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Author Topic: A side hustle here?  (Read 719 times)

HA Dave

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A side hustle here?
« on: February 23, 2019, 11:00:27 AM »

I ran across this piece that explores the idea of modern hobbies also being a "hustle". I've always used the term "side-hustle".... but the meaning remains the same.

Often when I mentioned my automation hobby... others have asked me about selling or "doing installations". And I've seen other forum members turn their hobby into a little profit/hustle. Not to call anyone out on such a thing or to criticize either. I think expanding an X10/automation hobby into a money-maker could only be GOOD for everyone involved.

And... I have another hobby that I have to admit I have turned into a bit of a side-hustle. Not a real money-maker... but I've kept a moderately pricey hobby to one that doesn't cost much at all. 

So... does anyone have any ideas on how to make our X10 passion a hustle as well?



https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/smallbusiness/in-the-era-of-the-hustle-hobbies-have-to-pay/ar-BBTTTjW?ocid=spartandhp
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brobin

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2019, 12:15:22 PM »

Honestly, if I were to do installations for others I wouldn't use X10.
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LostDog88

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2019, 12:26:22 PM »

Why?

The basic system setup no Pi no nonsense is reliable and works.
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brobin

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2019, 01:05:49 PM »

There are so many other more reliable and better supported options that X10 just isn't the best choice for 2019.  In fact, I'm faced with this decision right now.  I won't be getting paid but a friend who is building a home right now has asked for help in doing some of the "Jetson's type things" that I'm doing.  If I recommend X10 then I have to deal with potential signal issues and resolving them.  He wants to use Alexa - X10 offers no product that works with Alexa.  Sure, I can use a Pi to make that happen but then I'm left with ongoing support for it. X10 has no reliable app (I certainly wouldn't recommend a WM100).  I could suggest a Pi running HG but again, that's not exactly easy for someone who wants plug 'n play. 
 I'll probably recommend a Z-wave solution because there's so many off-the-shelf products and options for controllers.
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JeffVolp

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2019, 01:08:21 PM »

So... does anyone have any ideas on how to make our X10 passion a hustle as well?

When I designed the original XTB to boost the output of my TW523, it might have been considered a "hobby" when I started offering the kits to others.  I bought parts for 100 kits, and hoped to sell most of them.  That expanded into a full-time business with a dozen products and almost 5000 units shipped.  Now that it is time to retire, I'd like to transition production over to someone else to keep the products available.  So there is your chance for a "hustle".

Jeff
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brobin

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2019, 01:32:10 PM »

So... does anyone have any ideas on how to make our X10 passion a hustle as well?

When I designed the original XTB to boost the output of my TW523, it might have been considered a "hobby" when I started offering the kits to others.  I bought parts for 100 kits, and hoped to sell most of them.  That expanded into a full-time business with a dozen products and almost 5000 units shipped.  Now that it is time to retire, I'd like to transition production over to someone else to keep the products available.  So there is your chance for a "hustle".

Jeff
It still boggles my mind that X10 hasn't taken you up on that. :'
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dave w

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2019, 02:18:01 PM »

Over the years I have considered such a move. I always held back because I was working for a fortune 50 company that was so great to work for, I wasn't willing spend time to even think much about details.  If I were to try something now, I agree with brobin. I would push a mesh network like Insteon or Z-Wave. Not X10.

Just too many problems with X10. Number one; I would push the XTBIIR as a required element, but what if the customer wanted automation,  but only to control a few devices? The XTBIIR would almost guarantee a reliable system, but would add close to $500 to the system price because I would have wire it into the electrical panel, making sure I met all code requirements. With that sort of "I want no post installation headaches" requirement, even using the X10 Pi hub with maybe 10 device controlled, would dictate probably a $1000 base cost. And I would not offer security because I would not want to accept the perceived or real liability. So I just went out of business before I started.

About the only thing brobin said that I would differ with is; if using X10, I would sell the WM100 as an "anywhere in the world" remote control.   :'
« Last Edit: February 23, 2019, 02:24:44 PM by dave w »
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LostDog88

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2019, 05:05:11 PM »

When I started on this journey I just wanted to control a few lights locally and with a remote.

That quickly blossomed into pretty much a full automation. No voice/alexa/echo/etc as I don't really believe in wiretaps in my house.  ;D rofl rofl. But seriously. Call me crazy or conspiracy freak. I am not getting one.

With that being said. I can turn all lights off when I leave with one button on my keychain. The wife loves she can push a button and inside lights pop on ready for her to enter her home. I can arm a (fairly lame) security system, but it's loud enough the neighbors come check it out and call me. Set scenes when on vacation. Have the lights turn on at dusk and after we go to bed. Turn on in the morning and off at dawn. And the list keeps growing. Currently I am working on a door bell system and when that is working I will be able to send an email when someone pushes that button and I am on vacation. That with a camera will tell me to call my neighbor and ask him to pick up the amazon package.

As for cheap.....well that is the old triangle. Cheap/Fast/Quick. Pick two. And only two. You cannot have all three. When I started just controlling a few lights we were only talking about a couple hundred bucks. With my pro installation  rofl rofl maybe four hundred total for 5 or six lights. Now where I am at....yah.....pretty much about a grand. But the point is made. Home Automation with some sort of security that is under 1K. Pretty fair in my opinion.
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dave w

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2019, 06:27:44 PM »

When I started on this journey I just wanted to control a few lights locally and with a remote.

That quickly blossomed into pretty much a full automation.
Yeah, It's like meth, coke, etc. You quickly get hooked. The difference is: home automation is legal, and fun. <grin>
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LostDog88

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2019, 08:19:02 PM »

When I started on this journey I just wanted to control a few lights locally and with a remote.

That quickly blossomed into pretty much a full automation.
Yeah, It's like meth, coke, etc. You quickly get hooked. The difference is: home automation is legal, and fun. <grin>

Yah.....seems like it was a good week to stop sniffing glue! LOL. For you younger folks.......that movie is called Airplane. With Lloyd Bridges...If you never seen it. Do so NOW!!   rofl rofl rofl
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brobin

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2019, 09:31:30 PM »

Younger folks... here?  rofl rofl rofl rofl rofl
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HA Dave

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2019, 10:40:56 PM »

I know JeffVolp has a sweet side-line of products (great stuff). And Bill (of the old BVC software) made a couple bucks (far too few)... while exploring his coding skills. But Bill never really enjoyed or exploited Home Automation for himself. There was also a time back-in-the-day.... when people would sell X10 via links on their own web sites. Receiving a small (tiny) portion of the sales.

I've done some small X10 installs... mostly for family and close friends that had a security problem or issue. Not only did I never charge... I mostly donated the products needed, as well as did the setup. Besides my own... I've built a few Home Theaters too... also for friends. And never made a penny doing those either.

Only after I retired and took up bicycling did I fall into a chance to make a nickel or two restoring old bikes. Which makes me wonder if the "new" trend of making a hobby a hustle (or hustle a hobby), has anything to do with age. It may be more of an era.
 





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James G

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2019, 02:18:41 PM »

I would not call it a hustle. I would consider it turning a hobby into a business. Just make sure you have enough insurance (a $500,000 house fire would be bad) and define the limits of warrenty.
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JeffVolp

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2019, 02:40:49 PM »

I would consider it turning a hobby into a business.

That is exactly what happened in my case - from a few hours a week to a full time job.

Jeff
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James G

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Re: A side hustle here?
« Reply #14 on: March 07, 2019, 03:12:05 PM »

And I am glad you did!
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