One of SWMBO’s good friends and quilting partner asked if I could build her a “lap app”, which is quilter speak for a small adjustable stand that either sits on a table or rests in your lap to facilitate hand stitching. From their perspective a beneficial device but not at the advertised price of 69 - 75$ plus shipping. In short, a quick review of the cutoff and hardware bins and a couple of hours of shop time produced one which was deemed most acceptable and was paid for with 2 dozen home baked cookies.
In keeping with the rule of “no good deed” the first time the lap app was taken to a gathering, 5 more were requested based on similar payment terms 😳. The interesting side to this exercise was the opportunity to estimate the cost as materials were acquired. Not surprisingly the cost, including the Baltic birch plywood and hardware came in under 10$/stand. Not bad relative to the selling price. Does that make my labor worth +25$/hour? Doubt it.
The saga continues however with the request for a “clapper”, which sells for 15 - 20$ on the internet. Again a quick visit to the cutoff bin resulted in sufficient bits to glue up into an acceptable block at an estimated cost of less than 10$.
I have no interest in becoming a “manufacturer”, too much like work, but there does seem to be an opportunity here.