Levenger - Again

My few dealings with Levenger have not been smooth or cheap but after looking around the web I cannot find anything I like as much, especially the covers, so I've caved in and placed another order today. They tell me the book-cloth covers will be available in November and I plan to order a set then. I've tried Adoc and Snopake etc but refills are not easy to find as I live in the sticks and only Levenger gives me the versatility I need with their lovely, lovely products. Guess I'm hooked.

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Hidden under a pile of snopake

Adoc and Snopake ... refills are not easy to find as I live in the sticks

I've recently seen some Snopake disc-bound display books in my local WHSmith. A few days earlier I saw some Adoc/Snopake disc-bound notebooks in a branch of WHSmith in another town. WHSmith also seem to do their own brand of disc-bound notebooks. Availability seems to vary from store to store. My local shop has occasionally stocked the own-brand notebooks and has the Snopake 40-page display book in stock; I've thought about buying one just to have a ready punched cover. You might have some success if you can get to a local Smith's shop ... depending upon how out in the sticks you are.

Even Snopake appear reluctant to sell their disc-bound display books and notebooks. It's really difficult to find them on their web site and you have to buy a pack rather than a single one. They also don't seem to sell refills and definitely no punches. No other distributors lists the disc-bound products for sale. :-(

Snopake appears (to me) to be a licensee of Adoc

Other opinions welcomed.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

Someone mentioned in the

Someone mentioned in the other adoc thread that it appears to be the same as myndology. If that's the case, would adoc/snopake/myndology all be atoma licenses. I'm kinda hoping here, as it makes life easier knowing there are only two systems, and everyone else is licensing it. I'd be surprised if there are other systems actually, for patent reasons. I can't think of a good alternative to the smurf shape and T-shape that would work for a disc bound system, and if anyone copied an existing system, then they would need to license it from either atoma/rollabind.

Depends on the claims

I'd be surprised if there are other systems actually, for patent reasons.

It depends upon the actual claims in the text of the patent itself. Rollabind appears to be playing on the name Rolladex but are they the same company? The idea of easily removable cards is fundamental to a Rolladex card index but someone filed a patent using particular shaped smurfs to create notebooks. The Atoma/Adoc/Snopake patent may make similar claims but because the smurfs have a different profile that would be a new patent.

A few months back there were some postings here that showed how Levenger was licensing the Rollabind patent for its own products. So we know that they are using the same system. What we don't know is which of Atoma, Adoc or Snopake or any of them holds a patent and whether they are licensing it to the others. There's also the issue that Rollabind's grant of a licence to Levenger is based on a US patent not a British one or one from Europe. Could be that Atoma/Adoc/Snopake has a patent in Europe that conflicts with Rollabind's.

Other systems using smurfs may be patentable if the patent examiners believe that the claims are different enough and not obvious for a patent to be granted. Who knows using triangular smurfs instead of circular may be novel enough to gain a patent --- though this message would be considered prior art and scupper that application.

Patents are very devious stuff and the system is long-over due for improvement or cancellation. The US Patent Office has admitted many times it now has so few experienced patent examiners they are granting patents that should be invalidated for prior art or obviousness. Any venture into this area needs specialist help from patent lawyers in several juridictions.

I'm nearly sure they're the

I'm nearly sure they're the same. I'd be surprised that there be a license on that still, the system is really old... It's been around for decades.

Getting hold of Snopake/ADOC

... means a 2 hour drive to my nearest large city and even then the Snopake books have been out of stock. I used to do a stock-up when I could but now I make my own books with the DIY PLanner forms, some of my own and Levenger paper. It works but oh, how I wish there was store I could just go and browse!

My commisserations

a 2 hour drive to my nearest large city

Ah, so sorry. It's easy to forget that that can happen here in the UK. Easier for me, central London is only a Tube ride away and between here and there I have to pass through several large London boroughs with excellent stationery shops, each with huge branches of WHSmith.