[Jim Lande is a friend of the Rhythm Bones Society. He taught a rhythm bones making workshop at Bones Fest XIII bringing in lots of tools from his workshop.]
I have a great deal of fun making bones, but I don’t actively market them. It has given me an excuse to buy and try all sorts of interesting woods. Last year I bought lifetime supplies (i.e. a big board each) of American Chestnut, Kentucky Coffee Wood, fiddle-figured maple, Persimmon, Ipe, etc. There is a box full of bones on sale at the Saturday jam and occasionally I’ll bring some to events such as Blues Week.
Altogether I probably sell a dozen pairs a year, the money all goes to the Archie Edwards Blues Heritage Foundation, a 503-C, which, like most non-profits, is always looking for money. Fortunately, the organization has other sources of funds. I have taught a couple bones making workshops at the shop, but so far, attendees tend to treat this as a do-it-once activity. Most people don’t like sanding.
I have not wanted to sell mail order for two principle reasons:
1) I don’t use wood shop techniques. I start with rough cut blanks — several different patterns, and bone widths anywhere from 3/4” to 2 1/4”. I am shaping them a little with wood gouges, but mostly with wood rasps.
2) My bones are relatively short because that tends to work better with the one – four grip that I favor. My bones are not symmetrical. The tops generally have more curve.