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People wanting scraps

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by TheSnowman, Sep 17, 2012.

  1. TheSnowman

    TheSnowman Major Contributor

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    I've recently been getting emails from non-customers wanting me to give them my scraps for their "hobbies". I kind of rubs me the wrong way, someone who I've never met in my life, wanting me to take time to sort out my garbage to give them certain sizes (I assume to run through a CriCut). Does anyone do this? It's way easier for me to not waste time hearing about their grand plans for my scrap vinyl, and just get rid of it the old fashioned way of dumpster.

    Am I just grumpy today?
     
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  2. Signsforwhile

    Signsforwhile Very Active Member

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    I get a good amount of these. Seems to ramp up around the holidays. A couple of guys that do the crazy light display seem to love coroplast. Honestly I keep a good amount of the coro scrap, because what looks like a piece of garbage today could be a $15 sign tomorrow. Not that we keep every single piece....but a 8ftx6in piece of coro could be worht $100 retail if there was vinyl on it. I've tried to explain this numurous amount of times and get a pretty standard blank stare back when I'm done, followed by a huff and a stomp out of our office....
     
  3. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

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    easy way would be throw it all into a box, have set 1 day a month where people can scrap hunt...

    that is, if ya want to be nice.

    I usually say no.
     
  4. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    Tell 'em to call the human society or the cancer society.... you're not a non-profit.... at least not this week, yet.

    Over the years we've had an occasional one asking for this and I usually say, you want what.....?? My garbage or save my trash for you ?? You serious ?? C'mon....... really....... you want my trash ?? You'll have to take the whole bucket.

    Not once has anyone shown up to go through my dumpster.
     
  5. signguy 55

    signguy 55 Member

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    Charge a dollar per sq inch or some fantastic figure. Explain to them that a roll of 10 yard x 15" black vinyl costs you $800 plus shipping and you can't just give it away. Might as well make a few bucks off of it.

    Seriously, I have given scraps to some school teachers for their kids to play with and do projects. But that's totally different than someone with a cutter that wants you to keep them stocked in vinyl.
     
  6. Pat Whatley

    Pat Whatley Major Contributor

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    Every single day.

    If it's not people wanting "scrap" sign material it's guys offering to haul off all my "scrap" aluminum for me.
     
  7. Janjun

    Janjun New Member

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    If you are going to throw it away in the dump anyway, then why not? You could use your "eco-friendly" gesture to your benefit by advertising the fact (via a simple logo) that you donate your scrap to schools and individuals for the purpose of re-purposing / recycling and not increasing our landfills.

    Whether you believe in the whole ECO movement or not, the fact is that LOTS of people love this kind of gesture and you may get some customers from it (or at least get a favorable nod from future/current customers when they consider new business).

    Don't be a grump. Do what another post said. Throw all your scrap pieces in a box/boxes and, once a month (more frequent depending on your business) post a message on "FREE STUFF" in Craigslist. Put the boxes next to the dumpster (do this AFTER the trash has been picked up so they have at least a few days until the next pickup). Trust me, people will pick these things up FASTER than you can imagine. they are usually gone within the hour of posting for us.

    Why not turn your TRASH into good karma and promotion. :)
     
  8. bob

    bob Major Contributor

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    If you want give it away, then give it away. But don't rationalize your choice as some sort of environmental heroism. Eventually the stuff's going to end up in exactly the same place had you toted it off yourself, the local landfill. Just a little later.

    Even if it didn't end up in the landfill, perhaps it was recycled into some noble purpose, the net effect on the external reality is zero.
     
  9. Janjun

    Janjun New Member

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    Ha! ... and speaking of Bob ... :)

    I have to slightly disagree ... Not in theory but because of actual experience. I mean, sure, everything in business is relative. But, I consider a one-time $350 order to be a nice thing and $600+ order every quarter an even better thing. Last year, a Realtor called me and told me his wife has been getting scrap from my "Craigslist" ads for some time. She recommended my biz to him and he was looking to find a supplier for signs he needs updating every quarter or so ... That certainly worked. I also had an artist tell me he picked up a scrap of what was di-bond from me. he said he needed much more. I told him it was only available in 4'x8' sheets and he would have to wait for the next order. I placed the order, cut it for him in manageable 24"x24" sheets and he paid a premium price for it ... nice little profit.

    Anyway, my point is that if you are going to throw it away anyway, then why not take a few minutes to toss it in boxes that you will use to "give away" ... It may lead to something good. But, if a few $100 bucks is not that big of a deal to you then I certainly aspire to be at your level some day :).
     
  10. g&eprinting

    g&eprinting Member

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    "FREE STUFF" in Craigslist.

    This...

    Other sign shops come and pick mine up when I get to 3 boxes full and can not find use for it.

    I advertised for people with critcuts and such but who am I to judge.
    Take everything or nothing.
     
  11. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    You're a funny one. After reading your profile, your statements become more clear.

    See, you want me or some other shop owners to separate, arrange and waste more time organizing our scraps so someone can come take them for free. Yeah, do this once or twice a month, get nothing for it and then be the nice guy. Yeah, that's the ticket.

    You see, for someone or some company which generates quite a bit of waste, this would be an extra cost which isn't charged to the end-user, let alone your freebie guy taking your scraps. You tell your prospective freebie guys to come back later, charge them for your off-fall and claim to be a good guy. I do it, but there's an invoice involved and I still pay taxes on it. It's called business. You're in business to make a buck.

    If some school kid needs extra for a project or some starving artist needs a bone.... I decide if I wanna do it or not.... depending on how many jack-offs I encountered that day, setting the mood for freebie takers.

    You sound like you just got off the boat or something, but like you said..... unless you're only doing $300 to $600 a month in big sales, your disagreeing theory in your spot of experience hardly makes for the foundation of a good business plan and is pointless. Base your business on the positive and stop looking for ways to make a quick coupla bucks on the negative side of business.

    Did you know, none of us built our business[es] to what they are today, so don't aspire to us, but look to your government for freebie sh!t, just like your customers and you should/probably go far on your venture.
     
  12. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    I have some people that come in every 6 months or so. And i sell them my scrap cut vinyl. We save them the non usable scraps in garbage bags. 20 a bag or more depending on size of bag. But i don't sort it out for them. Take it all or leave it. In the beginning they wanted specific colors. I told them they could buy the whole bag. Gave them a good price. Just to haul my unusable scraps. Free money.... cant beat that....oh and they make little remote control cars and things like that.
     
  13. Jack Knight1979

    Jack Knight1979 Very Active Member

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    I had a lady call me, that wanted all my scrim vinyl cores. She was looking to build some kind of a chair for an art project. I liked the idea and set aside all the rolls I accumulated for a couple week.

    The lady never picked them up. NO from me, from now on.
     
  14. CanuckSigns

    CanuckSigns Very Active Member

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    tell them if they come to your shop and weed vinyl for you, they can keep the left over vinyl :)
     
  15. ThinkRight

    ThinkRight Active Member

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    :goodpost:

     
  16. TheSnowman

    TheSnowman Major Contributor

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    Not sure how them throwing it in the trash when they throw it away is any different than me throwing it away. Everything we produce eventually gets scrapped...
     
  17. animenick65

    animenick65 Very Active Member

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    We donate our scraps to non-profits and schools. We keep track of the sq. ft. and then write it off at the end of the year as a donation.
     
  18. Blaney

    Blaney Member

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    When I get a call asking for scraps, I tell them I take the trash out daily. If they want to come by and dumpster dive, feel free.
     
  19. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Good idea animenick... every penny counts right?... im going to start doing that as well. Thanks
     
  20. Typestries

    Typestries Very Active Member

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    We give away a ton of scraps. What doesn't go in the dumpster saves us cash. And it helps the planet for the future.

    1. Laminator backing paper takeup rolls either go to local schools for art time table covers, or go on craigs as free paper for crafts or packaging.
    2. Banner scraps have a dedicated plastic bin in front of the shop with a free tarps sign. Tons of folks take out of there. Painters, fishermen, firewood dudes, mechanics, plumbers and more.
    3. Vinyl scraps are either repurposed as screen mask out strips for our screenprinting friends (way better than blockout tape) or go to local schools

    Quite honestly, I see no reason not to give our trash away for free. It's part of our green mentality. When you do the volume we do, there is an amazing volume of waste generated. Thinking differently about it has saved us a ton of cash in trash removal costs so at least for us its not greenwashing.
     
  21. Jillbeans

    Jillbeans Major Contributor

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    I get a cheap-*** farm market wanting coroscraps to make their own signs.
    (to mark their produce in their farm market)
    They used to buy their signs from me but now get them free thru some government program.
    Vynull scraps, what I don't use (I am very resourceful) I give to a local preschool.
     
  22. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    I wish they would ask for my waste ink lol.
     
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