- OR - Is There Money In Wood

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Forum topic by Mark Wilson posted 04-05-2016 07:13 AM 1889 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Mark Wilson

2172 posts in 1115 days

04-05-2016 07:13 AM

I say there is.
I’m Here, today, in fact, to present incontrovertible proof that there is, indeed, MONEY IN WOOD.
Exhibit A:

A-Five-Shekel Piece, one on each side, for a total of Ten Shekels
B-One thin Dime, American, used as a plug in one of my very first turnings.
C-On Five-Cent Piece, American.
D-One nuther Five-Cent Piece, American.

Then, there’s this. Three, four years ago, I built me a treasure chest. I had run out of the pickle jars I had used, for centuries, to empty my pocket change into. I shall build for me a treasure chest, with a coopered lid, good, safe locks, and mighty joints. I shall build it, in point of fact, in a very sturdy fashion, indeed.
A word about hinges, before I proceed:
Only a few days ago, I was bragging up the Barrel Hinge to one of my illustrious Buddies. My mighty Treasure Chest was constructed using barrel hinges. As I said, it was at least four years ago I built this treasure chest. Over that time, I had relocated it countless times. There are no handles on the chest. Instead (and, this was by design – to make it as unattractive a target as possible), I made the lid to overhang the ends of the box 1/4”. To pick it up, one must lift it by the tips of one’s fingers. It has lived here, in the Dungeon, all that time, way back, against the wall behind my table saw, buried by various things that landed on it, in addition to about two inches of dust, from said table saw. I had to get something else out from that netherworld today, so I decided to clean up the whole area, and relocate my Mighty Treasure Chest to another spot. I lifted it and moved it to this side of the saw, and set it down.
It was then that the idea came to me for this Forum Topic. I went in the house a fetched the items in the above photo. Then I turned around and lifted the chest to put it up on the workbench for a portrait.

Barrel hinges aren’t supposed to come out, once they’re installed. Alack and alas, out they did come.

But, as I described, she’s a good, sturdy, corn-fed box. There was no other damage. I re affixed the hinges (tightening them in much more tightly, this time – that little tiny spectacle screwdriver(?), one can only do so much), fetched my little Butler’s dust pan, and made myself familiar with the Dungeon floor. Exhibit B:

Don’t get excited. Those chains are simple costume bangles that someone inexplicably left on my woodpile, many moons ago.

None-the-worse, for having beed dropped. The Mighty Chest weighs, oh, a ton, mebees a ton-and-a-half. Oh yeah. There must be at least a hundred dollars in there.

I’m not just goofing around, here, goofy, though, I may be. There’s a point to all this. Let us continue.

If it’s not too much trouble, I should like to read stories, with photos, when possible, of my Buddies’ successes in the sale of their works. My thoughts go to three categories:
1) Your very first sale.
B) Your most lucrative sale.
Also) Your most satisfying sale.
(Amounts received are not required, but may add to the interest of your story, inasmuch as being able to make comparisons between the three – one doesn’t necessarily mean the other.)
You may well note that the items in this treatise are still in my possession. So, they don’t count, in any case. I will begin forthwith, in the comment section, below, with my own example.
Please join me. There could be some excellent schooling to be had in this, for many of us.

-- Mark

16 replies so far

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Mark Wilson

2172 posts in 1115 days

#1 posted 04-05-2016 08:08 AM

My very first sale, as a Woodsmith, was (not to put too fine a point on it), a refinishing job. My neighbor, Al (yes, Al of the later refinishing project that went so horribly wrong, for which I was paid, despite the fact that I failed magnificently, and it had to be re-done by someone else – the Project whose name must never be spoken), heard me making noise, and noticed my growing timber collection on the driveway. Al came over.
“Can you refinish something for me?” implored he.
“I can try,” quoth I, “though I haven’t much knowledge, or experience in refinishing.”
“That’s fine. I’ll be glad to pay you to just make it look better than it does, so I can give it my niece. Time isn’t an issue. Take as long on it as you need to.”
He brought it over. (Note there’s no lathe, no table saw, no fancy workbench – in short, a remarkably un-cluttered Dungeon. I really was a a “babe-in-arms,” in Woodsmithery.)

Eleven months later, I gave it back to him. I had to teach myself everything I thought I needed to know, before beginning, once I saw that this was no dime-store knockoff. The actual job took about three weeks.

The most lucrative sale I’ve made in Woodsmithery, was The Good Egg.

It was purchased from me by my friend and neighbor, Joye, who paid more than I asked. I asked $750. She gave me $800, because, well, she’s nuts, and she said she “believes in me.”

The most satisfying was Ross's Box, which brought far less money. The satisfaction was in the story behind it. The gratification lay in the fact that I was nervous as a cat about getting it just right, pleasing Mrs. Ross, and, in the end, she couldn’t have been happier with it. This photo shows where the box wound up – on Ross’s fishing-lure-carving table, full of congratulatory notes he received upon his retirement. I didn’t, and still don’t, know Ross from Adam. But, the knowledge that something I made touched someone deeply means the world to me.

-- Mark

View robscastle's profile


5143 posts in 2256 days

#2 posted 04-05-2016 08:11 AM

Some projects I made some 6 years ago

So I have to agree there is money in woodwork

As for gold its there too!

-- Regards Rob

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Mark Wilson

2172 posts in 1115 days

#3 posted 04-05-2016 08:35 AM

Thanks for participating, Rob.

-- Mark

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2522 posts in 3736 days

#4 posted 04-05-2016 10:25 AM

My best paying work was for carving the 4 archangels, each standing approx 2”6” high (posted way back on LJ’s) but my most satisfying was only a couple of weeks ago with the Mobius Ribbon I carved the dogs on, I was about to sell when I was told the purchaser was a ex Special Service soldier who was a dog handler in Iraq and Afghanistan, the look on his face, the smile and the hand shake when I gave it to him was worth more than money.

-- Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

View lew's profile


12149 posts in 3807 days

#5 posted 04-05-2016 01:18 PM

You mean people will actually buy stuff made of wood????!

Almost everything I make is given away as presents for one occasion or another.

Actually, I just completed this project for my sister’s Minister (got paid for it, too!)

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View mahdee's profile


3919 posts in 1820 days

#6 posted 04-05-2016 01:27 PM

Heck, some folks worship wood.


View jumbojack's profile


1678 posts in 2676 days

#7 posted 04-05-2016 01:34 PM

Green burial caskets. I just delivered one. Must be made of pine. NO metal of any kind. I used 20’ of 1/4” dowel to make all the joinery fast. Nearly a quart of glue. A very solemn build.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View leafherder's profile


1440 posts in 2004 days

#8 posted 04-05-2016 06:52 PM

Have not yet had the good fortune to make money from selling wood although giving away my creations has brought non-monetary rewards. But seeing your post has inspired me, my coin hoard is outgrowing my own pickle jars and I have a few logs that have been asking to be hollowed out – must find a suitable lid for my very own treasure chest – or two – or three – or more. Must admit that Scrooge McDuck is my idol – I dream of someday swimming in my very own money bin. :)

-- Leafherder

View JoeinGa's profile


7739 posts in 2059 days

#9 posted 04-05-2016 07:16 PM

Well last weekend was my first “showing”... My daughter signed up for an Arts & Craps fair over near her and she sold a couple hundred dollars of my bowls and bird houses. (I’m actually not certain which ones she sold because she has about 40 of each. ) She said a lot of the people were telling her that she was pricing stuff too low, so that’s a good sign.
And this coming weekend there’s another In Warm Springs GA which is near the town we used to live in, so I’m gonna go over and sit in with her on this one (which means I’ll probably be hugging everybody that I haven’t seen in 10 years or so). And this weekend we’ll “adjust” some of the prices based on the feedback she was getting last week.

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View Dan's profile


714 posts in 1944 days

#10 posted 04-05-2016 08:26 PM

One of my first boxes from a couple years or so ago. Made with Teak which cost about 220 dollars. Sold it for 200 dollars.

-- Dan

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2742 days

#11 posted 04-06-2016 12:22 AM

I sell a lot of wood!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Mark Wilson's profile

Mark Wilson

2172 posts in 1115 days

#12 posted 04-06-2016 02:32 AM

John: You know, then. Don’t you? If you just dump your pocket change into a jar, or something, all of a sudden, just like that, twenty-five, thirty years later, you’ve got, like a hundred samolians.

-- Mark

View leafherder's profile


1440 posts in 2004 days

#13 posted 04-07-2016 06:42 PM

My coin hoard started in 1982 with 1 giant pickle jar and a VIMH that said “I wonder how many pennies this would hold?” Answer came 19 years later – 5349, but by then my OCD tendencies had kicked in and I now have separate jars for pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters. I rationalize it as an “emergency fund” for when the solar flares cause a zombie apocalypse resulting in the collapse of the paper money economy and a return to precious metals as the basic unit of exchange – which is also why I can’t bring myself to throw away broken electrical cords containing copper. Of course the copper wire also makes a nice accent on my wooden canes (see my project Ash Cane) – which is a nice way to return to the subject of woodworking.

-- Leafherder

View Mark Wilson's profile

Mark Wilson

2172 posts in 1115 days

#14 posted 04-07-2016 07:40 PM

John, sometime in the late 80s, I heard Neal Boortz saying, “Never buy anything with a $1 bill. Stash those away in different places. And, while you’re at it, use the change in your pocket. Put it in a jar.” It sounded like fun. What’s a dollar? What’s pocket change, in the scheme of things? (That was not VIMH. That was me.) I’ve got dollar bills and change in tool boxes, dollar bills serving as shims in ,y router table fence, and pickle, jelly, juice jars, full of change, (all mixed up). I go to those jars, when I’m hard up. But I’ve never emptied them and counted. The Treasure Chest used to have a lot of $1s in it. Then, a couple years ago, I got hard up enough to clean them out, and traded them in for four C notes. The reason I don’t count the jar change is that I couldn’t handle the disappointment, quite frankly. ($53.49, after nineteen years?) Many moons ago, I had a friend (yes, I used to have some of those), who, I always made it point to walk a couple steps behind him. He didn’t like having pennies in his pocket, so he would just drop them on the ground. Just a couple days ago, I was strolling out of the store, after having procured a pack of smokes (with money I begged from Dad), when this homeless guy asks me if I could spare some change. “Why, yes, I can,” said I. I had three pennies in my pocket. No more. No less. I offered. He accepted, and said, “Thank you.” Technically, my old friend gave the homeless guy three cents.
Now, back to wood.
I have something under clamps that needs to come out from under said clamps. It is my first effort in what I hope will be a game-changer, in the “Money in Wood” department.

-- Mark

View prometej065's profile


335 posts in 3735 days

#15 posted 04-11-2016 05:29 PM

beautiful and imaginative..


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