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Author Topic: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes  (Read 928 times)

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Offline Stuart Caruk

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Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« on: April 23, 2019, 06:25:34 PM »
I typically only saw large beams that are easy to quote and invoice. I've generated a bunch of short logs that I was planning to bust into firewood, but decided to whack them into 1" x 10" x 12' plus for board and batt siding. I threw up a craigslist ad which generated sales, but a ton of requests for everything under the sun.

In my CNC fab shop, I stopped doing quotes years ago because it took too much time, and I only got paid to make parts. I've generated a huge list of customers that I do repeat business for, so I rarely quote, and when I do I almost always get the job.

Craigslist is full of flakes, but I have gotten some pretty good sales.

I'm looking for an OFFLINE version of a tally sheet that I can input some key fields on a line (width, thickness, length, BF cost) preferably with the ability to change a default to inches or feet depending on the value.

If it can spit out a quote, it's even better. I can do Axcel, or ideally something that quotes inside of Quickbooks. I'd bet someone on this forum has a slick solution.

Thanks
Stuart Caruk
Wood-Mizer LX450 Diesel w/ debarker and home brewed extension, live log deck and outfeed rolls. Woodmizer twin blade edger, Barko 450 log loader, Clark 666 Grapple Skidder w/ 200' of mainline. Bobcats and forklifts.

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2019, 06:39:33 PM »
   Attached is what I use for calculating lumber sales. I don't see why it would not work equally as well as a price quote. If it was a quote I would add a disclaimer something like "Quote valid for __ days from date of offer" or similar verbiage. All fields are changeable to modify for your use with formulas built in to calculate charges accordingly. Good luck.
Howard Green
WM LT35HDG25(2015) , 2009 4wd Dodge PU, Kawasaki 650 ATV, Sthil 440 & 441, homemade logging arch (w/custom built rear log dolly), JD 750 w/4' wide Bushhog brand FEL

Dad always said "You can shear a sheep a bunch of times but you can only skin him once"

Offline Percy

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2019, 08:24:14 PM »
Lately I been asking quote seekers if I could just text/ email my price list. Itís been working out. Disclaimers like WV suggests ( list valid for 30 days).  I get people wanting me do design their fences/decks etc and give them a cut list so they can go price elsewhere. Time consuming extrordanair 
GOLDEN RULE : The guy with the gold, makes the rules.

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2019, 09:53:29 PM »
Percy,

   My wife was with me today and we were just rambling after a potential customer site visit and we drove past an area where we had a customer similar to the ones you describe. A year or so back he showed me his trees - still standing and we agreed on an area I could set up to saw then he asked me how much it would cost for me to saw enough lumber to build cabins. I told him I could tell him exactly how much sawing would cost for the size and quantity of lumber he told me to cut but I had no idea how to calculate cabin building costs for someone else since I did know know the cabin sizes or if he wanted his studs, rafters, joists, etc on 16" or 24" centers, ceiling heights, number and placement of windows and doors, etc. If I were building for my use I could prepare a BOM and make a cut list and know but not for someone else. There are some real squirrels out there.
Howard Green
WM LT35HDG25(2015) , 2009 4wd Dodge PU, Kawasaki 650 ATV, Sthil 440 & 441, homemade logging arch (w/custom built rear log dolly), JD 750 w/4' wide Bushhog brand FEL

Dad always said "You can shear a sheep a bunch of times but you can only skin him once"

Offline PAmizerman

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2019, 09:54:38 PM »
I have a price sheet i made on Excel with the most common dimensions I saw. Priced per piece. It took a little time to do initially but saves lots of time in the long run. My repeat customers get a copy of my price sheet. 
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Offline Peter Drouin

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2019, 10:01:56 PM »
I pass out price sheets to everyone that stops in, has all the sizes I sell 
A&P saw Mill LLC.
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Offline Stuart Caruk

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2019, 02:09:02 AM »
WV Sawmiller, the Excel spreadsheet is awesome thanks!

I'm trying to avoid the stocking lumber process, but I'm also trying to avoid turning stuff into firewood if I can make lumber from it. Turns out that all those 14' butt logs I have lying around are far easier to make boards from than the side lumber from 34' beams. I think the capitalist in me is seeing more value in what typically goes to the firewood pile. 
Stuart Caruk
Wood-Mizer LX450 Diesel w/ debarker and home brewed extension, live log deck and outfeed rolls. Woodmizer twin blade edger, Barko 450 log loader, Clark 666 Grapple Skidder w/ 200' of mainline. Bobcats and forklifts.

Offline Bruno of NH

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2019, 05:31:57 PM »
I have made prints and cut list for 2 customers on pole garage packages. 
With cuts laid out on the print but I grew up with the folks.
I'm doing a bathroom addition for one again this summer.
I won't do it for everyone though.
thomas 8013 mill ,Mahindra 3540 cab tractor loader  Dump trailer  and lot of contracting tools

Offline jcbrotz

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2019, 04:47:06 AM »
Here is the Excel Sheet I have used for years.
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Offline Jwswan

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2019, 09:34:19 AM »
jcbrotz and wvsawmiller, thanks a ton for sharing.  my accounting software (accountedge for Mac) is on the whole really good. I can pretty easily maintain an inventory on it for basic stuff in my boatshop, and my guess is it's got the capability to manage the variability of  sawing orders, I'm just not smart enough to take the deep dive and figure it out.  These excel sheets are the perfect tally sheet and then i can enter the invoice total into my software in a nice, clean way.  I don't do much in the way of volume, but even then it's still a bit too much time on the ol' TI-82 for every customer.  

Josh 
Keep 'em guessin'.

Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2019, 10:37:49 AM »
Jwswan,

 You are most welcome. You see how to change the formula for the sales tax if you need to use that - just click in the tab below the WV Sales Tax and when the formula displays change the .06 to whatever your state requires. If you need to make other changes and need help PM me and we'll customize it for you. If it works for you and makes you a lot of money feel free to send me some of it or just send it straight to Jeff for setting up this forum. :D
Howard Green
WM LT35HDG25(2015) , 2009 4wd Dodge PU, Kawasaki 650 ATV, Sthil 440 & 441, homemade logging arch (w/custom built rear log dolly), JD 750 w/4' wide Bushhog brand FEL

Dad always said "You can shear a sheep a bunch of times but you can only skin him once"

Offline Jwswan

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2019, 04:28:13 PM »
WV sawmiller, will do. Though if sawing full time is anything like building wooden boats professionally, i'm guessing i can insert the tired old "how to make a small fortune" joke here;). thanks again.  
Keep 'em guessin'.

Offline longtime lurker

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Re: Easy way to generate sawmill quotes
« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2019, 05:14:32 PM »
I hate retail, went the way I did with wholesalers to avoid exactly that... time lost to quoting, time lost to hand holding the general public who don't know what they want, time lost to sales because I like to talk timber etc etc.  Its not that i dont do retail, its that i dont advertise for it so mostly people dont even know I'm here. when I've finished expanding I might go back to it becase I like the margins, but for now my time is worth more driving a saw.

Make yourself a price list -  I actually have two. Ones the wholesale price for the volume guys done in cubic meters. The other is the retail price which is calculated in linear meters. Metric... consider it BF price vs price per linear foot.

Once you got your list it's just about inserting the number in an excel spreadsheet setup for quotes, or just emailing out the price list and let them figure it out themselves. I prefer the latter because again... Its about time management. Or build a website and show a pricelist on it and direct them to that.

Time is money, and while old fashioned service is great its not necessarily profitable. We try and give good old fashioned service... But that starts when we have an order not just an enquiry. Just beware the generation gap if you go web based: there's a generation out there that aren't necessarily tech savvy and require more human input.
The quickest way to make a million dollars with a sawmill is to start with two million.


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