ITC Issues Cease and Desist Order Against Bosch Over REAXX Jobsite Table Saw

ITC Issues Cease and Desist Order Against Bosch Over REAXX Jobsite Table Saw

Since last year, Woodworker’s Journal eZine has kept our readers informed of developments in the current litigation proceedings between Robert Bosch Tool Corporation and SawStop, regarding Bosch’s skin-sensing REAXX™ Jobsite Table Saw.

To that end, on January 27, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) ordered U.S. Customs to exclude Bosch REAXX Jobsite Table Saws, and cartridges for those saws, from entering the United States. Further, the ITC issued an order to Robert Bosch Tool Corporation saying Bosch must “cease and desist from conducting any of the following activities in the United States: importing, selling, marketing, advertising, distributing, transferring (except for exportation), and soliciting United States agents or distributors for imported [REAXX] table saws.”

The ITC has now terminated its investigation against Bosch.

Dr. Stephen Gass, president of SawStop, commented on the Commission’s decision: “When Bosch chose to introduce the REAXX saw in disregard of our patents, they left us with no alternative but to take action in court. We have defended our innovation, our hard work, and our investments in developing SawStop technology, and we are pleased that the ITC ordered the exclusion of products that use our patented inventions without a license and confirmed the strength of those patents. We are grateful for the U.S. patent system for encouraging and protecting innovations and we look forward to continuing to supply the market with safer saws.”

In response to the “cease and desist” order, Linda Beckmeyer, Bosch’s manager of media and public relations, offered this reply:

“Robert Bosch Tool Corporation is very disappointed with the ITC’s decision. Bosch maintains that development of its professional table saw product respects other companies’ patents and represents a new and unique technology in the construction market. It is disappointing that a competitor is continuing its campaign to stop the sale of REAXX technology to consumers.

We believe that advanced REAXX safety technology does not violate any competitor’s intellectual property rights. The patents asserted against REAXX are based on applications filed more than 15 years ago; Bosch does not believe they apply to REAXX technology. In addition, Bosch believes that if the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office had complete information, it would not have issued certain patents in the first place.

It is our firm belief that the development, marketing and distribution of the REAXX Jobsite Table Saw is completely separate and distinct from anything other brands or manufacturers are doing.”

Beckmeyer added that the case is now in a 60-day presidential review period, which began on Jan. 27. During this time, the U.S. president has an opportunity to review the facts of the case and then veto this exclusion order.

During the review period, “nothing changes,” Beckmeyer says, related to the availability of REAXX Jobsite Table Saws, activation cartridges or other accessories.

Beckmeyer further clarified that the ITC order relates to future importation of REAXX saws into the U.S. Activation cartridges that are now produced in the U.S. are not affected by the cease and desist order.

“At Bosch, safety is a priority. We will work to defend consumers’ rights to buy our products,” Beckmeyer says.

Woodworker’s Journal will continue to provide updates about this case as information becomes available.

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  • Norman Erwin

    But the BOSCH REAXX model cost less and does not ruin the saw blade when engaged.
    Seem the two parties should get down to negotiating a fair technology licensing agreement?

  • Dave

    What a poor decision. I hope many woodworkers write to President Trump and let him know that Saw Stop’s monopoly is NOT good for our trade. The advanced design by Bosch is a much preferred method and is why Saw Stop went after Bosch. The cost and time to get back up and running after a near accident is so much better with Bosch and keeping this saw out of the US is detrimental.

  • Robert Weber

    I will never buy from saws top. No matter how good Thierry saw is. When it first came out they filed suit to have flesh sensing on all saws. They should license the technology, and let Thierry saw stand on its own merits.

  • Robert Mayo

    I don’t know patent laws but, I have looked at both saws and to me they are not the same. They operate completely different to achieve the same result. I, for one, have been waiting to purchase the Bosch saw due to its brake systems’ ability to be used twice before replacement AND not destroying the expensive blades I prefer to use. I will be writing to whomever I need to in order to weigh in to President Trump!

  • Pack Fan

    Now my concern is this, will Saw Stop now inflate the price a bit to increase profit margins?
    Just need to be focused on a non sensing table saw if that’s the case when I’m in the market this spring.

    • Rtw

      Yup, you vote with your $.

  • VieteranGunsmith

    Unless the Bosch saw parts are precise duplicates of the SawStop parts, and the same in position and number within the unit as an assembly the only similarity between them is that they function similarly. The fact that the SawStop damages the blade and the Reaxx does not should be an indication to any thinking and intelligent person they are not the same thing and thus negating the claim against Bosch. But then, we are talking about federal government bureaucracy and those intellectual attributes don’t appear to be present in most cases.
    Bosch makes great products, and who outside of woodworkers has ever heard of SawStop? That in itself speaks volumes.
    Personally I am sick and tired of the abuse of litigation to attack competitors, whether they be political or commercial. We have a problem in this country when people can file suit in court for disputes instead of by way of making your product better or your philosophy more attractive to others, choosing instead to go judgement shopping. Pathetically sad state of affairs brought on by the empowerment of people who lack the courage to compete and persevere.
    It all starts with participation trophies.

  • RandyandCarol Pittman

    I remember when the inventor of the Saw Stop technology first developed it, he wasn’t planning on manufacturing saws, he tried to license it to current manufacturers, but nobody wanted it. That’s why he created his own business to begin with. I can understand his desire to keep the technology for himself, but I am all for competition in manufacturing. Maybe with additional competition, we can get the price down to where I could actually afford to buy one!

  • Michael Holden

    My main objection to Bosch is that they have no intention of selling them in europe, and with no valid explanation.

    • Rtw

      They don’t want to have to fight the European counterpart to the ITC too.

      • Michael Holden

        AFAIK Sawstop only have a US patent, Bosch would be free to sell in europe, if they could be bothered. Though they’d probably rip us off as with anything else, compare a 1627EVSPK router at $219 vs GMF1600 at £373. Thieving ba$$%RDS

  • Duster

    The short explanation is that the type of accident that SawStop and the REAXX technologies protect against is not very common at all. Yes, they are extremely expensive, **when** they happen. But despite that, they are not remotely a high risk event. The European requirement of a riving knife, rather than a splitter, takes care of the vast majority of the risk in saw accidents. The same is true of the REAXX technology. The riving knife on a SawStop does more to protect a user than the special characteristics of the SS ever will. It just isn’t as flashy because it actually eliminates the hazard of kick back almost completely.

    Only in the US is there anything remotely resembling a market for either SS or R because the country is still transitioning from older saws with terrible blade guards and splitters to genuine riving knife systems. An internet search will reveal extensive confusion about the differences between splitters and riving knives. As the SawStop litigation, and that boneheaded lawsuit by the ambulance chaser for a knucklehead operating a saw with No safeties at all, showed, in the US bad design can still be a real hazard. Even here though, changes since the mid-70s in safety recommendations have made riving knives standard equipment.

    Ultimately the only time either the SS or RX system would actually be a benefit is if you either are operating the system without any other safety measure – the SS and RX mechanisms give more room for “safe” stupidity – or when by some extraordinary circumstance an operator actually pushes a hand into the blade, an eventuality far, far less common than kick back. It would follow that European makers, well aware of the effectiveness of riving knives and the relative cost vs benefit considerations of SS and RX technology, know there’s no market.