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New to the game...a few questions.

September 13 2017 at 2:49 AM
Andy  (Login SouthDakotaCarver)

Hi all:

I just purchased 2 chainsaws, and am going to see what I can do. I have a few random questions.

Does everyone have a state tax ID number, and pay the appropriate taxes, or do you work on a cash basis?

What kind of, and how much insurance is advisable (both for at home carved projects, and work done on site), and what kind of rate should I expect?

How do you set your prices? I will be working out of my shop/yard to start, doing signs and small pieces until I gain more experience.

I do have access to an experienced carver: assuming I spend some time with him, should I expect to pay a fee (hourly or otherwise), or should I expect to just watch and help him, and give him a gift certificate or something at a later date.

I would appreciate some insight.

Thanks,

Andy

 
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AuthorReply
Steven Higgins
(Login Shiggins)

Welcome to our international family of affection

September 13 2017, 3:15 PM 

Andy, glad to have you on the forum and in the family. We all have tax Id numbers, pay appropriately the taxes required, hardly ever get cash but when we do, that gets reported as well. All carvers are very well insured. We not only have our vehicles fully insured, we also have very good health insurance just in case we get injured in our dangerous job. We also have liability insurance policies usually in the 10 million dollar range just in case we happen to throw a wood chip in the eye of a California resident.( As carvers we have many fine hard assets that need to be protected in case we get sued.) Also we don't just rely on our fine health insurance to keep us going; the vast majority of us work out regularly, eat mostly organic produce and always get a good nights sleep before spending 20-30 min limbering up with a combination of streatching and calisthenics. ( you do want to get the day started right) Now off to work- we carvers are a 9-5 bunch and that is what I am recommending to you Andy. A good solid 8 hours of work with plenty of time to get home and help the wife with dinner, now the lawn, spend time with the kids and do the dishes. It really all settles into a predictable routine. As far as pricing all this artwork you are making- 300$ per hour is about what we all make on average. I would also suggest that you not come down on your prices if customers try to bargain. ( they pay what you are asking eventually but you can't blame them for trying- Damn those American pickers). Investing in yourself is always a good move. Teaming up with an experienced artist shaves years off the learning curve and therefore justifies adequate compensation. Now this differs but the going average is in the 40,000$ range not including the gift cards and helping out around the shop that you mentioned earlier. In case you were wondering, the two saws you have purchased should last you the rest of your career. They are the extent of the tool purchasing that you will need to be a smash hit success. If you don't believe me just ask your wife. - welcome aboard Andy

 
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Art
(Login buck893)

Re: Welcome to our international family of affection

September 13 2017, 4:29 PM 

Now that's a great sense of humor Steve and a very accurate description of most carvers I know. Can't wait 'til Backus weighs in on this thread happy.gifwink.gif

 
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rick martin
(Login rmartinbull)

Re: Welcome to our international family of affection

September 13 2017, 7:07 PM 

That's the way I've done it and its made me rich, honest.

 
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Rick Nasby
(no login)

Not Steve

September 14 2017, 12:19 AM 

Andy that couldn't be Steve. Steve credited his mentor a hole lot more than 40,000.00. As he had empirical visions of greatness. It's said he'll never pay off that debt. He eats very poorly at pizza joints, McDonald's and such. The only time he works out is running from his wife, jumping fences, climbing trees and other means of escaping her. No insurance company will cover him, as he's been reported multiple times by near victims of his thrown and flying chainsaws. This is when he can't get a beak right. Or a Bears head is too small. We all pity the real Steve as he struggles to be a top carver. So sad. So very sad.
The real Steve would never come on the Internet, because his family won't let him touch the computer. He drops bits of his sesame seed buns and special sauce in the keys. All while trying to find the start button. Andy if you make it to an event, you'll know Steve by. Girls hanging around him, calling him Honey, and wiping his chin, adjusting his bib. and helping him guide his cookie grasping hand too his mouth. He also walks with a bit of a switch, unlike most carvers. He plays guitar and does the hand jive on request also. For that he's not so bad. We all love the real Steve. So hope you meet him one day Andy.

 
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Carver Jake
(Login Carver01)

Bench

September 16 2017, 2:33 PM 

I've got a great large eagle bench by the "Real Steve". Got it when he and Mark Colp were carving together at an event. Quite a show if you ever get to see them carving together. Jim

 
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bad santa
(no login)

they unblocked me

September 16 2017, 10:33 PM 

Just for this thread.. how funny...
That was not Steve. Lol.......

 
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bad santa
(no login)

Re: they unblocked me

September 16 2017, 11:30 PM 

I met Steve's parents in Westport and spent a bit of time with them, not like I was after a prize after all...lol.. they were very supportive and a bit extreame about it but super nice people.. I was not a threat.. lol.. whit a teacher like Conrad how could one go wrong.. I don't think he even finished high school if I remember right, mom and dad farmed him out and put him to work in the west coast sweat shop.. haha

 
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bad santa
(no login)

Re: they unblocked me

September 16 2017, 11:42 PM 

Lonnie won semipro that year above Steve .. Flashback I need help if you can. I'll send a card .

 
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Mike S.
(no login)

Re: they unblocked me

September 19 2017, 3:58 AM 

Andy, I don't know if I can match all of the great advice you've got on this post so far but, you could do a search on here for each question you have individually and you may find a lot of good info that has been posted here over the years that will answer your questions. If you have access to a full time carver, they might be able to answer a lot of that for you. Hope that helps,

Mike S.

 
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Heath Hurlbert
(no login)

have death teegh that needs carving

September 26 2017, 4:59 PM 

I have a dead tree that I would liked to be carved. Heath Hurlbert 248/851-4053

 
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