Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

258
Banjo Lovers Online


Want to hide these Google ads? Join the Players Union!
Jun 1, 2020 - 6:02:11 AM
1240 posts since 4/13/2017

I am an 18 year old fellow. I plan to go to college this coming fall. I need to get some form of income to help my parents pay for my car insurance, which as an 18 year old boy, is pretty dang high (this is a whole other topic, but I think that boy's insurance being higher than girls is ridiculous, because I am not the stereotypical boy who likes to race and do other dangerous things in a car).

That aside, I can buy a 3.5 x 3.5 x 36" maple table leg blank for approximately 50 bucks. It would appear that I can get two block rims out of this. These would be 11" and 3" tall and 3/4" thick. I am capable of building nice, solid block rims. In fact, I just finished my first banjo with a hard maple block rim using an almost flathead style woodie, and it sounds GREAT.

Would selling block rims be a decent way to make a few bucks? Sell them for like, $80? Would two new block rims go pretty fast here on the hangout? What if the buyer sends me their tone ring and flange and I fit them for the buyer for like, ten bucks extra?

I enjoy doing this work very much, but I can't really afford to do it for fun, ya know? Plus, I gotta pay my insurance.

Jun 1, 2020 - 9:53:01 AM
likes this

14817 posts since 12/2/2005

Tough question, Hunter. Your target price isn't crazy at $80, considering that a Tony Pass block rim is around $350. But here's the thing: Pass rims are a known quantity benefiting from years on the market and being selected to provide the rims for Stellings. Meantime, you can get a conventional Cox rim from the maker for $170, or a conventional rim from Sullivan Banjo for as little as $95.

The challenge for you is that these are all established businesses, and have proven their ability to deliver quality products over time. Your work might be superior in every way, but how would anyone know that?

If saving money - and making some - is the goal, this doesn't strike me as the right idea at this time. Hey, you COULD offer pre-orders through the Classifieds section here, and maybe someone will bite.

Many people who want to bring a product to market do so by making prototypes available to established businesses and, if those businesses are please with the result, getting that endorsement (or becoming a distributor). Not saying they'd do this, but say you made up a rim and sent it gratis to Sullivan banjo, with a request that they try it. If they liked it, and you could assure them that you can keep producing that quality (difficult to do with a one-off score of a nice piece of wood), that's a way to establish things. But in order to do that, you'd need to front the money and time to get prototypes into their hands.

Does that make sense?

Jun 1, 2020 - 11:10:31 AM

1240 posts since 4/13/2017

quote:
Originally posted by eagleisland

Tough question, Hunter. Your target price isn't crazy at $80, considering that a Tony Pass block rim is around $350. But here's the thing: Pass rims are a known quantity benefiting from years on the market and being selected to provide the rims for Stellings. Meantime, you can get a conventional Cox rim from the maker for $170, or a conventional rim from Sullivan Banjo for as little as $95.

The challenge for you is that these are all established businesses, and have proven their ability to deliver quality products over time. Your work might be superior in every way, but how would anyone know that?

If saving money - and making some - is the goal, this doesn't strike me as the right idea at this time. Hey, you COULD offer pre-orders through the Classifieds section here, and maybe someone will bite.

Many people who want to bring a product to market do so by making prototypes available to established businesses and, if those businesses are please with the result, getting that endorsement (or becoming a distributor). Not saying they'd do this, but say you made up a rim and sent it gratis to Sullivan banjo, with a request that they try it. If they liked it, and you could assure them that you can keep producing that quality (difficult to do with a one-off score of a nice piece of wood), that's a way to establish things. But in order to do that, you'd need to front the money and time to get prototypes into their hands.

Does that make sense?


Yeah, this makes sense...I'm just looking to make some money doing something I enjoy. I was thinking that maybe I could sell some good quality block rims that arent too expensive. As cool as it would be, I'm not looking to make a reputation for myself like Tony Pass or someone. I would absolutely LOVE to experiment with different things in rims, but being rather poor, I cant really shell out the money to keep buying hard maple to build 50 rims and only 1 be what I'm looking for, ya know?

Maybe I could post completely blank block rims for like, $70, then cut different types of woodies on top for an extra $10 or $15, fit someone's flange (or shoe belt) and/or tone ring for $10 or $15 extra, drill the rod holes (or bracket shoe holes) for $10 or $15 extra...like I said, I'm just wanting to get some dough doing something I enjoy. You think I could do it like you said, just post and ad and see if I get any orders?

Edited by - Blue20Boy17 on 06/01/2020 11:19:34

Jun 1, 2020 - 11:26:32 AM
likes this

KCJones

USA

714 posts since 8/30/2012

Your question basically boils down to this: Is starting a music instrument parts supply business from scratch a good way to make money for an 18 year old in the year 2020?

I think the answer is no.

My advice is to get a job that is somehow related to your major. If you're smart, tutoring is the most lucrative but it can be a grind. Lab assistant is another option but more competitive. Working part time at a local company in your industry is best. Do something that pays the bills, but also prepares you for life. An hourly job will pay you a few hundred a month. Can you make and sell 6 banjo rims per month, consistently over several months? Probably not. You can still make those rims and put them up for sale, but it won't replace income from a job.

And stop referring to yourself as a boy. You're a grown man now.

Jun 1, 2020 - 12:07:32 PM

14817 posts since 12/2/2005

quote:
Originally posted by Blue20Boy17
You think I could do it like you said, just post and ad and see if I get any orders?

No idea. Only one way I can think of to find out...

Jun 1, 2020 - 6:59:27 PM
Players Union Member

Lew H

USA

2515 posts since 3/10/2008

"Maybe I could post completely blank block rims for like, $70, then cut different types of woodies on top for an extra $10 or $15, fit someone's flange (or shoe belt) and/or tone ring for $10 or $15 extra, drill the rod holes (or bracket shoe holes) for $10 or $15 extra...like I said, I'm just wanting to get some dough doing something I enjoy. You think I could do it like you said, just post and ad and see if I get any orders?"

If I were you, this is the route I would go. Who knows there might be lots of people with those GoodTIme banjos who would like a better rim, maybe one with a tone ring of some sort. But as KCJones says, think of it as a side line for now.

Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.15625