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Tips on Writing a Patent Application
Tips on Making Patent Drawings
More Tips on Writing Patent Applications
Patent Guide
Instructions on Writing Utility Patents
• Patent Drawings
You will find it easier to write the description and claims if you have the drawings at hand. Drawings must be included with your application if the subject matter can be illustrated. They should show every feature of your invention that is defined in your claims. If your invention cannot be illustrated, but you can describe it using photographs, include the photographs or copies in your application. 

There are regulations for the size of the paper and the format, the colour of the drawings, their proportion, how they are numbered and referred to, and how they are included in the application. 

To prepare your patent drawings: 

Use good quality paper for your patent drawing
There can’t be any folds or creases, erasures, or underlining in the drawings as they must be capable of being electronically reproduced. The paper size should be 21.6 cm wide by 27.9 cm long and the dimensions for the margins are: 

top and left 2.5 cm 
right 1.5cm 
bottom 1.0cm 

Please don’t write anything in the margins. 

Do your patent drawings in black and white 
Do not use colour except in rare cases. The lines should be well-defined, dense and dark so that they can be accurately reproduced. You must use hatching (fine, parallel lines) to indicate cross-sections and be careful that the hatching does not obscure any of your reference characters. 

Maintain the correct proportions in your patent drawing
Draw all the elements of the same figure in proportion to each other unless a difference in proportion is essential to make the drawing clear. 

Number each figure and element in your patent drawing
Each drawing or figure as well as each described element of the drawing must be numbered. Number the figures consecutively and make the numbers at least 0.32 cm high. Number only the features that you will mention in the description. For example, there shouldn’t be numbered elements in the drawings that aren’t referred to in the description. Use the same number for each element if it is repeated in several drawings. Don’t include any text with your drawings unless the text is necessary for the reader to understand the drawings. 

Assemble the patent drawings 
You can place several drawings on one page. If you have partial drawings that are meant to be assembled to show the invention as a whole, you must place the figures so that the whole drawing can be assembled without concealing any of the individual figures. The drawings are placed together at the end of the application, after the claims. 

Examples of Patent Drawings
Patent Drawing
Collapsible tent frame

In this example of drawings from a tent frame patent, different views are shown of the same elements. Note that the same elements in each figure have the same number.

Patent DrawingSeparable electrical connector

These drawings show three different views of an electrical connector. 

Next page > Patent Descriptions

The source of this information on patent drawings came from the Canadian Intellectual Property Office. The tips would also be helpful for patent applications to the USPTO or WIPO. The CIPO is in no way affiliated with Primedia/About.

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