BOSTON - TEC Engineering Corp., which charges in a lawsuit that Budget Molders Supply Inc. and Plastic Process Equipment Inc. copied its Ultraline plastic parts conveyor, has won a preliminary injunction against the two firms. Ruling Aug. 1 in Boston, Judge Nathaniel Gorton of U.S. District Court issued the preliminary injunction, which bars Budget Molders Supply and Plastic Process Equipment from manufacturing, distributing, promoting, advertising and selling the Budget Supraline Conveyor. The defendants do not have to recall any promotional materials distributed before the judge's ruling.
Gorton agreed with claims by TEC, based in Oxford, Mass., that the Supraline is ``confusingly similar'' to TEC's Ultraline.
``It is identical,'' said Andrew Redgate, TEC national sales manager. ``It's like two exact same Ford Tauruses.''
The Ultraline is designed to convey injection molded and blow molded parts.
TEC brought both conveyors into the courtroom and the judge examined them during a hearing.
Budget Molders Supply and Plastic Process Equipment appealed the injunction.
``Any purchaser who looks at these products is not going to be confused about whose conveyor it is,'' said Louis Ciavarra, the companies' Worcester, Mass., lawyer. The companies, which have common ownership, are based in Macedonia, Ohio.
The judge's order covers horizontal, inclined and variable inclined Budget Supraline Conveyors and any other conveyor likely to cause confusion in the minds of customers.
TEC Engineering Corp. is not affiliated with another Massachusetts firm that uses the TEC name, Thermoplastics Engineering Corp. of Leominster.