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Forum topic by krisrimes posted 09-05-2013 03:43 PM 2331 views 0 times favorited 30 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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111 posts in 2739 days

09-05-2013 03:43 PM

I have been recently contacted by an individual to put together a prototype and quote for some folding beach chairs. The client sent me a picture of what they are looking for and asked if I would be able to build them sturdy enough to hold up to the abuse a chair would get at a hotel. I sent back a reply asking how many they needed and what the time frame was. I am still trying to digest the reply back, the hotel orders from 800 to 1000 per year and they are looking for somewhere local to get them. For me, this is an enourmous opportunity. Some might not see it as all that big, but I do work a 40 hour a week job on top of trying to make a little extra cash through what I can sell. I am going to go back over all of Huff’s advice about pricing and see if I can’t come up with a winning bid. Wish me luck.

30 replies so far

View UpstateNYdude's profile


917 posts in 2187 days

#1 posted 09-05-2013 04:09 PM

Damn you’re going to have to crank out a minimum of 2-3 chairs a day to keep up with that, you might want to take some vacation from work to get the jigs built lol…good luck I hope you get it.

-- Nick, “I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it.” – Vincent Van Gogh

View Puzzleman's profile


417 posts in 3148 days

#2 posted 09-05-2013 04:57 PM

My suggestion is to see about farming out some of the work or having someone else make the sub-assemblies. Since you already have a full time job, you need to think about the most efficient way for you to do this by using others.

-- Jim Beachler, Chief Puzzler,

View krisrimes's profile


111 posts in 2739 days

#3 posted 09-05-2013 06:17 PM

I hear you, I already have someone lined up to do the canvas for the seats. I will be looking for ways to make this work.

View rrww's profile


263 posts in 2317 days

#4 posted 09-05-2013 06:23 PM

Congrats, if you land it it could lead to a lot more work from word of mouth. Think long and hard about pricing try to be fair. Make sure you have a well written contract that covers all your bases, payment terms, storage, lead times, and any deposit. Buying lumber, building chairs and waiting 60 or more days to get paid can raise your blood pressure a couple notches. 1000 chairs a year is 2.7 chairs per day 7 days a week, you might wanna look into some vacation time from work.

Hope ya land it!

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3852 days

#5 posted 09-05-2013 06:25 PM

Start looking for a pin router.

View Nygiants77's profile


57 posts in 2162 days

#6 posted 09-05-2013 09:55 PM

If all goes well you may just be quitting that job good luck

View tncraftsman's profile


93 posts in 3343 days

#7 posted 09-06-2013 12:49 PM

Congratulations! Welcome to the wonderful world of production woodworking a.k.a. wood production manufacturing.

Making multiple items in a production setting is a different animal than making something in your workshop on the weekends.

Accuracy in your jigs is key. Forget about making them out of wood, use steel. Wood will wear easily and something that is 1/64 out of alignment on #74 could add up when you realize it on #235 and you are 1/4” inch out of alignment.

Good luck and keep us posted on how it goes.

View waho6o9's profile


8525 posts in 2781 days

#8 posted 09-06-2013 01:20 PM

Good luck and congratulations.

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15703 posts in 2823 days

#9 posted 09-06-2013 01:24 PM

Wow, an incredible opportunity. If that’d happen around here, I’d talk w/ the local cabinet shop (does production work) and ‘team’ with them on repetitive cuts and parts fab. I’d concentrate on assy and finishing. So much work there, good luck definitely!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View bowedcurly's profile


519 posts in 1933 days

#10 posted 09-06-2013 01:31 PM

sounds like pneumatics with a large air compresser and clamping rack are in the future I seen a clamping rack on C list for 2500 in nashville

-- Staining killed the wood<<<<<>>>>>Dyeing gave it life

View yrob's profile


340 posts in 3857 days

#11 posted 09-06-2013 01:32 PM

good for you if you get the job. I never had to deal with large scale production for woodworking but given the numbers you are giving this seems very hard to do for a one map shop who has another job. Just the logistics do not add up. how are you going to store hundreds of chairs before
delivery, store the wood required to build them , etc.. Sounds like you may
have to setup a business with a few people and sufficiently large rented space. one guy to cut parts, one to assemble and one to do the finishing. also will you have to outlay the thousands of dollar in material before you deliver and get paid ? Still despite all these issues it is a great opportunity and i wish you success.

-- Yves

View Makarov's profile


102 posts in 2010 days

#12 posted 09-06-2013 01:57 PM

If you have not done so, look at incorporating your business as an LLC (limited liability corporation) if one of your chairs breaks and someone gets hurt, you could loose everything you have ever earned. An LLC is inexpensive and easy to set up in most states. Good luck with the contract looks like your on your way.


-- "Complexity is easy; Simplicity is difficult." Georgy Shragin Designer of ppsh41 sub machine gun

View Nygiants77's profile


57 posts in 2162 days

#13 posted 09-06-2013 02:25 PM

I would take Eric’s advice. When something goes wrong businesses are ready to pass down the blame. So even if something lands on you the LLC will be a nice cushion.

View SteviePete's profile


226 posts in 3507 days

#14 posted 09-06-2013 04:25 PM

Sounds like you are trying to dump a great hobby. ...don’t forget to pay employee taxes quarterly. Good luck.

-- Steve, 'Sconie Great White North

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3852 days

#15 posted 09-06-2013 04:41 PM

They may have unrealistic expectations in terms of price. If
their guests have been breaking China-made chairs,
they may be looking for much better quality at not
a much bigger price.

Some business that rents “furniture” for events approached
me to build “benches” (upholstered boxes). They wanted
them super cheap. Know why? because they would throw
them out after the rental. They were looking to build
a business around not storing the stuff and the miracle
shop that could keep up with their demands for speed,
delivery and rock-bottom pricing would be a godsend to
them. As I saw it, they wanted to pass all the warehousing,
labor and headaches to the manufacturer.

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