I like machinery and would like to start my own factory. Worthwhile endeavor? - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobw View Post
    I see where I went wrong as a kid. I didn't wait for it to be broken before I tore it apart.
    I took off all the wing nuts that held the crib together ...

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  3. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by yosimba2000 View Post

    The plan is to start small, say selling homemade cardboard boxes, but scale if it grows. Do you think it's worth trying?


    My alternate plan would be to start a hot-dog stand.
    Buy into a UPS store franchise. Hire a kid to operate your doggie stand outside the front door.
    Eventually CA law will mandate a health warning label on each hot dog sold.

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    Hmmmmm

    I like machines too.
    That’s why I have a beautiful power hack saw in my shop and a couple of other pieces of shit that are incapable of making me a dime.

    I hear these stories about some lucky idiot who dreams something up and has the grit to take it to market and makes his fortune. I have even met one or two of these people.

    What I see far more however are people who understand that a business is a machine to make money.
    It almost doesn’t matter what the business is- these types of people have a specific and fairly rare set of skills which allows them to prevail where others fail.

    Boxes.
    One of the bigger hitters in my client pool owns a large vineyard in CA.
    It turns out he is also a factory owner- he owns two in fact.

    The first is an outfit which produces cardboard cartons.
    It seems he had too pay too much for these for his vineyard so he worked the numbers and saw he could produce them and save money on one end and make money on the other selling them to market.
    After getting in the paper business the soda straw thing happened and he sees there is a market where there is sufficient margin to make money so he buys another outfit making paper straws.

    I’m not saying it can’t happen- cardboard boxes- do what you love.
    I’m just saying learn what it takes to identify and run a successful business plan.

    That skill of running a business is required, a great ideal is not.

    All that said- the OP sounds like a troll- it’s sort of the too perfect setup.

    If the cardboard box factory fails you can live in one while you run the hotdog stand...

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  6. #24
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    Thats interesting on the vineyard making boxes oh yes op could be a troll or genuine tis the net after all.
    On the big players you will be competing with a certain group of a certain religious background who stick together like glue not a lot of details get out in the public view. One thing to note is they actively promote the lowest cost, this is from job adverts in their name so your up against them. Better get organised..

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    Could be a troll? The hotdog cart gave it away.

    I too have a client that owns a vineyard . . . he decided he was paying too much for glass bottles and now owns a state of the art glass container company built from scratch. Lots of interesting machinery and it took more than 40k to build a plant that makes glass containers. I bet his cost was at least double that amount, or perhaps 2000 - 3000 times that amount? Don’t know exact numbers.

    Glass is harder than cardboard, that is why you package wine bottles in cardboard boxes. Harder stuff like glass is also more expensive to make so yes, probably best to start with cardboard. If you want to conserve cash, gummy bears are also made on really interesting equipment and are softer than cardboard so probably cheaper to get into the market with. But if you are into packaging . . . you are on the right track with bubble wrap.

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  10. #26
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    don't forget, the founder of Taco Bell started out with a hot dog cart. But he noticed the taco benders had a lot more customers than him.
    Cardboard boxes are a huge business. A folder, slitter, gluer line can be well over a million bucks each. Not something you start in your garage.
    Maybe combine the two, Hot dog in a Box.

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    There's money to be made in Toilet Paper....

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    Mail order hotdog, frozen in dry ice in an insulated box with a chemical heater to cook it after you receive it.

    Hotdog: $1
    Packaging: $10

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhajicek View Post
    Mail order hotdog, frozen in dry ice in an insulated box with a chemical heater to cook it after you receive it.

    Hotdog: $1
    Packaging: $10
    shipping: $27.50

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    Haha, not a troll! Although the hotdog cart thing was, I asked the same question on Reddit and was told to post here as well.

    In both places, I've seen an overwhelmingly negative response to starting a factory. Could you expand why it's not such a good idea? The best I can think of is cost of manufacturing domestically vs outsourcing from other countries. At this point, is the US market just better off consuming and redistributing rather than producing?

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  18. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by yosimba2000 View Post
    Could you expand why it's not such a good idea?
    You need some more zeros on your number, 2 would do it, 1 might be a struggle.
    Might be able to get some small scale custom work with your budget, but you would need some customers to start with.

    Here is what I think of when you say "factory":
    YouTube

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    I recently came across a friend's post on FB advertising a small hamburger hot dog fries type lunch counter. ( he's a R.E. agent ) Small stand alone 1990's building seating maybe 40 at most comes with the business asking 550,000 can and it's out in a large town - small city. I thought of the HotDog stand analogy immediately upon viewing it !

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    Quote Originally Posted by yosimba2000 View Post
    Haha, not a troll! Although the hotdog cart thing was, I asked the same question on Reddit and was told to post here as well.

    In both places, I've seen an overwhelmingly negative response to starting a factory. Could you expand why it's not such a good idea? The best I can think of is cost of manufacturing domestically vs outsourcing from other countries. At this point, is the US market just better off consuming and redistributing rather than producing?
    Very simple. By your own admission you do not have the skills to start and run a one man operation and your budget is far too low for anything but a small one man shop making a very simple product.

    If you had a good product idea AND were very innovative you might be able to start and run a small scale operation. More than one success started in a basement or garage but in every case they had the experience, knowledge, and skills needed.

    Could you manage to design and build simple equipment to cut and fold boxes in an efficient manner? At your budget that would be how you'd likely have to start.

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    $40k is about what it took for me to start my business in 1995. I bought a better than average desktop computer, ACAD license, multi-use printer/fax/scanner, an IBM laptop, a rotophase, transformer, and a bunch of electrical panel building tools, and a digital oscilloscope and nicer DMM . . . and a heater for the garage I was working out of. That was enough for me to launch and last about 9 months before I got my first paycheck then 9 months later we outgrew the garage. Then 5 years before I outgrew the service station, then 16 years before we outgrew the 25,000 square foot concrete tilt up building . . . I hope I retire before we outgrow our present facility.

    Today that would be about $70k . . . I would do it again in a heartbeat.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yosimba2000 View Post
    Could you expand why it's not such a good idea?
    Your biggest problem is lack of capitol, 40k will not buy a building, might make a down-payment, but still leave you nothing for machines or material. If you have a million dollar idea, start making it in your garage and see where it goes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kustomizingkid View Post
    I like watching porn and am thinking of opening my own studio...
    Naa! Then it would be work.

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    The advice I always give and no one ever follows is before you get your first piece of equipment, better yet before you even decide on a product, take an accounting course. They always say that they are going to have an accountant do the books, completely missing the point. It isn't just listing income and expenses, it is predicting how an expenditure will pay off and how soon and making sense of a report the accountant gives you written in accountese.

    Bill

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    Quote Originally Posted by motion guru View Post
    $40k is about what it took for me to start my business in 1995. I bought a better than average desktop computer, ACAD license, multi-use printer/fax/scanner, an IBM laptop, a rotophase, transformer, and a bunch of electrical panel building tools, and a digital oscilloscope and nicer DMM . . . and a heater for the garage I was working out of. That was enough for me to launch and last about 9 months before I got my first paycheck then 9 months later we outgrew the garage. Then 5 years before I outgrew the service station, then 16 years before we outgrew the 25,000 square foot concrete tilt up building . . . I hope I retire before we outgrow our present facility.

    Today that would be about $70k . . . I would do it again in a heartbeat.
    In the beginning:
    Did you sleep at night?
    Did the experience age you faster than normal.

    I heard a guy say "I am ok with that" when I commented on a picture that shows two twins, one older looking than the other.
    I'm just asking because I have noticed that some people can't take the stress too good. I knew a guy from work that commented one
    day at work that his friends in Taiwan are doing better than himself in the USA. He had immigrated from Taiwan to the USA and had
    a wife with a couple of kids and a house in San Jose with a swimming pool. What the hell else does he need.

    Later he started working for a start-up. Twelve hours a day Mon-Fri, eight hours on Sat, with Sunday off. It was like that for a couple
    of years. They finally went public and he made a good chunk on stock. Question is what did it do to his health?

    In my opinion it's better to be alive than have more than you need and screw up ones health.

    Anyway, I think what you did took guts.

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  28. #39
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    If permits for Hot Dog carts push 6 figures in prime areas, I wonder what it cost to park a food truck in front of the museums in Washington DC?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob F. View Post
    You need some more zeros on your number, 2 would do it, 1 might be a struggle.
    Might be able to get some small scale custom work with your budget, but you would need some customers to start with.
    Ah maybe I shouldn't have used the word factory. That video would be the dream. I was thinking 40k, small garage shop and expanding if the stars align. Although i agree I wouldn't be competitive in any way.

    I'm interested in making staple products because it seems to require less development than new products. I've tried making a new product and it was a waste of money.... good learning experience, though.


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