Originally Posted by mattathayde
i just bought 16 feet of pyrex tube, its borosilica glass, not soda lime. soda lime does not have the strength of borosilica glass, there is no reason to substitute it. lampworkers use boro for the most part, you can use soda lime but for anything that is going to be used and not just be a piece of decorative art they will stick to boro. the reason a lot of lampworkers are going to blow you off is that they deal with a lot of people who say they want to buy this that or the other and then fall through so they get pissed off trying to do commissions for stoners that will flake on them. show up cash in hand to talk to them to show them your are serious.
seriously though ya you can sell a lot of mouth tips at 10 bucks but they will suck, any one that understands the work that goes into them and wants the nice piece of craft will drop the cash. reducing quality to make a cheaper product is never acceptable
im not sure if your referring to hookah stuff or to head shops, ya there is a lot of shit in shops though from the middle of no where but most of it is total shit, the vases we get for hookahs, are super seedy, super cordy, have stress cracks, and are not blown out evenly or even ground flat. american glass blowers dont want to give you a quote because people walk in and go "can you do this for 10 bucks" when its worth 200. a lamp working studio can be set up pretty cheap but the materials are not super cheap. its 5-20 bucks for a 20" length of 6-8 mm thick colored boro glass, tubing is 1-5 bucks per foot of tubing depending on size and thickness, so with the gas, electricity, and materials your at at least 5-10 bucks, then put on top the wage and general mark up, you looking 20-30 bucks for a small piece that took 30 mins to make.
hot shop blowing is going to cost even more for stuff like vases because its costs a huge amount more. for gods sake a good pipe and punty from spiral arts costs 350 for their standard work horse pipe and the large counter balance punty. the tools are going to run 800 bucks at least for your basic tools every gaffer needs to use then take into account at least 30 bucks per hour to rent time or close to that just to run a shop if you have your own.
the reason its cheaper over seas is a) substantially lower quality materials, b) reduced wages due to poverty levels, c) less skilled workers, d)less attention to details
good luck trying to sell some indian crap lampworking but i will happily go pay a friend 50 bucks to make a mouth tip or trade some work for one and get something that is well made
honestly, if you want to pay 50 fucks for a single mouth piece, that's cool. Obviously its going to better quality and better designed, but production wise it's not going to be something many people are going to want to drop the money on. It's a nonessential component, not going to effect the smoke or anything and the only major benefit I can think of is it could be easier to clean.
Other then that, if you actually wanted to market it to a larger audience, you gotta make affordable. Some people may think it's a great value at $50, but most wont. There's very little actual value in a glass mouth piece since it honestly doesn't do anything.
As far as the shipping goes, we've shipped glass material over seas before and the amount of broken glass is pretty limited depending on what's ordered. For something like this the limited quantity might be about 200-300 and probably for a decent price. As far as the cost of shipping goes, that price goes into the final price of the product.