Running costs of cat. H

Someone actually asked me about some running costs, that forced me to guesstimate, so I thought I’d share it here.

Running costs of Cat H, assuming you reload. I am estimating on reasonable bases and averages. I also know that a couple of people I spoke/see arrived on freakishly similar estimates. I am going to do this based on 9mm, but it all balances out in the end.


  1. Doesn’t matter how strong your brass goblin foo is, you will get 5% - 10% brass attrition.
  2. Something I do, up to you how you manage your estimates, but I consider all cases essentially free (paid off) after I have shot them once. I don’t bother with depreciating bullshit and what not.

So, some reasonable purchase costs for non-commercial qualities of components.

Pew components Price
Primers $60/1000 (could be a lot less in bulk, but $60 is a good median)
Cases $230/2400 (give or take)
Bullets $60.5/500
Powder $55/500gm (could be less in bulk)

6c per primer
9c per case
12c per bullet
2c per 3.3gr charge

So we have 30c per cartridge. Or we have 21c per cartridge after you reload again.

shoots per week shoots per month rounds per shoot rounds per month 12 month with case no case
2 8 100 800 9600 $2,890.25 $1,970.25
2 8 150 1200 14400 $4,335.38 $2,955.38
2 8 200 1600 19200 $5,780.51 $3,940.51

Typically, I’d say 200 rounds per week is realistic, be it one visit and you make the most of it or a few visits where you don’t consume as much. I’d also say that if you are into shooting and like your club, you’ll be there a lot. So say 2 shoots per week on average. Some weeks none, some weeks heaps.

And here we have it, to help you estimate 9,600 rounds per year per person at circa $2900. Or $2000 on conservative side.

Where did 200 come from?

Most competitions with the exception of very few are around 50 rounds. Shooting comps and checking your skills against others is awesome. So there’s 50 rounds there. Competitions are rapid, so bam, bam bam and you’re done. I typically like to send a few more after or before a comp. That’s another 50. And that’s your 100 rounds per shoot.

The ‘with the exception’ are comps like IPSC and ICOR (maybe others, I don’t shoot others), where you are expanding a lot more ammo, but over longer period of time, so just basing it on me, not really in the mood to shoot more after that. So 100 is a good ballpark. Of course if this is the only day you are shooting, you may want to double that number.

There’s some insightful numbers there but honestly, I don’t shoot twice a week and I don’t know many people who do - twice a month on a good month perhaps, especially at the moment.

It’d be interesting to run the numbers for 50 rounds x once per month and get a more realistic idea of what someone who’s not always at the range would be spending, IMO.

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Data is above, just swap out 800 for 50 :slight_smile:
50 * 0.30 * 12 = 180
50 * 0.21 * 12 = 126

Horses for courses I suppose. And now with lockdown, I am certainly not going anywhere.

That said, pretty much all comp days I shoot on (I actually shoot on more days with open access), I see the same bunch of people, shooting the same amount of time. People who shoot IPSC which are most of the newcomers these days, at least around here, will shoot a lot, purely from match consumption. Say you run a course, 5 mags, and you do it twice in a comp, that’s already 100. Plus training to draw and rapid fire. In terms of realistic data, I’d lean to numbers above more so than a box of ammo a month for new shooters. And then purely from point of view of ‘getting it out of the system’ for a year or so. Could go down, could go up, could just give up and exit the sport entirely, but I’d say starting numbers, for new shooter, ooof they’d be up there :slight_smile:

For me, leaving so close to the range certainly doesn’t help lol

btw @MaxJon would love to see your bullet swaging setup :slight_smile:

Dont forget the licensing and permits are almost twice the price of cat A&B…and the declaration of independance every time you wanna have a shoot. @juststarting yeah yeah I will get there…

That was one of the factors that led me to suggest @juststarting’s figures might not be broadly representative. Pretty much everyone I know with an SO gets the “Where do you think you’re going?” thing if they go to the range too often.

Of course, there’s heaps of different ways to participate in sports and the IPSC shooters do go through a lot of ammo - I know a couple and their figures match with JS - but for other shooters it also depends how often their local range runs matches and individual courses of fire.

It’s still interesting to see some dollar figures attached to the costs, though!

Yes, licence costs, club membership, gun ownership and maintenance costs, holsters, rigs, pouches, (reloading kit?), all that aside, just thought I would focus on ammo, but absolutely those are not cheap toys.

What is this “declaration of independence”? I really should have accounted for that! But no, no, I like sane logical things. Is it something specific to some clubs? Of course there are inconsistencies across clubs and states! Bah! Sad. Why would I even pretend to think that it’s all similar and sane.

In my experience, if you are not licenced, yes, heaps of paperwork (NORI) to take a guest to the range. But if you are licenced, it’s just a sign-in, at least across a couple of clubs I have been a member of and I strongly suspect all VAPA member clubs, could be wrong. In my current club anyway; last club, membership card just got scanned. Only paperwork is for NORIs for unlicensed guests, as a recurring thing, unless I am wrong or misunderstood.

SO like significant other? Well, that’s nothing to do with shooting… My wife has her hobbies, I have mine. That’s a relationship dynamic thing. If someone is that controlling or needy, well, there are other issues outside of shooting sports lol.

That’s a big one, I should have called it out. I’ve been lucky, clubs I was/is a member off, it’s almost daily and rolling throughout the day. But I have heard that there are clubs that only have a single time slot during very limited days and with VERY limited disciplines. I joined a club like that at first (limited disciplines) - never again (I’d seriously consider quitting the sport all together if that was the case again).

I am beginning to think I shoot too much. Is there such thing? Maybe you lot don’t shoot enough :slight_smile:

Well I definitely don’t shoot enough…

It’s still something that needs to be factored in as to whether or not someone can get to the range as often as they’d like. Someone who’s single or has an understanding partner can still get to the range more often than someone with kids or a needy partner.

I don’t think there’s such a thing as shooting too much, though - I’d like to get to the range more but twice a week is pushing it for me.

Well, this is a tangent I am not exploring lol

backs away slowly

LOL, Just do what I did, get her involved as well, She actually owns more cat H firearms than me (only by 1) That way they don’t complain and as @juststarting said it is part of the relationship and you showing interest in her hobbies and vice vicer leads to a happy life.

We are lucky over here as the cost of your license does not change if you a cat A, B or H, one price covers all. My figures are close to what @juststarting has posted but we shoot a lot more rounds as I reload for 3 of us and we shoot nearly every weekend and practice during the week.