As a low volume novice home shop machinist (calling myself a machinist is really a stretch at this point) I have been buying my materials at a couple of online metal suppliers who offer good prices and good service.
Today I was shocked at the price differential between two particular suppliers (didn't mention names because I'm not sure if its ok).
I priced a piece of 1018 crs 1" X 6" by 2 feet long. The supplier who has historically had the lowest prices who I usually go to first wants $127.50 + shipping. My intuition told me that was extremely high. So I went to another supplier I have also used with good luck albeit their prices are usually 15-20% higher, and they wanted $56.01 for the same piece of steel. So I figured there must be an error with the first suppliers online prices and decided to call and ask them. The person I spoke with in sales checked and said there's no error, the right price is $127.50. I told them it didn't make sense and I'd keep looking.
Has anyone else found this kind of disparity in metal prices recently?
I may have to find a cheaper hobby.