallel to the cylindrical…

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