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Getting Started (Novice)

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Old January 9th, 2010, 05:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
sensei2001 sensei2001 is offline
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Default Getting Started (Novice)

As a sideline to my dojo I sell martial arts equipment. I am thinking about adding custom embroidery work to my product line, but I have very limited knowledge of the field, having consulted with a small logo-wear manufacturer in 1998. The business would consist primarily of adding logos and lettering (names) to such articles as: martial arts uniforms (10 oz. to 16 oz. canvas material, up to four layers thick), martial arts belts (4 layers of cotton fabric surrounding a 1/16-inch thick cardboard stiffener), ball caps, shirts, nylon jackets and windbreakers, sew-on patches, nylon and canvas gym-bags, etc. Most orders would be for 1 to 5 items, with the possible exception of sew-on patches that would have a minimum order size of at least 25, so it's definitely a small-batch operation and strictly a sideline -- if it's even feasible.

What sort of equipment would I need to start off? Would any special equipment be needed to avoid breaking needles on multi-layered, heavy canvas uniforms and belts? How much is the potential savings of buying used versus new equipment? What is the oldest/cheapest equipment I should consider?

On the type of equipment you recommend, what is the typical production time for a job consisting of (as examples for feasibility cost and productivity calculations): (1) a 3-inch diameter 4-color logo on a ball cap or sew-on patch, (2) a name in 1-inch tall letters, 1 color, 7 inches long, or (3) a 6-inch by 8-inch 4-color logo on the back of a jacket? What is the typical set-up time to load the design, thread, and get the target material mounted in the hoop and ready to start? Am I correct in assuming that production time is directly proportional to the area covered with embroidery, so that a 4-by-4 job takes four times as long to embroider as a 2-by-2 job?

What are some major pitfalls I should be aware of before venturing into this?
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Old January 9th, 2010, 08:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
BILL MCKINNEY BILL MCKINNEY is offline
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Default Re: Getting Started (Novice)

THIS MACHINE WILL DO WHAT YOU WANT TO DO AND MUCH MORE
ANY QUESTIONS LET ME KNOW
[email address]
304-894-6991
reduced to $7500.00 for all with training
hoops and hoop master / software and designs turn key every thing to start and make money!!!!!!

BE-1201
12 Needle Single Head Embroidery Machine
The BE-1201B-AC single-head embroidery machines are specifically designed for sewing patterns. The editing function has been simplified to cover only those functions which you use most in order to make overall operation easier. All functions can be input from a single control panel, so that operations are easy to understand and simple to carry out. You can embroider a pattern that has already been input simply by selecting the desired pattern from a maximum of 45 patterns.

• Automatic color change
• Quick-change 270° cap system
• Cam-driven, single presser foot for fast, quiet operation
• Noise reduction feed mechanism
• Automatic top and bottom thread trimmers
• Narrow machine design: machine will fit through a 32" door opening (with table assemblies removed)
• Trace mode for verifying location of designs before sewing
• Built-in 3.5" floppy disk drive enables the machine to run as an independent stand-alone unit and able to read all popular embroidery machine formats
• Machine memory of 45 designs (a total of 480,000 stitches)
• Back up or move forward through the design in increments of 1, 10, or 100 stitches or by color changes
• Capable of sewing flat, tubular and finished cap items
• Memory retention after machine shut-off

software and hoops of all kinds and designs include
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Old January 14th, 2010, 11:45 AM   #3 (permalink)
reddog88 reddog88 is offline
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Default Re: Getting Started (Novice)

What brand of machine is this you're talking about. Are you the dealer, or selling it privately.
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Old January 14th, 2010, 02:39 PM   #4 (permalink)
Flint54 Flint54 is offline
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Default Re: Getting Started (Novice)

Brother has the PR-600 this as stated is a 6 needle machine, similar table top machines are made by Barudan, Tajima, SWF, Melco, Prodigi, Happy and a few others (these are known as "Arm Machines)(these also have a small sized embroidery field). Needle counts run from 6 to 15 with some 9 and 12s.

Stepping up you get into the small sized single head full industrial and commercial grade machines (these are known as "Beam Machines" they also have the largest sewing field size). There are numerous brands as stated above. IMO the upper end machines are the best for a newbe as "If it doesn't work out you will be able to turn over your machine much easier."

Getting into the Embroidery Business is not something that would be considered a small budget item. Be prepared to spend $10,000 plus very easily on machine, software, accessories, expendables and tools needed. Then comes the garments.

Here are a few of the upper end machines and the web sites. I would also recommend that you get a machine that has a minimum of a 1 million stitch memory.

www.barudanamerica.com - Brother Embroidery Machines
www.hirschinternational.com - Tajima Embroidery Machines
www.SWFEAST.com - SWF Embroidery Machines
www.melco.com - Melco Embroidery Machines
www.pantograms.com - Toyota Embroidery Machines
www.prodigiemb.com - Prodigi Embroidery Machines
www.happyemb.com - Happy Embroidery Machines

If you are new to the business remember to BUY NEW! I say this because if you have no knowledge of the machine you get tech assistance and machine repair could very easily bust your bubble! A new machine from a major manufacturer will come with a warranty, training, support, service and most everything you will need for start up. Software will also be a major purchase and time expenditure. You should learn to digitize yourself, this way you will know what is happening with designs. There is a lot to learn, it is not the turn key business that some expound.

If your intent is to really make a go at it, then by all means go for the gusto! Just do yourself a favor and research what you will need to learn before you start spending your money. Be sure to research your intended machine and buy the best that you can afford. Get reliable and reputable software, be very aware of any Auto Digitizing Software. Many of the more inexpensive offers have extremely limited editing ability over the auto digitizing they provide and the results are very poor. It is very true that YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. If it appears to good to be true well you know how that goes.

Go with Quality and you will get Quality, and that is the bottom line! The CUSTOMER Deserves QUALITY!
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Old February 5th, 2010, 10:33 PM   #5 (permalink)
sensei2001 sensei2001 is offline
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Default Re: Getting Started (Novice)

Thanks to everyone who responded. Based on my estimates of the market potential this is an idea that simply won't fly -- which explains why no one has tried it before, or at least not tried and succeeded.

For an investment of $7,500 to $10,000 there are a dozen ways I can make 10 times as much money as in a sideline business doing custom embroidery.
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