Estimating Dental Chairs

What Would you Charge?

What would you estimate this dental chair?

dental chairsHere is a copy of my estimate.  I'll be giving this estimate to the client in the next day or two, and wondered what you thought. This estimate is for Each Chair. When I go out, I will also change the Quantities to give them the total estimate on all the chairs. (This estimate also shows 5 round stools, which are not in the picture)

The Situation

The client has 5 dental chairs, which were reupholstered some years ago using a standard grade of foam, which is now pretty soft. I notice that the foam was just a flat piece of foam. When the vinyl cover was put on, the sides were pulled down, leaving the center raised up a little. Currently the seat foam is only about 3" to 3 1/2" thick at the top and then tapers down to about 2" at the bottom of the footrest. The current foam on the backrest and the headrest is about 2" thick. They want all the foam replaced. The upholstered pieces are just are just velcroed to the metal frame. They fit down in recessed areas and just pop out. (Although I didn't actually check how the arms were attached.)

The Problem

The problem that they are having is that some of the clients, at certain positions, start to slide down out of the chairs. One thing that I noticed, which they didn't mention, is that when I sat all the way back in the chair seat, I sat on the hinge (that connected the seat to the back.) The chairs frames are solidly connected to the floor, so the frames can't be brought into my shop.

My Proposal

I suggested that, when replacing the foam, the seat area be contoured so that his clients will sit in the dip (contoured area), which will hold them better in the chair. In addition to that, the side edges of the leg-rest area, and the backrest and head rest, could be raised up a little to help keep the better centered in the chair. I also suggest that we do one first. We'd make a prototype (cut,shape, and glue the foam in place) and then take it out to the dental office to have them sit on it. (Since I'm making a new shape in the foam, I would prefer to have one of the chair frames in my shop so that I could test it out as I shape it, so I can get the right shape, but since the chair frames can't be moved, I'll have to figure out some other way to test the right shape.) When I go out to have them test the shape of the foam, I could take a scrap of vinyl to put over it while they try it out. Their office is located about 2 miles from my office.

The Cover Design

When we determine that the shape of the foam is correct, then I would glue the center part of the vinyl to the foam so the vinyl would be connected to the foam. (I've done this with other doctors exam tables and it has worked great.). I'm also thinking about whether I should eliminate most of the welts (except on the arms) so the vinyl would wrap around better. There would be some seams at the ends, which would be shaped to fit. Any Thoughts? Is My estimate easily understandable? Am I charging enough? Am I leaving anything out? I've thought about writing a cover letter to go with it, but I've put so much work into making this estimate that I'm kind of burned out with it. I'm thinking about making an appointment with the dentist and explaining the estimate to him and his staff.

Best Wishes, Stephen From a message I posted here: Estimating Dental Chairs