Ford Power Stroke Nation banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
PSN Lover
Joined
·
123 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I grew up on a Farm in northern Michigan and moved down state for Welding school and now a Fabrication Job making almost anything from steel structures to spiral stairs etc. I'd really like to move out to Montana soonish and start my life for real. I'm 18 and want to be on my own and succeed. I have a lot of dedication and i'm a hard worker. When I move out to Montana i'd like to start my organic livestock business but i'd also like to work full-time from my shop as a truck/off-road bumper fabricator. I want to make Road armor type things, and roof racks, etc. I love doing that stuff. My question is for all you shop owners, is it worth it? I'm a good fabricator and a good welder. I've learned a lot and continue learning, what i'm wondering is if I do it right and work hard can I actually make good money? Is it worth it? I don't need to make million's I just want my nice house, nice ranch and my shoppe. And my wife and kids to be happy. I want to be able to be around for my kids and be the fun dad. And work for myself and make enough money to support mine and my kids hobbies. etc. you know "The American Dream" I grew up a hard worker, and I know you don't get anything you don't work for. But what's your opinion?
 

·
Super Hauler!
Joined
·
3,882 Posts
If you have the self motivation to do it then anything is possible. I run a shop here in town and i have to tell ya, its hard to stay on track with a wife and kid wanting you to take the day off and "play" all the time. Once you get your name out there and build a reputation the work will come, the hard part is building the reputation and getting your name out there. I would go for it but have a backup plan for income, it might be a slow for a few months.

Let me know once you get setup, i have a lot of guys around here looking for that sort of thing. I cant do them because most don't understand that custom means money, if you want something custom please be prepared to spend more than you would for a assembly line product.

Good luck to ya!
 

·
PSN Lover
Joined
·
123 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
If you have the self motivation to do it then anything is possible. I run a shop here in town and i have to tell ya, its hard to stay on track with a wife and kid wanting you to take the day off and "play" all the time. Once you get your name out there and build a reputation the work will come, the hard part is building the reputation and getting your name out there. I would go for it but have a backup plan for income, it might be a slow for a few months.

Let me know once you get setup, i have a lot of guys around here looking for that sort of thing. I cant do them because most don't understand that custom means money, if you want something custom please be prepared to spend more than you would for a assembly line product.

Good luck to ya!
OK sweet. Thanks for the reply and encouragement. I will keep in touch.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,295 Posts
if you do get a shop started let me know. im always in to support a new shop as long as the work and product that comes out of the shop is good and worth the money. imo custom is worth it for something that noone else has.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,586 Posts
Hey good luck brother and wish the best for you. Just remember you'll have to make some sacrafices but it will all be worth it in the end. I agree with the guys above and hit me up and once your set up, always looking to support the small business man.
 

·
PSN Lover
Joined
·
123 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
ok, thanks everyone for the support and replies!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,557 Posts
if your only 18 (or anyone without retail experience), I'd suggest quite a few good classes on business mgmt, once in business money matters change!
good luck to ya
 

·
all ur OBS r belong to me
Joined
·
1,591 Posts
As a guy who has made a very good living as a fabricator/erector... I can say its not a bad way to go.

At 18 you should probably work in the trade for a few more years because there is a lot to learn.

I would also say to not waste your time with truck bumpers. There's not enough profit in them. Leave that stuff to the big manufacturers, because you won't be competitive in that market without a plate laser/water jet and your own paint or powdercoat shop. I've built bumpers for myself and I can tell you that I would have to charge $2500 for it to be "worth my time." The money is in custom fabrication. Misc metals like railings, atriums, awnings, stairs... All pay much more that you would make selling truck parts.
 

·
Eric
Joined
·
106 Posts
It's awesome to see someone out there with such ambition!
I'm 21 and in the same boat as you, minus the Montana bit, but I can agree with just about everything said above. I build specialized vacum trucks for the company I work for and there really is allot to take in. I learn new fab stuff all the time, but the parts that really matter, as stated above, are Money, Management, and Money Management(which is my biggest problem). Starting a new business is easy. Keeping in business is the part that trips 90% of people up.
To add my personal touch, I want to say that good customer relationships are huge, especially in the de-socialized age we live in, and I know that I make an effort to take my business to the people who treat me like a human being and that go the extra mile for their customers, even if it means spending a few extra bucks.

Best of luck in your indevours!

Eric

sorry for the rant but this is the kind of thing that makes my day!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
As an echo to what everyone above has already said, its great to see a hard working young man with big dreams!

My advice to you is to be patient, enjoy where you are at now, work a few more years to get experience, at eighteen you are still young and that is great because now is the time for you to really go full steam into learning as much as you can about the successes and failures of the other people whom you work with.

But.... at the same time, don't forget your dream, save for it, plan for it, and when the time comes, act on it. You will have to make numerous sacrifices, and it wont always turn out the way you want it to.

Also, you NEED, NEED, NEED good financial wisdom and some good solid business classes, you need to know what it takes to keep a business going and how to stay on track and motivated.

Also, this isn't a popular thing to say today, but if you really want to be a success, consider Jesus, you can gain everything in this life, but if you go through it without Him, at the end of this life, well, it wont matter much. But if you accept Him as your Savior, well then, the whole perspective just got infinitely better.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
49 Posts
Im young too. I honestly recommend you paying as much as you can in cash. If that means finding a job and saving for a couple of years with no major spending then do it. Its worth it in the long run.
 

·
Pissed in your Cheerios..
Joined
·
157 Posts
Let me tell you, my sister moved to Bozeman when she was 21 years old, 2,000 in her pocket, her F350 and a trailer of horses. IMO Montana is a wonderful place to live, cheap living costs, wonderful view, great people and places. From my time in Montana I never really saw fabrication shops like the one you are talking about, but I was just looking in the wrong places.

All the patrol cars on my police force have Road Armor bumpers/ Brushgaurds and almost every vehicle I had seen in Montana had a bumper/ guard. I would look at dodge chargers with brush guards and instinctively think they were police being that our chargers have guards.

I know I've gotten off track here but what I'm trying to say is once you go to Montana, you'll never go back. It's cheap living, simple life and endless things to do. Room for dreams and business and the people willing to spend a good dollar on the idea you have dreamed up. Make it a reality. I wish you the best of luck!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Coming from someone who is in the process of getting a fab shop for the first time I'd say it's worth it but I've always looked at life like the more things you do on your own the better you will feel about it...I startedworking for my dad doing drywall when I was twelve im 22 now and been doing drywall for ten years and when I turned 16 and got my first truck I started going to college for welding and working full time now I've been doing side jobs in my dad's drywall shop welding steel gun cabinets to custom one off front and rear truck bumpers to 13 foot steel gates and I'm now looking for my first shop for my fab business and I couldn't be happier with myself! If anyone needs something built lmk lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
301 Posts
I being a shop owner even down here in Florida where the is I believe to be a lot larger diesel seen, and especially with how young you are, your going to have to have someone backing you in order to keep things going forward and not falling on your face. Don't worry about your own builds especially!!!! Put every dime you have either into business/bills/savings/and most importantly food.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
I'm 26, I opened my own custom shop last year. I absolutely agree that you should work a little longer for someone else and save your money. Pay cash for everything and it's important to keep a low overhead. I'm working 2 jobs at the moment just to help support the cost of buying more equipment and tools. One thing about your own business is you're always going to need another tool or machine. If you aren't good with math or taxes you need to get a bookkeeper that knows what they are doing. I lucked out with my wife being an accountant. My customers come back to me because of my low labor rated and my relationship with them. Always treat them the best you can and they'll remember you. It's not easy running a place by yourself, but it's well worth it for me.

Sorry for being all over the place in my response.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
252 Posts
Sorry to revive a old thread. But wish Id see more people out there wanting to get out on their own like this.

I agree with a lot of what has been said here.

Custom stuff is very hard to sell. People generally dont understand what it takes to build custom parts or complete vehicles. And It always pisses me off when I see people spouting off how thier car or truck is custom.....when its nothing more than a bunch of bolt on crap that any joe blow can get from a catalog.

Custom parts mean a lot of time into them. you have to design, build, test...its very time consuming.

With that being said. Generally a small percentage of your business is actually going to be custom work. But there are lots of ways to keep a fab shop busy. accounts accounts accounts. Sub contract for jobs. lots of companies out there that need things built for their product that dont do it in house.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
No credit cards. No car notes. You can do almost anything if you have no debt. It aint how much you make, its how much you keep that leads to financial security.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top