STL files… how to get meal money?

I’m not planning on starting a business but wouldn’t mind being rewarded for my efforts. I enjoy my 3D printing and have printed many items, some for friends at no charge and am happy to continue doing so. One of my favorite items is a whistle that I customize with their names on the side.

But a friend asked if I could copy a part for her kayak that she lost. The kayak company has gone out of business so replacement part isn’t available. I spent some time in tinkercad coping the part, printed a sample or two to get it fitting correctly then printed a final part in PETG. Not exactly the same as the original but close… she tried last weekend and it works great and she is happy.

She posted it on a user group for this kayak and a few seem interested in printing it themselves and asked for the STL file.

I do enjoy this type of printing and find it rewarding helping a friend but wonder if there’s a bit in money to be made for my time… not planning a retirement fund but maybe a lunch out with my partner as she puts up with my hobby! LOL.

Is this a reasonable idea… how much do I charge for a STLl file and how do I go about it? I know this item is a very limited market as the kayak isn’t sold anymore and only was sold for a short time so I don’t expect many sales.

Thoughts are appreciated

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Hi @derek3pugh

to be honest this is how some things get started. I love to see people use this as a way to solve problems that would otherwise go to waste.

I have seen specialty STL files sell for as high as $100 but most are usually under $10. The question is that once you sell it to someone they can technically repost it free of charge. If the part would have been $50 I think between 5 and 10 is a reasonable price to charge for it. Also, offer it as a printable item. You know you can print it well and would allow you to put a couple of cents away to pay for your future upgrades.

A few people on here started printing stuff for friends and now have a full-on side job from it. Others can comment better than I. My farm is B2B sales so I am not really in the same category.

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