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Discussion in 'Original Pictures Forum' started by etwman, Dec 20, 2002.
etwman- Thanks for posting those close-ups of the box! Looks to be well constructed.
It's all about money...but, it's also about WORK and charging properly for it!
True, but it's not all about the money. You have to do what you like to do. Truthfully it's really about:
1. Not having non-billable hours, they'll kill you everytime. If the guys have worked 45 hours that week, you should be billing 45. Are guys running out to lunch? Why? They should be on the job site. Every time I see a truck/trailer parked at a McD's at lunch there is no way they are only taking a 1/2 hour. By the time they get there, eat, and get back to the site you're paying them to eat.
2. Exceeding the customers every expectation and don't cut corners.
3. Having the right equipment most of the time. You'll never have all the equipment you need, but you can get pretty close. More importantly you have to charge for that equipment each day, whether it sits on a jobsite or gets used. Example, each of those Freightliners get charged $141.00 a day to be attached to a job. When we do a landscape/hardscape/grounds care job the computer brings up what equipment is needed and charges for it correctly either to compile an estimate or bill. If you don't charge for equipment you won't be able to replace it when its worn out. And you had better figure in fuel and insurance into that as well.
When everything comes together just right that's when you start making money. With new businesses I'd say it's 4-5 years before you really start reaping rewards. It's one thing to think your making money it's another to really be doing it. Ask yourself at the end of your season what's left over? Can you make it through the winter with adequate start up funds? Are you banking on snow removal to carry you? You shouldn't be! Tough questions but reality sets in quick. I'll be the first to tell you that this industry is not an easy one to make huge money in, it can be done, but you have to be prepared to turn away business. I can't even imagine how much "unneccessary work" we have turned away in the last five years. I bet our sales would be triple but our bottom line would be the same. One of the things we do to weed out the "unneccesaries" is our appointments are only from 8-4 M-F. If you want us to do your project you'll make a sacrifice from your job to be there during those hours. If not, you don't want us that bad. Do you know how much less running around I do? Huge! Do you know how much higher our job retention rate is? Enormous.
Just some things to ponder over.
This may have already been covered, but how much did it cost to have those toolboxes built. I cringe every morning because it takes the guys so long to get the trucks loaded with what they need. I want for my hardscape guys to be able to keep the compactor, transit etc on the truck instead of having to figure out what they need each day. Plus, it takes a while to load all of the hand tools, blower, etc. I thought about getting some 60" underbody tool boxes, but that would screw us up when we are trying to load the trucks with the skid steer because in order to get the load centered the skid steer tires have to actually go under the truck body.
$2,800.00 for the big alluminum box. Local amish guy here welded it, now that was a year ago so things have changed but that's a pretty good price for that alluminum fabrication. That's mounted on the truck as well. Another guy from northern PA contacted me about getting one done and I gave him the guys number. Down side, you'll probably be waiting a couple of months for it, he's pretty busy.
The first one was out of steel and it actually cost more because i went through a well know fabrication place in the area. Wouldn't go steel again, alluminum is much nicer and lighter.
There definitely is a plus to having everything on the trucks. If we spend 5 minutes grabbing a couple misc things in the morning I'd say that's alot. All the big bulk materials get shipped right to the jobsite. All the hardscape tools are in the big job box.
Stay off our turf or I'll scratch those pretty trucks of yours!
Good grief, sorry I'll never eat at a Wendy's up there again, though it was good to see your charming face. I hardly noticed you were there because all your trucks were so dirty.
Nice new Ford by the way.
I have always been a diesel nut but went the gas route with my 02 Chevy. I have gone back over to the dark side again with this 06 GMC H.O. Duramax and let me tell you this thing goes. I dropped a chip in it, added some Banks stuff, and I'm around 430 hp and 860 lbs torque. Hooked up a 10,000 lb load to it, went out on the highway up over a large incline, set the cruise at 80 and crested the hill at 80 without any downshifting.
Due to get lettered on Tues, GPS Nav. system and hands free system in Wed. and we should be good to go. I'll post a final pic later. If you have never driven the new HO Duramax you should go and test drive one.
You also with that chip/programmer and the Banks stuff justed voided your warranty and GM & Ford are sticking to their guns big time and doing so as they claim the programmers cause too much damage to the turbos and egr's. Also don't figure "I'll just take it out before I go to the dealer for warranty work" because once installed it sends a message to the on-board factor computer that records the info.......they'll even be able to tell you exactly what mods you did and the model numbers you use. If you think not check the GM and Ford Diesel chat sites, everyday new bunch of guying on there crying that did mods then had issues and bam, no more warranty because of those mods. BIG Mistake you made adding it before the warranty expired.
I'm really not all that concerned about it. My friends duramax was done, and done right, 3 years ago and he hasn't had a single problem. The same guy did mine. You can do them wrong and pay hard or you can do them right and not have any problems. Half of it also comes down to how you drive it, little common sense goes along way.
I knew that info going into it. Thanks anyway.