Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas
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  1. #1
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    Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Goodevevening everyone!!

    Some of the most commonly asked questions I get through YouTube, and other such places, are from people, usually newer welders, looking to make a little side-money with their newfound metalworking skills...

    And I've decided to do a mini-series on my channel, probably 4-5-6 episodes, spaced out weekly, each one featuring a simple project idea that could make someone a few bucks.

    I remember making Fence Unrollers, three-point carry all's, three point hitch receivers, and a few other things when I first started welding (not that long ago, haha)...

    I'll ditch the fence unrollers... Those are comparatively complicated to build, and cost me $100-$200 each in materials, which puts them above what these people are really *looking* to spend on a project. Plus they take FOREVER to sell, lol...

    But the carry-all's, I'll probably put in the series. Same with a few things made of horse-shoes...

    But I've decided to come to the forum and ask for your advice and ideas, for simple projects that a newer welder could complete to gain some experience and a make a few bucks... Like I said, If I use your idea, I'll make a video of myself building aforementioned item, include the dimentions, materials, and everything else I used, and give you credit for the idea as well. Ideally, the projects I complete will be fairly cheap to build, and can be done with simple tools... Stick welder, maybe a MIG, angle grinder(s), torch, etc...

    And thoughts for this project would be much appreciated...

    Thanks in advance. Have a nice week, everyone
    a.k.a ChuckE2009 on Youtube

  2. #2
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    I tried pushing fireplace log grates I built out of 1/2"x1" flat bar this past winter on Craig's list but had no takers. Built one as a sample, took pictures and posted, but no takers. Figured with the shop extremely slow back in January it was a better use of time than sitting at home.

    Listed them for $80 and pushed the hand made in the USA, not Chinese mass produced junk line. If I wasn't surrounded by box stores selling the import crap for $50 I might have had a shot.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    How about steel plinking targets. Or yard art.

    They seem to sell on Ebay and swap meets. Perhaps you can put them on consignment at the feed stores or art galleries. You would be surprised what I see at the county fair and festivals. I was shocked a couple of years at the amount of yard art at the strawberry festival in Ventura, Ca.

    Good luck.
    "Nothing welded, nothing gained."
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  4. #4
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Rolling .22LR targets... shoot them they keep going farther away.

  5. #5
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    I'd suggest some of Wello's Or Yorkiepap's projects that they actually sell. Niel's ( Wello) candle holders, picture frames, plant hangers, drink holders and so on are quite well documented and from what I understand he makes decent money on them at the market. The one of Denny's ( Yorkiepap) that comes to mind right away is some of his alum tread plate stuff he does. The napkin/letter holder is the 1st one I can think of, but I know he's posted up others.

    The other biggies would be some of the horse shoe stuff that's been posted up from time to time. Coat racks, wine rack, letter holder. book ends, shelf brackets... Horse people eat this stuff up big time.
    .



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  6. #6
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Hi Lanse, the wine bottle holder is simple ,scrap pipe, railroad spikes., and flat stock. You could use almost any scrap metal for it. Here's the posting.
    http://weldingweb.com/showthread.php?t=249051
    http://weldingweb.com/showthread.php?t=249051&page=2

  7. #7
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Here's a simple/cheap idea for a project. It is a lamp made from chain welded together.

    http://weldingweb.com/showthread.php?t=94911

    I feel sure someone could make a few dollars selling some of these. Many different configurations that could be used besides the one I made, but you get the idea.

  8. #8
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    horse shoe wine racks are easy and very cheap to make.... I sold this one for $60 or $70 I believe. another idea is a smoker out of a 55 gallon drum? Think of projects that wouldnt need a huge machine and a plasma cutter to build. Im sure lots of people on the channel have 110 migs and angle grinders. show that you dont need all the fancy stuff to make cool stuff!

  9. #9
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Hey I've got an idea, what about a photo booth!

  10. #10
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Quote Originally Posted by Gjertson View Post
    Hey I've got an idea, what about a photo booth!
    Yeah, but can you help me figure out how much I should charge to build one? Thanks!

  11. #11
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Have sold over 250 sets of these clamp on tractor forks that double as a clamp on reciever hitch holder. All parts are plasma cut (Powermax85 on a PlasmaCam) and welded with a Hobart Handler 210 mig.

    Jim Colt
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  12. #12
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Lots of these kinds of custom architectural brackets.....this was an order for 50 of these cut from 3/8" steel. This one is just tacked for measurement verification, holes are plasma cut as well for 1/2" bolts.

    Jim Colt
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  13. #13
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    After years of failure doing the custom fab thing here in the Midwest, I have found that there are only really two markets.

    Super cheap flea market stuff or high end custom pieces.

    Problem with middle of the road stuff is that most ppl immediately say they can buy it cheaper at the big box store or Walmart. Or, if its like off road stuff, they immediately have a buddy who can build it on his lunch breaks at a local shop for beer money.

    Pretty hard to compete with near free labor & the super cheap ppl who search it out. I try to avoid that pitfall, been there done that. CL isn't a good place to advertise quality higher priced work. A never ending stream of cheapskate dirtbags constantly trawl it for deals. Only thing I have found CL good for is buying stuff to later resell.

    If you do the yard art thing, you have to price items reasonable enough that you don't take a beating selling it, but can make a few bux by turning volume. Personally, the thought of hauling around dozens of finished pieces around from place to place, having to store them, handle them & protect them from damage, theft, etc is not very appealing to me.

    If you opt for high end, you have to tap the market where the buyers have deep pockets & will pay for one of a kind things. I've went this route with a collection of home furnishings such as elaborate mirror frames, light fixtures, etc. I plan to eventually have a collection to show at a local art fair that has a lot of high end clientele. I'm in no hurry to get it together, I want the pieces I'm working on to be right. I don't want to sound full of myself, but I prefer markets where I dictate the terms & circumstances of the medium I am selling, be it welding machines or things built with them. Markets like ePay & CL leave the seller at the mercy of cheapskate buyers, or ones filled with an aire of entitlement feeling the seller should capitulate to any terms they are dictated.

    No thanks.

    I sure don't expect to get rich doing it, but I'm done with crap like that.

    Make far more money selling welding machines than I ever have welding.

    IMHO of course
    Last edited by 7A749; 04-29-2013 at 06:18 PM.
    Clueless and perfectly satisfied with it....

  14. #14
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    And of course metal art....in my house since we have horses much of the art is related. Go to a horse event with this type of metal art....and you will sell some product. Oh yeah....the deck railing in the last picture showing the horse plant hangers (on my house) was plasma cut, welded and painted in my shop. Custom built railings go for some pretty big bucks.

    And if you do not have a cnc machine to cut the parts....find someone local that does! My son works full time in my shop (I don't have any time for it) and would be happy to cut parts for your project and ship them (USPS flat rate is cheap!) anywhere. He currently gets a lot of work from local welding shops that do not have cnc plasma.....that need anywhere from 1 to 1000 parts cut for their projects.

    Jim Colt
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    Last edited by jimcolt; 04-29-2013 at 06:27 PM.

  15. #15
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Definitely money in the equine industry Jim.

    Heard that from several credible ppl including you.

    I truly believe in shooting for the higher end stuff clients want & not need. The ppl who really want can generally afford to pay.

    I've been thru several nightmares working for ppl who had me chasing my tail doing industrial work, etc. just no money in it around here. Too many hacks working on government jobs at their place of employment, or for $20 an hour out of the back of their truck. Can't even compete with that.

    I knew a dude when I worked at Dart who was a welder. He build stainless steel grated camp grills. Did it all with company machinery, consumables, filler gas & usually worked well beyond his lunch breaks on them too.

    Oh, he also deliberately scrapped out useable material so he could buy it for pennies on the dollar for his projects. Made a ton of money on the side doing it too. Mighty proud of himself. He eventually got caught, but they didn't fire him. Just one of those guys who always manages to slip thru the cracks. I can only guess at how many jobs he charged big money for & did for nothing at work with their machines & materials.

    Bummer. At least I have a conscience.

    About impossible to compete with ppl like that & they're everywhere around here.

    IMHO of course
    Last edited by 7A749; 04-29-2013 at 06:33 PM.
    Clueless and perfectly satisfied with it....

  16. #16
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Bottle trees from rebar.

  17. #17
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    [QUOTE=Lanse

    I get through YouTube,

    And I've decided to do a mini-series on my channel, probably 4-5-6 episodes, spaced out weekly, each one featuring a simple project idea that could make someone a few bucks.:[/QUOTE]


    What your YouTube channel? I wanna subscribe. That will b a cool mini series to keep track of.

  18. #18
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Ask Ironheart-Ram.

    He seems to make a little cash welding scrap into different shapes.

  19. #19
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Quote Originally Posted by dallas_ View Post
    Ask Ironheart-Ram.

    He seems to make a little cash welding scrap into different shapes.
    But it does not fit the term "Simple" the OP used
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  20. #20
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Plasma table. It will take $50 jobs and turn them into $450 jobs. But you need cash for the plasma table, otherwise labor overides cost and like 7A stated its flea market stuff but thats just my opinion bud. Put a machine in the back of that truck when your out of school and do a little mobile work and see where that takes you
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  21. #21
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Quote Originally Posted by soutthpaw View Post
    But it does not fit the term "Simple" the OP used
    Absolutely.

    Mario has incredible vision & execution.

    That's what ppl are paying him for.

    IMHO of course
    Clueless and perfectly satisfied with it....

  22. #22
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Not quite right! This bracket, 11" tall and 5 deep, made from 3/8" steel and welded sold for $28 each (we did 50). Without the welding we would sell the 3 metal parts for $19 to $20. If you can do these by hand.....and drill the holes....you could not do them for that price. My shop makes $100 / hr doing jobs like this with the CNC (one man shop, my son, PlasmaCam/ Powermax85) 50 were done and ready to go in about 3 hours. The PlasmaCam paid for itself in a few months doing jobs like this. The holes were plasma cut, no need for a grinder....we did build a simple jig for welding.

    Jim Colt




    Quote Originally Posted by weldermike View Post
    Plasma table. It will take $50 jobs and turn them into $450 jobs. But you need cash for the plasma table, otherwise labor overides cost and like 7A stated its flea market stuff but thats just my opinion bud. Put a machine in the back of that truck when your out of school and do a little mobile work and see where that takes you
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  23. #23
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Quote Originally Posted by 7A749 View Post
    Absolutely.

    Mario has incredible vision & execution.

    That's what ppl are paying him for.

    IMHO of course
    MINE TOO !!! He is in a world of his own. Took me forever to build those old days plastic model kits. They even had '' DIRECTIONS ". He looks at a pile of pieces and ''SEES'' the finished product. Truly AWESOME !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. #24
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    Quote Originally Posted by jimcolt View Post
    Not quite right! This bracket, 11" tall and 5 deep, made from 3/8" steel and welded sold for $28 each (we did 50). Without the welding we would sell the 3 metal parts for $19 to $20. If you can do these by hand.....and drill the holes....you could not do them for that price. My shop makes $100 / hr doing jobs like this with the CNC (one man shop, my son, PlasmaCam/ Powermax85) 50 were done and ready to go in about 3 hours. The PlasmaCam paid for itself in a few months doing jobs like this. The holes were plasma cut, no need for a grinder....we did build a simple jig for welding.

    Jim Colt
    Jim, I think you read my post wrong, thats exactly what I was getting at!
    I hate being bi-polar it's awsome




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  25. #25
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    Re: Simple Money-Making Welding Project Ideas

    There is money indeed in job shop stuff, but again, you have to have the equipment & ability to turn it out fast enough to make a profit.

    I have access to a full sheet metal shop where I mainly use his press brake, roller & shear. He has a nice older plasma table powered incidentally by a PM 65, but I have to pay him for anything he does on that. It's only fair.

    I can do a great deal of jobs for different ppl because of just having access to these three tools. If I had to hand cut & weld together the same pieces I shear & brake, it would take forever & I would lose money.

    At the same time I don't have the room or electrical capacity to own tools such as these.

    All a matter of what you're doing in your shop & the customers you serve. Not everyone has the Capitol to invest in high cost tools.

    I don't
    Clueless and perfectly satisfied with it....

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