If you are concerned about various over runs in labor or the customer may be prone to making design changes, you may be able to estimate the job based off an hourly charge. In fact that is how many shops operate. The cost of the welding material, of course is not included and that may be a separate estimate, depending upon the customer supplying the welding material or not. But when figuring your hourly wage, examine local competition charges, and set your fee somewhat within that range, to whatever you think that will be satisfactory. Figuring an hourly charge is not hard, and most of that will involve you figuring out what you can live with. Basing your charges off of an hourly rate also can figure in any eventuality with a customer who is wishy-washy in his demands. If you say to the customer, “I’ll do this for 70.00 an hour.” He may be happy to hear that he will not get charged any more than necessary, and it will also put the responsibility of making any changes or overruns in his hands. Keeping up with the time is important, and nowadays relatively easy to do. The issue that arises is that a quote for a total number of hours may be requested. That’s really something learned from experience, but sometimes friendly competitors don’t mind telling you what they’d charge, especially if there’s enough business to go around. Though don’t be surprised if they don’t lend a hand to the new kid on the block the first time you ask.
Archive for the ‘Cost Of Welding’ Category
A lot of scientific formulas have been written on weld filler deposition rates for each process, and lbs. of weld per foot and cost per inch to do various types of welding. They figure in spatter loss, bead width, joint design, overall metal transfer efficiencies and more variables so you can closely estimate the cost of welding and make the best estimate for how much it will cost you to do a certain project. Those formulas are fine. I have them. They work. But they may not be practical for smaller jobs. The cost of time used during estimation may outweigh other, more simple methods. And then, if the estimate doesn’t win the bid, then there is the lost effort. The method I frequently employ is to only estimate the material cost. At today’s cost of welding metal, I can roughly double the cost and add 10% to it to get a fairly close estimate that will not only make some money but win bids. This isn’t a careful analysis to be sure…and sometimes my margin levels are a little lower than they should be, but at times it works out better than expected. But I never lose money this way and always am satisfied with the take home from the job, and the customer is generally satisfied with the result. I’m not quite sure how scientific that is, but in many traditional retail markets, a profit margin of 50% is normal, and expected. The extra 10% is there for padding for the unexpected, and if the job comes out under budget and on time, you can remove that at the end as a final discount, which further pleases the customer.