Wood is expensive

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I'm hoping this picture is mislabled and they aren't selling this as Bird's Eye Maple: http://www.pompy.com/furniture/?categoryG&productA52 $2,420 for a blanket chest? Maybe tools aren't that expensive...
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I suspect wood is a little high by historical standards due to politics and high energy prices, but the most significant portion of price is labor. It would be interesting to run the numbers, but I suspect they could ship the materials to Asia and assemble that chest with a retail price considerably lower than the ones listed on that site.
Jeff
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Tue, Jan 22, 2008, 7:30am (EST-3) snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com (Jeff) doth posteth: I suspect wood is a little high by historical standards due to politics and high energy prices, but the most significant portion of price is labor. It would be interesting to run the numbers, but I suspect they could ship the materials to Asia and assemble that chest with a retail price considerably lower than the ones listed on that site.
Historical stqandards? Years ago wages were low, prices were low. Today wages are a lot higher, today prices are a lot higher.
If you want to run the numbers, you can go out and find someone that would custom make one for you, of at least equal quality, if not better, with high quality wood, for less then what those people want.
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On Jan 22, 11:58 am, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (J T) wrote:

It's not that simple. Some prices are higher while others are considerably lower. How many computers did you own in the 1970s? Now you can practically get one in a box of cracker jacks. Lumber is a natural product whose price is tied tightly to energy and housing. I can't find free historical pricing on the Internets but I did find this flimsy indicator. In 1991, "the 15,800 board feet of lumber used to frame the average house cost $3,200 at the sawmill gate. Today, the same quantity costs $7,000." Harvests are down, energy is up and we're at the end of a housing boom. That price will probably recede. I'm not sure how this compares to the mid 70s - the gold standard of high lumber prices, but I doubt I was off base when I said it was a little high by historical standards.
Jeff
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Jeff wrote:

I paid about 180 bucks for a Bosch jigsaw in 1979 or thereabouts. I paid 160 a few months ago for the one that replaced it when the old one died the death. The price of a Sawzall has pretty nearly remained constant in the face of inflation. Tools right now are a bargain compared to the '70s.

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Thought I would bring this around.
Went to buy cherry ply the other day. Price $130..
A small lumber guy I deal with who doesn't deal in ply or anything but hardwoods sells cherry for about $4.30 - $4.80 depending on when I have bought it. I didn't check his current price, but the 4.80 was the highest I paid last April. Bought about 150 bd feet which is gone now.
So the question is, why would I buy cherry ply for $130, when I can buy less expensive birch ply, and resaw the cherry into veneer, and make the cherry go way farther. Aside from the time savings, (I'm not a pro), I think cherry ply is way over priced right now compared to the cost of cherry.
Even if I decided to eliminate the ply and build it with solid cherry, the cost difference w/o loss is negligible. About 150 to 130..
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On Jan 23, 4:51pm, tiredofspam <nospam.nospam.com> wrote:

Are you thinking you could buy birch, resaw your own veneer, and make cherry ply in your shop for less than the 130? And come out with the same product? Thats crazy. You have perhaps 60.00 a sheet or more into the birch ply. Tthat would leave you, best case, with 70.00 to work with. This doesnt take into account that 60.00/sheet is low, fuel, and your time to go get it, and so on.
After that you have to purchase the cherry (+fuel and time) , resaw it, (blades, shop time, wear and tear) etc.. Veneer the ply, (glue, clamps, time, vaccum setup, etc..) Sand, scrape, finish the ply (paper), and you are still going to likely have an inferior product to the commercially available ply.
Even if you used a very low number of $100.00/hr just for the shop time you would be losing your shirt.
The solid cherry option is fine unless you wanted the stability and speed of the ply in the first place (which is likely).
Too often people dont realize that the added expense of a given item is far offset by its time savings and other charecteristics. This is very easy to do when you devalue your time and operating costs down to $0.00.
Mark
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$60.. Birch ply is $45 a sheet here. Putting on another 2 layers 1 on each side would be time consuming, but I would actually get 2 A sides out of it, matched two.
I would be at 1" ... better. Cherry ply for $130 is not A/A.. Since I am not a professional, I can afford the time and cost. But if I were a professional, it would still work for high end work. Very cost effective. A pro shop would probably use MDF for a substrate, but I don't like MDF. Too heavy, reminds me of cheap knockdown furniture. Don't get me wrong I use it for jigs and templates.. but I don't believe in it for furniture.
BDBConstruction wrote:

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On Jan 23, 10:36pm, tiredofspam <nospam.nospam.com> wrote:

+ tax, + fuel, +time,....

So you would have to compare the price to 1" cherry ply

Who knows if you would have A/A, what you would accept during manufacture, and what the outcome would be

No you cant, and this was the main point of my reply, there is still time, and moreso there is still cost. It would be like someone saying their local supplier wanted $XXX for some 4/4 cherry and they got a steal on the same material somewhere else but failed to factor in that they drove 800 miles to pick up the material, and lost a days pay, as opposed to buying it locally. Most would only compare what they actually paid for the cherry itself. Its called self dillusion. Your time, hobby or not, has a value and your gas and shop costs are likely the same, or at least similar, to mine per square foot.
You still have an electric bill, heat bill, blades, equipment depreciation, you still buy blades just like I do, etc.. Just becasue you are not "a professional" doesnt mean these $$ are not coming out of your checking account. They should be directly associated to the cost of that sheet of ply. They are directly associated with "the cost of goods" and your operational costs even though they are funded as a hobby.

No, cost effective would be to source 1" A/A cherry ply (if needed) because the shop time to create this cherry ply in any quantity would likely be several hundred dollars per sheet. Say you could make 2 sheets per 1.5 day (glue ups an all) using the numbers so far. 1.5 days shop time = 1200.00, substrate (your numbers) 90.00, cherry veneer 102.40 (3 sq'/bd' no waste, no cull), misc (glue) 4.00. That totals 1396.40 for 2 sheets, or 698.20/sheet. Even if you devalue your shop time by 50% Its still 398.20 per sheet and there is no factor for consumables (blades, paper) other than glue, no sales tax, no fuel to procure material.

"Probably's" arent really what I was talking about. I am merely saying that one hour of your shop time, and you are in the hole for 100.00. Period. It doesnt matter if you are a professional or not. I am not saying not to do it by any means. We all play around with new techniques and try new and different things all the time. I am not however going to dillude myself that I could fab a new engine for my truck for cheaper than I can buy it by devaluing my time to $0.00.
I am not a fan of speding money, but the simple fact is that there are very few things that you can fabricate or build for less actual $$ (if you use honest accounting) than you can buy them for. If we have a unique situation or want to try it for the hell of it, thats fine, but on mass it is a losing proposition.
Mark
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BDBConstruction wrote:

Some people confuse a business with a hobby...different rules...Rod
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Where is the difference? If you buy a sheet of ply for $45 and modify it at a direct, accountable, cost to you of $300 it becomes a $345 sheet of ply.
You may be more willing, and in fact happy, to pay the $345 because it was part of your hobby and you received enjoyment in the manufacture of said sheet but none the less the cost of that sheet was $345.
The point is, you cant say "man ply is high, so I make my own*". The * at the end of that statement has a monetary value that should not be misstated.
Mark
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tiredofspam wrote:

There's more to plywood than cost savings.
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Fri, Jan 25, 2008, 11:31am snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (BARRY) doth sayeth: There's more to plywood than cost savings.
Indeed yes. The Egyptians, or whoever, did good when they first invented it.
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J T wrote:

I understand that one of Rome's "secret weapons" was their plywood shields. Think what could have happened if somebody had showed them how to make Lexan.
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On Fri, 25 Jan 2008 16:55:29 -0500, "J. Clarke"

Funny thought!
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Fri, Jan 25, 2008, 4:55pm snipped-for-privacy@cox.net (J.Clarke) doth sayeth: I understand that one of Rome's "secret weapons" was their plywood shields. Think what could have happened if somebody had showed them how to make Lexan.
Be happy they didn't discover how to make gunpowder.
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J T wrote:

Why be happy? Rome was the bright hope of the world at the time.
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Fri, Jan 25, 2008, 7:11pm snipped-for-privacy@cox.net (J.Clarke) doth queryeth: Why be happy? Rome was the bright hope of the world at the time.
Yeah, if you were Roman.
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J T wrote:

Yeah, and there were two ways to get to be Roman--be borne there or get conquered.
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J. Clarke wrote:

One could also pay for citizenship -- often a fairly substantial amount of money.
IIRC, being a citizen of a conquered country did not make one a Roman, it only made one subject to Roman rule and a second class citizen relative to the real Roman citizens.
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