Your most expensive rocket based on labor costs?

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

BABAR

Builds Rockets for NASA
TRF Lifetime Supporter
TRF Supporter
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
8,093
Reaction score
2,900
So I checked for the average United States minimum wage at this site

https://www.dol.gov/whd/minwage/america.htm#Texas

and found it is $7.25 per hour

so what does this make your most expensive Rocket based on the number of hours that you put into it at minimum wage

I am sure I am on low end, at maybe 20 hours about $145

Include fin tacking (but not just glue drying)
Exclude paint and resin curing times.

For ease of comparison, put hours and $ amount down
 

hornet driver

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
4,637
Reaction score
7
I can't even begin to come up with an answer. I've tried to track the time I spend before but I gave up, best guess is realistically about 20 to 30 REAL hours of work and That's on the JQ with at least 5-10 more hours to go. The problem I have is the materials always float around 100 bucks no mater what I do( most of my stuff is scratch built). The basic builds don't take a ton of time or money, it's the damn finishing that hammers me on both fronts---H
 

blackbrandt

That Darn College Student
Joined
Mar 18, 2012
Messages
9,281
Reaction score
41
Easily my L3 bird.
I spent probably 50 hours working on it in Solidworks, figuring out how everything would mesh together.
Then I ordered the parts about 3 months after I started CAD.
I've spent probably another 70 hours building it.

I'll spend another 10 painting and sanding.


That's 130 right there, plus another few for prepping for launch.
 

RocketFeller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2009
Messages
1,185
Reaction score
72
Our upscale Dragonfly probably took 50 hours of construction (minimum estimate) with three or four people (myself and my middle-school helpers) working most of the time. There were also two trips to Washington (70 minutes/150 minutes each way) for our carbon fiber plate and tube and several trips to our high school's wood shop.

If we were to add up the hours at minimum wage plus the retail value of supplies, our rocket cost as much as a decent used car - luckily most of the materials were donated and my crew's wages were paid in snack-food....
 
Last edited:

FredA

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
2,185
Reaction score
357
Heck - I've probably got over 100 hours in front of Burnsim just for the motor I'm working on.....
 

Bat-mite

Rocketeer in MD
Joined
Dec 5, 2013
Messages
11,046
Reaction score
1,785
Location
Maryland
Been working on my Formula 200 as time permits since July. I have not counted the hours; I can't count that high!
 

grandcross

Lifetime Supporter
TRF Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Aug 29, 2015
Messages
269
Reaction score
23
I've got more than 100 hours in my Saturn 1B build already, and I wouldn't claim to be even halfway done
 

dr wogz

Fly caster
Joined
Feb 5, 2009
Messages
6,249
Reaction score
1,391
Location
Land of Poutine!
Would tat also then include "shopping"? I've spent a few hours gather my list and then pricing the parts, deciding, breaking the order up between two vendors for various reasons, etc..
 

James Duffy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
1,012
Reaction score
400
...so what does this make your most expensive Rocket based on the number of hours that you put into it at minimum wage?
The rocket documented in this thread took a solid eleven months of (almost) full-time work. Let's call it 30 hours per week for 47 weeks, or 1,410 hours. At minimum wage that comes out to $10,222.50.

As there are in excess of 23,000 rivets on this model, that's at least 44.4¢ per rivet.

And, no, I was not enjoying myself by the end of the project.

James
 
Last edited:

Steven

Lifetime Supporter
TRF Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Sep 17, 2013
Messages
3,621
Reaction score
1,090
The rocket documented in this thread took a solid eleven months of (almost) full-time work. Let's call it 30 hours per week for 47 weeks, or 1,410 hours. At minimum wage that comes out to $10,222.50.

As there are in excess of 23,000 rivets on this model, that's at least 44.4¢ per rivet.

And, no, I was not enjoying myself by the end of the project.

James
I see where you're coming from having put in so much time and energy into a certain project. Been there, done that.
 

Igotnothing

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2014
Messages
883
Reaction score
104
Every hour is $200 at a therapist avoided.

So all my rockets pay me.
 

cerving

Owner, Eggtimer Rocketry
TRF Sponsor
TRF Supporter
Joined
Feb 3, 2012
Messages
4,250
Reaction score
1,564
I've got more than 100 hours in my Saturn 1B build already, and I wouldn't claim to be even halfway done
I have a Semroc Saturn 1B that I keep opening up, staring at, and putting away. I may be retired before I have the time to do anything with it...
 

Steve Shannon

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Jul 23, 2011
Messages
6,686
Reaction score
3,526
Location
Butte, Montana
The rocket documented in this thread took a solid eleven months of (almost) full-time work. Let's call it 30 hours per week for 47 weeks, or 1,410 hours. At minimum wage that comes out to $10,222.50.

As there are in excess of 23,000 rivets on this model, that's at least 44.4¢ per rivet.

And, no, I was not enjoying myself by the end of the project.

James
I have a hard time finishing things as is. What you've done is absolutely impressive to me, but I'd be looking for a less labor intensive way to do rivets. Was making the rivets the most tedious part of the build?


Steve Shannon
 

rcktnut

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2009
Messages
1,685
Reaction score
251
Location
Sheboygan WI
The rocket documented in this thread took a solid eleven months of (almost) full-time work. Let's call it 30 hours per week for 47 weeks, or 1,410 hours. At minimum wage that comes out to $10,222.50.

As there are in excess of 23,000 rivets on this model, that's at least 44.4¢ per rivet.

And, no, I was not enjoying myself by the end of the project.

James


WOW, NIIIICE!!! Did it ever fly yet! If it were mine I'd have to let it sit on display for about 3 years, to make sure the paint is totally dry.
 

James Duffy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
1,012
Reaction score
400
WOW, NIIIICE!!! Did it ever fly yet! If it were mine I'd have to let it sit on display for about 3 years, to make sure the paint is totally dry.
Thanks! Yes, it did fly. Successfully, even! Go to the 18:30 point of this video if you'd like to see it:

[video=youtube;QoM3hlvNTEI]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoM3hlvNTEI[/video]

The Jumbotron knocked a couple of the fins off, but the modular construction of the model makes component repair and replacement easy.

James
 

grandcross

Lifetime Supporter
TRF Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Aug 29, 2015
Messages
269
Reaction score
23
Every hour is $200 at a therapist avoided.

So all my rockets pay me.
When I had my sailboat, I named it the 'Royal Ottawa'. It's named after one of eastern Ontario's finest mental health facilities :)
 

Latest posts

Top