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Making accessory parts that have gone obsolescent on Older Super Cars

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levelupinnovator

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I made $300 this weekend by designing and 3D printing 2 hyper fine resolution AC knobs for a Light Blue 2001 Ferrari. I spent 2 hours in total doing this.
The owner was going to have to buy a new AC off of ebay for $1300 otherwise. Photos of the real and the replicated models are attached below. I attached a stock image of the car as I didn't get photo of it to show off. (lesson learned for next time)

After slipping the knobs and verifying that they worked correctly, I got to take a ride in it and it was amazing! I loved getting thrown back into seat from the acceleration as we navigated the neighborhood! The sound of it was incredible. It felt so good getting into it.

Do you think I could help other people with this? Maybe start a business doing this?

34251 IMG_1632.jpg
 

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minivanman

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It really depends. How much does it cost you to make a part like that and how much would that type of part cost to buy new and used? know you said he would need to buy a whole new unit but just for giggles.... how much would it cost?
 
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levelupinnovator

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It really depends. How much does it cost you to make a part like that and how much would that type of part cost to buy new and used? know you said he would need to buy a whole new unit but just for giggles.... how much would it cost?
On super cars, the knobs , buttons and accessory panels are typically custom and need to be mimicked or redesigned. When they say the whole car is built from the ground up, they mean it. The Ferrari is a very custom piece for example and each component is different from the common off the shelf! But if I had to name a price it would of cost the company to make the knobs that were in the car already: $12 a piece

It cost me $30 to procure the parts! Pretty high margin of $270 and very easy to sustain and keep each file. The next time someone asks for a knob or any button of the same model, it will be zero design time and I'll just outsource it to someone to print and ship off. Obviously probably need to have human contact on in this business since I am working with higher earners / people who are paying more than usual for an knob.



The unit cost of the AC on Ebay is $1,300 and also he would of had to pay to get the whole AC unit replaced by someone who specializes in removing and replacing equipment in super cars.
So for him to go through the whole process, it would cost $2-3k.

So I could see myself replicating the replacements and maybe adding some more bells and whistles to the buttons/knobs or panels. For me it is low risk and if there is ever a problem, it won't be in a high risk area such as a clutch or something that requires heavier engineering and a seal of approval!

I'd rather spend $300 than try to go to a bunch of online stores that have mismatched parts that don't work. Or trying to sift through ebay to find something that might work. I'd rather have a guarunteed fix and that's what I would promise!
Thanks. Anymore thoughts? You definitely helped me see more of this idea. Also, I need criticism to check my bias. So if you have any other critiques, please hit me!!!

Thanks for your time!
 
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minivanman

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I totally get it. I had a Maserati, so my pocket book understands. lol Even the knobs on a washer/dryer are sky high! So bascially on anything that would need to be made you would outsource it? You do not have a 3D printer, correct? Would you just be outsourcing the production and you design it or outsource the whole thing?

Lots of things you could focus on. I might know where to start if you would like the name of the group. It's local here to Fort Worth/ Dallas.
 
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levelupinnovator

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I totally get it. I had a Maserati, so my pocket book understands. lol Even the knobs on a washer/dryer are sky high! So bascially on anything that would need to be made you would outsource it? You do not have a 3D printer, correct? Would you just be outsourcing the production and you design it or outsource the whole thing?

Lots of things you could focus on. I might know where to start if you would like the name of the group. It's local here to Fort Worth/ Dallas.
It's all about the pocket book!

I would do the design and replication because I enjoy/ have really strong design skills.
You are correct at the moment for outsourcing the manufacturing. I have someone who owns a very good printer (one of the best on the market). I would be helping his business out, which I would be happy to do.

If the business idea were to do well and show strength, I may consider a printer, however if I have someone who is better than me and saves me time, I will go with him/her! I also have some online automation (time saving for me or my team) ideas which would allow the car owner to self create their product that they'd wish, or they can contact me for help!

If you would feel comfortable sharing the name of the group, I would be extremely happy since I am local to this area. I am currently looking into channels that I can let people know of this service.
I tried reaching out to reddit today and I think that may not have the right type of people to share this service to!

Very best to you! Is there anything I could do for you in return? Maybe make you some washer and dryer knob print outs?
 
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minivanman

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Go to FB groups like this one. There are hundreds, probably thousands of them out there.


Planes might be another good niche. Even model planes or trains maybe.

I appreciate the offer but my guy buys units wholesale and he saves parts from one to use on another. So we pay $40 for $400+ worth of parts basically. If he buys 12 washers, he breaks down 2 of those for parts to repair the other 10.
 
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levelupinnovator

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Go to FB groups like this one. There are hundreds, probably thousands of them out there.


Planes might be another good niche. Even model planes or trains maybe.

I appreciate the offer but my guy buys units wholesale and he saves parts from one to use on another. So we pay $40 for $400+ worth of parts basically. If he buys 12 washers, he breaks down 2 of those for parts to repair the other 10.
Thanks for the reference! I'll see what happens!

Also, there definitely is a niche for this. It's just a matter of word of mouth and seeing if it truly is something that has enough demand!

Ok! Yeah, you definitely should go that route on your washer dryers! That sounds like a better plan, and washer/dryers are not too different other than the outsides so it would make since that you would never have an obsolescence problem!
Thanks for the tips and advice!
 
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biophase

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Dude I need 2 knobs printed for my stove! They have been discontinued and I had been looking for 4-5 months for a replacement. Then a friend said why not get them 3-D printed. I just never got around to it. What type of data do you need to be able to duplicate a knob?
 
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levelupinnovator

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Dude I need 2 knobs printed for my stove! They have been discontinued and I had been looking for 4-5 months for a replacement. Then a friend said why not get them 3-D printed. I just never got around to it. What type of data do you need to be able to duplicate a knob?
Haha oh no! That’s definitely something I could help you with. If you could send me some pictures of the stove interface and if you can get the rough dimensions of the shaft. It probably is D shaped! Also, I’d need the outer most dimensions of the knob as well, and the thickness. If you don’t have those I can just redesign a knob that would fit in.

Since I am newer to the community, what is a good protocol to contact you through?
Edit: I followed you, and changed my privacy to being able to start chat with people I follow. Maybe that will help.
 
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biophase

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Yes I got your pm. Sorry I haven’t replied. This is what my knobs look like.
 

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levelupinnovator

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Yes I got your pm. Sorry I haven’t replied. This is what my knobs look like.
Yes I got your pm. Sorry I haven’t replied. This is what my knobs look like.
I’ll design them tomorrow when I get a chance! I’ll need the outer diameter dimension,the height dimension, the shaft diameter, and how far the little plastic adaptor sticks out from the knob! A picture with a ruler would help!
 

biophase

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I'll PM you the details tomorrow! Thanks!
 

JasonR

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I think there is a real demand here! Not just for super cars (though you could start there), but for all sorts of shit.

There is a resurgence of older super cars with 6 Speeds (Diablos, 360s/Maranellos, etc.) that are definitely hard and expensive to find parts for.

If you're taking this seriously, I know a supercar mechanic shop owner in California I could put you in touch with. He may provide some valuable insight and even eventually become a client.
 
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levelupinnovator

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I think there is a real demand here! Not just for super cars (though you could start there), but for all sorts of shit.

There is a resurgence of older super cars with 6 Speeds (Diablos, 360s/Maranellos, etc.) that are definitely hard and expensive to find parts for.

If you're taking this seriously, I know a supercar mechanic shop owner in California I could put you in touch with. He may provide some valuable insight and even eventually become a client.
Hello JasonR,

I have found that through my research there are more than enough people who want their parts replaced on their cars, planes, even home appliances. After asking this question, I realized I can get alot of business as long as I can replace the parts and make sure that they work the first time. I found a way to leverage my time with this opportunity as I will implement an automatic system in the future once I have the foundation built up.

I am very serious, as this is an opportunity to give value to this world in a way that I can.
I would be happy to connect with you and chat more!

Any knobs or accessories I can fix for you or design projects I can help with? I do not want to take if you give me something awesome. So just let me know!
 
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Ing

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I m in a FB group Verteran cars.
Ther some people easy ask the community, which parts they should make printing. And the comunity tells them. Deal.

you could try to easy ask!
 
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levelupinnovator

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I m in a FB group Verteran cars.
Ther some people easy ask the community, which parts they should make printing. And the comunity tells them. Deal.

you could try to easy ask!
Thats a good idea. I will try it out and let you know how it goes.
Thanks Ing.
 
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levelupinnovator

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I m in a FB group Verteran cars.
Ther some people easy ask the community, which parts they should make printing. And the comunity tells them. Deal.

you could try to easy ask!
Ing I have a question for you.
When you say "easy ask" do you mean directly messaging people who are on the group?
 

Ing

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Ing I have a question for you.
When you say "easy ask" do you mean directly messaging people who are on the group?
No, not messages. They ask f e: hi folks, I have printed a knob for a Maseati, its fine, look. What else should I print for you.
 

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