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The claims define the scope of patent protection. Link to patent.

I am not a fan of the type of claim allowed. The claim is to a rim. I am not sure whether the tire is not a required part of the claimed rim*. But, the rim structure is defined by angles flowing from the combination of the tire and rim. So, one does not know the scope of the patent claim until the tire is mounted - while the claim does not actually require the tire to be present. Claim interpretation nuance.

* Claim 1 says "a tire bed to seat a tire". But, I don't see a positive recitation of a tire on the rim. The claim may be read to implicitly include the tire. However, you know what they say about assume. I think it can be argued that the claim does not require a tire. As such, the claim is broad enough for the patentee to have protection for the rim alone, which equals suing rim manufacturer. OTOH, if one require the combo of the tire and rim, infringement may not occur until the end user installs X tire on the rim. Who would you rather sue - rim manufacturer or each individual cyclist?

PS - the only discussion of a bicycle in the MPEP is a case related to claim indefiniteness when the scope of the claim is based upon an unclaimed and variable object. MPEP 2173.05(b) II. A claim may be rendered indefinite by reference to an object that is variable.
 
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