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Topic: Expensive furniture
Message: Posted by: The Mighty Fool (Sep 15, 2004 02:22AM)
First off, let's face reality. Magic can be expensive. Period. (I STILL can't get over that $4500 D'lite routine though!)

I know (Or rather, I've been TAUGHT by others in this forum) that there are a variety of reasons for the price-tags on magic, notably exclusitivity, protection of the secret, protection from counterfeiters, and pure quality or high-end mechanics.

Can someone explain to me then what the deal is with pouches & tables?? I've seen 'Magic street / walkaround' pouches on magicsites selling for $125-$300!!! You can buy an umpire's pouch--which has room for 8 baseballs, and pockets for a brush, pens, strike-counter, etc.---for $66! A leather pouch of 'streetperformance' dimensions can be had from Bannana repubublic for $80! Then there are the tables. A simple street-table....wre're talking a flat 12"X24" surface on a folding tripod with gold fringe....goes for over $200 on most sites! I've made one of those things (minus the fringe) and it cost $30. I don't see how there can be any issue of protecting secrets / exclusitivity in these instances.

Now, there are specialty cases / tables, like the breifcase table, and the suitcase with all the drawers & compartments which sets up as a table / dresser, or carrying cases which don't morph into tables, but are designed for all the props of a magic show. I can see how those items would be worth over $150, but they usually start at around $295. I KNOW I could get my hands on suitcases and gaff-up attatchable stands for them!! It would run mabye $60 a job! Then all I'd have to do to make 100% profit is sell 'em online at $120 each, and I'd STILL be undercutting everyone else by at least $150............hmmmmmmmmm.....(Lightbulb appearing over head)
Message: Posted by: Rob Johnston (Sep 15, 2004 10:08AM)
When it comes to carrying devices, cases, etc....I tend to make my own.

I cannnot afford the pricetag of the marketed versions. They overcharge to the point of silliness.
Message: Posted by: Daniel Santos (Sep 15, 2004 02:28PM)
You're right....luckily I got my table as a gift haha. By the way.....a $4,500 D'Lite routine?! That's crazy....
Message: Posted by: Alan Munro (Sep 15, 2004 03:43PM)
I prefer to use mass produced stuff rather than things that are made in a labor-intensive manner. A plastic tote on a tray stand make a good prop stand.
Message: Posted by: The Mighty Fool (Sep 16, 2004 03:04AM)
Daniel....the 4500$ D'lite routine is in "The good, the bad & the garbage" section under the review of tricks & effects thread. Definetely one of the more heated debate topics and eduating reads *Ahem!* if I do say so myself!
Message: Posted by: Miracle Man Show (Sep 16, 2004 04:30PM)
I agree about prices. I made my own open top table, I got what I wanted, and it didn't cost a fortune.
Message: Posted by: Doha Dealer (Oct 12, 2004 05:28AM)
I completely agree on the prices of tables etc. I have made my own - stage tables through wood work, close up through customising brief cases.

The biggest reasons for high prices are 1. teh ineffeciency of the industry and 2. the lack of competition. The internet has helped that quite a bit, but there is still a long way to go.
Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (Oct 12, 2004 01:13PM)
A lot of cheaper items are mass produced in china.
We buy a lot of these types of itmes all the time.
They can be good but they can also be crap.

I bought some screwdriver tips for my drill motor.
Every time I screwed in a new screw... I had to
toss out the tip and replace it with another.
My project took 8 screws, and 8 screwdriver tips.

A store owner told me a story about this. He said that they bought stuff made in china from a distributor and the quality was pretty good. then the distributor kept finding ways to make the product cheaper. switching out this for that, cheaper thread, cheaper fasteners, but would never pass on the reduction in price to the buyers.

So the buyers end up paying the same thing they used to but the quality keeps getting worse and worse. Looks exactly the same but will not last.

I usually make a lot of stuff for myself as well. Once I find the perfect item to replace it I will. They are usually worth the cost after you really know what you want.

The difficult thing about magic is that there is not a huge market for really nice furniture, pouches, and props. Making 10,000 tables could be done at a wonderful cost and the quality could be astounding but nobody is going to sell 10,000 tables and it costs more per item if you make less. Nothing you can do about that.

Banana republic etc., can do this and it works because the market is much much larger.

One of the finest props I've ever seen was a Joe Porper Sankewood wand on ebay. I don't think making 10,000 to keep the price down would be a good business decision. But, you can go to the music store and buy a very nice crafted practice drumstick for $3. I've done it myself. They are beautiful.
Message: Posted by: Laughing Otter (Oct 21, 2004 02:36AM)
On 2004-09-15 03:22, The Mighty Fool wrote:
...Can someone explain to me then what the deal is with pouches & tables?? I've seen 'Magic street / walkaround' pouches on magicsites selling for $125-$300!!! ...Then there are the tables....
Manufacturers and distributors would not continue to ask for the high dollar if *someone* wasn't paying it, eh?
Message: Posted by: Regan (Oct 21, 2004 07:50AM)
Otter, you hit the nail on the head with that statement.

Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (Oct 22, 2004 04:14PM)
It seems to get a product to market in a less expensive way...

You can have a cheaper quality product.
You can spend more up front to make a good product less expensively.

The second option is what we're all after.

This takes money, and guts. It's much more risky for the creator. More people would buy them. But would it be enough to offset the costs? How many would have to buy to break even? How many such that you're making a descent wage off of the product given the time you've put into it?

Some creators just don't have the money. Some don't have the guts. Some have neither but a really great idea/product.

What then?

Using my example above,..
Certainly Joe Porper does not owe it to us to make 2000 wands out of snakewood so that we can get them for $50 (or is that also too expensive?).

It seems that it would be very risky for him.
Much safer to make them as ordered for $200.