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Tips, Techniques, and Questions -- Technical questions or tips

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  #121  
Old 2012-04-16, 6:16pm
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Hey, you forgot making the pecans
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  #122  
Old 2012-04-16, 8:26pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalera View Post
I'd seriously consider it, depending on the timeline and price. When you consider how much less time you'd spend on photography, listings, packaging for shipping, etc. it's very doable in under a year, for small relatively simple beads. When I was torching full time I made over 15,000 beads per year.
Of all the people to questions this LISI !?!? queen of spitting out beads faster than lightning!

I thought that was her normal monthly order load now lol
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  #123  
Old 2012-04-17, 12:44am
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Originally Posted by jaci View Post
Of all the people to questions this LISI !?!? queen of spitting out beads faster than lightning!

I thought that was her normal monthly order load now lol
LOL!

Well, I do make a lot of beads like you already know, but I think any little 1-2 person company accepting a contract for 10,000 beads is well....I think it's "nutso". I mean, "10,000 beads" is a lot more than the humongous number of "1,000". Just the thought of having to make 1,000 beads for someone makes me nervous. The most I ever did was 500 under contract, and I was pretty damn apprehensive until they were all done and out the door.

When you take on a contract for 10,000 beads, you are taking a LOT of risks. What will happen to your deal if one or more of the following happens to you or your business??

What will you do if something happens to you or your partner, like a very serious accident, serious illness, or how about a death in the family?? What will happen with your contract then? They won't give a shit about you, or your family, and they will want their beads and/or their money. So, if it's just you, one little person, or you and a partner, that is too small of a back-up for a very big job. It's all on you if something bad happens and you cannot continue to fulfill your contract. If something goes wrong, you could lose your business, your reputation, and more. It's not worth it, and you are not going to get top dollar for your work. Why would you want to sell your beads for less than they are worth?? I could never understand "wholesale" with artisan lampwork.

I'm not trying to rain on anyone's parade here. I'm just being realistic. You are just human, not machines that can be replaced when broken. I really have to laugh at people who think they are invincible, and I can almost see their eyes lighting up with the flipping dollar signs. Ka-Ching!

Sorry! I just had to tell it like it is!
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Last edited by Lisi; 2012-04-17 at 12:47am.
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  #124  
Old 2012-04-17, 8:04am
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Originally Posted by Lisi View Post
Who the hell would want to take an order for 10,000 beads anyway?? Only a mass producing company could handle that. Unless they are giving you a year or two to make them.
Based on my rate of production, that would be 100 torch days. Not so crazy, or maybe I am in hell.
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  #125  
Old 2012-04-17, 8:06am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CD Lampwork View Post
212 degrees is the boiling point of water. No matter how high up you turn your stove, boiling water will remain at 212. The extra heat just makes it boil harder, not hotter. Just as ice water is 32 degrees. Water is just a really weird substance.
Ever make candy and watch the candy thermometer for hard boil stage? The boiling temperature is 212, but if you turn up the heat and wait, the temperature will certainly go up.
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  #126  
Old 2012-04-17, 9:28am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ginko View Post
Ever make candy and watch the candy thermometer for hard boil stage? The boiling temperature is 212, but if you turn up the heat and wait, the temperature will certainly go up.
There are a lot more technical sites, but this one is pretty easy to understand

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/in...2043237AAqfpWA

If the thermometer is touching the side of the pot, then sure. The pot will get hotter than 212. But the actual boiling water will remain the same.

But you do make a good point. When testing beads using boil-ice the bead should be suspended in the water and not just sitting on the bottom of the pot.
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  #127  
Old 2012-04-17, 9:40am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisi View Post
LOL!

Well, I do make a lot of beads like you already know, but I think any little 1-2 person company accepting a contract for 10,000 beads is well....I think it's "nutso". I mean, "10,000 beads" is a lot more than the humongous number of "1,000". Just the thought of having to make 1,000 beads for someone makes me nervous. The most I ever did was 500 under contract, and I was pretty damn apprehensive until they were all done and out the door.


I'm not trying to rain on anyone's parade here. I'm just being realistic. You are just human, not machines that can be replaced when broken. I really have to laugh at people who think they are invincible, and I can almost see their eyes lighting up with the flipping dollar signs. Ka-Ching!

Sorry! I just had to tell it like it is!
You're right, that is a big order.
My problem would be also keeping the retail end going. I think we've all noticed the dip when we take time off for a show and then lose momentum on the retail/online end.
It is very do-able with some discipline, but I don't think I'd be eager to go after it unless it could be delivered in increments and spread out a little.
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  #128  
Old 2012-04-17, 10:24am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisi View Post
LOL!

What will happen to your deal if one or more of the following happens to you or your business??

What will you do if something happens to you or your partner, like a very serious accident, serious illness, or how about a death in the family?? What will happen with your contract then? They won't give a shit about you, or your family, and they will want their beads and/or their money. So, if it's just you, one little person, or you and a partner, that is too small of a back-up for a very big job. It's all on you if something bad happens and you cannot continue to fulfill your contract. If something goes wrong, you could lose your business, your reputation, and more. It's not worth it, and you are not going to get top dollar for your work. Why would you want to sell your beads for less than they are worth?? I could never understand "wholesale" with artisan lampwork.

I'm not trying to rain on anyone's parade here. I'm just being realistic. You are just human, not machines that can be replaced when broken. I really have to laugh at people who think they are invincible, and I can almost see their eyes lighting up with the flipping dollar signs. Ka-Ching!
I don't buy into this argument. What if something happens to you and you didn't take the giant order? Your business is still going to suffer. You're still going to have financial issues. Presumably with a large wholesale order like this you don't get paid the full amount upfront. It's not like a supplier is going to drop 20 or 30 grand in your lap and then wait for a crap ton of beads. More likely the amounts will come in increments as the order is filled.

Not taking an order because of this reasoning is like staying locked in your house because you're afraid you'll get hit by a bus.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bluhealer View Post
You're right, that is a big order.
My problem would be also keeping the retail end going. I think we've all noticed the dip when we take time off for a show and then lose momentum on the retail/online end.
It is very do-able with some discipline, but I don't think I'd be eager to go after it unless it could be delivered in increments and spread out a little.
These are the questions I'd be asking myself. It is hard to maintain an online shop and do wholesale and do shows. It's a lot of work. With a huge supplier order, it would be likely be either/or. I'd be more worried about if the supplier suddenly stopped buying. Then you'd have to rebuild your online/show business.
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  #129  
Old 2012-04-17, 10:38am
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I don't buy into this argument. What if something happens to you and you didn't take the giant order? Your business is still going to suffer. You're still going to have financial issues. Presumably with a large wholesale order like this you don't get paid the full amount upfront. It's not like a supplier is going to drop 20 or 30 grand in your lap and then wait for a crap ton of beads. More likely the amounts will come in increments as the order is filled.

Not taking an order because of this reasoning is like staying locked in your house because you're afraid you'll get hit by a bus.
I agree....this is not being realistic...it's being paranoid.
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  #130  
Old 2012-04-17, 12:27pm
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Originally Posted by ginko View Post
Ever make candy and watch the candy thermometer for hard boil stage? The boiling temperature is 212, but if you turn up the heat and wait, the temperature will certainly go up.
That's because the water has evaporated and the sugar is boiling. If you take a 12 quart stock pot and fill it with water and boil it it will stay at 212 until the pot is dry.
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  #131  
Old 2012-04-17, 12:48pm
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That's because the water has evaporated and the sugar is boiling. If you take a 12 quart stock pot and fill it with water and boil it it will stay at 212 until the pot is dry.
ah. That makes sense now.
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  #132  
Old 2012-04-17, 2:26pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisi View Post
LOL!

Well, I do make a lot of beads like you already know, but I think any little 1-2 person company accepting a contract for 10,000 beads is well....I think it's "nutso". I mean, "10,000 beads" is a lot more than the humongous number of "1,000". Just the thought of having to make 1,000 beads for someone makes me nervous. The most I ever did was 500 under contract, and I was pretty damn apprehensive until they were all done and out the door.

When you take on a contract for 10,000 beads, you are taking a LOT of risks. What will happen to your deal if one or more of the following happens to you or your business??

What will you do if something happens to you or your partner, like a very serious accident, serious illness, or how about a death in the family?? What will happen with your contract then? They won't give a shit about you, or your family, and they will want their beads and/or their money. So, if it's just you, one little person, or you and a partner, that is too small of a back-up for a very big job. It's all on you if something bad happens and you cannot continue to fulfill your contract. If something goes wrong, you could lose your business, your reputation, and more. It's not worth it, and you are not going to get top dollar for your work. Why would you want to sell your beads for less than they are worth?? I could never understand "wholesale" with artisan lampwork.

I'm not trying to rain on anyone's parade here. I'm just being realistic. You are just human, not machines that can be replaced when broken. I really have to laugh at people who think they are invincible, and I can almost see their eyes lighting up with the flipping dollar signs. Ka-Ching!

Sorry! I just had to tell it like it is!

I wouldn't take payment up front, and I'm sure they wouldn't offer it. I'd expect payment as I completed a batch, for however many beads might be in it. If I get sick or have an accident or a death in the family, that's going to affect my business regardless.

As far as top dollar, if I don't have to spend hours photographing or listing my beads, I can afford to charge less for them. A guaranteed buyer would leave me more time to make beads, and I'd spend much less time doing the other, un-fun stuff. I have about thirty sets sitting here that I've been procrastinating photographing for a couple weeks now; if I had a buyer already lined up, I could have been paid for and shipped them by now.

I have no issues with the quantity of beads... that's a great arrangement, provided they have a 6-month to 1-year timeline for them.
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  #133  
Old 2012-04-17, 2:33pm
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That's because the water has evaporated and the sugar is boiling. If you take a 12 quart stock pot and fill it with water and boil it it will stay at 212 until the pot is dry.
That does bring up another question, though, which is how hot the beads actually get in boiling water. The water itself boils at 212 degrees, but the pan is conducting heat from the burner and the beads are in direct contact with the bottom of the pan; glass is not a good heat conductor, but it is a conductor nonetheless, the beads therefore most likely get hotter than the water, even though the water is continuously cooling the surface of the pan and beads. Interesting.

Time to consult with my physicist friend again.

You could avoid this issue by going the opposite direction; from freezer to boiling water.
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  #134  
Old 2012-04-17, 2:46pm
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I would definitely not have been interested in an order of that nature a few years ago, but now that I'm a full-time student and have little time to maintain my website, it would be a far more practical arrangement than trying to cram in photos and listings every week. The non-beadmaking part of my business take up about twice as much time as the beadmaking part, so if I could just make beads and ship them, it would be an ideal situation. The drawback is that if I get the internship I want this summer, I wouldn't have time to make beads unless I also didn't take any classes at all.
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  #135  
Old 2012-04-17, 3:11pm
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If you wanted to keep the beads at 212 degrees F, you would need to suspend them in the water with something like a sieve. If they were on the bottom they could get significantly hotter.
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  #136  
Old 2012-04-17, 3:33pm
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Well I would offer to help SuzyQ with that offer. Maybe as a shop assistant or something. I kinda like doing the same thing over and over. I personally don't know If I could do the order alone without knowing the time from.
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  #137  
Old 2012-04-17, 6:32pm
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Come stay with me Nikki and we'll crank it out, lol. It so rare I get a torching buddy.

I'm dying to know who DOES have that order.
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  #138  
Old 2012-04-18, 6:57am
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I don't think I've made 10K beads, in all of the years I've been playing at the torch...
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  #139  
Old 2012-04-18, 2:38pm
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Is it one beadmaker making 10,000 or a few making 10,000? He did say 'beadmakers' so that's unclear.

Castle walls, I have dreads and I've had beads both annealed and not annealed (it was a test, I do not condone nor sell them) for 5 years now that have smacked more things than any bead should be able to withstand and they are fine. Sure a dot or 2 are cracked on one, it's on a very long dread and it does hit concrete if I sit down on any.

..the tests sound silly imo
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  #140  
Old 2012-04-19, 7:28am
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I don't think I've made 10K beads, in all of the years I've been playing at the torch...
You may have... Your beads are so small 1000 could look like 100! Lol

10,000 beads... That's like 9 lbs of glass for you to complete the job right? Lol

(I don't think I've made that many either! Ever!)
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  #141  
Old 2012-04-19, 7:29pm
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Not taking an order because of this reasoning is like staying locked in your house because you're afraid you'll get hit by a bus.
That's BS. I've learned from my life experiences to never take anything for granted. This is not "paranoid", it's just being smart. Those who trek along in life like it's always going to be fine and dandy, are going to set themselves up for a hard fall. This goes for anything in life, not just business.

My point is that if you are going to take an order for 10,000 beads, you had better make sure that you have some lampworker friends on standby to make these beads if you can't. If you don't have a back-up plan, then taking on such a huge responsibility is not smart. My parents were artists and they ran a really good business, but they didn't take dumb risks. They had back-up for everything, and they never bit off more than they could chew.
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  #142  
Old 2012-04-19, 7:45pm
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Dumb risk? Not seeing it. If you can't fill the order due to an emergency the buyer will just find someone else.

Now if you spend the money before you have actually followed through, that is a dumb risk.
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  #143  
Old 2012-04-19, 8:05pm
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I don't see how taking on a huge order is any more a risk than anything in life. No pain, no gain and all that. Getting outside your comfort zone is good for ya! If something happens, you deal with it.
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  #144  
Old 2012-04-20, 6:01am
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Come stay with me Nikki and we'll crank it out, lol. It so rare I get a torching buddy.

I'm dying to know who DOES have that order.
That would be great! So ya, someone needs to get Susan the info so we can get this party started
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  #145  
Old 2012-04-20, 6:47am
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I don't see how taking on a huge order is any more a risk than anything in life. No pain, no gain and all that. Getting outside your comfort zone is good for ya! If something happens, you deal with it.
It doesn't seem like any more of a risk than any other order, if they're paying as you go. Certainly less of a risk than having a child, buying a house or a new car, or taking out loans to go to school. All of those scenarios have a "what if something happens to me" risk factor, with much worse consequences. Worst case scenario if you agree to make 10,000 beads and then something happens to you is that the ordering company has to find someone else. It happens all the time in business; Company A arranges to order 10,000 pieces of merchandise from Company B. Company B is able to produce the first 2000 pieces, and then something happens and they dry up. Company A goes "Oh damn, now I have to re-source that part" and does.

For that matter, sometimes it's Company A that goes belly-up, leaving Company B holding the ball and wondering what they're going to do with the latest batch of specialized parts they made for Company A.
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  #146  
Old 2012-04-20, 10:31am
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ChaseDesigns ChaseDesigns is offline
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Well, I live for today. No one knows if tomorrow is coming. Does that mean I don't have contingency plans? No. I do. I've managed to run a profitable business for ten years. I think I have a handle on it. Like Susan said, taking orders is smart. Spending the money before the product is delivered is not smart.
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  #147  
Old 2012-04-22, 6:09pm
nikki2kats nikki2kats is offline
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Very interesting conversation guys, thanks for all of the thoughts. As others have said, taking a big order can be a very secure source of income for a while, but it would have to be balanced against other income streams to work. Many a business has hit hard times if they have relied upon a single customer who then bails out. Teaming up on an order like that so that you can still maintain the shows and on line business could be a great way to bring in a steady large scale customer. As far as the testing, I see no reason not to quality test a product, but it is important that we understand what the test proves. Is boiling water to ice water a valid check and if so of what? Does this test prove the bead was annealed, that all the strain has been removed, etc.? If the test is valid for certain specifications, is it an appropriate test for all sizes and shapes of beads? All COE's? Will the the test reveal the majority of flawed beads? Is it possible to introduce flaws into the beads with the test? How much of the production should be tested? As an industry we should have these discussions, and if possible answer the questions one way or another, otherwise we could find ourselves forced to perform tests that make no sense whatsoever. Would love it if some materials scientist were out there and could weigh in.

Nikki
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Old 2013-11-14, 6:36pm
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glassbead glassbead is offline
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Before I had an annealer, I used to take my beads and freeze them and drop them on the floor- it wasn't steel, just wood, but it was 3-4 feet down. I didn't boil them, though.
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