Projects that sell - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 07-31-2020, 10:20 PM Thread Starter
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Projects that sell

Hi guys,
I'm looking for some ideas on small projects that I could batch out, and that sell. I need to start making some money on the side with this hobby, and the small"tips" I get from family and friends (on top of costs), is not cutting it anymore.

Thinking things like...
Cutting boards
Keep-sake boxes
Dovetail boxes
Storage crates

What else have you all made that sells pretty well?

Any and all ideas are welcome and greatly appreciated.

-"starving" wood worker.
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post #2 of 7 Old 07-31-2020, 10:31 PM
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Are you planning on an online shop of some sort, like Etsy, for instance? Or word of mouth, referrals, weekend booth, etc.?

We've made about 75-80 cutting boards, mostly end grain, and there's not a lot of profit in them but you will make money. We've also done a lot of trivets - use less wood, quicker to make, sell easily, but hard to get more than about $45 for a trivet. Again, you'll still make money but just not a lot.

I guess it depends on how quickly you turn work out and what your raw costs are as to whether you'll make much doing this. If it takes you 10 hours to make an end grain cutting board because you're not set up to do them quickly then you'll be working for less than minimum wage. But if you can batch make them 4 or 5 at a time and still do them in 10-15 hours total then you'll do well.

It seems the folks that make money have found a niche and fill it well with good marketing and customer support. It may take a while to find that niche, though.

David
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post #3 of 7 Old 07-31-2020, 11:40 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by difalkner View Post
Are you planning on an online shop of some sort, like Etsy, for instance? Or word of mouth, referrals, weekend booth, etc.?

We've made about 75-80 cutting boards, mostly end grain, and there's not a lot of profit in them but you will make money. We've also done a lot of trivets - use less wood, quicker to make, sell easily, but hard to get more than about $45 for a trivet. Again, you'll still make money but just not a lot.

I guess it depends on how quickly you turn work out and what your raw costs are as to whether you'll make much doing this. If it takes you 10 hours to make an end grain cutting board because you're not set up to do them quickly then you'll be working for less than minimum wage. But if you can batch make them 4 or 5 at a time and still do them in 10-15 hours total then you'll do well.

It seems the folks that make money have found a niche and fill it well with good marketing and customer support. It may take a while to find that niche, though.

David
I've thought about Etsy, just haven't looked into the fees and such yet. I was going to start with Facebook/craigslist around where I live. I have gotten some jobs for friends at work, and hoping that turns into more jobs. My issue there though, is I don't usually charge them much more than cost. Maybe I need to change that.

I have, what I would consider, the "essential tools"... TS, jointer, planer, clamps, planes multiple benches, bandsaw... I do not have a drum sander (which I think would help a lot with end grain boards).
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post #4 of 7 Old 08-01-2020, 05:35 AM
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This past spring I sold a bunch of cedar planters through the Nextdoor app. You might be surprised how many of your neighbors are looking for local sources of things to buy without going into a crowded store plus you get to meet your neighbors. I also picked up a lot of side jobs. Once the neighborhood finds someone locally who will rip lumber for them for a reasonable price you'll stay busy. I've picked up all kinds of work through the app...everything from selling my own projects to painting mail boxes to making an extra shelf to...lots of stuff..even walking sticks. You also get to learn who to avoid at all costs. You'll of course run into people who want it for next to nothing and want it done NOW! Drop everyone else IMMEDIATELY because MY problems are more important than anyone else's.... Yeah..they're out there too..

I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
Marty or Marty Farty if you feel mean.

Last edited by allpurpose; 08-01-2020 at 05:41 AM.
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post #5 of 7 Old 08-01-2020, 10:03 AM
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Kids toys - wood and natural finish!!! HOT STUFF right now. Sell it on Etsy
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post #6 of 7 Old 08-01-2020, 10:07 AM
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Have you thought about hope chest/blanket chests...I use to sell the crap out of these..Just gotta keep the price within reach....making baby beds to reuse the mattress...

Similiar...mine would be 4 poster bed with a teddy bear cut out...
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Last edited by Rebelwork; 08-01-2020 at 10:14 AM.
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post #7 of 7 Old 08-01-2020, 04:18 PM
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Spheres,,, I did just call them ‘balls’ but that didn’t sound right. I turn many different sizes and shapes, and finish with a Nice Benjamin. Moore clear....I sell about a dozen a week at a friends gift shop...

Reproduction ammo cases, do a little wood burning on them,,,, nice custom items.

Custom made gun boxes, fitted and lined interiors,,,,also display cases.....again good money,
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