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Race Car Fabrication There is a lot of cool fabriaction going on the race car industry, show us what you got.


Race Car Fabrication There is a lot of cool fabriaction going on the race car industry, show us what you got.

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  #1  
Old 03-03-2009, 09:16 PM
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bt race cars bt race cars is offline
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Shop owners

How do you charge for small and or miscelanious stuff?

the problem I have is returning customers wanting a lot of little things taken care of like air pan,new seat mounts,racing steering column,remove some weight, etc. etc.
and I cant give them a good "guesstimate" without seeing how much time it takes and I have yet to try the by the hour thing.
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Old 03-03-2009, 09:22 PM
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set a hourly rate for general labour and a minimum charge as well . post both in plan view so the customer can see it .
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Old 03-03-2009, 09:44 PM
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For a guesstimate on little stuff, I guess an hour for each small "item" they want done, then double it, cause you know stuff always takes longer then you expect it too.

Also, keep actual timesheets for your projects. #1, you'll see how long things actually take you, #2 you'll know the next time how long it took you on a similar project. First time you do the project it's usually a wash. The next time someone comes in for the same thing is when you'll actually make $$$
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Old 03-04-2009, 01:53 AM
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charging for small jobs

I have found that sometimes even the little jobs that you think will only take a few hours always takes more time. I have some set prices for some things but I just keep track of my hours and at least I can see my time. From there I can make adjustments to the price if I feel it is just to much time to charge for a certain job.At some point on some jobs the time involved is just more than you can reasonably charge. When this happens I often wonder why I took the job in the first place. I enjoy building race cars but I still have to make money. Also sometimes I go overboard on how nice I try to build it when something a little less fancy would have fit the bill, but that's just me.
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Old 03-04-2009, 09:54 AM
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I wouldn't be afraid to charge by the hour without a guesstimate. Maybe tell the customer if it looks like it will run over x hours you will let him know before you complete the work. If I ever needed an ATV, Snowmobile, Chainsaw, etc.... fixed; they don't give me an estimate. Just a bill at the end. If I liked the price I go back, if I think I was screwed, I go somewhere else.

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Old 03-04-2009, 11:41 AM
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X2 on the time sheets; I do nothing without generating paperwork and tracking the hours.

I use an hour minimum on all jobs and usually tell a customer it *should* take this long and as soon as I see it looking to overrun I will let them know. The key with that is to let them know in the middle of the estimated time rather then at the end.
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Old 03-04-2009, 11:49 AM
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NOTHING takes less then an hour.
We talk long enough to understand the job 5-min to 1/2-hour.
I weld, grind, whatever for 15-min to 1/2-hour.
I clean up the thing that was just worked on and put chit away 5 to 10-min.
I clean my hands 5 min.
I go to the computer/receipt book and generate paper 10-min.
There was some incidental materials that will not be invoiced.
1Hour minimum at shop rate no problem.

That 1 hour minimum should be posted. It lets the customer know what to expect minimally so there is no surprise. But if the job takes 1/2 hour you as the shop owner can always do it for less and that will make the customer come back. Be careful though as there are some customers/small jobs that you do not want to come back
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Old 03-04-2009, 01:46 PM
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BT
Get a time clock, write the customer name on a time card and when ever I work on something for their racecar I punch on/off the job. let them know your hourly rate and minimum charge up front before you even take the job, I include the time card with their bill when they come to pick it up. never had a complaint with a high priced bill, the time card shows you are not pulling numbers outta yer hat, and will surprise you and them just how much or how little time some stuff takes. I never give estimates on a car or job that has a punch list of to do items, unless you have done atleast 10 of them before. Never be afraid to charge for what you know.
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  #9  
Old 03-04-2009, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by entropy View Post
NOTHING takes less then an hour.
We talk long enough to understand the job 5-min to 1/2-hour.
I weld, grind, whatever for 15-min to 1/2-hour.
I clean up the thing that was just worked on and put chit away 5 to 10-min.
I clean my hands 5 min.
I go to the computer/receipt book and generate paper 10-min.
There was some incidental materials that will not be invoiced.
1Hour minimum at shop rate no problem.

That 1 hour minimum should be posted. It lets the customer know what to expect minimally so there is no surprise. But if the job takes 1/2 hour you as the shop owner can always do it for less and that will make the customer come back. Be careful though as there are some customers/small jobs that you do not want to come back
I agree completely with every thing E said but would add on special order parts or one off stuff you will probably never be able to get your money back on we charge a non refundable deposit of half total cost involved up front before anything is ordered or work started. that way if they cancel or change their minds (they almost allways do) you havent lost your ass completely.
suppliers are stocking less product now & charging return fees & fuel surcharges on almost everything. remember that shop rate has to pay the overhead + your wages, our gas bill for the paint booth alone was 3000$ last month, that doesn't include heating the shop either, it is on a seperate meter.

the labor rate here in rogers AR. is 45$ an hour plus 28$ per hour for materials & that is just for everyday vehicles, street rods & customs get hit a little harder because they are usually harder to please & much higher quality than the mass produced crap we all driver every day.
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  #10  
Old 03-04-2009, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dqracer View Post
BT
Get a time clock, write the customer name on a time card and when ever I work on something for their racecar I punch on/off the job. let them know your hourly rate and minimum charge up front before you even take the job, I include the time card with their bill when they come to pick it up. never had a complaint with a high priced bill, the time card shows you are not pulling numbers outta yer hat, and will surprise you and them just how much or how little time some stuff takes. I never give estimates on a car or job that has a punch list of to do items, unless you have done atleast 10 of them before. Never be afraid to charge for what you know.
I really like this idea!!!

However I am allergic to time clocks
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Old 03-04-2009, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dqracer View Post
BT
Get a time clock, write the customer name on a time card and when ever I work on something for their racecar I punch on/off the job. let them know your hourly rate and minimum charge up front before you even take the job, I include the time card with their bill when they come to pick it up. never had a complaint with a high priced bill, the time card shows you are not pulling numbers outta yer hat, and will surprise you and them just how much or how little time some stuff takes. I never give estimates on a car or job that has a punch list of to do items, unless you have done atleast 10 of them before. Never be afraid to charge for what you know.
That is excellent advice. I am now on the lookout for a time clock. I have learned too much of this the hard way. I am trying to get things under control before I totally burn out on doing work for anybody but myself.
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Old 03-04-2009, 06:30 PM
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If you go to the store for milk only is it cheeper than when you go get a basket full of stuff?
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  #13  
Old 03-04-2009, 08:03 PM
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Lots of great advice thanks Guys.
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