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post #1 of 8 Old 06-30-2013, 11:46 PM Thread Starter
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First commission

On a whim, I posted an ad in my local Craigslist that I would be willing to make workbenches for people.

I got an email this evening from a guy asking for a quote for an 8' long bench. He included plans for a simple bench made out of 2x4s. Given that the wood for it would run about $90, I quoted him a price of $150 for an 8' long bench made out of 2x4s for the base and 2x6s for the top, and he accepted it!
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post #2 of 8 Old 07-01-2013, 01:02 AM
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Congrats. Good luck with it.
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post #3 of 8 Old 07-01-2013, 04:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Curl View Post
On a whim, I posted an ad in my local Craigslist that I would be willing to make workbenches for people.

I got an email this evening from a guy asking for a quote for an 8' long bench. He included plans for a simple bench made out of 2x4s. Given that the wood for it would run about $90, I quoted him a price of $150 for an 8' long bench made out of 2x4s for the base and 2x6s for the top, and he accepted it!
Congratulations on getting a paying project. You may pick up some pointers on pricing out a job by doing this one. It all depends on how little you can afford to work for. Lets say that you have all the lumber stacked up ready to go at 8 AM. If you are completely done by noon, you have pocketed $15/hour.

Do you think you can knock it out that fast, and are you satisfied with making $60? I will admit when I started out $15 per hour on some projects was a lot better than breaking even, or worse yet winding up in the hole. For however long a project takes, it's time out of your life.






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post #4 of 8 Old 07-01-2013, 06:59 AM
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Congrats.
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post #5 of 8 Old 07-01-2013, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks folks. Cabinetman, this is a hobby for me as I have a full-time job as a software developer. As such, I think $60 for a few hours work is fine. It keeps me busy and I get a week's worth of free lunches out of the deal.

Now if I was trying to use it to pay the bills, I'd be homeless before long.
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post #6 of 8 Old 07-18-2013, 01:41 PM Thread Starter
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i finished buying the wood for this ...

the frame is 2x3s doubled up, with a top of 3 2x10 pieces of douglas fir. the shelf below is 15/32 ply. there will be 6 legs: one on each corner, and a pair in the middle.

total cost for the wood: $74. So I'm looking at a profit of $76. I spent about an hour last night figuring stuff out and cutting and assembling 4 of the legs. Another couple of hours tonight to finish it up, so I'm looking at about $25 per hour profit.

heck fire, i'll take it.
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post #7 of 8 Old 07-18-2013, 02:36 PM
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That's great Chris, its always nice to be paid for having fun in the shop.

I take commissions for small projects too.

I charge by the hour and include time spent in material selection/purchase and any design work that is required.

If I start the project with a clean shop I charge for shop clean up after completion.

To insure that the client gets a square deal I use the stopwatch function on my phone.

The clock stops for breaks, phone calls and any prolonged head scratching...



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If I make a mistake and have to buy more material those costs come out of my pocket.

I don't do any advertising.

When I deliver the finished product I give the client my card and ask them to give them to interested parties.

Please post pics of the bench.

When I die, I want to go peacefully like my grandfather did — in his
sleep. Not yelling and screaming like the passengers in his car.

Jack Handey
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post #8 of 8 Old 07-22-2013, 12:55 AM Thread Starter
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pics of the bench

the top is 3 8' long 2x10 doug fir

i am putting a shelf below, but that is not done yet.
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