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  1. #1
    Super Member
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    May 2002
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    Wylie, Texas
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    JCB165HF

    Default Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    The other day while visiting a fellow tbn'r here in norte tejas the subject of a loafing shed came up. I told him that I would think about helping him lay out a do it yourselfer.

    That conversation initiated an evolution process. I'm to the point of starting to make some prototypes and doing some tooling up in the next couple of weeks.

    What we're talking about manufacturing and selling is connectors so that a do it yourselfer could fabricate a shed, garage, loafing shed, carport, or awning with just common power tools, C purlins, and metal siding.

    A do it your selfer would figure out the configuration of the project. He-she would then purchase the appropriate connectors and the necessary purlins, sheet metal, screws, etc.

    The tools required would be a drill with a driver bit, screw gun works best, cordless drills are adequate if you're not in a hurry. Something to cut the purlins with would also be required. Anything from a hack saw to a portaband with a chop saw, sawsall, sabre saw, or even a circular saw with a metal cutting blade could do the trick.

    Of course the connectors would come with directions and ideas. I would want to retail them through the local steel suppliers and online.

    Do you think you would be interested in such a system?

    Do you think the do it yourselfers you know would be interested in such a system?

    I'm always coming up with ideas, wife says she's never seen anything like it. As with all things some of them are good and some of them, are, well, let's be nice.

    What I like about this one is I know the pleasure of making it my way with few limits. With the system I get to share this process with folks not as lucky as I am. It would work great for the learning weldor and even for the person with no access to a welding process. They can design their project to meet their wants and needs and not adjust their desires to fit what's available.

    I do want some feedback if you can find the time and interest.

    Would you as a do it yourselfer be interested in such a product?

  2. #2
    Super Star Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
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    11,305
    Location
    PA
    Tractor
    NH TC25D

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    <font color="blue"> Do you think the do it yourselfers you know would be interested in such a system? </font>
    I would. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img] Got any examples?

    I'm not in TX or OK, but I could use the online option.

  3. #3
    Veteran Member mikim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
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    2,345
    Location
    Paige Texas
    Tractor
    NH TC45

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    Yeah - I like DIY kits - makes things go quicker and cuts down on my mistakes. Doesn't eliminate 'em - just cuts down on 'em. Seeing the things you do and how you do them on here - will you be able to overbuild your kits (not a bad thing) and still be able to price it within limits of what folks will want to spend on a shed?

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Mar 2002
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    2
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Tractor
    Yanmar 2620D

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    Mueller has a selection of "no-weld" building components -- sounds a lot like what you are talking about. They call them purlin quick connects. Here's the link: http://www.muellerinc.com/products/s...ck_connect.php

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jul 2001
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    1,806
    Location
    Houston, TX.
    Tractor
    2001 TN65, 1951 8N Ford

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    That's a good question. Site built buildings are relatively cheap and most of the do- it- yourselfers, around here anyway, can figure out most of the corners and such themselves. I am in a heavily industrializes and oilfield area, Houston, so you have a lot of people that you can call on if you run into a problem. Plus, most of these people are just out and out cheap. They would burn up an extra month on a project and then have it fall down around their ears rather than spend an extra hundred or two to make their life easier. You also can always find a rig welder around here that doesn't want to go out of town or can't pass a pi$$ test to get a real job that will come straighten out a mess for a few bucks. We don't have inspections here in the county so nothing has to be built to code. I doubt all areas in the state are like east Houston so you might get your idea to work elsewhere. There are a couple of other things to think about. Is there a chance what you want to do will be covered by someone else's patents? You might have to spend some serious time surfing patents and then build your stuff different than any you find. Then you need to patent it so some smart **** doesn't patent your design and sue you for building it. Have you checked into product liability insurance? I worked for a guy in Florida who designed , patented and built temporary safety railings. A pothead took a header and the resulting lawsuit got him out of that business with a quickness. The fittings you want to build could lead to someone bonking themselves on the head or tearing a fingernail off, that would have to be the designers fault, right? You also have to look at building codes for people that have inspections. I know that they are responsible for researching that kind of thing before building but are you responsible to build your fittings to some kind of national code before you can offer them for sale?

    I think your idea would work if you would target your advertizing to the McMansion/ retired/ city moving to the country crowd. Look at a lot of the guys on this website. The're buying the place of their dreams and doing as much of the work as they can themselves. A product like yours would make a project possible they would normally think out of their depth. Good Luck! [img]/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]


  6. #6
    Super Member
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    Dec 2000
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    6,737
    Tractor
    JD 8320 MFWD, JD 6415 MFWD, FEL, and cab, John Deere MFWD 4600, John Deere 4020, John Deere 4430, John Deere 455 mower, Deutz, and Gehl 4610 perkins skidsteer

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    There are actually several companies out there that do this same thing Harv. Some are ready-made. They come in pieces on a flat-bed and the mfg. comes out and stands them up in about an hour and you are ready to go. Others come in a kit that you can order. They come on a truck and you simply assemble the pieces. I'd check into patents etc. that are already out there as I have seen them done a number of ways. I would hate for you to spend alot of time on something that has already been done.

  7. #7
    Veteran Member
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    Jun 2003
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    1,190
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    Denton, TX
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    BX 2200

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    wroughtn Harv,
    I have a loafing shed exactly like the one you're talking about. I chose to do mine as a weld together, but it could also be a bolt together (self-tap screws actually). The only thing it requires is cutting the 2" x 2" square tubing to length and cutting the angle on the eve sheets. All of the other metal sheets come cut to length from the sheet metal supplier. I live just off of I-35 in Denton if you want to see it sometime. Or if you give me a few days, I can try to post some pictures.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Dec 2002
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    306
    Location
    Magnolia, TX
    Tractor
    99 JD4200 4WD Collarshift

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    "Plus, most of these people are just out and out cheap. They would burn up an extra month on a project and then have it fall down around their ears rather than spend an extra hundred or two to make their life easier."

    That sounds like you're talking about me. More sweat, more nails...

  9. #9
    Veteran Member
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    Jun 2003
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    1,190
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Tractor
    BX 2200

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    wroughtn harv
    I think you're best bet is to design some connectors for use in connecting 2" x 2" square tubing. You can build almost anything using this stock in different configurations like trusses etc. Design some connectors that will allow 2 " square tubing to connect in angles, T's, 3-ways, 4 ways and splice. (Not unlike what's available for wood deck construction) The buyer can choose to fasten them with self tapping screws or weld them. I have some contact information for a metal stamping business near Dallas that handles exactly what you're needing and can probably do some proto-types. I can also set you up with an expert AutoCAD drafter that can do some moonlight drafting if needed.

  10. #10
    Super Member
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    May 2002
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    Wylie, Texas
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    JCB165HF

    Default Re: Some questions for TBN\'rs in Texas, OK, etc

    I heard about the Mueller product the other day and dropped in for a hands on look.

    They're fantastic.

    They're also quite pricey.

    I was also told the company that supplied them to Mueller had went belly up and once inventory was gone that was it.

    The steel supplier that told me about the Mueller product pointed out the reason he didn't carry the product was the cost of inventory. Not only the just the bucks to keep what could be needed in stock but the cost in floor space and the time spent with the customer explaining how to build with them.

    My product is much simpler than that.

    I started off thinking along the same line as the quick connect, a specific product for a specific situation. Then I redirected the thought process towards limiting the number of products to as few as possible without limiting the scope of the end user's project.

    Right now I have three pieces. They are all that is needed to make ninety nine point nine percent of the projects that a do it yourselfer would tackle.

    I believe a typical do it yourselfer with a screwgun, a metal cutting saw, and a little common sense can build a twenty by thirty carport without stretching themselves too far. A twelve by eighteen loafing shed or a twelve by twenty tractor hotel would be a snap.

    I haven't figured out the pricing yet but I feel confident in saying none of the three I've got designed right now will retail for more than eight dollars, hopefully less.

    This means an enclosed two sides carport twenty by twenty would have less than two hundred dollars added to the cost of materials for the connectors.

    The one bonus about this system that I'm most proud of is the opportunity to use common methodology for finishout. The do it yourselfer not only gets to make the pitch of the roof or even the side configuration the way they want. They also have the option of insulating and finishing out the interior walls with materials found at their local box store.

    Of course I'm the double lucky one. I not only get to figure out to do it. I get to figure out how to make the tooling to make the stuff so anyone can do it.

    Now is that pure t luck or what?

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