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View Underdog's profile

I need to sell these Model T cars and Trucks - Suggestions?

by Underdog
posted 12-13-2018 10:59 PM


12 replies so far

View GrantA's profile

GrantA

1498 posts in 1792 days


#1 posted 12-13-2018 11:01 PM

Put a little Christmas tree and/or presents in the back /on top /in the seat and watch em move!

View pottz's profile

pottz

5216 posts in 1369 days


#2 posted 12-13-2018 11:55 PM

first let me say those are beautifully done,but at 120 dollars your gonna have a hard time getting people that appreciate the quality and time that goes into making those.i had the same problem selling pens,i wanted around 50-80 bucks depending on the kit and materials but was lucky to get 20-30,paid my costs but didnt make any money.i wish you luck because you do some nice work.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View NoSpace's profile

NoSpace

155 posts in 1625 days


#3 posted 12-16-2018 06:03 PM

those are really awesome and I do think you could get what your asking for them or even more with the right alignment of the stars. I doubt there is a formula, something niche like that you could either get lucky with your first offering or try 10 different things until you stumble upon the solution.

The problem isn’t the quality of your product, but getting your brand established. My wife is addicted to eBay. She’s a talented artist—oil painting airbrush etc., but it’s really, really hard to break into that market. But she’s so addicted to staring at all the things people like to buy, that she kind of knows what the market is for various trinkets and what to my mind is junk, but what has blown my mind on several occasions is how she can come back from the dollar store with a bunch of cheap materials and slap it all together into crafts that might be cute, but nowhere near equal to her artistic talent, and then make 10x + markup on them.

Part of that equation is that just buying and selling whatever on eBay, and generally not really making money at it to my knowledge, she has a respectable feedback level. I could never make it worth my time selling my stuff, but I think it’s a fair bet if I were to try, my best luck would be to let my wife sell it on eBay because she already has the feedback, and probably a few dozen fellow crafty people who follow what she sells and get a good vibe from her. I’m telling you, just watching her on eBay I’m positive i could never make it in business because I just don’t understand people.

I have considered this: whip up a few safe items, some cutting boards / game boards, stuff that people generally buy and easy to make, and see what she can get for them on eBay. If it comes in anywhere near worth my time, it still wouldn’t be worth it because I could come to this board with so many more talented people than I and say, okay guys, here’s what I need and what I can get you for them.

So that’s a roundabout way of saying, consider hitting up people online who sell crafts and see what they’d think about selling your stuff. Somebody already with the network has a major advantage over you with a new eBay account with no feedback (or any other account). If you prefer to go it alone, then consider getting into the mindset of learning to be a small business owner, and come up with some other things to sell too. You might establish yourself as well by youtube videos on your product, those things are unique enough that I’d be interested in watching and built your rep. that way. That may be even a longer road.

But the reality is most likely you have to build up your reputation in some way or other first before getting the money your stuff is worth, and part of that process may be selling your stuff for less than it’s worth to establish your reputation—which means consider also selling stuff that’s easy to make to get started. An additional challenge is the ready availability of crafts made cheaply offshore. I could go on and on about pricing because I’ve been around a lot of artists. My dad was an artist with occasional notoriety, but what doomed him wasn’t talent, but the reality that he had to take the risk of selling his stuff for far less than he wished to in order to establish himself.

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

5478 posts in 3628 days


#4 posted 12-16-2018 07:03 PM

An item such as yours, although of outstanding workmanship, can be produced overseas at a fraction of $120. A customer has to know the difference between home grown workmanship and a cheap foreign substitute. In the right situation, you may find the right customer. I think a crafts fair is the best place for such an item. A venue like Craig’s list is for people looking for a bargain.

View langski93's profile

langski93

119 posts in 3818 days


#5 posted 02-25-2019 11:50 PM

Hi Underdog,
Beautiful work, but what are they ? Are you offering them as toys or collectibles? I would position them as a premium collectible. Each model has a real story which is why you chose to make a model based on an actual vehicle. Provide the context of who built, why built, how many were made, historical significance, interesting or fun facts to name a few points.

INMO it needs premium and thoughtful packaging to match your quality. Use your imagination as it doesnt need to be expensive. Just remember, in the world of collectors, tools for example, everyone wants the original box.

It’s good that you already have more than one model. Orphans don’t sell. You could introduce a new model every quarter and/or bundle different types for package buys. This was made for selling via social media. Asia can’t touch this. Volume too low and right now the factories are searching for the next Toys R Us. More importantly customers can’t develop a relationship with those guys.

Good luck

-- Langski, New Hampshire

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

478 posts in 564 days


#6 posted 02-26-2019 12:57 AM

Find a way to manufacture so gift shops can sell it for 50-70$.

I know this sounds harsh(believe me I know), but $30-70 is there “sweet spot”. I sell quite a few things to gift shops. I feel my products are worth more than what they get. But in the end it’s only worth what people will pay.

Play up the made in USA by hand deal. Tag it with a little blurb about yourself on one side and a fun fact about the types of wood on other.

One of my best customers takes my products and engraves stuff on them for company gifts. Maybe find a store that’s in with the companies in your area.

View fuigb's profile

fuigb

558 posts in 3342 days


#7 posted 02-26-2019 02:04 AM

How much? Dunno. Nice work.

The dilemma posed here reminds me of two lessons that I learned from the same dead guy at an estate sale. Old coot had died and the family put the entire contents of the house up including 100s of model airplanes made from kits and displayed on shelves lining the basement. I was there in the waning hours of the sale and it was obvious that in three days not one of those planes had sold. Lesson one: what is dear to one is dumpster-liner to many if not most or even all other people.

Seeing all of those unwanted models -lovingly assembled and painted- passed over would cause any sort of hobbyist-cum-sentimental sort saddness, but then just imagine the uncounted hours that old boy plowed into his passion. Easy to imagine that guy walking out of the factory each evening as the years rolled by and seasons changed, always eager for supper and then to get back to his basement/hangar. Lesson two: if you’re happy with your pastime then you’re among the luckiest of men.

Underdog, looks like you had a pile of enjoyment from building those automobiles. I hope that you get what you want, dollar-wise, but even if you don’t you already got what you really wanted all along: a splendid time doing what most others cannot understand.

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

View Dark_Lightning's profile

Dark_Lightning

3441 posts in 3494 days


#8 posted 02-26-2019 04:39 AM

Find a (semi) local store that sell this sort of thing. I built some bird houses many years ago that sold poorly at craft fairs at $6 a pop (a total bargain!), but when I sold them to a boutique for the same price, people were happy to pay them $12. I sold a lot of them for $6 to the boutique! I made just under $5 apiece and could make 32 an hour. But one hour’s worth took a month to sell. If I knew how to market properly, id’ be retired, now, Oh, wait, I’m retired!

-- Random Orbital Nailer

View TravisH's profile

TravisH

668 posts in 2320 days


#9 posted 02-26-2019 12:48 PM

I chalk them up to one of those items that you make because you want to make it. Those type of things don’t sell at any of the craft shows I have been to at a 1/4 of your price. A lot of items are that way simply no broad market demand for them.

Majority of people are going to see a wooden car toy and it will have to be priced according so likely 20 bucks tops. A select few may pay 40 bucks for it based on a perceived value but most likely you better hope they have some sort of nostalgic memory about one they may have had as a child. Even fewer at a craft show are going to value it as a display piece so you have a very niche thing to begin with.

The other huge issue at most craft shows I go to are a segment of retired guys. Really have to get to know the shows and the type of vendors. I can’t count the number of old guys I have talked with that think they are making money but are selling at a loss (goal isn’t to make money). I got to laughing one time as a guys wife piped in “Tom we can’t pay for the booth off the sales, How you making money?” After some back and forth she finished the discussion with what I think boils down the truth of the mater, some do shows because it gives them a day to day purpose in life and they get to talk with a lot of people. Wooden cars, puzzles, doll furniture and pens seam to be very prevalent with these fellas at the shows I have done over the past few years.

View Phil32's profile

Phil32

538 posts in 288 days


#10 posted 02-26-2019 08:29 PM

I hate to say it but this may not be the place to ask for advice on selling your Model T’s. If we knew the answer, we’d be out raking in the money for our wooden creations. We tend to look at such projects and think how we could make them much cheaper. I’m sure I would feel very hurt if I explored the public’s interest in my stuff, so I limit myself to enjoying the woodworking process and don’t try to make a business of it.

-- Phil Allin - There are mountain climbers and people who talk about climbing mountains. The climbers have "selfies" at the summit!

View becikeja's profile

becikeja

991 posts in 3198 days


#11 posted 02-27-2019 12:53 AM

On-line you’re at $20-$25 max. Too many cheap Chinese alternatives, too hard to establish you’re value as an artist. With that said here is a guy who has made his mark with toy cars: www.baldwintoys.com I say made his mark, because recently I was in a boutique and saw one of his pieces. It was behind glass, I asked the shop owner if it was a baldwin and he was shocked that I knew. It was. Once you see one of his pieces they are hard to mistake. This got me to thinking. How the heck did I know that? Would people recognize my stuff the same way? When you get to that point you can start asking the big bucks (not that $120 for 40 hours of work is big bucks) but until you hit that point I think you’re in the lot with the rest of us. I try to sell enough each year to cover my hobby costs. A few new tools, a few pieces for myself, and many hours of enjoyment in the shop…... My suggestion, as others have said above is to market it as art, do a write up and market it at local boutiques. On-line people are looking for a bargain. Just my 2 cents. good luck

-- Don't outsmart your common sense

View JohnMcClure's profile

JohnMcClure

621 posts in 1025 days


#12 posted 02-27-2019 01:09 AM

In a non-starbucks coffee shop in a rich neighborhood.

-- I'd rather be a hammer than a nail

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