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Buy the wood?

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Get your mind out of the gutter! There's a piece of spider wood on ebay I really like but I can't get past the price. $45 for an 17x11x11 piece of wood seems pretty steep to me. Is that too much to pay?
 

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I don't think so. I've been working on some great pieces of iron wood with dark red color for almost one year. It has to be dried, cleaned, debarked, sanded.....and I will then set it back in water to pull major amounts of tannins out before I sell it. I'm talking hours and hours of work to get a piece ready for the aquarium. So 45 is good for a small piece. I will be asking over 1000.00 dollars for a piece that will fit larger tanks. It is very big. About 2' x 2' ft hollowed out burled wood. Gorgeous.
 

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I guess it's worth it if you want to impress someone with your wood..
 
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You can get some great wood on here..some one a a few weeks back was having a good sale of buy 2 get one free big or small and cheaper prices..but that's just me I like pieces that I can put together or spread out and add different plants to them..it seems a little much for one
 

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Good materials are very hard to find. If you like it, buy it. That does not seem like an unreasonable price at all to me.

I am 99% sure "spider" or "Red moor" wood is some type of rhododendron/azalea root. The native rhododendron in GA look exactly like it.
 

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Hardscape is definitely worth the investment. It's not like it goes bad (unless you have behemoth plecos which have no place in a planted tank in the first place). That being said I feel most driftwood in American stores is extremely overpriced compared to what's widely available in Asia. If you have family or friends coming from Asian and they have spare space in their luggage see if they can go to the world-famous fish markets and bring back some nice pieces for you.
 

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I don't think so. I've been working on some great pieces of iron wood with dark red color for almost one year. It has to be dried, cleaned, debarked, sanded.....and I will then set it back in water to pull major amounts of tannins out before I sell it. I'm talking hours and hours of work to get a piece ready for the aquarium. So 45 is good for a small piece. I will be asking over 1000.00 dollars for a piece that will fit larger tanks. It is very big. About 2' x 2' ft hollowed out burled wood. Gorgeous.

I don't think most people realize the effort required to process wood. Takes a lot of time, elbow grease and electricity/gas.
 

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I live right near a stream and a Dam, So i just go and collect it. No way would i spend the money on Wood. UNLESS it was a piece that screamed at me. and the price would have to be very low.
 
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Wood price is like any other price. It really doesn't make much difference how much work or time it takes to get it ready. What matters most is how we each see the item. People set tanks out on the curb all the time because they don't like to clean them. It's all how the buyer and seller feel.
I have never bought a piece of wood so I would pay very little.
 

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I do feel like people pinching pennies does nothing to help the hobby as well. We all wonder why American aquascaping sucks compared to Asia and Europe, but people are trying to spend the least amount of money like it's a contest on who can be the cheapest. So why would a seller try to sell nicer big peaces when people only want cheap sticks? If that's all people buy, that's all they will sell.

I looked through hundreds of individual pieces of wood before setting up my tank. Couldn't find a single peace I liked. You should really snatch it up and if you decide you don't like it later, someone will buy it off of you if it is nice.
 

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I do feel like people pinching pennies does nothing to help the hobby as well. We all wonder why American aquascaping sucks compared to Asia and Europe, but people are trying to spend the least amount of money like it's a contest on who can be the cheapest. So why would a seller try to sell nicer big peaces when people only want cheap sticks? If that's all people buy, that's all they will sell.
I am sorry, but this is the most baseless malarky I've heard in a while. Aquascaping ability has virtually nothing to do with a persons willingness to empty their bank account buying up high end, expensive items. Furthermore, there is no reason to think that an average person in "Asia" or "Europe" is going to be any more willing to buy three letter branded gear, or exclusive hardscape materials that cost more per ounce than some of the most precious metals on earth.
I've seen plenty of amazing aquascapes in plain old black rimmed tanks running aquaclear filters, using hardscape materials and substrates that the individual found in their locality or bought at a landscaping supply for dirt cheap.

I would also counter that being over focused on high-end equipment and exclusive/expensive hardscaping materials has massively taken away from a focus on the proper composition of aquascapes with _plants_ and their husbandry. I think this has been far more of a hindrance to the hobby than penny pinching ever will be.
 

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I am sorry, but this is the most baseless malarky I've heard in a while. Aquascaping ability has virtually nothing to do with a persons willingness to empty their bank account buying up high end, expensive items. Furthermore, there is no reason to think that an average person in "Asia" or "Europe" is going to be any more willing to buy three letter branded gear, or exclusive hardscape materials that cost more per ounce than some of the most precious metals on earth.
I've seen plenty of amazing aquascapes in plain old black rimmed tanks running aquaclear filters, using hardscape materials and substrates that the individual found in their locality or bought at a landscaping supply for dirt cheap.

I would also counter that being over focused on high-end equipment and exclusive/expensive hardscaping materials has massively taken away from a focus on the proper composition of aquascapes with _plants_ and their husbandry. I think this has been far more of a hindrance to the hobby than penny pinching ever will be.

Hmm the only one talking about gear is you. I am talking about wood and rocks. But your are free to talk about that, too.

Lack of availability, too, is a problem. I think. I ordered a bunch of rocks from AFA and absolutely hate them, but it's not worth the time or effort or money to ship them back and have new ones sent and hope. They wouldn't send me any pictures and let me pick what I wanted. It seems like people in Asia have more access to materials to choose from. I ended up having to work with the materials I was supplied with, but I feel very "meh" about them.

If I was wanting stump-style driftwood, I would pay $150-$200 for the above wood, Akaliman. Looks pretty big, maybe 4x2. if I saw the ideal peace of wood I just HAD to have and I could afford to do so, I wouldn't worry about price. But I'm not a big driftwood person.
 

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Hmm the only one talking about gear is you. I am talking about wood and rocks. But your are free to talk about that, too.
I think you kind of missed my point. It's ok though because discussing it further doesn't really help the OP in any way.
Good hardscapes are always necessarily expensive.. we'll just go with that.
 

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its about 120cm long, 70cm tall, and about 60cm wide

i got it for free, picking it up by river banks.
but it took me 45 minutes flight and 2 hours boat ride (i travel to remote area for my job), from capital city (jakarta, that's where it may have demand for). And if you pay attention, those woods had been chopped up and glued back together in order for me to be able to bring back by plane.

if you want to sell it, you can't cut it. so you gonna have to put it in a crate, and cargo it.
so altho its free, the logistic is messy. if I were to sell it, no less than $200 for sure. But I won't sell it. I have been searching for woods that size for half a year.

thats the thing with this hobby... sometimes you can't put price on it.
if it's make you happy, buy it. like some one said it above
 

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its about 120cm long, 70cm tall, and about 60cm wide

i got it for free, picking it up by river banks.
but it took me 45 minutes flight and 2 hours boat ride (i travel to remote area for my job), from capital city (jakarta, that's where it may have demand for). And if you pay attention, those woods had been chopped up and glued back together in order for me to be able to bring back by plane.

if you want to sell it, you can't cut it. so you gonna have to put it in a crate, and cargo it.
so altho its free, the logistic is messy. if I were to sell it, no less than $200 for sure. But I won't sell it. I have been searching for woods that size for half a year.

thats the thing with this hobby... sometimes you can't put price on it.
if it's make you happy, buy it. like some one said it above
So you paid for a 45 minute flight, a 2 hour boat rental, and whatever it cost you to ship it back. Sounds like it was more likely around $300 just to acquire it, not counting the time you spent cleaning and prepping it. I would estimate the total value of transportation and work at $500 for that piece and that is giving no value to the wood itself. Final price should be sold for $600-750 imo to make a profit off it.

If you are buying wood for an aquarium there are a few things to consider.

1. How much time/effort does it take to prepare it? If it takes 10 hours to make it presentable then it is worth at least 10x your countries hourly minimum wage.

2. How much does it cost to ship it? Wood is typically heavy, oddly shaped and difficult to ship. A decent sized piece can cost $50+ just to ship.

3. There are also different kinds of wood. Some is rarer and more difficult to get than others. If you are just pulling sticks out of your local stream then you won't be selling them for much. If you are acquiring and cleaning up large pieces of spiderwood than those cost a lot.

4. Like aquariums, size and cost are not linear. Smaller size wood is pretty cheap, but once you get to bigger sizes the prices climbs exponentially.

5. Shape. There is an artistic factor to price as well. A random branch or a huge hunk of wood are just sort of blah and will have a price to match. A perfectly shaped trunk shaped piece with gnarled roots coming out of it will cost you for the aesthetic appeal.

In the 120g I am currently working on I spent ~$100 on the driftwood for half the tank. I expect to spend another $50-75 to finish off the hardscape.
 

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Im a sucker for manzanita....and the last 2 75Gs I have done I have spent probably around $120-150 on wood alone. My 56G column however has the most expensive wood....it was from a member here several years back who went out and hand collected me a piece to fit the tank perfectly for my island look...and cut it in half so it would fit and shipped it to me. I gladly paid $200 for it.
 
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