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Remodeling guy walks in with the need to exactly match existing door profiles. Original cabinet manufacturer is out of business. Unusual pattern profiles. Needs to have a door for Miele refrigerator, two doors for cabinets being modified for new range and two drawer fronts. Doors have arched raised panels. How many of you would make these? Requires one cope & stick set, one edge profile knife, raised panel knife and templates for the panel and head parts of the doors. You can have the knives made for you or make them yourselves. The price for having the knives made and making 3 doors, & the fronts gets looking really expensive, especially when the decorator wants her cut (100% mark up) and the contractor has to fool around with his part. Contractor already has a price for the knives but his regular cabinet maker doesn't have the heads for the knives and has never made things out of the ordinary. I used to make custom stuff for this contractor, long ago. But it's not what we do now. I really can't make the knives a lot cheaper than he can buy them. We have the ability to profile grind, make the templates, set up the shapers and all the rest. I hated to turn the re-modeler down but his client's husband is a lawyer and already complaining about prices (and he hasn't even seen the prices for the 3 doors yet!) Forgot to mention the finishing to match aged, white washed maple. How many of you would take this type of work on?
I do a lot of that kind of stuff - matching doors, moldings, etc. SOme cutters I grind in the shop others we get made up. Everything is charged out by material and hourly rate.
It really doesnt matter to me - if I can make the shop rate, doing custom matches (along with stain and finishing) or new construction. Everything pays the bills.
I actually love being able to give people something that is otherwise not going to happen.. as no other shops around here do that kind of work.
One thing, for small runs, I find it faster to quickly draw the profile in CAD, extrude and 3D model it and carve some lengths of molding or door stock on the CNC. Our router doesnt run constantly, so it is usually no issue to run a 1/2 hour to an hour for these jobs.
Every shop will be different. Sometimes time is the enemy (or lack of it) but I like to try and squeeze in these jobs, especially for good general contractors that may come back with more and/or larger jobs in the future.
It sounded okay till you got to the match old finish sentence. I'd have the decorator take care getting the finishing contractor. I always passed on 100% of the tooling costs to the customer. Whether you have it as a line item on the quote, or added it in to the costs, they pay for it.
That is part of what i specialize in. Custom tooling is 100% paid for by customer and i get to keep it. Square footage charges plus setup charges. The price is what it is. They dont like it find someone else but they usually come back. LOL.
Agree with Door Shop Guy.
Charge your full prices. What is the benefit of not? You are trying to make profit. They are trying to match an old design and finish. This job will take time from your regular operation. What is the cost of disrupting a regular operation for one of a kind jobs?
Charge them the full price. If they do not take and go else where, no harm and your regular business keeps humming along. If they do take it, you make a good profit for the pain of disrupting your regular business flow and accompanying problems.
The decorator wants to double your price just for being pretty? Did I read that right?
Larry , you said "it's not what we do now "
We all know how our bread gets butter on it .Learning to say no when the scope is wrong or we are too covered up with work is hard to do but necessary sometimes .
D Brown, That's why I turned it down.
If you know what your costs are to do the work, then charge it out at your regular rate so you make your money for the time and materials spent. Mark up your knife charges, but do not charge them as a line, it is just part of the job.
I have made $800 single cabinet doors before, and both the customer and I were happy.
If they don't like the price, then they can go elsewhere and hope the other shop will undercharge for the work. You don't owe them a favor, you are in business for profit, and you have a responsibility to charge things so you make that profit.
They bought a Miele fridge, so the customer will not flinch at a price.
Its often hard to put yourself in some one else's shoes. So they have a $60k+ kitchen. They just bought a new $3k fridge. In order to make the whole thing work they need to puchase a $1000 door. Its like having to buy Mercedes hubcaps when you buy new tires.
At the end of the day,they have a couple of choices: have you do the work at your price or find someone else. As long as the risk reward ratio is okay, what is the problem?
Many here don't understand the terms "Not my line of work." Yes, I used to do such things but as a group long ago we decided to pass on making kitchen doors. You guys that make kitchens can do such things. I sent him off to the best bet for someone else to do it. It is also a personal thing. Though I'm sure it could get done in this shop, it isn't something my guys have done. We are set up for production, not one offs. Our one offs are done within a standardized system. It's a business choice.
Adam, just for clarification - If they bought a Miele fridge my guess is they spent closer to 7k not 3k.