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Is the shooting experience being priced into Elitism?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by valnar, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. valnar

    valnar Senior Member

    Apr 9, 2003
    I'll admit this is a very strange thread for me to create, but it has been crossing my mind lately.

    Are guns and shooting become an "Elite" pastime? With the price of ammo going up considerably, it's pricing itself out of the mainstream for many people. Sure, we either reload, shoot less or just flat out spend more money to keep up with the times, but usually when a hobby becomes expensive, it becomes a badge of honor for rich people.

    Harley motorcycles are a perfect example. Once the passion of common, blue-collar men, you now find yuppies joining the crowd since they are apt to afford a $30,000 motorcycle. Of course, we've always had the high-end clay shooting shotgun crowd, and they will continue to afford that luxury into the near future. But maybe it's more than that now.

    Now, my personal opinion....over the last few years of reading various gun forums, I've seen a few more posts about people buying high-end bolt guns, like Sako or Cooper because, well....the price of ammo is so expensive, that the price of a quality gun pales in comparison. Why run expensive ammo through a cheap gun, right?

    These are just my thoughts and opinion, and I wanted to put them to paper. Anybody else feel this is happening?
  2. Murphy4570

    Murphy4570 Member

    Oct 14, 2010
    I just shot 4 guns for over 2 hours at the range today, probably spent less than $80 in ammo amongst the four. Shot a LOT of ammo!

    Cheap ammo and cheap guns are out there, you just have to look around.
  3. bigfatdave

    bigfatdave Senior Member

    Jul 13, 2008
    Near Camp Perry
    I've thought the same thing, the money I spend on guns and ammo would be a much bigger dent in the budget if I didn't have a pretty good job, pay-wise.

    If the trend continues, even basic self-defense guns will become too expensive for an honest working person starting out. I suppose there is a segment of the political spectrum that would be delighted to have guns too expensive for po' folks, the same segment that passed "Jim Crow" laws and "may issue" CC permitting. (I'm not implying a conspiracy, just pointing out that guns were kept from the underclass in the past on purpose)
  4. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Senior Member

    Feb 6, 2007
    I can still afford to shoot quite a bit cause I reload........but even that has gotten outta hand lately.
  5. El Mariachi

    El Mariachi Member

    May 3, 2011
    So Cal & Baja
    After spending almost a quarter mil on a 55 foot sailboat, living aboard for 3 years then taking it down to Mexico for another two, plus all of the moorage fees & repair & maintenance bills before finally selling it and breathing a huge sigh of relief? Trust me, I almost feel like I'm getting paid to collect & shoot guns.......:D
  6. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Senior Member

    Jul 30, 2006
    Johnson City, TN
    Ammunition has certainly gone up from the 1990s and early 2000s, but I think it costs less, adjusted for inflation, than in the 1970s and 1980s.
  7. wally

    wally Senior Member

    Jan 2, 2004
    Houston, Tx
    Check out old sporting magazines from the 1950s & 60s "surplus" $45 ACP was like $25/100, you could buy a decent new car for $2000-3000 back then.
  8. nyrifleman

    nyrifleman Member

    Apr 2, 2010
    Chenango County, NY
    I don't think the price of guns is increasing at all. I would say that it remains pretty stable. You can have a good modern gun for $200-300 (I'm thinking a pump-action shotgun, basic rifle or basic handgun). Adjusted for inflation, I bet that's what the introductory price has been throughout the years.

    Things like "assault weapons" tend to fluctuate in price due more to the political environment than actual cost of manufacturing.

    Ammo prices are a different thing entirely. The high ammo prices are due mostly to the high cost of raw materials and high cost of energy (remember, it's gasoline that gets the copper from the mine to the refinery, from the refinery to the wholesaler, to the distributor, to the ammo plant, to the gun store) and it'll take some good old technological innovation to resolve that issue.

    But it's not like the price of energy and raw materials isn't affecting everything else as well.
  9. macadore

    macadore Member

    Jun 21, 2007
    San Antonio
    I bought a lot of ammo when it was cheap. Still shooting it. I also shoot surplus 7.62x54r and 5.54x39. They're corrosive, but cleaning the barrel is cheaper and faster than reloading. Nagants are a hoot. They're long enough that I can actually see the sights without glasses. That means I can also see the target.

    I used to reload and enjoyed it. My house got overwhelmed (elderly relatives) so I had to put up my equipment. That's changed so I'm going to get back into it.
  10. ApacheCoTodd

    ApacheCoTodd Senior Member

    Jun 30, 2011
    I think in my case it is no more expensive to shoot than it has ever been in a general round for round way, especially when - as stated above - adjusted for inflation.

    Further, as I grow older I buy better ammunition, components and firearms and in fact fire less rounds per hour of shooting.

    I have found myself enjoying the greater returns from quality items and well timed and analyzed shooting over my days of shooting whatever I could afford - as much as I could.

    Additionally - a couple of quick glances along the firing line and around the parking lot at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility last week showed no signs of a move towards elitism though I certainly do understand the initial question on the OP's post.
  11. moxie

    moxie Senior Member

    Dec 30, 2002
    Erath Co., TX
    Silly thread. Smacks of "class warfare." In 1989, Blazer 230 gr. ammo was $12.00 for a box of 50 at Sports Authority in Fort Worth. It was a decent deal. It's available at Natchez today for $14.99. All things considered, $14.99 today is a better value. Yes, reloading components have gone up. But they still allow the prudent reloader to shoot for a lot less than factory. You've got to look around for the good deals.
  12. Jeff H

    Jeff H Senior Member

    Sep 14, 2009
    Actually, it is diesel but that doesn't make your point less valid. Energy costs are a huge factor as well as the scrap metal market. Have you seen what scrap lead and copper go for at the local recycler?
  13. Walther P99

    Walther P99 Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    San Antonio, TX
    Seems like everything in the USA is getting more expensive with quality decreasing. After all, have to pay for the executive bonuses somehow..
  14. nosmr2

    nosmr2 Member

    Jan 26, 2010
    I don't think an interest in firearms is more expensive than most hobbies. Have you priced a round of golf lately? I quit playing golf when it hit $30/round. That doesn't take into account the golf balls I would lose over the course of 18 holes. Not to mention the $130 driver and $300 set of irons (those are cheap compared to most) that you need. And if you are gonna golf you need beer, and you can't bring your own so add another $4 a beer. And when you get tired of golfing your kids or grandkids don't really care to inherit old clubs and they just aren't worth much. My guns will be around forever. They won't maintain the price I paid for them, but they will always be worth more than some old golf clubs and a bag. Not trying to rag on golf here, just the first example I thought of.
    Hell, bowling has gotten crazy expensive at the lanes nowadays. I guess everything cost more, but better than sitting on my ass in front of the TV.

    I reload now to save money and shoot my 22s more often than I used to, thanks to a serious cut in pay, but I still enjoy it.
  15. Kingofthehill

    Kingofthehill Senior Member

    Jun 25, 2009
    i love shooting of all types but i find myself shooting less and when i do its my .22's

    its getting expensive to shoot my beloved 1911's.

  16. jim243

    jim243 Senior Member

    Sep 11, 2009
    I know I'm getting old when read stuff like this. Now country club memberships ($10,000)are Elite not range memberships ($100.00), Now $350.00 for a single golf club (driver) is Elite not 22LR rifle for $150.00. What's the cost of golf balls $3.75 each or a dozen for $34.95, last time I looked 550 rounds of 22lr was about $18.95. What's a round (9 holes) of golf $35.00 or more, range fee last time I went was $10.00 for all day.

    The problem is todays kids, yes if your under 45 years you are one of my kids, you are all spoilied. Back in the 1930's and 40's most people shot 12 gauge or 22 LR, basicly hunters shot the large bore centerfire rifles and then only maybe 10 or 15 rounds per year. Some would compete but only a very few. Today shooting is a sport (and here I though it was for feeding the family).

    Yes, it costs me $80.00 in ammo each time I go to the range (I reload) but I would rather do that than spend another $250.00 on a new fishing rod and reel.

    But that's just me.
  17. shootniron

    shootniron Member

    Jan 29, 2012
    Shooting and guns have always been expensive. As a matter of fact, I am not sure that we are not in one of the best times ever for it. If ammo cost is pulling you down, try reloading...it makes a lot of difference in the amount that you can shoot for the same amount of money.
  18. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Senior Member

    Jun 11, 2005
    I think buying and shooting firearms has always been fairly expensive. When 38spl ammo hit $10 a box and 357 mag ammo $12, I was thinking I needed to cut back. That is a while back. :D

    Firearms are probably cheaper today than 50 years ago relative to what you earn. Ammunition has been creeping up in baby steps, then back, then up again.... just like gasoline, but it seldom goes back to the price it was before when it goes on sale.

    For myself, I shoot more 22LR these days and enjoy it. I buy better 22 rifles and handguns because I like good looking firearms that shoot good. I keep a supply of centerfire handgun ammo, but not as much as 22LR. Other than 223, I keep a couple boxes of centerfire ammo to hunt with and it last years per box. Shoot in August.... check scope... yep its still on. Ready for hunting season for normal ranges. But honestly, I shifted to deer hunting with a handgun exclusively unless I am hunting fields. Even then, I still lean toward the handgun; just can't take as long a shot and it doesn't particularly bother me if I have to pass up a shot.
  19. sugarmaker

    sugarmaker Member

    Jan 24, 2010
    Load, cast boolits, scrounge brass, buy good non-collector grade used guns, shoot an AR-15. Shooting cast 357's with 5-7 grains bullseye costs about 3 cents a round with scrounged brass. I shoot more $$ stuff now but when I was 12 and shot a 357 blackhawk many decades ago that's how I did it, two hours of lawn mowing back then equated to 300 rounds. My guess is that hasn't changed that much.
  20. gbran

    gbran Senior Member

    Jan 21, 2003
    Pretty quick we'll be faced with $5 gasoline to get to the range with.

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