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Sell Those Puppies!

A group to discuss selling the instruments and accessories we build.  Where to sell, how to display, what works and what doesn't.  Where do you find your buyers? 

Members: 161
Latest Activity: Jul 13

Discussion Forum

Cigar box guitar luthier wages

Started by John Rivers. Last reply by John Rivers May 9. 7 Replies

Do you realize a small child working in a sweat shop in a third world country probably has a greater hourly earnings potential  than a large child building cigar box guitars for resale in the US of…Continue

music store sales of your instruments

Started by bairfoot cajun. Last reply by Kentucky Mojo May 5. 6 Replies

if you find a local music store that is willing to put your instruments in their store,i cannot stress enough, how important it is to have great folks that will work with you. this is the first thing…Continue

Shipping Costs

Started by Wade. Last reply by the anonymous pick Mar 18. 4 Replies

I've been shipping my pickups(small packages) all over the world and didn't really have an issue with shipping costs, until now.A customer contacted from Canada and asked me if I would sell one of my…Continue

Market saturation point?

Started by Orcabait. Last reply by Wichita Sam Mar 1. 20 Replies

Long time lurker, first time poster. i see a lot of vendors of CBG on places like eBay, Etsy, etc. Not being a long time CBGer, I have to ask the experienced sellers here; Is the market in the USA on…Continue

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Comment by Brian Revels on December 18, 2016 at 8:54pm

Will Rankin Some of your best bets are with online shops.  I sell on Etsy and do okay (I sell Cigar Box Amps, Preamps, and Guitars).  Setup is pretty easy and online fees aren't horrible.  Ebay may be another option, but I have heard it's very hit or miss. Sometimes music stores will help out, but that's more consignment. You can try to find Craft shows, but I haven't had much luck personally with those (lots and lots of happy lookers, but not a lot of sales).  Best of luck!

Comment by Will Rankin on December 16, 2016 at 4:45am
Hi everyone! I'm recently new to this site, however have been a long time facebook junkie.... My wife and I of 16 years just opened up a ma and pops shop selling and building homeaide CBG's..... I have a few of em on consignment, and I have my own facebook page called Lil Momma Jo's Guitar Shop.... I haven't got the web page inventoried yet, however..... to make a long and critical story short.... here's my question....

To market these CBG's what is the quickest way to move the product.....I have over 2000 boxes over 300 tins...of course they aren't all done up but nearly 75 CBG's are complete and need new homes.....
Comment by Habanera Hal on August 27, 2016 at 12:26pm

Pavlov - yeah it sucks trying to cater to the unwashed and unknowing.  We still do craft fairs with our other non-musical products but learned the hard way NEVER do an outdoor fair!  I won't even get into the time a storm came up close to closing and while my guitars were getting blown all over and the tent was trying to become a kite this women decided to sit down in our space and chat about her nephew who played guitar 20 years ago.

Comment by Habanera Hal on August 27, 2016 at 11:32am

I've pretty much given up on the craft fair scene for selling CBGs.  The people who attend these are ignorant of what they are (I don't mean that as an insult, BTW, it's just that they don't know about the blues scene).  My best successes have been in a permanent booth in a blues-themed art store and at music festivals with a blues/country base.  As to Etsy or Ebay, I think the market is getting saturated with hit-and-run builders that are in it just to make a fast buck and don't really understand the luthier-ship (is that a word?) necessary to produce a quality instrument at a price that will give a profit. (i.e., people shopping on line will buy the lowest-cost item, not necessarily the best quality.)  After all, if you can't get them to pick it up and play it first, there's no way they can appreciate your craftsmanship.

At general product arts and craft fairs I've been more successful lately building "Strumstick" style backpackers.  People seem to accept these as true instruments whereas the reaction to CBG's is that they are toys or at best, oddities.  With the same investment in parts and time, I can get 50% more for a strummer than a CBG.  I've given most of my cigar box inventory to my wife who makes other items out of them.

Comment by Brian Revels on December 28, 2015 at 10:07pm

I sell on Etsy.  The local craft shows weren't worth it for me, even the good shows (with several hundreds of people) that had low to reasonable fees.  The last one I did took me 3 months to prepare for, 3 days of selling, and I only made $150. CBGs aren't really popular around here (lots of people never seen or heard of them).  You'd think that'd be good. But like Wayfinder I get a lot people saying, "Wow, that's awesome", but hardly any sales.  Now starting in November of this year and going til I shutdown my Etsy store the 2nd week in December... I sold around 8 or 9 CBGs (all but two I had to make).

Comment by Dave Lynas on December 10, 2015 at 6:10pm
Bottom line for me was with ebay the instruments left the building. I wasn't bothered by profit. I'm using my work as a small retirement income. It helps a Lot even if it doesn't show a profit.
Comment by Dave Lynas on December 10, 2015 at 1:57pm

I know i can sell on ebay. It works ok for me, but i stopped last holiday season by having a couple of small problems meaning returns. I'll sell again on ebay when i can't move in my house. I sell at my pottery studio at holiday sales but only rarely. Friends find me and ask for some. Most of my outgoing is gifts and they are good gifts. We've got to put these in young hands and gifting is the best way to get it in their hands. I'd like to sell more locally where i can see the buyer. I'm going to try backyard music and sales this coming summer. I've made a bandshell/shed to the yard and have many garden beds and fencing for a nice site for a sale. Looking forward to that. I don't want to shlep all over at art fairs etc. There are few music instrument fairs here in Duluth. The CBG thing hasn't hit here yet. I think the time is right for a good event around homemade instruments here. I just like making more than selling...

Comment by Al Nelson on December 10, 2015 at 1:26pm

Does anyone ever think that the corporate mindset is so ingrained in people that anything out of the ordinary is difficult for them to grasp? I sell CBG's, Ukes and Amps mostly at a local farmers market. But I tried some shows this year that had large upfront entry fees. I've found I have the most success in helping people understand cigarbox guitars when I relate them to things they know. That goes for selling cigarbox ukes too. I'm moving more ukes than guitars overall through the year. I just finished a holiday market where I did half and half CBG vs ukes. But the holiday market is always a different story than the rest of the year. I also noticed this year doing shows in small town vs large city, the small town people have a greater appreciation for the homemade if it's well done. They have an eye for it. Large city folks seem a bit jaded. These are just generalizations, but worth considering. I'm still chewing on this years lessons my self.

Comment by Matt McCarthy on December 10, 2015 at 11:41am
Thanks Wayfinder, you're right of course, there is no logic when it comes to selling. I am a trained fine artist, and I gave up making large scale stuff because I couldn't afford to have it lying around, yet people loved what I was making. My tutors were always telling me off for selling too cheaply, but I had to just to get stuff out of the way. What I'm making now is more craft based, but affordable, and in their way the guitar knobs are little works of art, as I couldn't easily reproduce patterns even if I wanted to, and the fact that they're unique appeals to me. I know they're not to everyone's taste, but I'm sure makers who want something truly one off to embellish an instrument with, rather than the usual white/black generic type. would go for them? I guess it's early days, but I'd rather not sell at all than sell at a loss, which is what I've done up until now! I know if I put them on Fleabay as auctions that they'll sell, but we know what happens there, some will go for next to nothing, and by the time we've paid fees, PayPal etc it ain't worth doing. Thanks again, Matt.
Comment by Matt McCarthy on December 10, 2015 at 8:06am
I sold quite a few of my handmade knobs on eBay a few months back, but didn't really cover my costs, which obviously isn't good. The buyers were all really effusive in their praise for my knobs, and that encouraged me to set up my own web shop. I have priced what I make reasonably given the level of work involved in producing them, and the fact that each one is unique and not the cheap generic cast plastic type. I just wonder whether folk really appreciate the amount of work and skill involved in producing something truly unique or unusual? I know I do, so why am I not selling them when they are receiving nothing but praise? It's very confusing!
 

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Discussion Forum

Cigar box guitar luthier wages

Started by John Rivers. Last reply by John Rivers May 9. 7 Replies

music store sales of your instruments

Started by bairfoot cajun. Last reply by Kentucky Mojo May 5. 6 Replies

Shipping Costs

Started by Wade. Last reply by the anonymous pick Mar 18. 4 Replies

Market saturation point?

Started by Orcabait. Last reply by Wichita Sam Mar 1. 20 Replies

consignment advice

Started by TattooedAxe. Last reply by TattooedAxe Jan 13, 2016. 6 Replies

consignment advice

Started by TattooedAxe. Last reply by Orcabait Jan 12, 2016. 5 Replies

PayPal Here

Started by Mr. Toad. Last reply by Braxton Nagle Feb 12, 2015. 4 Replies

Transporting CBGs......

Started by W.T. Tarapchak. Last reply by Muddy Creek Guitars Jul 27, 2014. 3 Replies

Cold War

Started by Wayne Bigler. Last reply by Chris Carlson Apr 19, 2014. 1 Reply

Selling Canjos and Amps

Started by John Hersey/Hersey Collectibles. Last reply by Pete Turner Aug 25, 2013. 6 Replies

Do You Take Credit Cards?

Started by Madurobob. Last reply by Muddy Creek Guitars Aug 1, 2013. 6 Replies

Facebook page for cbg's

Started by TattooedAxe. Last reply by steven beck Jul 14, 2013. 1 Reply

want to buy a cbg in uk

Started by howling. Last reply by South Paw,Davey Oct 17, 2012. 17 Replies

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