Forum Title: Looking To Start Striping
Howdy, I've been reading on striping a bit and have been looking at potentially trying my hand at it. At the moment I'm a 19-year-old engineering student out of Arkansas looking for something to do in the summer months that could potentially turn into a full-time deal once I graduate. I started looking into it because the family on my mothers side stripes and seals here in AR and a bit in adjoining states, and I live outside the area they work. I would talk with them about it, but we don't talk to them after they threatened to burn the house down and shoot dad (Gasp!) I could possibly talk to my grandfather, but it leaves a lot of room for the whole thing to unravel and cause a ruckus, so I've come here to you, the great peoples of the internets. So, all humor and dysfunctional family members aside here's what I've got going for me. I still live at home right now, and I'm going to school in town on scholarship, so all profits can be turned back into the business. I live in what I feel like is a good triangle, with a population of 3 million within about 1-1.5 hours driving distance. Draw a triangle between Tulsa-Springfield MO- and Fayetteville AR and that would be my main stomping grounds. I'm a late night person, so the hours don't bother me, nor does good honest, dirty work. I would love to be able to work for myself, after a few years of working for The Man I don't think that's the kind of life I want to live. (Nothing wrong for the guys who do) I have this cool tendency to fall in with some good ol' boys who like hard honest work too, so I feel I have a good pool of potential partners (I know, be careful with friends and money) and both my parents striped for a bit before we moved away from my mothers family. What I'm looking to do is try and get an idea on what it would cost me to get started small scale, things like gas stations, local mom and pops, and small-town shopping centers. I figure if I do enough work to pay off a small scale machine, that will give me an idea if I want to keep going, or I can sell out and come out ahead for learning something while breaking even. I was eyeballing something like a Titan Powrline 850 to get me started. I know its an anemic machine, but I think going slow at first wont hurt me, and if I decide I want to stick with it and upgrade, it would be something I could hand off to a partner to run stencils while I run lines. I was also wondering if y'all could help me out with ideas on fair pricing for the south, I don't expect to be able to demand top dollar yet, but I deserve fair pay for my work. Along with that what I should be thinking about paying for paints, stencils and other consumables. And I understand, there's a lot that I don't know what I don't know, so any words of wisdom are appreciated. I find that listening to older guys who've been there will save you many dollars worth of headache. Thanks for your help - Woo Pig
Category: Paving Post By: ALLEN GARZA (Maple Grove, MN), 12/30/2019

Welcome to the striping world. First, avoid the Titan 850 like the plaque it is. Look for a used machine for under $2000. You can get a used Graco 3400 for about the same price. The only thing you will have is your reputation and using a Titan 850 will not help it at all. You will also need some basic stencils which you can make out of wood to start with, go to a parking lot at night with large sheets of tracing paper and make you own. Its goinf to cost you 2-$3000 to start up but quickly make that back.

- PAUL TAYLOR (Chico, CA), 01/31/2020

One big thing is be realistic about your thoughts. Striping my appear like easy money, but that’s often an illusion. Not to discourage you at all, just be realistic. You’re going to need start up capital, that will cover your machine, tools, paint, plus overhead such as insurance, cell phone, advertising and so on. Realistically 5k is prob a minimum, but your looking closer to 10 to have a real business. Of course you can start cheaper, but those that do are often working for beer money. To do it right requires investment. I would research some costs of used machines like jpanz suggested, some insurance, business licenses, marketing etc, then draw up a business plan. From there you’ll be able to see if you have what it takes to make it work, or if you would be in the weekend warrior beer money category. Keep in mind that the jobs you will start with are usually minimal profit, so you’ll need several to cover that overhead plus put some in your pocket. I’m by no means trying to talk you out of it, in fact, I encourage entrepreneurialism, but I have learned the hard way on a few times, and for sure have fallen for the illusion of money in this business. As long as you have a decent plan and are realistic about your expectations, you can do it. Take it easy start slow and you’ll have a better shot. Keep us posted, we are here to help.

- NATALIE PARKS (Nashville, TN), 01/31/2020

For getting started out, what makes the T850 plague like? Inconsistent spray?

- PEARL SCHWARTZ (Pittsburg, CA), 01/31/2020

requestaquote Get Free Quotes callnow 888-506-9527