Author Topic: Your design fee is %@$#% per hour?!!!!!  (Read 5533 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 76
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 28
  • Likes Given: 18
Re: Your design fee is %@$#% per hour?!!!!!
« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2015, 02:16:01 AM »
I've gone back and forth on this issue as well, and have adopted a few simple rules. My day job is at a gun store and when people find out that I make gear (which is information that I never volunteer) I get inundated with custom requests.
Most of the time people come to me with half witted ideas of "awesome gear" and promises of "this design will make you a bunch of money", and 90% of the time these end up being laughable. I actually adopted my first rule out of this issue.
Rule 1, If I think your idea will get you killed if/when you need to use it I'm not building it.
Sometimes the idea might literally get them killed, but usually my reason for declining is that the whole idea is just rubbish and no matter how well made they will perceive that rubbish as some wrongdoing or poor design work on my part.

Rule 2, Unless I sign a release I maintain 100% of the design rights. This is in line with what mogensbeck had to say. If I'm working out this design for you it's because I think it is actually viable (refer to rule 1) that means I want to add it to my portfolio of designs and am absorbing the cost of development into that consideration.

Rule 3, I generally don't do multiple prototypes, and you agree on the price before scissors are ever taken to material. This one is hard for people. I'm not trying to come off as condescending here, it's just I do an enormous amount of conceptual development and sketching of designs before actually making something. Very rarely do I get into a project and realize that I should have done something differently. This would probably be different if it were something like a complex PC system or similar, but in custom work it's usually simpler than that.


  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 193
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 35
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Your design fee is %@$#% per hour?!!!!!
« Reply #16 on: September 14, 2015, 02:39:10 AM »
Frick, I've been charging $22/hr labor plus materials and hardware for projects.    I figured I was making about $24.50/hr as a Deputy Sheriff until I got hurt on the job. Decided $22/hr was what my extra pain was worth.

Some interesting stuff, I ate some of the design and planning time as investment in future product sales.

My helmet covers go by the build your own a la carte menu based on time needed to perform each detail.  Every single cover has been different, sure they look cool, but it is turning into a terribly inefficient business model.   By now I have figured out pretty much what users want most frequently but each sale, I keep getting some one-of detail the user thinks he needs.    I was hoping by now to have had one of mine picked up by one of the bigger gear mfg but no luck so far.

The M240 Ruck is a sound design, but it needs a means to exploit it for sales that cannot afford four-frickin'-thousand-dollars for the Tyr Tactical version.


  • Chuck - Maker
  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 436
    • View Profile
    • Two Way Trauma
  • Liked: 60
  • Likes Given: 76
Re: Your design fee is %@$#% per hour?!!!!!
« Reply #17 on: September 14, 2015, 12:56:48 PM »
Didn't know about that ruck until I looked it up...  $4k seems like a pretty weighty price. 
Two Way Trauma: Providing equipment for those trained in the judicious application and relief of trauma.