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PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2010 7:59 pm 
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So my friend's sister asked if I could make another of my inlayed serving trays for her mother as a gift.

Here's the tray I made for a friend (See this thread for details http://www.woodworking.org/InfoExchange ... highlight= )

Image

Image

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I've only sold a few pieces to neighbors and relatives so I have no idea what I would ask for that.

What would you charge? Those are hand cut dovetails and hand routed inlays. I didn't really keep track of how many hours it took to make that one.

I could probably skip the dovetails to keep the price lower . . . but even then?

I'm sure you'll ask what type of market this is in or location. My friends sister (and mother) live in Boston.

How about this . . . if you were putting this on the internet for sale, what price would you put on it?

Thanks,

-Brian


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2010 8:13 pm 
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If someone was reluctant to pay $50 for it then I would gladly keep it. $75 is a moderate price for something as finely crafted as that apiece.
Don


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:22 pm 
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I have to agree with the others. That tray is worth at least $75.00.
That being said, you may know that I have been trying to sell things I've made at a flea market with out much success.
Now, rember my stuff is not as well made or as useful as what you have done. Im trying to sell scroll saw vases, scroll crosses, wooden wrist watches, key chains, and even my wooden can crushers. All these things have already made and I have not had a request for custom building them.
I have sold several can crushers to friends for $50.00 but, I have trouble getting $15.00 for a "That's so cute" scroll saw wooden watch or $10.00 for a "That is a beautiful cross" or $5.00 for "That is a clever cheese board" at a flea market.
Also, a flea market is not a good place to sell "Arts and Crafts". People at our flea market are looking for that $2.00 antque hand plane that is worth 50 bucks or that .50cent piece of glass wear that is so rare it should only be seen on "Antique Road Show".
If I am ask to make something for someone (for them selves or to be used as a gift) I would start with the cost of materials (including sand paper and finish) and a rather low dollar per hour labor charge. Rember most of us are working with wood as a hobby not trying to make a living out of it but, we still have "some pride" and a few tools that are nessary to create the item.
Talent...??? Well, we will leave that for a future post. :D

Rog

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:56 pm 
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after reading your initial post and before reading the others the number that came to mind was $75-$100. I would also simplify the tray by using box joints and not sacrifice joint strength by doing so.


Hope this helps

Jeremy


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 12:34 am 
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There's the story about the old guy that was selling woodworking stuff that he'd made... a customer came up to a chair he had and asked "how much"
"$100" the old man said
"Great!" said the customer, "I'll take 8 of them-- can you make them for me?"
"Sure" says the old man, "that'll be $1500"
"$1500!?" says the customer-- "but you only want $100 for that one!"
"Yes" says the old man, "but the first one was fun to make... the other 7 will be work"

I guess my point is this-- if this is a favor for a friend and you will enjoy or learn from it, eeking over whether to charge $50 or $75 is not in my book worth the mental effort... if it'll be fun, come up with a price that you both will be happy with-- in my mind this means covering my expenses and getting enough dough to cover a new router bit for every couple of hours "fun" it will take... If however, this will be work... come up with a price that you would be happy with if you had to make a dozen of the item... after all, you should be justly rewarded for WORK and ARTISTRY that you do-- If there is a deadline and it will add stress, this almost always pushes a project over to the "work" catagory for me.

None of this is to say that you shouldn't get paid for your craft... far from it... I can only guess the actual labor hours you have in that piece and I'll just guess and say 4(ish) actual hours of work (at least with the dovetails being hand cut... so probably more really and at 4 hours you'd be working pretty quickly) and around $20-25 in materials (and shop stuff like sandpaper, finishing materials, scroll saw blades, etc etc?) If these were the numbers I was looking at I would probably charge a friend a "fun" price of around $75 just to cover expenses and maybe buy a new plane iron or router bit...

but to make a one off custom made item that I considered "work" would have to be more... probably double the friendly rate which would work out to around $25 per hour which is a little more like what many artisans makes for their work

....as for a custom made piece that is your "signature work" I would also not skimp on the detail work... this is afterall your signature work... but that is just me...

Beautiful tray once again... sorry if my post rambled on a bit (I do that)
Lawrence

ps- oh yeah... and according to my old buddy that taught me bowlturning the price also drops relative to the attractiveness of the customer... unless you are a mechanic of course ;)


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 12:47 am 
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I'd like to add to see more real profit. I know there is more then 3 hours in there to charge only $75.00 materials time to clean up solvents and glues. .....

I'd suggest you make no less then 3 up to 5 trays. you'd have everything set up for each piece you can stack your inlays pump out the dovetails; between hand cut box or dove go dove. finish one finish Five

I'd say you would see more return for your time

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 10:48 am 
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Mango wrote:
I'd like to add to see more real profit. I know there is more then 3 hours in there to charge only $75.00 materials time to clean up solvents and glues. .....

I'd suggest you make no less then 3 up to 5 trays. you'd have everything set up for each piece you can stack your inlays pump out the dovetails; between hand cut box or dove go dove. finish one finish Five

I'd say you would see more return for your time


I like your thinking there Mango! :) That is what I thought when I started making my "Can Crushers". I found that making 5 at a time (that's just how my material works out) was just as easy (altho a little more time comsuming) than making one. I can set up the saw or router to cut enough pieces for 5 at a time instead of just one and make more dollars per hour. However, until I find a market, I have to store them and wait for the "right" person to put down $50.00 for one.
I have sold or given away 25 or so and have 3 still in storage ready to go. I am still NOT getting rich by any means but, this is just a hobby for me.

Rog

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Dont badmouth no strangers, they just friends you aint met yet.

An ounce of responsibility is worth a pound of State and Federal laws.

I spent most of my money on woodworking
tools and beer, the rest I just wasted.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:31 am 
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I think Lawence's reasoning is spot on ... 4+ hours of labor, working quickly, plus materials etc.

I can't imagine that the inlays went quickly. That takes time and thus, money.

Personally, I think $100 would be a very fair price. Oh, and don't forgo the dovetails.

As an aside, is the Nittany Lion logo trademarked by Penn State? I suspect you wouldn't be the first person to profit from it, but there might be legal issues if you end up "in production".

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:43 am 
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DMoening wrote:
As an aside, is the Nittany Lion logo trademarked by Penn State? I suspect you wouldn't be the first person to profit from it, but there might be legal issues if you end up "in production".


Oh I'm sure it is. I actually mentioned that in my original thread. I'm pretty sure there won't be much of a "production" run for these. I doubt I'll ever make more than this one, maybe another. They'd only be for friends and family regardless. So I think I'll risk it. :-D

And there was definitely more than 4 hours of work. The inlays probably took me 3 alone. Dovetails were probably 1-2. I'm not that fast yet on either of them . . .

-Brian


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 12:17 pm 
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The inlays probably took me 3 alone. Dovetails were probably 1-2. I'm not that fast yet on either of them

Wow, I had no idea.

You'll get better (and faster) with each one you do.

In this case bump the price to $125. (And don't look back)

You'd be hard pressed to find a like item for less.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:49 pm 
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One thing that you also have to think about is that when you put a logo on it, it becomes personalized. and think of the merchandise that teams sell be it NFL teams or College teams. A short sleeved T-shirt will be $30 from a team store, and Fans blow money on that stuff without hesitation.

You have a unique market when supplying something with a team logo on it. fanatics won't hesitate to drop the money down when it's something they want as a fan.

For this reason alone, I'd suggest a starting value of $75 and upwards of $125. Go look at some team apparel sites. they might have wood clocks or TV trays or something that will shock you how much they are listed for. And if you are going to sell them on the internet with optional logos, I'd definitely start them out at $100. Fans are exactly their definition... a fanatic. $100 is nothing to lay down for their game room or game day experience.

Plus you are building a fine hand crafted personalized piece. Without the logo, I'd say it's worth $50 - $75!

By the way, excellent work!

P.S. Coming from Ohio, Make some Ohio State ones, and put whatever you want on the price, you'll sell lots of them! We're crazy here... ;)

P.S.S. Watch out for copyright infringements selling on the internet. you probably need to check out how logo's can be used and sold. maybe you can't say something like "Official Penn State Serving tray"... or as long as you don't put on the universities name or something like that, I'm just guessing here.

Andy


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