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Discussion Starter #1
if i allow them to be my exclusive shop that i use (possibly even drawing up a contract saying that they will get to be the only shop used provided they remain competitively priced and can fulfill the order requirements), that they dont charge a setup fee... how open to this do you think most of them would be?
 

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Since set up fees are usually a nominal amount it seems to me that they would not mind waiving them. At the same time, since set up fees are usually a nominal amount it seems to me that you would not mind paying them to ensure you are getting the best job. Furthermore, I think it would be pretty foolish to sign an exclusive contract with a print shop. You don't want to get locked in to something you can't easily get out of.
 

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Talk is cheap. Even w/ a contract, what happens if you don’t hit the volume you say? Do they have to be jerks and take you to court? Are you going to cut a check for the difference? Just saying you’ll use them exclusively means nothing. Exclusivity on zero is still zero.

You really have to SHOW them you’re a serious player in order to ask for a really competitive price. Why should I, being the printer, take a financial risk on you? The odds are actually better letting you go to my competition and let them take the risk.

Also, don’t think that the shop that comes in the least is going to be the best deal. What happens if you do lock into a long term agreement and their work starts to suck? I pay my printer extremely well! It’s an integral part of my business. I rather pay my guy more and have the luxury of being one of their most profitable clients. This way when I need something done, it get done ASAP! How much is that worth?

Take it to the total extreme. You love your print shop! They charge you the best price you know. Always run your small orders whenever you want. You have no screening or set-up costs. Doesn’t matter if you print one color or 10, it’s the same cost. Now you’re wondering why the shop went out of business and you’re back to square one… only worse!
 

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MikeyFingaz,
You have asked this question in 2 different places.(maybe Rodney will move one)
But you also got some answers in the other place.

CoolHandLuke said:
Take it to the total extreme. You love your print shop! They charge you the best price you know. Always run your small orders whenever you want. You have no screening or set-up costs. Doesn’t matter if you print one color or 10, it’s the same cost. Now you’re wondering why the shop went out of business and you’re back to square one… only worse!
Like I said there, that's exactly what I have! Best prices, no screen charges after first run of same design, small orders, excellent quality! I had used a few other shops before I found this place, and interviewed even more. Could not find better prices, or better quality. On top of it, they have been in business since 1980, and still have customers from their first year of business. Great Place!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
so its not common to charge a setup fee everytime you place an order???

the guy i am considering using (if i understood him correctly) said i would be paying the setup fee everytime i placed an order for another run... he was the most courteous of all the shop owners i spoke with, but im starting to think he is trying to pull one over on me...

my biz partner who is the financier of our company makes over $700,000 per year on another venture that he owns... we are tentatively scheduled to meet with the shop owner sometime after the next two weeks... i am a thrifty type of person, and i want to know a bit about this befroe we go into a negotiating scenario with the shop owner... even though my partner can afford it, i do not want to find ourselves getting nailed with a setup fee everytime... it wouldnt be profitable if we make a small order to have to pay 80 bucks on top of the costsw for the shrts and the service on them...

is it possible that once he meets my partner, he may change his tune??

a one time fee is fine, but a setup fee for every order is not something i am willing to pay.
 

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Some places charge every time. Others don't. I have happened to have found a great one that doesn't.

If they do great work(only time will tell that), then go back to them again and again. If they see you will keep giving them business, I'm sure they would be more than willing to keep the screens or let you keep them, and waive the screen charges. If they would not agree to that after you have shown that you are a loyal customer, it would really make me wonder about them.
 

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You really have to SHOW them you’re a serious player in order to ask for a really competitive price. Why should I, being the printer, take a financial risk on you? The odds are actually better letting you go to my competition and let them take the risk
These is the key here. You can SAY you'll print 1000's of garments a month, but they don't know that and would be risking a loss if you don't deliver.

But if you start running 1000's of garments per month through his shop, he can SEE the history of volume and they you have more ground to negotiate.

There are also many printer choices, so interview different printers, check their quality (not just pricing) and see which one delivers the most consistent quality, has the happiest customers, and stands behind their prints.
 

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MikeyFingaz said:
even though my partner can afford it, i do not want to find ourselves getting nailed with a setup fee everytime... it wouldnt be profitable if we make a small order to have to pay 80 bucks on top of the costsw for the shrts and the service on them...
Not every shop is run the same way, so it's not necessarily a bad sign or anything. If their work is good and their per shirt price better than the competition it may all work out for the best.

But if you want a baseline...

1) Setup fees are usually (but by no means always) a once off fee. A lot of shops hang on to screens for later print runs.
2) An $80 setup fee is not standard (I'd say $15-$50 is normal, most around $25-$35, sometimes there isn't one, sometimes it's $80...)
 

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We never charged a setup fee until this year. $10 a screen is a nominal fee but it helps cover the costs of developing a good screen plus the screen washout and materials (emulsion. ink wash, emulsion remover, etc).
Our customers don't even question the setup fee. Although we do waive the setup fee when we have a larger order or potential repeat customer.
 

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Welcome to the T-Shirt Forums, globalwp :)

I've seen some printers stop charging screen fees on every setup job and instead charge a one time "film" fee to cover the film creation costs.

Is it true you can save films longer than screens?
 

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Thank you for the warm welcome Rodney.

Yes, good point however. print shops look at what it takes to remain in business as mentioned by CoolHandLuke.
The shops charging for films are almost certain to bury a screen material cost and time in the bottom line of the t-shirt cost.
Not to stray from the initial subject of this thread, yes print shops can be persuaded from dropping the screen charges. But never go into an agreement that locks both parties in. A good print shop has to be sold by the customer as well. Just as a customer does not know the quality work he'll initially receive, the print shop does not know the honest commitment the customer will have long term.
 
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