Girish C. Dubey, President STAR, INC.

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  • in reply to: Good Comparison list on striping machines #5785

    I think I disagree. But…I want to be fair…so first I’ll say this.
    1) I own a Graco. I own a Titan. I also own a conventional. I love each one. No complaints…at all.
    2) I started striping in ’93. In ’98 I completed my 1000th job. Don’t be impressed. That’s only, about, 200 jobs per year.
    OK? OK.
    Now…to my readers…try this…
    A) Get a can of spray paint.
    B) Spray a polka dot onto the ground.
    C) Walk 9′ and spray another one…don’t look back!
    D) Walk another 9′ and spray another one.
    E) Repeat this process until you have 20 polka dots in your row.
    F) NOW…look back. Are they perfectly in line = perfectly straight? Probably not.
    Ask yourself…could you drive a perfectly straight line…for 180′?…while your striper sprays a polka dot for you? Maybe?
    Phase Two…
    A) Walk 36′ away and make a parallel line of polka dots. That’s right…36′ away and 9′ apart from the first row. Again…you have 2 rows of polka dots…kinda parallel and each dot is 9′ apart. OK? OK.
    B) Connect the dots…(between the 36′ dimensions). Let’s make it simpler…
    C) Put (2) dots on the ground. 36′ apart. Paint a stripe between them…perfectly straight…razor sharp…as though you snapped a line.
    Could you do it? Could you do it 20 times in a row?
    NOW…here’s more…
    What if there were (3) double bays to stripe…and…they lined up? (In a minute, I’ll send you to my site for a video.) Could you do that? What if there aren’t any islands to give you a “starting point”? …as if islands are always perfect.
    Would I do this?…never…especially on a NEW LAYOUT. Never. Would I drive around trying to go straight…without snapping a line? Never.
    That said…would I ever “unload and go” on a Re-stripe? Yes.
    Would I ever “unload and go” on a Re-stripe over seal? No. I still snap. (Ok…maybe once every few years on that one perfect job.)
    Would I ever “unload and go” on a brand new layout? Never.
    OK…that said…I’ll bet these things have a purpose…angled lines in a parking garage?…spraying polka dots every 150’…inside the suicide lane…so workers can know where to place DOT arrows…etc.
    Here’s my conclusion…I’ll wait. I’ll see how these things sell. I’ll wait for the other guys to let me know how they use them.
    Now…go to my site. http://www.americanstriping.com
    Click on the Video link.
    One video deals with how to make your lines…not only straight…but “lined up”. Think it through.
    And keep this in mind…your dots not only have to be straight…but they, too, need to be lined up.
    So…will this save you time…yep. Money?…those two things kinda go hand in hand…so…yep.
    (unless you have to do it again…or don’t get paid)…nothing personal.
    But…will it give you the lines you need…on a brand new layout? Be careful.
    Last…I love my Graco. I also love my Titan and my Conventional.
    See ya.
    Uncle Dan

    in reply to: $75.00 striping “machine”? Is it worth it? #5774

    Hey Kevin
    You’re right…they’re hard to find…used.
    I do think that this is a testimony to the industry = no one let’s them go.
    Have you tried paving companies in the area? I stripe for a paving company and they have a striper in their shop. If you’re fortunate to buy a good one…you may very well also get a client to follow = stripe his/her work!
    Have you tried a repair shop? Sometimes they’ll have a rebuilt one to sell. Rare…but worth a try.
    Have you tried a local Sherwin Williams…or Rodda Paint company? Sometimes they’ll order one in for a client and then the client backs out. They’ll sell this new model for a little less just to get it off their books.
    That said…let me encourage you to consider a new one. Check out the prices for a smaller unit. Don’t forget Titan. http://www.titantool.com I’ve had a Titan for 16 years…I love it…but it just broke…finally! The 2800 model is a great machine. Not too big. Not too small. (I had a 4000.) And…certainly Graco. I just bought one. I love it too.
    Kevin…someone like you? = experienced…you can do it. A new one may only be $1000.00 difference. Maybe Rodda paint can order it for you…or SW. That way…you can check paint prices…and have it shipped right to the store…maybe even make a payment or two.
    I hope this helped.
    Keep in touch.

    in reply to: Walgreen Specs #5759

    Hey Ed.
    I wouldn’t hold back.
    1) They aren’t going to come over to our side = they are going to go with these specs.
    2) …and again…bid it to your favor.
    Sometimes when I bid a job outside the limits of normalcy…
    …and I get the bid…
    …my first thought is…
    …crap…what did I miss?
    I liked your idea of a rectangle for the DRIVE THRU.
    That makes total sense.
    Conversely…when I do not get the bid…
    …I think…that’s ok.
    Now I’m going to talk out of the other side of my mouth.
    Walgreen’s aren’t that big = 100 cars?…(4) directional arrows?
    …and it’s a new lot? = wide open and no traffic.
    Bid it right…take your time…and look for more.
    You’ll do great.
    Keep in touch.

    in reply to: Walgreen Specs #5757

    Hey Striper Ed…how are you?
    My answer?…the first way. Put down an 8″ black line…then a 4″ on top.
    Trying to spray a 2″ line is difficult enough…let alone perfectly beside an existing 4″ line.
    I’m guessing this is a concrete parking lot? I see these. I’ll bet then the arrows will also have a black border around them.
    I think it’s because some well intentioned engineer or architect thinks…hey, you can’t see paint on concrete.
    My only advice is this…
    1) I find that a good latex works well on concrete.
    2) Alkyd turns a lovely orange when applied to freshly installed concrete. That may not occur though, since the black is there first. This may also be a reason for the black. But…then again…the stores I see use white on top of black…and again…it’s on concrete.
    3) Don’t be afraid to bid it right. Black costs more. Buy it in single gallon cans. Open each can only as you have need. Then…return the rest. Maybe keep some for some unforeseen mistake you must “black out” on a different job.
    4) Maybe…just maybe…you can spray a 3″-4″ border around an arrow…that you own. But if you must cut new stencils…add the complete cost to the job. Odds are…you’ll never use it again…you decide.
    5) Bid it right. Time…paint…switching colors…hand painting…new stencils…
    All that said…I hope you get the job.
    Let me know.

    in reply to: can you pay 20 an hour and still make out #5751

    Dang it!…I missed this post…but for all readers…I answered Mike the day he posted..from my email.
    I just didn’t see that it was also posted here. Again…I apologize.
    Here’s what I wrote to Mike…
    $20.00 per hour will attract almost anyone. The trick is this…he or she must represent you.
    He or she must not be in it for the money only. They must be a person that really enjoys making the job look sweet…while staying inside your budget.
    And…can they work well with clients? Can they represent you?
    Next…the good news is this…just like anything, you’ll start relatively small. You’ll learn it. You’ll need a helper.
    That gives you time to find the right person…quietly. And…odds are you’ll know it soon…then bump the wages up.
    If you’re lucky enough to have someone already to go…good for you. But most of us don’t.
    A friend of mine…( a striper) had his college son bring some buddy’s along…a few years have elapsed…now his son runs a separate crew. He, (the son) just bought a cool house down the street from me. Pay him well.
    Keep in mind though…I’m not the authority here…on wages and helpers. I’ve worked alone for so long, my ideas may be archaic and need updating.
    But I see two things…
    1) Guys like me last. We have less overhead. More flexibility. We tend to have less debt. Less pressure. Trying to secure work to keep employees busy may mean cutting into margins = profit = giving away work just to keep people. $20.00 per hour for 4 hours per day won’t keep your “lead person” around for long. And you may bid work you just don’t want. But we’re not rich either.
    2) There are crews that are large…and in this arena that means (3) trucks and maybe (5) employees. Insurance. Workers’ Comp. Fuel. And they make it. One crew has. Many trucks. Stipiping in other counties. A warehouse. Etc. However there’s always the story of someone who borrows to make payroll. Figure interest on that money.
    Bottom line. I want everyone to make more than me. I want everyone to be debt free. Decide for yourself where you are. Decide for yourself what risks are acceptable…and how quickly you want to get “somewhere”. Have a plan to back peddal. An exit strategy.
    For me?…If you have a good solid living. If you’re buying batting lessons for you daughter…music lessons for your son…you may have found your niche. There’s nothing wrong with sailing an even keel.
    But for you…the answer may lie somewhere within the category of defining goals.
    Last…I am not the authority here. I know how to stripe. I know what’s worked for me. So…if you have input…I’m all ears. I’d love to hear…others may want to hear also…what are you paying? Are there different scales you may use for different jobs. (Not everyone can Layout.) Do you borrow to make payroll?. Do you layoff?
    Me?…I hire a 20 year old when I think I need him. I pay him more than $20.00 per hour. But I use him for a day or two. He loves the extra cash. Sometimes he only drives my truck.
    Let me hear from you.

    in reply to: Rollmaster #5746

    Hey David
    I don’t know. I went to the site and saw the (2) products…the Rollmaster and the Rollmaster 5000. I’ve seen these at the Asphalt conventions and I have reservations. 1) What about a rough parking lot? I’d be concerned that I cannot get coverage…here’s why. I hand roll blue squares at 39″ x 39″. Once these are dry, I then spray my H/C stencil on top. I have difficulty during the hand rolling process if the asphalt is rough or cracked or…and here’s a big one…gritty. First…I will have to go back and forth to work the blue in and get coverage…then…I will inevitably pick up small pebbles, dirt, grit. pine needles etc. into the roller. In this application…neither of these “troubles” is a big deal…but…if I were painting the actual stripe…I’d be concerned.
    Next…Tennis courts used to be striped by hand. We would tape the lines and then apply a clear coat specifically to stop the paint from oozing under the tape and offering a rough finished edge. We would then roll the lines with white paint and then pull the tape. My point?…I would expect this machine to offer a rough edge and/or a “boat wake” type of an edge.
    Now…here’s a small argument against a statement from their site. “Paint a better quality line with sharper edges.” Ever since the introduction of the airless, we don’t use the clear coat over the tape…on tennis courts. Why?…because airless striping machines offer a very sharp edge. And…now?…I don’t even tape…I snap a line and paint a 2″ line right beside it.
    Last…for the price of the 5000…you could find a used airless…or a conventional machine.
    OK…last…last…what about stencils? What about curbs?
    All that said…you decide…there may be a market for this type of machine…but…I know (6) stripers in my town…no one has one. We all have airless and conventionals. Very quick. Very easy. (Very straight.) Very cool.
    Let me know what you decide.
    Before I go…try airlessco.com
    These seem to be less money. And…if you do buy a larger unit 2 years from now…this machine can be a great back up…or use it for stenciling while your partner is striping…or sell it.
    Keep in touch.
    See ya.

    in reply to: Choosing the right type of traffic paint #5744

    Hey David
    Either one = water based or oil based. I’ve used both. They apply well. They cover well. They wear well.
    The ONLY consideration is weather. If it’s cool or cold…oil based will dry more quickly. But…if it’s a gorgeous Summer evening…or if you’re in a year ’round warmer climate…use water based = latex. You’re right…the clean up is easy.

    Water over oil???…yes. Do not be afraid. Pull the trigger. The paint…assuming it’s a good paint…needs a semi rough surface to get its “fingers” into so that it can “grip” the surface. Therefore…by the time you’re asked to do a Re-stripe…the old paint IS roughed up “a-plenty” and the parking lot IS too. Pull the trigger. Don’t look back.

    P.S. Brand new asphalt is pourous. Therefore…either type paint can grip it easily.

    Good luck. Keep in touch.

    P.S.S. What type of machine do you have?

    in reply to: How much to charge for striping layout #5743

    Hey Lineman
    How are you? The best way I could answer pricing is to first send you to a post titled…”pricing a striping job”.
    In that post I mentioned overhead…and competition. I also mention some numbers that may get you started.
    In a quick answer though, concerning lay outs…it’s time. It takes more time. Cover that cost. At least.
    Let me answer this post now, a little differently. I hope the (2) posts together can help.
    My overhead is me. And…there isn’t a job I can’t do.
    My competition is any number of companies in my well known large, metropolis town. Lineman…I can beat them on price and…I hesitate to say this…on quality too. I think what happens is this…turnover occurs. So…when a new person grabs the bars…sometimes it gets a little squirrley. Also…companies with 3-6 people need to get work. They bid low…to keep people busy…I don’t. The down side is this…no snapping…sometimes = let’s get going…let’s hurry…the faster we go the more the owner makes…and there’s alot of work because the bids are low. So…rookies go fast. I don’t. Don’t get me wrong…there are good crews too…but I’m quick and I do great work. I want you to be the same.
    Lineman…here’s my point…bid it like you see it. Ignore everybody else. YES…your bid will be close…but do not try to be the cheapest in town. Ask yourself a question…if you hired a plumber, would it be on price alone? YEEEES…his price should be in line. But he should be able to speak to you…talk a little bit…I don’t want some hoaky sales pitch but I do look for someone who explains a little …let’s me know it’ll be taken care of, etc. If you’re that kind of person…you have pricing power.
    That said…I can’t just say…hey bid 20 cents or 30 cents…but figure your overhead…what ever that is. Paint? Gasoline to the job? Insurance divided into the number of jobs. (Do you work 8 mos.? 12 mos.?) Do you work alone? Are you the only guy within 30 miles? Do you pay into Workers’ Comp.? I do. Do you have 1 million in insurance? 2 million? I do. Then look at the additional time…especially if you have a helper. Cover that cost.
    Lineman…read that other post and figure up a bid. Tell your customer…I’ll lay it out…I’ll snap every line…they’ll be lined up, parallel, same length. It’ll take me 3-4 hours. It’ll be bone dry before I leave. I’ll work after hours. You’ll come to work in a couple days and see it done. $400.00. I’ll send an invoice. You’ll get it in a couple days. I’d love to be paid in 10 days. Hand ’em a bid. It doesn’t have to be elaborate…something from Quick Books is fine.
    Let me know if these (2) posts helped. I hope so.
    Your friend.

    in reply to: other forums and issues. #5739

    Hey Newstripe…how are you?
    I think we may have spoken before.
    If not…ask away. Ask any question you want.
    I’m here.
    And…the answer to your question??? = right here.
    Right here is where you go.
    I’ll help you.

    in reply to: pricing a striping job #5735

    Hey Steve
    …no laughin’ here.
    Everybody was a rookie.
    I think that there are (2) types of machines that dominate the industry.
    1) The conventional. Tried, true, tested. Maker?…= JCL Equipment Co.
    2) The airless. Probably has a bigger piece of the market. Makers include Graco, Titan.
    There’s always room for discussion here…but these are the (2) types and the big boy mfg’s.
    A starting cost is somewhere around $3200.00. And there’s your answer.
    In other words…no $75.00 stuff. If you’re going to Re-stripe your own parking lot…don’t buy anything…just hire it out.
    But…if you’re looking to make some extra money on the side with hopes of growing…and you will…spend $3200.00-$4000.00 on a machine.
    Next…on this site I gave a “list of sorts” under Striping Equipment. Read that. It’s good. It compares these (2) machines.
    When you do…you’ll see that I may guide you toward the conventional. It’s a great machine. User friendly…especially for the rookie…using oil based paint…on “Re-stripes”.
    So…I think the answer to your question is this…narrow the field to (2) types. Explore these machines.
    Evaluate what your “market” will “probably” be. (More than likely you’ll approach an owner or property manager and ask if you can “Re-stripe” the lot. Just you, after hours, and probably use oil based paint. I’d use the conventional.) And decide.
    Last…I bought a conventional in 1993. I used it for 3rd shift, Re-stripes using oil based paint. Then I switched to latex Paint and sprayed over fresh seal coat on a second shift. When that got too old…I bought my airless; a Titan. I use both almost daily.
    So…let’s do this…you explore a website or 2. Gather info…gather questions…and let’s talk again.

    in reply to: Good Comparison list on striping machines #5730

    Hey Don…Good point…and thank you.
    JCL Equipment Company, Xenia, Ohio. 1-800-76LINES…ask for Jim.
    I’m referring to the HRL-1.
    I recommend the air curtains.
    I also recommend the Binks 2001 for stenciling.
    I think it’ll be under $4000.00 out the door.
    I hope that helps. Let me know.

    in reply to: pricing a striping job #5728

    Hey Don
    Yes…that’s a book…follow the link…if you’re interested.
    I also offered a comparison between 2 popular striping machines.
    It’s here on this site.
    I’m thinking under $4000.00 out the door for either machine…but check me on that.
    As far as the $100.00 price…that is entirely up to you. But you’ve introduced the “minimum charge” topic.
    Sometimes these are more lucrative than seemingly bigger jobs simply because the paint needs are so minimal. If you offer $100.00 and have 10 lines…you’ll use a half gallon of paint…but you’ve driven to purchase it and driven to the job twice = once to bid and again to work. That may equal $10.00 – $20.00. The rest is yours…after the tax man cometh and taketh away! Calculate some of that. Again…it is entirely up to you…and we agree on the aerosol spray = stay away…use a real striping machine and command higher prices.

    in reply to: pricing a striping job #5726

    Hey donsf49
    Pricing is always tricky. Here’s why. Overhead and competition. First things first…
    If you pay $10.00 per gallon and get 350′ per gallon…that alone costs 3 cents per foot.
    Let’s say it’s a “Re-stripe” of an 80 car parking lot = 1500′. You’ll need 5 gallons of paint = $50.00. Now…I’m going to stop right here and dangerously say…most people think that’s your overhead = paint! But…you and I know better…I did not include one cup of gas for the striping machine…3 gallons of gas for your truck…your cell phone bill…yellow pages…business insurance…1 million dollars worth of insurance isn’t that expensive…buy it.
    So…if it’s JUST YOU working and you’re spraying a parking lot that has 80 cars…figure 3 lines per minute. You can stripe the entire job easily in less than 2 hours. 30 minutes for prep and clean up…30 minutes for striping…the rest for travel. By the way…that’s in a perfect world…supposing we’re pretty good at our job. So how much do you want? After all is said and done?…$200.00? $300.00? That means $250.00 – $350.00…plus whatever additional “overhead” you decide. That means it’s 17 – 23 cents per foot. AND…that’s for a Re-stripe…not an “Over seal”…let alone a “Layout”.
    I’ve helped stripers price from all over. Some live in towns where the paint store is 45 miles away. I live in a large, well known metropolis. If 30 cents for a Re-stripe is the going rate for your neck of the woods…so be it. BUT…be careful…it may not mean that you’ll be making more than someone else pricing at 17 – 23 cents…in a different “market”… = a different neck of the woods.
    Check your overhead…look at the job…put a price on it. Your price.
    I remember the first time I “upped” my prices. It was because I was swamped…swamped…swamped. My overhead didn’t change. Did I mentioned swamped? I deduced 2 things…1) my prices may be too low…but more importantly…2) I was in demand. I’d like to think that I was doing a good job.
    Now…I know you can do the work. And I know you’ll do a good job. So…what I would like to encourage you to do is this…price the job as you see it. Grow and build a reputable business. Keep in mind all things…best you can…including your “secondary” overhead = your home life.
    Your friend.

    in reply to: Truck Layout #5715

    Tru Trak
    Excellent. Sounds like a great plan. I’m still interested too. Keep in touch as all this unfolds.
    Dan Z.
    American Striping Co.

Viewing 14 posts - 256 through 269 (of 269 total)