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Thread: Animatronic designs for sale question:

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  1. Default Animatronic designs for sale question: 
    #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Eastlake, Ohio
    Posts
    833
    This is more of a poll question. I have hundreds of animatronic, static prop, and scene designs in CAD. I was pondering offering up for sale some of my animatronic designs for the DIY'ers. Everything from small single cylinder mechanisms, up to and including multifunction rotating motion base elevator rides. Is this something that haunters on a budget would be interested in? My designs include detailed blue prints including all purchased parts with sources and part numbers, and all manufactured items with detailed dimensions and manufacturing instructions.
    Brian Warner
    Owner of Evilusions www.EVILUSIONS.com
    Technical Director of Forsaken Haunted House www.Forsakenhaunt.com
    Mechanical Designer (animatronics) at Gore Galore www.Gore-Galore.com
     

  2. Default  
    #2
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    Nov 2009
    Location
    Michigan
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    546
    I would love to see a list of what you have. What kind of prices were you thinking for plans.
    Phatman
     

  3. Default  
    #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Eastlake, Ohio
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    833
    Alot of them are on www.evilusions.com , but I will have to add to that list all the custom designs and one off's I have built.

    As for price, I am not sure, that is one of the reasons I am posting here. For CAD work I generally charge per hour, so the complexity of the design will be in direct correlation to the hours invested. A small animatronic mechanism that retails for $300-500, I would probably charge $50-100. A much larger, more complex animation, such as a rotating motion base elevator, I would charge $750-1000 as it would retail for close to $20,000 as a finished piece. Obviously this is open for discussion, I am trying to get an idea of what pricing could be.
    Brian Warner
    Owner of Evilusions www.EVILUSIONS.com
    Technical Director of Forsaken Haunted House www.Forsakenhaunt.com
    Mechanical Designer (animatronics) at Gore Galore www.Gore-Galore.com
     

  4. Default  
    #4
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    Jun 2012
    Location
    Prattville Alabama
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    I would say the price point is the key here... If you go for a higher price point you'll automatically set yourself out of reach for most DIY's. If these are all projects that you already have blueprints and drawings for, you should ask yourself how much money they are currently making you just sitting in your computer... Its harder to charge the same thing for a project that you've done for yourself "at your own pace" than it is for a custom project "someone hires you to spend the time to figure out". You'll have to make the final call yourself, but maybe you could group some of your projects into similar functions (like projects that can be built with 1 cylinder and a 2 way valve) or based on the skill level required to build them. This may help you to keep your price point down within the range of more DIY haunters.

    Personally, I like finding plans or drawings that I can take and build my own projects. Now having CAD drawings and a parts list for a project... that would be sweet! I'd buy a copy if its something I can afford.

    Just my thoughts..
     

  5. Default Not bashing your idea...just isn't for me. 
    #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    605
    You want a survey...so I'll play along. You got my attention from heading but for me it just doesn't make sense to spend a lot on plans. I have a lot of guys who want to build props for the haunt. I hear them every Sept. saying "Next year I could build this or that". I have not seen one GOOD plan in 12 years from my guys. I have seen two simple props that were so bad I REFUSED to even let the public see them. I have a shop, a welder, drill press, torches, and more; but truthfully I feel I am losing money if I tried to make my props. My time is better spent on the farm, doing custom work for other farms, or vacationing. Maybe I am too negative ....but i hate working on equipment. I am updating a combine corn head and sprayer now in the shop.

    I AM SURE this will be perfect for others who have time not allocated to an outside job. So again I am not bashing the idea. I would like to give my guys who help me haunt and set up some more hours. But a few hundred dollars for plans....and to chase parts....keep them on task...just isn't my way. I rather pay for finished product. A collection of a dozen plans for $50....I would still hesitate. Yes I dropped a lot of $$$ this year on props at Transworld...and have my shopping list already started for 2014-2015. And I could save myself some $ in the accounting column for prop expenditures doing it in house. But when I have Posion Props, Scarefactory, Distortions, and Gore Galore it loses all appeal to me to make my own.

    Selling a book of plans. That I am afraid would not go over very well...maybe even back fire. We haunters know each other. Austind who already chimed in happens to be a guy I am holding onto a box of stuff for from Transworld. Didn't want to take his box of scents he got from "Granny" on the plane back home. You might sell a few books....and the plans would get shared all over. I could easily see you selling a few plans that get shared with haunt "B ,C & D"and end up killing a prop sale you would have had with haunt D.

    Wicked Farmer
    Last edited by wickedfarmer; 07-07-2013 at 10:16 PM.
     

  6. Default  
    #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    500
    I've paid 100 for designs before. The angles, measurements, cylinder size, everything was already measured out. Saved me WEEKS in trial and error. 30-100 is fair. 30 for smaller and simpler designs. 100 for larger.

    Also require a signed agreement that covers that they will not mass-produce your designs and sell them, nor will they Sell or share your designs.

    I signed an agreement with Devious Concoctions, and have stuck to it. I bought schematics and designs, and haven't showed them or sold my animatronics to anyone.
     

  7. Default  
    #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Nashville
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    322
    I think its a good idea if you think like a retailer who wants to sell the most via low cost and quality. If you take your hourly rate and try to get compensated for that by a small divisible factor you're going to get that return. Your actual cost is zero plus printing since this is basically a resale. You sale at a $1 and you're in profit. So sell a few at a fraction of your hourly rate like a laborer or specialist. Or sale 100s/1000s at a low rate for high profit like a retailer. Plus you could do a dozen books each with maybe 20 plans for 50 bucks each.. they would be more marketable to the masses.

    This isnt something hard to do on your own with a Popsicle stick jig and a little trial. At the show everyone gets as deep into your props as possible to photo the guts so they can make it...dont think it will hurt anyone since its usually time in the build process that is usually the key. Plus the dressing. I sold a drop ceiling that worked on 2 Cylinders 4 years ago ..sold a bunch but for some reason on that one had a bunch of peeps call me and asking how to make it.. that gets old fast. Not surprised though!

    I think too that most pro prop builders build to the design not the pneumatic. I know many dont even make jigs and rebuild every time a prop is ordered... big companies too.
    Make the pneumatic fit the project not the other way around... and I realize peeps sell just the Pneumatic set up for peeps to dress too.

    Anyway... thinks its a good idea if its priced to the masses not a few.
     

  8. Default  
    #8
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    May 2007
    Location
    Columbia, SC
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    752
    Quote Originally Posted by tonguesandwich View Post
    I think its a good idea if you think like a retailer who wants to sell the most via low cost and quality. If you take your hourly rate and try to get compensated for that by a small divisible factor you're going to get that return. Your actual cost is zero plus printing since this is basically a resale. You sale at a $1 and you're in profit. So sell a few at a fraction of your hourly rate like a laborer or specialist. Or sale 100s/1000s at a low rate for high profit like a retailer. Plus you could do a dozen books each with maybe 20 plans for 50 bucks each.. they would be more marketable to the masses.

    This isnt something hard to do on your own with a Popsicle stick jig and a little trial. At the show everyone gets as deep into your props as possible to photo the guts so they can make it...dont think it will hurt anyone since its usually time in the build process that is usually the key. Plus the dressing. I sold a drop ceiling that worked on 2 Cylinders 4 years ago ..sold a bunch but for some reason on that one had a bunch of peeps call me and asking how to make it.. that gets old fast. Not surprised though!

    I think too that most pro prop builders build to the design not the pneumatic. I know many dont even make jigs and rebuild every time a prop is ordered... big companies too.
    Make the pneumatic fit the project not the other way around... and I realize peeps sell just the Pneumatic set up for peeps to dress too.

    Anyway... thinks its a good idea if its priced to the masses not a few.
    I have to agree in the sense that it should be priced to sell many rather than one. Not gonna lie, the idea is enticing as a prop builder to get plans and do things for our show but with a price tag like $700 per design for something that's WORTH build (that's the second key) then why wouldn't I just spring for the extra that a prop company would sell the completed thing for, shipped?? Once materials time and everything is spent then we're back to square one. Keegan is right in how DC produced books with multiple plans for $40 or so bucks. Granted I'm sure it wouldn't be the CAD, supplier, most-the-work-is-done lists, but the concept is the same. IDK...just my thoughts.
    O'Shawn McClendon
    Creative Chair -- Operator: Cayce-West Columbia Hall of Horrors

    One mans junk is another mans kick-ass new prop...

    http://www.hallofhorrors.com

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    http://www.myspace.com/cwcjc_hallofhorrors
     

  9. Default  
    #9
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    Jun 2006
    Location
    Eastlake, Ohio
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    Quote Originally Posted by freak 'n' stein View Post
    I have to agree in the sense that it should be priced to sell many rather than one. Not gonna lie, the idea is enticing as a prop builder to get plans and do things for our show but with a price tag like $700 per design for something that's WORTH build (that's the second key) then why wouldn't I just spring for the extra that a prop company would sell the completed thing for, shipped?? Once materials time and everything is spent then we're back to square one. Keegan is right in how DC produced books with multiple plans for $40 or so bucks. Granted I'm sure it wouldn't be the CAD, supplier, most-the-work-is-done lists, but the concept is the same. IDK...just my thoughts.
    $750 for a prop design that would cost $20,000 as a finished product from a prop company seems reasonable to me. I may be biased however. I believe that fully dimensioned drawings, with 3d models, and full bill of materials with sources and part numbers, is worth more that what has been made available up to this point in our industry.


    Thank you all for your responses. I think at this time I will just stick with doing custom CAD designs for haunts and other prop companies vs trying to sell larger quantities of my plans @ $20-50. I greatly appreciate everyones opinions.
    Brian Warner
    Owner of Evilusions www.EVILUSIONS.com
    Technical Director of Forsaken Haunted House www.Forsakenhaunt.com
    Mechanical Designer (animatronics) at Gore Galore www.Gore-Galore.com
     

  10. Default  
    #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    500
    Change your mind and wanna sell some schematics and small end designs for 50-100 bucks a piece, I will gladly sign non disclosure agreements!

     

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