In most games i have played so far, making items and selling them at a profit makes you just that; a profit. In the cases of weaponsmiting, artifacting, and huntsman, i really found no such way to make a profit by making rare and exotic items. Why? Because the materials that go into the weapon + the 15% tax on the TP =/> the price of that weapon. (This is true for all the corrupted weps + rares) I can assume that armor crafting is the same way as well. Yes you could farm all the materials that go into that weapon and make it that way, but you could also just sell all those materials for the same amount of money and make a profit that way.
You could make rares and salvage them for Ectoes, but that is a gamble you may not win. (You could just place a 19s buy order on the creatable rares and salvage that way…its cheaper than actually crafting the item + you don’t need 375 crafting…hint hint) I’m not looking for a super fast way to make money, i am simply stating that 400 crafting is pretty much worthless aside from making legendary weps, and that basically the money/time/effort you put into getting a lv 400 crafting skill is really just for making the gifts for a legendary.
In most other games, all you get out of leveling crafting is the ability to craft materials for a profit. The up front costs of leveling crafting in the first place presents a barrier to entry that keeps crafts profitable.
In GW2, the fact that getting a 400 craft is worth 10 levels turns this on its head. Crafting is an incredibly popular way to level alts quickly, to essentially buy levels with gold. There isn’t nearly the barrier of entry on a high level crafting discipline, as it’s now just a side effect of leveling your characters.
There is money to be made off of crafting, but with essentially a negative up front cost to getting 400 crafting on a character, profits are inevitably going to take some work to acquire.