(Everything you want to know about the T-C T is able to be accessed by clicking the bars at the top of this page. Details on other relevant aspects of the T-C T… those covered by the other QR code sticker… are here or to be found by clicking on the page with 2 dots.)

Covering: Patent, Copyright, Statement, Certification, Study, Testing

This page is a high-tech way of conveying the information usually given in an abbreviated way on SMV emblems that addresses “certifications” and other such manufacturer’s and legal information. In today’s world of near-ubiquitous smartphone usage, and acknowledging the fact that the Tri-Color Triangle ™ is also a high-tech development in its own way, especially for farming and Amish safety, we are taking advantage of QR Code technology to convey much more information than would be possible in a traditional sticker. Plus, we think that the Limited Use License sticker information was long enough already.

Update: Patent granted

The Tri-Color Triangle ™ is a copyrighted design that is additionally patented in the United States and cannot be copied (counterfeited) in any size, nor may the design be utilized by others, whether for sale or not, in any manner (including decorative, clothing, advertising or cultural reference purposes) nor may such potential copies, impinging derivations, trade dress infringement attempts nor counterfeits be sold by any other person or manufacturer (though it was offered under FRAND terms to the ASABE but to no avail… go figure).

Safety Psychographics LLC states that the core, non-copyrighted, non-patented design parameters (the basic SMV emblem design) follows the elements set out by SMV 276 wording, though not, of course, the flawed intent of revision 276.8, which “reflects” unfortunate engineering and professional compromising (in our opinion, as referenced here). We state that the materials used in the T-C T meet or exceed U.S. D.O.T. highway signage standards for durability, fade-resistance and fluorescence, i.e., ASTM D4956-09… and we believe that such standards are sufficient for, if not superior to other standards currently held forth as relevant or “the last word,” flawed and being the result of compromising as they may be.  A link to the Avery-Dennison Omni-Cube ™ sheeting that we utilize in making the T-C T is here, and links to the various ASTM D4956-09 standards are here.

The Tri-Color Triangle ™ that you probably scanned the QR code for is the result of a fairly dramatic visibility improvement over all prior incarnations of this 55+ year old “tractor triangle.” You may have noticed, whether you came across this triangle by day, dusk or night, that it was an obviously more visible and effective safety emblem than what you may have seen previously on the backs of other slow-moving vehicles… marked simply with a conventional orange (and hopefully-)fluorescent triangle with a retro-reflective red border.
more on what “retro-reflective” is and how it contrasts with “reflective”

This T-C T SMV emblem incorporates (and goes beyond) the now-traditional color scheme of the original design designed by Ken Harkness at Ohio State University in the 1960s; that design later being codified by the ASABE (originally the ASAE; those letters living on in the standards nomenclature); the standard being periodically updated through the years to incorporate improvements to the emblem… this occurring through version 276.7… but then taking a first-ever step backwards with current version 276.8: the first time they oddly took a step to incorporate a prohibition, though a flawed-in-the-execution one, with inherent technical issues that reflect (pun intended) the behind-the-scenes shenanigans and questionable intent that brought it about. See our page on The curious case of the revisions that involve SMV emblem standards 276.8 and 279.14)

The sorry, sordid state of affairs referenced on the aforementioned page leaves the Innovative, Progressive and Safety-Minded folks at Safety Psychographics in the position of having to sell our Award-Winning Product (award-winning from ASABE)

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at this time under the status described immediately below. We feel this is the result of undue shenanigans and skulduggery that have seemingly befallen on the ASABE… appearing to be the result of their being a non-profit organization that always needs funding, and therefore, quite possibly being susceptible to, for instance, making public safety compromises… which might be in order to stay in the good graces of some of their listed financial supporters of their Standards Department; supporters who also happen to be in  positions of potentially being adversely financially impacted by any large success of an award-winning product such as the T-C T… a product that was considered to be a New Standard… one that didn’t need to utilize a supporter company’s products to incorporate in the proposed 276.8 standard that the Lighting and Marking Committee saw fit to turn down, and then not consider recommending a study on.


The circumstances under which the Tri-Color Triangle ™ is being used/offered for sale:

Firstly, the Tri-Color Triangle ™ is able to be sold to and used by members of the Plain Community, namely, the Amish and the “horse and buggy” Mennonites, for use on their buggies, sulky carts and farm wagons under stated religious exemptions for using non-standard (or even non-existent) slow moving vehicle markings, as has been historically upheld in the courts.

Secondly, other users of the T-C T, as noted here that agree to the conditions mentioned,  are helping to fill a void that could have easily been avoided by the actions of the Lighting and Safety Committee during their voting meeting on the proposed revision of standard 276.8, where they ultimately, instead of voting up or down on making the design of the T-C T to become the new SMV standard, could not bring themselves to petition for a University study of the merits of the T-C T, even at the supposed behest of the chairman (of course, it appears that the alternate 276.8 “reflective prohibition” version was going before the committee at the same time… why get behind a study?… go figure).

Thirdly, the non-Plain, mostly-farm U.S. would-be users/buyers/study-testers of both sizes of the T-C T are obtaining/buying/using the T-C Ts at this point only if they acknowledge and agree to be participants in the testing of the T-C Ts for this study (details here) and also agree to abide by the Limited Use License for use of T-C Ts as spelled out here. Such persons are being given notice that they are using the T-C Ts at this point only as active participants in the practical road-testing phase of this study being undertaken by us, and that their use/purchase of T-C Ts is under this limited circumstance for the time being, and by their use/purchase of a T-C T they are agreeing to this scope-limited circumstance. Just as some users of SMV emblems consider them in the context of being legally-required like a license plate, our users can consider the display of the T-C T ™ while in this temporary testing status to be akin to displaying a manufacturer plate on a prototype car being legally tested.

mfr plate

No further statements nor certifications are stated or implied until this situation changes in the future… which we fully expect to and are actively working on. This page and site will reflect such eventual changes and this “dynamic link” is keyed into the QR codes.


So, in a nutshell, the Tri-Color Triangle ™ has gone from one man’s safety idea that was initially lauded by the head of the ASABE standards department at first viewing,* to winning from ASABE an AE50 product of the year, to nominally going through a standards revision process (while a financially-favored alternate/opposite/prohibitive version was apparently going through simultaneously, judging from the timeline involved), to not being recommended for a university study (even though we agreed that it was a good idea, in written rebuttal to a committee member’s comment), to now having to undertake a practical, real-world study in the field on our own.

*presented in person at St. Joseph, Michigan ASABE HQ as a possible new standard for the SMV emblem… “We’ll even reimburse your patent costs….” (PS, too late now; final payment was on 5-3-19)