View Full Version : Where is the money?

Dan Bello
06-16-2006, 11:00 AM
I just got my laser this week and have been pretty much living in my garage with it for the last four days. When I am not playing with the laser I am usually reading this board. The near unlimited opportunities with the machine have prompted me to post this question.

I am a corporate media (web development, video, powerpoint...) producer by trade and plan on hitting up my existing client base for work doing premiums and signage, but I would like to know where the highest profit margins can be found outside of these opportunities.

I would like to find some other ways to keep the laser firing. It could be a product or something I have to pitch to other businesses as an add on to an existing product.

To summarize an already verbose post:
What uses of this product have you found to have the highest profit margin and has been the easiest to sell and market?

Thanks for the help.

(BTW my new baby is a LaserPro Spirit 25)

Mitchell Andrus
06-16-2006, 11:33 AM
I got my Spirit 60W last week also. I'm in need of serious sleep.

Run a business first, operate your laser second. If you wait for clients to come to you with good ideas, you'll be watching a lot of TV.

Forget plaques and awards. The holidays are coming. Create a corporate gift item that your clients will NEED to buy in quantity. Pen and pencil sets in rosewood boxes, for instance. Laserbits has the best prices. Cost, about 8.00, sell for 30.00 engraved. Forget putting the corporate logo on the box. Design something that complements their business, and offer to add a small web address on the back if they NEED to advertise.

Buy 100 key fobs (1.09), engrave your advertisement on them and hand them out. Better than business cards.

Go here for ideas. Order a bunch of stuff just to get the juices going.

www.absupplydesign.com (http://www.absupplydesign.com)
www.laserbits.com (http://www.laserbits.com)
www.uniquecounrty.com (http://www.uniquecounrty.com) - pen box ideas (oops www.uniquecountry.com (http://www.uniquecountry.com))

Don't forget the clear lidded gift box. 0.45 to 1.89 makes an expensive looking presentation. Use artist's mat board to make a custom interior to hold the goods in place. Cut out on the laser and scored for folding too.

You'll need to create your own market - sharpen your elbows, it's crowded out there.


Brent Vander Weil
06-16-2006, 12:44 PM
I echo your post Dan... I am still trying to come up with a good stable product line that will generate some income while I look for that one of a kind million dollar original piece invention :-)

Rodne Gold
06-16-2006, 12:45 PM
Have a look at his thing I wrote for some avenues to pursue

Don't forget to hit the "view full message" thingy at the bottom of the first bit to see all of it.

Rodne Gold
06-16-2006, 12:52 PM
Apart from the previous post , there is only one thing that is gonna generate business , a nice sample range (don't be titght , spend on all types of material and items , take 2-3 months to do this - will gain you a ton of experience) and MARKETING it!!!
If you do not market - you are dead!!!!
A zillion marketing ideas on the web , use em!!!
Don't worry about income for the first 3 months , you should never have bought if you cant afford the working capital to get up and running for at least 6 months , just try different stuff and build up the samples and a hot marketing plan.
THEN hit the ground running and with a bang. Creeping around 1/2 assed and unprepared umming and ahhing is a recipe for disaster.
Nuff sed ;)

Joe Pelonio
06-16-2006, 1:11 PM
The biggest moneymakers for me are quilt templates, puzzles, industrial prototypes and custom car parts, in that order. I have one customer averaging $3,000/month now, and she found me on the internet. While
I have a sign shop and do a fair amount of name badges, nameplates and engraved signs, they are not that profitable. Here's suggestion. Whenever you are in a craft store, fabric store, or even big hardware store, look for things for sale that you could make with your laser. A lot of stuff is die cut or cast and screenprinted, but we can still make them cheaper, plus we can do customs sizes and shapes, and personalize them for wholesale customers with their logo.

Shaddy Dedmore
06-16-2006, 3:38 PM
The biggest moneymakers for me are quilt templates, puzzles, ...

Would you mind expounding on Quilt templates and Puzzles?

Thanks Joe

Mitchell Andrus
06-16-2006, 3:57 PM
Another pen box idea.


Joe Pelonio
06-16-2006, 4:12 PM
Would you mind expounding on Quilt templates and Puzzles?

Thanks Joe
I've posted pics before. people who do quilting use acrylic templates in various shapes, some ruled, in their work. Many are available at craft and fabric stores. They place them on the fabric and cut around them with a rotary cutter. Often they want a custom size or shape, which are not available except from people with a laser. One lady was quoted hundreds of dollars to have a couple of them fabricated by hand at a plastic shop,
using router and drill. Lots of labor. Then if they want more for their friends they start over from scratch, where we would have it ready to run. The really good customer is selling to people with longarm quilt machines. You'd be amazed to find out how many people have a sewing machine that costs $10,000 or more, especially in the midwest.

As for the puzzles, I have done several versions, in large quantities as corporate awards. Sort of the brain teaser type puzzles. Then I do some jigsaw type for a large corporation that uses them in coporate training exercises. They are 12"x18" and I get $62 each, normally they order in quantities of at least 10 with different images and cuts.

Quilt Template: http://us.st11.yimg.com/us.st.yimg.com/I/yhst-79070301531217_1897_20617487

Corporate Puzzle: http://members.aol.com/pelonio/dsc00796.jpg

Jigsaw Puzzle: http://members.aol.com/bisjoe/puzzle13piece.jpg

Brent Vander Weil
06-16-2006, 6:03 PM

Now that is awsome... If you care to share tips and tricks on that kind of design work I would be greatful for the instruction!!!

Mitchell Andrus
06-16-2006, 7:32 PM
Hold your horses, Brent.

I've had my Spirit one week (well, 8 days, but I was away last weekend).... The one with the rose inlay is mine - my first attempt. The one with the grapes was found on the 'net - not mine.

To tell you though, setting up this kind of design with a good graphic program isn't too tough. A good wood carver can completely lay out a front door with borrowed art and an opaque projector in a few minutes. I've seen it done at a wood show. Clip art is everywhere.

To do this pen box f'rinstance, paste a few grape clusters and leaves in a few spots. Add a border, a few vines and some verbage... done. (Probably got most of it from a wine label)


Keith Outten
06-16-2006, 8:34 PM
Commercial Signs :)

Brent Vander Weil
06-16-2006, 9:16 PM
Ahhh I had some serious laser envy there if you had done that in a little over a week of ownership:-) LOL

I am still cutting templates that I have found or been given... just to experiment and then have something that may come in handy down the road....

Dan Bello
06-26-2006, 11:29 AM
Thank you all for the feedback.

My head is still reeling but, I now have a more refined focus on what direction to go.

Mike Null
07-18-2006, 4:13 PM
Since I just recently joined this forum perhaps you won't mind a belated response.

Given the contacts you have I would not rule out awards. There's plenty of money to be made there and the nice thing is it's usually repeat business. Awards are usually presented quarterly, annually. Repeat business will pay the lease payments on the machine.

I try to do as much commercial marking as I can find. My price per minute is choice. I do a good nametag business--boring, not artistic, but when I can take $20 worth of material and turn it into $220 or more in an hour I'm not gonna fuss about boring. Nametags are also repeat business. Office nameplates will bring about $8.00 each; you can get 18 per quarter sheet of laminate at a cost of $16 including Velcro.

Notice there is no mention of woodworking. I don't use the laser for that.
I rarely use my machine for woodworking though that is my hobby.

George M. Perzel
07-19-2006, 8:22 PM
Hi all;
Here's a cdr and photo for a pen box similar to the one that Mike
posted. Have fun!!

Pete Simmons
07-19-2006, 8:48 PM
Anyone have good luck opening the cdr file. I cannot get it to open in Corel.

Yes, I have changed the .htm to .cdr after saving. Still will not open. I am using Corel 12.

Rick Maitland
07-19-2006, 9:13 PM
Not working for me either.:rolleyes:
We are in the same boat here Pete

Gary Shoemake
07-19-2006, 9:33 PM
Apparently George is using x3.:confused:

Mitchell Andrus
07-19-2006, 9:44 PM
X3 works.


Mitchell Andrus
07-19-2006, 9:48 PM
This looks more complicated than it is. It's just a collection of cliparts. Really!!!


Dave Fifield
07-20-2006, 1:38 AM
I translated the file into Corel Draw 11 for y'all. Enjoy.

Dave F.

Brent Vander Weil
07-20-2006, 11:51 PM
Thanks for sharing that Dave... appreciate it.

Brent Brod
07-21-2006, 7:04 AM
How are you guys downloading this cdr file? It just pops open as garbled text in the browser for me :confused:

Brent Vander Weil
07-21-2006, 6:37 PM
How are you guys downloading this cdr file? It just pops open as garbled text in the browser for me :confused:
Right click the link.. choose save file.... then make sure you change it from a .htm extension to a .cdr file... save and open in Corel...

Brent Brod
07-22-2006, 12:03 PM
Right click the link.. choose save file.... then make sure you change it from a .htm extension to a .cdr file... save and open in Corel...
For some reason that doesn't work in IE for me. When I right click and "save targe as" I get the Sawmill creek gif, not the pen box. There are no other options on the drop down that look logical. They are open, open in new window, add to favorites, create shortcut. I don't see anything that says save file. I'm using IE 6.02.

I was able to do this in the Firefox browser, so thanks for the tip

Al Mutairi
07-22-2006, 1:49 PM
It's confusing for everybody. The way that works for me is like that , the first right click on the file name only gives me an attachment.gif extension file !! no good . I left click on the file name , open the garabge text file , hit the back button on my browser then right click on the file name again & save target as .

Some members post V12 files & this ofcourse will not open with older versions of Corel Draw.

I suggest that all should save their coreldraw files in CMX format (Corel presentation Exchange) this will help alot in file sharing between different versions of Corel Draw.;)

Al Mutairi
Kuwait City