I am going to try to keep this thread updated so that my process is visible by all, that it may help them find the path of least resistance.
Step 1 Concept Invention thought of, preliminary research online etc.
Step 2 search of prior art/patents @ USPTO.gov by myself
Step 3 Located Patent Attorney
After searching I found Rob Nathans who for $375 did an exhaustive search and agreed to write up the patent for $2800 Great to deal with, and not insanely expensive.
Step 4 proof and revise patent drafts and drawings
Step 5 Decide if I want to lisense or manufacture (the impossibility of talking to a manufacturer to license has me going the manufacture route)
Step 6 Use Thomasnet and alibaba to find manufacturer (alibaba was more informative and helpful)
Step 7 (current step) Signed a non-disclosure with manufacturer and am beginning design and tooling phase.
If there are any questions feel free to post them here, I will do my best to answer them.