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Author Topic: Determining lumber prices  (Read 671 times)

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Offline dirthawger

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Determining lumber prices
« on: May 12, 2018, 06:50:54 PM »
I finally got my Norwood LM29 up and running and I've already had requests for quotes. My problem is I don't really know what to charge.  I live in Shreveport,  LA. I was considering $0.50 bf for pine $1 for oak and $1.25 for cedar. I'm thinking that might be a little expensive. I've done a little research in my area and prices are all over the place.  There's a big sawmill 100 miles west of me that cuts pine 0.35 bf, oak 0.50 bf and 0.40bf for cedar.

Offline Brad_S.

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Re: Determining lumber prices
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2018, 07:41:53 PM »
 Dont try and compete against a big mill, you will surely go broke. 

Know what your logs costs. Have a set dollar amount as your sawing cost. Add those two together and that is the minimum price you can sell for. Hopefully you can make a few extra cents profit. 

 For example, a load of white pine cost me $.35 a board foot. I charge $.35 a board foot to saw anybodys logs, including my own. Therefore I have to sell my Pine at a minimum of $.70. At that price Im not making any extra, I am just making a sawing fee. Theres a lot of extra handling and getting rid of waste products that I would like to charge more to cover  but in my area $.70 a board foot is the going rate and if I cant live with that, I shouldnt be selling it. 
"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." J. Lennon

Offline Magicman

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Re: Determining lumber prices
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2018, 08:04:01 PM »
Trying to make a profit selling lumber is what got me out of the lumber selling business.  Items such as; sheds, support handling equipment, lumber inventory, drying, waste disposal, maintaining a log inventory, and I haven't even mentioned competitive pricing.  :-\

Now plenty of sawyers do it quite well.  Things to consider might be stocking lumber that it not available from local sources.  Also adding value such is thicker items such as mantels and slabs for counter tops, etc. but then again, it requires proper handling and drying. 

It will all get down to your ability to market rather than just saw.
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Offline SawyerTed

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Re: Determining lumber prices
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2018, 08:35:16 PM »
Offering product not commonly available is also a niche.  Not everyone can or will quarter saw oak for example.  The other is to offer a better product.  
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Offline dirthawger

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Re: Determining lumber prices
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2018, 10:17:07 PM »
Ok I appreciate it. I've considered selling beams and mantels as those are very expensive in big box stores. I put an ad up on Facebook to try and get a feel for what most people want cut and it seems 1x6s are popular so I guess I'll try and get a big inventory or 1x6s going.

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