help pricing osage rocker

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Forum topic by okwoodshop posted 09-21-2009 07:57 PM 1345 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View okwoodshop's profile


448 posts in 2592 days

09-21-2009 07:57 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I need help pricing the osage rocker i am about finished with, My family has always gotten them first so i never have sold one. I told them all that I needed to sell this one or the shop was going to close due to lack of supplies, I know it isn’t in the same class as the maloof style rockers on here but what would be a fair price??? I don’t have much in the wood as the tree was given to me. I have time in cutting and a small sawmill bill. I haven’t kept up with hours as i have had to start and stop to many times. would like to know a ball park figure. I promise I won’t take offense just want some HONEST ideas and i know how the economy is right now. you can see the rocker in my projects and i will post a pic as soon as the finish is dry, thanks

5 replies so far

View gerrym526's profile


266 posts in 3225 days

#1 posted 09-22-2009 02:19 AM

I’ve often asked woodworkers who ran their own businesses the same question. The answer was fairly consistent across several people-1) Keep track of the hours you spent, and 2) Price based on an hourly rate of $20-50 per hour depending on the level of sophistication of the work.
I looked at your rocker projects and think your work is very high quality- different from the Maloof style rockers, but very good work.
Don’t let the economy dictate the price (unless you really need the money). Your skill has value and there will be people willing to pay for quality work from a woodworker. Once you start chasing a market that always wants the lowest price, it’s hard to raise it when the economy rebounds.
Hope this helps.

-- Gerry

View huff's profile


2828 posts in 2702 days

#2 posted 09-22-2009 04:28 AM

I like Gerry’s advice. As woodworkers, we usually want to be fair to the customer and don’t want to charge too much, but most of the time we’re not fair to ourselves and end up giving our work away. If you don’t value your time or talents, then trust me, nobody will. Time and materials is a good way to figure your price. Materials is a must, labor is a little more difficult to figure. If you have a lot of learning time involved, then you may want to adjust those hours a little. Your customer shouldn’t have to pay you $50.00 / hour to learn a technique. Just try to be fair to both you and your customer.

-- John @

View FatScratch's profile


189 posts in 2720 days

#3 posted 09-22-2009 02:18 PM

I am a real amateur here, but as someone who does financial analysis all day (without getting too technical), just ask yourself: “If someone asked me to make a duplicate today, what would I charge them?” Meaning, how much money, factoring in supplies and other basic expenses, would it take to motivate you to do the project again? I think that will be the best determinant of what the piece is worth, to you.

View jeffreythree's profile


38 posts in 2593 days

#4 posted 09-22-2009 06:12 PM

It sounds like this is not your first rocker; so you should know about how many work hours you have in it. Also, a material multiplier method would not work here since you have a “discount” on them. I would say choose an hourly rate based on your skill level and multiply it by the number of hours you have in it. If it is higher than you are comfortable with or it is higher than comparable pieces, then you can always go down.

-- My Etsy store:

View daveintexas's profile


365 posts in 3293 days

#5 posted 09-22-2009 07:45 PM

You have recieved some really good info. I am guessing it might be hard to accertain how many “production” hours you have into that rocker.
I would think that somewhere around 40 hours might be fair. Now in our part of the country the door rate is approx. $25.00 per hour. (adjust according to your area)
40 hrs x $25.00 = $1000.00
You said the wood was given to you, but you should still figure the materials.
Maybe 40-50 bd ft of osage orange (bois d arc)
50 bd ft x $5.00 per bd ft= $250.00

So if I built this rocker and were to sell it in Texas , I would be asking between $1200.00 and $1400.00 for the rocker.
And even at that price, I think its kinda low for a custom built, one of a kind rocking char.

Hope this helps some, and good luck selling your chair.


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