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Vinyl jobs

Started by sofadoc, August 27, 2015, 11:06:35 pm

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sofadoc

Over the years, I've never done as much vinyl work as I have this year.

Just off the top of my head, I can think of at least 600 yards so far this year.

Hospital sofas, restaurant booth seats, patient exam tables, beauty shop/barber chairs, and other miscellaneous items.

For the most part, vinyl jobs are quick, easy, and my favorite.......profitable.

Sure, the mark-up on vinyl usually isn't what it is on cloth, and vinyl jobs have consumed a great deal of time that would've normally been spent on cloth work.
But that really doesn't really bother me, since most cloth jobs are COM anyway.

Are you furniture guys seeing a lot of vinyl work?
"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban

MinUph

Average amount of vinyl here. I did do a cornice out of vinyl today. Don't like it for this use.
Paul
Minichillo's Upholstery
Website

sofadoc

One thing I've noticed, is that customers with vinyl jobs are far less likely to furnish their own vinyl than cloth job customers. Even though vinyl is readily available at retail stores like JoAnns.

"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban

cajunpedaler

I try like the dickens to furnish the vinyl for vinyl jobs...in my area anyway, what is available at a retail level and called vinyl is crap...I would much rather sell the vinyl than to use COM on vinyl jobs...
And quite the opposite for cloth.
Perry
If at first you don't succeed, redefine success. If at first you fail, redefine failure.

gene

I'm not seeing an increase in vinyl work. It tends to pick up before the summer moths in general anyway each year.

Most of my work is residential and not commercial.

gene

QUALITY DOES NOT COST, IT PAYS!

sofadoc

Quote from: gene on August 28, 2015, 09:59:01 pm
Most of my work is residential and not commercial.
Up until the last couple of years, I would've said the same thing.

I haven't made any conscious effort to transition over to commercial. It has just naturally evolved.
Other than my staunch refusal to bend over for ID's, I've done nothing to discourage residential work.

About 5 years ago, a fledgling company began operation in Dallas. They were located in 2 buildings separated by a busy street. Their forklift drivers were constantly given citations by the city police for darting across traffic.

The company got tired of being harassed by DPD, so they bought some land just down the road from my shop, and moved their operations there. That's when they looked me up in the phone book.

It started out with little odds and ends. They were the world's leading manufacturer of shoeshine stands (which means they built about a dozen of them). I did the padded seating for them.

Over the next few years, the orders gradually grew more meaningful.

Now, my seating is in more than 300 department stores across the country. And some VERY important government buildings. A non-disclosure agreement prevents me from naming them.

At the same time, the number of restaurant booths, salon seating, and other local commercial jobs have dramatically increased.

In a way, I'm kinda glad. There's so much junk residential furniture flooding the market, it gets harder every year to convince customers to reupholster. With vinyl commercial jobs, I see more of a stable, predictable future.
"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban

MinUph

We do some contract work I like it for the reasons you mentioned Dennis. More quality products to work with and better $$. I am trying to grow that side of the business. One contact at a time.
  Good for you. Maybe I sat on one of your shoe shine seats LOL. Doubt it I think I've had my shoes shined maybe twice in my live by a ss person.
Paul
Minichillo's Upholstery
Website

Rich

Sofa,
What are you making that's selling in dept. stores?

One aspect of working with vinyl (my work is almost exclusively vinyl) is that you have to heat it whereas most fabrics you do not. This adds time to the job. Also, once you've made marks in vinyl like a line of staple holes or stitch holes and need to make adjustments, unlike many fabrics, it's there for all to see. I've had to replace the whole piece on occasion.
Rich
Everything's getting so expensive these days, doesn't anything ever stay at the same price? Well the price for reupholstery hasn't changed much in years!

sofadoc

Quote from: Rich on October 28, 2015, 11:19:42 pm
Sofa,
What are you making that's selling in dept. stores?
My product isn't for sale. It's customer seating, such as in dressing rooms.
"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban

kodydog

Just looked at photos of furniture I've completed this year and to my surprise I haven't done one vinyl job.
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html

Mojo

When I first started in this trade I did alot of vinyl work. I despised the stuff and hated working with it. Then I started learning some tricks from Mike and June and a few others here and enjoyed working with it.

I have forgotten alot of what I learned because I haven't worked with vinyl in a while. But I did get to enjoy it. I would love to get a vinyl seat/cushion job now as I am so sick and tired of seeing acrylic and vinyl awnings.

It is the one thing I really envy you guys for. Every job you get is a bit different. Different layouts, different fabric, different cushions, foam, etc. I stare at the same colors, fabrics etc. week after week after week. It is repetitive, monotonous and boring work.

You furniture and marine guys at least get some different things popping up every week with each new order.

Chris

MinUph

Yes Chris we do have a multitude of different pieces and fabrics. I hear ya when you say it is boring working with the same stuff all the time. I couldn't do that. Today and yesterday I had the privilege of working with rebonded leather on a tuff to cover chair. I hate the stuff. Is doesn't work like fabric and doesn't work like vinyl. Real crap from the manufacturing to the end use to the peeling it ends up as.
  Such is live in the Upholstery business. Cornices next week. I just love cutting wood.
  If you'd like I'll send you my next vinyl seat to do. Breakup your day a little.
Paul
Minichillo's Upholstery
Website

Mojo

Paul:

I would love to do a seat but never have time. I have six prayer cushions ready to be sewn. Vinyl is cut, welting made, foam cut but no time to put them together. They have been sitting in a couple boxes for over a year. :(

Whats a prayer cushion you ask ? I make them with 4 inch foam. They are about 2 ft long x 10 inches wide. I use them whenever I have to get down on my knees to do something like working on a tire, weeding the garden or planting flowers, etc. I call them prayer cushions because at our age you get down on your knees and then pray you can stand back up again. :)

Coach owners, mechanics and gardeners love them. They make being on your knees much easier.
I have never sold them, just made a few for myself and friends.

Chris

Rich

Quote from: Mojo on November 13, 2015, 02:35:13 pm
When I first started in this trade I did alot of vinyl work. I despised the stuff and hated working with it. Then I started learning some tricks from Mike and June and a few others here and enjoyed working with it.

I have forgotten alot of what I learned because I haven't worked with vinyl in a while. But I did get to enjoy it. I would love to get a vinyl seat/cushion job now as I am so sick and tired of seeing acrylic and vinyl awnings.

It is the one thing I really envy you guys for. Every job you get is a bit different. Different layouts, different fabric, different cushions, foam, etc. I stare at the same colors, fabrics etc. week after week after week. It is repetitive, monotonous and boring work.

You furniture and marine guys at least get some different things popping up every week with each new order.

Chris


Here's my experience; Each job different=low efficiency=low profit. Boring and repetitive=high efficiency=higher profit.
Rich
Everything's getting so expensive these days, doesn't anything ever stay at the same price? Well the price for reupholstery hasn't changed much in years!

baileyuph

Rich - spot on!  What could be boring about seeing greater profits.  Efficiency definitely is higher (I have a rather large project that is paying the bills - large motel chain items with the same experience).

Doyle