Starting a small wooden toy business

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Forum topic by Skiedra posted 138 days ago 1375 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Skiedra's profile


254 posts in 797 days

138 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: tools toys side business

Hey all,

I have an idea to start a small wooden toy side business.

Power tools I have atm: 1) belt+disk sander 2) vertical drill 3) table saw 4) scrollsaw 5) planner 6) router with a custom ( routing table on the way. 7) jigsaw 8) circural and this other similar saw

Seriously considering Sorotec’s Stepcraft 600 CNC.

Lacking tools: 1) Bandsaw 2) More clamps

At my location, I have this wood available: pine, ash, oak, spruce, birch, linden, some maple. Also, baltic birch plywood.

My shop is small, around 3×4 meters (10×12 foot)

Any advise on how to proceed? Much appreciated.

13 replies so far

View rhett's profile


693 posts in 2173 days

#1 posted 138 days ago

There were some regulations put into place a few years ago, regarding the selling of wooden toys to children, mostly has to do with finishes. Check that out FIRST.

The other piece of advice I will offer is this. Do not finance or lease equipment under the premise that “work will come if I have the tool”. Work your a$$ of with what you have and stay free from overhead for as long as possible.


View Loco's profile


210 posts in 255 days

#2 posted 138 days ago

What country ? In the US teams of unemployable lawyers await an accident involving toys. It’s really, really big business !

-- What day is it ? No matter. Ummmm What month is it ? No moron. I paid for a 2 x 6. That means Two inches by six inches. I want the rest of my wood.

View Skiedra's profile


254 posts in 797 days

#3 posted 138 days ago

Loco, I’m in eastern Europe and would aim towards eastern/central European markets.

Rhett, I plan on untreated toys, or linseed oil & beeswaxing them

View jerrells's profile


832 posts in 1390 days

#4 posted 138 days ago

I started a scroll saw hobby business about four years ago. I have basically the same equipment. I used craft shows, Facebook, my web site, friends to market my business. It has taken about 4 years for me to start getting a reasonable flow of income (which I do not really need as I am retired). Find good craft shows with lots of traffic. Find ways to get your name out there. I give away a number of items and some of the reason is marketing my name. Find someone in your country in a similar business that will share information.

Just my thoughts

-- Just learning the craft my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ practiced.

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

1508 posts in 1427 days

#5 posted 138 days ago

I have made and sold wooden toys here in Texas. The new regulations pertaining to toys is mostly about finish but you still have to submit any toys, even with no finish, just to show that there actually is no finish…... I was paying about $850 a year for liability insurance. That is a lot of $5 toys!... Toys sell very well and are easy to mass produce with simple tools but the risk is too great for me so I stopped making them.

-- In God We Trust

View helluvawreck's profile


14625 posts in 1372 days

#6 posted 138 days ago

I would talk to your accountant about setting it up under an LLC and you definitely will need some liability insurance.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Danpaddles's profile


532 posts in 817 days

#7 posted 138 days ago

I’ve made a number of toys over the years, never give a thought to liability. But then, this is the first year I am selling stuff. Before, it was all just for gifts.

I wonder what the liability is if I go back to just giving away a few stand up puzzles, and stop selling?

And- what the heck will I do with a box full of puzzles that did not sell at the last show? Just give them away, I guess.

-- Dan V. in Indy

View Skiedra's profile


254 posts in 797 days

#8 posted 138 days ago

Great advice, everyone, thank you.
Regarding CNC and going over to “expensive” tools, my understanding is that CNC would take away most of the cutting and some shaping. Leaving sanding, finishing and assembly.

View quvia's profile


92 posts in 173 days

#9 posted 137 days ago

I make a lot of toys for family and friends and am proud to say I never put anything sharp in the toys. All glue with the idea that nothing will come off that a child can swallow. People really like this for there children.

-- Ted ,Conesus,N.Y.

View Skiedra's profile


254 posts in 797 days

#10 posted 137 days ago

quvia, do you plan on posting any of the toys in your projects section?

View shipwright's profile


4670 posts in 1303 days

#11 posted 137 days ago

If you have drill press (you mentioned “vertical drill”), then a simple overhead pin router like this one would help cut repeatable parts.
You can make one with what you have in a couple of hours.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fiberglass trees.

View quvia's profile


92 posts in 173 days

#12 posted 137 days ago

I will collect some toys and post them this evening. Thanks for your interest.

-- Ted ,Conesus,N.Y.

View Skiedra's profile


254 posts in 797 days

#13 posted 135 days ago

shipwright, great idea, I will try it out.

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