Originally Posted by Mr B
You shouldn't be so dismissive. ;- ) Make it a pre-order item. If you can get x pre-orders, then your willing to make a small batch.
That would be a legal problem: If I'm taking an order and request a payment from the customer, I must ship - at least according to my terms and conditions as they are right now. Note that it involves substantial money to have the terms and conditions checked for compliance with German laws and EU directives.
I can get around this by not requesting a payment, but then I don't have a "signature" from the customer, so we don't have a contract. It would then be uncertain if the customer will buy it at the price and at the time when it'll be available. This would go back to me taking all the risk.
We're working on the PayPal module of the shop site right now. Appears like there are a number of different APIs, and at least one of them allows authorizing, but not actually executing a payment. This may be a way to implement something like "crowd funding" without paying huge amounts of money to the crowd funding platform. If anyone has experience with that PayPal function - hints are very welcome.
Edit: Just called PayPal, and they told me that the idea is not viable: Authorizations aren't guaranteed, and they last for 30 days only.