Prodigal Ponderings RSS



The Pricing Dilemma: How Do You Price Your Products?

For new business owners there is perhaps no greater challenge than pricing  products for sale. My wife and I ponder this each time I complete a new product. Based upon a thousand different factors we each arrive at a figure and then we yield to one another to determine a final price. What are the factors? 1. Data alone (materials, equipment, supplies) : how much did the wood cost? What about the glue? The clamps? How about the table saw and miter saw; and the saw blades on each? The more equipment we own the less time it takes to make a product, and the better the product will turn out; but how do you price this out? 2. Governmental cost (keepin it...

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My Best Finishing Tip for Hardwoods

After doing plenty of research and trying multiple methods I came up with my own process of finishing hardwoods for products that do not come in direct contact with food. I’ve used this process on chess boards, lathe pieces (such as candle holders and pepper mills) along with coaster sets, etc. The finish is clear, hard and beautiful! Before I begin I’ll tell you what I tried previously: 1. Minwax Paste Finishing Wax: a nice starter product that applies easy and protects the wood, but hardly an “eye popping” finish 2. Boiled Linseed Oil covered with Instant Bond Wood Adhesive: better, but not great 3. A variety of other finishes I saw online but again, none matched the success below:...

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Are "Exotic" Woods Food Safe?

We have several of our products including our cutting boards for sale at a local shop in our hometown of Cartersville GA.  Recently a customer asked about the safety of the wood we used, particularly in our products that come in direct contact with food. While all woods possess different qualities and many of them contain natural toxins that could be harmful, the primary threat of these toxins are to the woodworker and not the customer.  Breathing in the wood dust which happens easily when cutting or sanding wood, poses the greatest risk of harm, primarily to the lungs and usually due to extended exposure; however there are also reported allergic reactions of nausea or sensitivity of the skin or eye.  (Again,...

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Are "Exotic" Woods Food Safe?

We have several of our products including our cutting boards for sale at a local shop in our hometown of Cartersville GA.  Recently a customer asked about the safety of the wood we used, particularly in our products that come in direct contact with food. While all woods possess different qualities and many of them contain natural toxins that could be harmful, the primary threat of these toxins are to the woodworker and not the customer.  Breathing in the wood dust which happens easily when cutting or sanding wood, poses the greatest risk of harm, primarily to the lungs and usually due to extended exposure; however there are also reported allergic reactions of nausea or sensitivity of the skin or eye.  (Again,...

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Edge Grain Cutting Boards

  One of the alternatives we offer to our “end grain” cutting boards is a slightly less expensive but equally durable “edge grain” board.  As the term indicates, these boards use a different portion of the wood (edge) for your cutting surface.  Although these boards do not possess the same qualities of end grain they do offer some distinct advantages. First you get a far different grain pattern from the edge of a piece of wood than you do from the end.  (Below notice end grain top left, edge grain middle and lower left) Second, because less of the wood “fibers” are exposed, edge grain boards tend to hold their color longer than end grain. This can be particularly rewarding when...

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