What motivates your gun-related expenditures?

What motivates your gun-related expenditures?

  • Need. I'm a minimalist and I buy only what I need for a specific purpose.

    Votes: 5 4.0%
  • Utility. I make select purchases that expand the functionality of what I already have.

    Votes: 40 32.0%
  • Exploration. I like to try new things: a new cartridge, a new platform, a new reloading tool, etc.

    Votes: 33 26.4%
  • Collecting. I enjoy the pride of ownership of lots of guns, with or without a theme.

    Votes: 28 22.4%
  • Addiction. I can't help myself; if it looks cool, I buy it.

    Votes: 19 15.2%

  • Total voters
  • Poll closed .
Interest. I have some, just because I wanted to know more about them. Some just for shooting, some just for looking at and some, I'm not real sure why I have them.
I marked "utility," as that has really been my primary reason for the past ... 15 years or so? With that said, I think I have everything I need. So now I've begun exploring more. The last 2-3 purchases I've made have all been things I wanted, but didn't necessarily need.
Motivates? I didn't vote any. None apply to me. Motivates? Reasons? Why? I don't buy guns for the same reasons most people buy guns today. I don't buy guns because they can kill. Enjoy, is about the only word that comes close, I guess.
I really appreciate the responses. Good, thoughtful, and sometimes humorous feedback. My question was somewhat motivated by my recent decision to start building out a stripped lower that's been sitting for a while. I can't really articulate what my original purchase was motivated by; I certainly didn't need a stripped lower, and it didn't really provide any utility. I don't collect guns, much less ARs. It will probably get built into a pistol, simply because I'm curious. So that's exploration.

Utility is my aspiration, though, and I really ought to do some downsizing and consolidating as I near retirement. And I'd like to lose 15 pounds ...

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I opted "utility" as it's the primary factor in most of my purchases. For example, I have at least one duplicate of each of my regular carry pistols, and anywhere from five to fifteen magazines for every auto pistol I own. My hunting and defensive rifles, same (well, probably have over 50 AR mags). Have different optics for each AR, i.e., EOTech HWS, ACOG, LPVO. Purpose built bags and cases for each firearm for any possible use/situation (range, hunting, camping, bug-out, etc.). Keep parts on hand for each pistol I own, order parts kits at least a couple times a year.

Lately I've tailored expenditures based on the possibility of having to evacuate my property quickly due to the anticipated 9.0 plus earthquake up here and potential tsunami or other catastrophic event. Unlikely, but I want to be prepared. So rigging vehicles, bikes and boat for such.

But, I could've voted "collector" as well. For some reason, I keep accumulating old Colt and S&W revolvers as well as the odd 1911 here and then, none of which I "need" at all. Just like 'em.
Frankly, Because she knows that one day we can develop a physical discomfort which —would— prevent travel,

…she spends money on Extra Travel which prevents me from buying a Huge heap of .308 ammo plus a cool CETME L (.223) by excellent manufacturer Marcolmar.

This would prevent needing a “strict ammo diet” during the next panic — more fun.
Almost always exploration. Every gun I have purchased has a different reason/goal for purchasing. Lately, I've been spending too much on upgrades. Decided I need to turn my Mark IV into some sort of competition gun :). I put the smily because I don't really do much competing. New optic and mount, new trigger and internals. But I'm really just exploring and discovering new things.
It varied depending on my circumstances.

Early on in my youth (1985-1990) I was a minimalist, mainly because I had a minimal amount of money.

During the 1990-2010’s, for many years I was mainly buying limited stuff for work or work-related purposes.

Near the end of my career I had the resources to buy a boatload of firearms, primarily handguns, to bolster my collection and fill niches that I wanted to fill.

Now, I will buy maaaaaybe one or two a year, as I am pretty much set. :thumbup:

Stay safe.
Utility for a few, collecting for most of the rest. I have 'social' guns, for antisocial people, and a nice group of guns I have wanted for a long time and can afford more than I could when younger and raising kids.
Since I was high school age I've enjoyed shooting, and collecting guns. Back in high school I worked 7 days a week after school, and weekends, and most of my pay went to my cars, or more guns. Not sure why I got into collecting as it wasn't anything my dad did? But I just always loved old guns and old cars, and both still eat up disposable cash today.
With a small budget I collected little Remington Model 12 .22 pumps then as they could be bought for $50-$100 in nice shape. As I got older, and income increased my interests changed, and I gradually moved up to more expensive firearms, but still old guns. I shoot all of my collection, so I am not just collecting, but making ammo for odd obsolete cartridges so I can shoot my old 1800's rifles and handguns.
Fun and coolness: but little to do with current fashions: only guns with character (no tactical accessories/ no scopes). Interests kept changing, being a late-bloomer with guns. Some things we say actually are in a literal sense .

Most selling was only to allow much quicker acquisition of cash to buy a different type.

But with my final interest primarily consisting of (NATO) Battle Rifles, handguns No longer interest me except as a very secondary variety.
They never seemed as cool as rifles.
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A better question might be "What limits your gun related expenditures"?

Of course, the answer to that is as always


I could hit the Powerball tomorrow I don't think she'd let me go crazy.

I haven't bought a new gun in several years. I think the money is better spent on consumables such as ammunition and magazines and really, I think I've reached a point where I have more magazines than I will ever actually need. So the gun budget goes to ammunition.
I don't think I fit neatly into any of those categories. The vast majority of my expenditures over the last year have been for reloading components and equipment. As I have posted in other threads, last winter/spring I inherited an array of reloading components and dies, which conveniently allowed me to get started in the activity, which otherwise I would have found prohibitively expensive, given the cost of components nowadays. Even with what I received (which was considerable, and very welcome), I've still spent probably $1000 on more stuff this year.

For me reloading is not a hobby. I view it as more of a survival skill, a way to cope with spiraling ammunition costs, periodic shortages, and the looming interventions of tyrants.
Somehow I never joined the common mindset of "needing" lots of magazines.

I had no delusion they of ever fighting in a new version of even a “small Alamo”. A thousand movies are still just movies, but they “condition” people…
Good gosh- west TN has nothing to do with eastern Ukraine, not since the Battle of Shiloh in 1864.
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Over the years, a bit of everything has motivated me.

For rabbit hunting, it's shotgun for me. So I classify that as "need". Same for a .22 for squirrel/varmint hunting.

Then there's self-defense and collecting ("collecting" does not mean "safe queen"...it means "something I've always wanted for some reason other").

Stocking in times of plenty for times of not-so-plenty.
None of the above. None comes close to what "motivates" a true gun enthusiasts. Amateurs maybe. But not real enthusiasts.
Maybe because there is no complete explanation.