Sounds right, you're fielding 3-4 parties while fielding your own party with "pimped out gear" and you're expecting low maintenance and high profits? "send a party out on patrol, they should be a money making operation" it really shouldn't be, its a patrol you're paying for, not a raid.
Disband a party or 2 and your money will come rolling back in, sounds like you're just poorly handling your finances by over extending your coffers and blaming the game for not just giving you more money per month, there's got to be a balance where you can save up and splash out on max parties during war.
Edit: 150 a day per workshop isnt good
How are you supposed to mobilize all of your party capability if you can't afford to use them as a money making operation and you can't afford to keep troops for them in garrison? Just from a gameplay perspective, this sounds miserable. Every time my kingdom randomly declares war, I am supposed to drag around companions and recruit a party for them? That's tedious.
Call the workshop 250 per day then. It's still years of operation to make enough profit to afford a helmet. Something is out of balance.