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STI DVC-3Gun (courtesy

Over on our post STI Guns: What Sales Slump? TTAG commentator Bob spied the Texas company’s DVC 3-Gun and remarked “I have no idea of how to convince the wife that I need a $3k handgun. The words don’t exist in any language I know. That’s what TTAG needs to do an article on.” Jeff the Griz had a recommendation: “Every time you visit the ATM take out an extra $20, hide it until you have 140 of them hidden away (important to remember where they are). Then use the credit card for the last $200+, tell her you got a hell of a deal on it!” Any other advice for our man Bob?

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    • My wife knows about TTAG, I never thought my joke would make question of the day. Yes, my wife also knows about the purchases I make.

      • Well i can do one better than your joke. I have a separate slush fund account that i syphon off $100 from every paycheck. Been doing it for years. The little wife knows about it and i pretty much can do what ever i please with it. And she can say nada. I want a PS4. I buy a PS4. If i want a $3K gun, i buy a $3K gun.

    • If she complains I just let her go without it for a couple of days, she always comes around…

  1. Fundamental solution: Make enough that she doesnt care about 3k anymore

    Strategical solution: not letting her know entirely about you finances right from day 1

    Tactical solution: buy the gun and beg for mercy. Just careful dont screw up the priorities

    • Or do what i did and syphon off X amount every paycheck and tell the little lady that its your fun money. Doing that instantly reduced the stress over money in my house. Before that, i never saw any of the money i was making.

  2. That’s easy: I don’t. Oh sure, she’ll “let” me buy it if I want to. The real “cost” comes when _she_ wants to buy something.

  3. Give her a few bucks and tell her to buy herself something pretty. Or take her on a closet tour of her shoes — and what is it with women and shoes? Or should I say Choos?

    Then go buy any gun that you can afford.

  4. Nobody outside the military “needs” a $3K gun. Want of course. Need? Just NO. Yeah, yeah, you say for competition. Still NO. Want.

    • If you have to get a 1911/2011 because of whatever reason, you NEED above 2k to get a *relatively* reliable action

      • My $500 RIA 1911 has been flawless in several hundred rounds and it is also very accurate. If you’re paying $2,000, you are seeking bragging rights and/or pretty.

        • You got lucky with those.

          Been shooting 1911 since 8 and i still compete with them. To me it’s 1911 for everything, Glock for EDC/HD/SHTF

          Reliable 1911s these days are either expensive and done right, or accidentally done right

          And there are plenty that are expensive and not done right

        • My $350 RIA has around 1500 rounds, totally reliable. Not one malfunction (other than user). Use Shooting Star magazines and have a Dawson Precision fiber front sight.

        • I have a 5″ Para Expert, and after the rebate it was about $550. I’ve sent it back to them to address a feeding issue, and I’ve had to replace the grip safety with a Wilson Combat piece. I still don’t have $600 in it and I enjoy shooting it quite a lot. However, I don’t even try to run cheaper ammo or aluminum case stuff in it, and beyond that it doesn’t really like hollow points.

          At a later date I might try to make it better as a project gun, but for now it’s solely used on the range when I feel like a .45. I would certainly never trust it for a carry gun as it currently stands.

          Ultimately I still enjoy shooting it and I plan to keep it around. But I bought it with realistic expectations.

          • My RIA tactical was just under $500. I shoot the cheapest stuff I can find, including aluminum and reloads, and it has not missed a beat. I took it home, cleaned it and oiled it. I have done nothing else and it has been flawless.

        • My 4″ Kimber was very unreliable until I put in Wolff springs at about 1400 rounds. Hasn’t missed a beat since. I don’t know about aluminum or Tula ammo, since I don’t buy it, but it eats whatever else I feed it.

        • BS. The Springfield MILSPEC is as reliable as a 1911 can get. It runs about $700.

      • If you have to get a 1911/2011 because of whatever reason

        I would maintain that this, too is a want, not a “have to” or a “need”

    • You know what’s weird? Every Wilson Combat, STI, and modified high end 1911 has been more accurate than any Ruger or RIA 1911. They’ve got better components, too. In other weird news, the Tesla P90D I test drove was also nicer and faster than any Saturn or Daewoo I’ve driven.

      I like cheap guns that work. That’s why I own Glocks, a basic AR-15, and a basic AR-10, etc. And I like expensive guns that are more accurate and work better. If you never shot a Wilson or STI, I highly recommend it. Heck, even the slide on a Wilson Combat 92 FS is much smoother than the stock Beretta.

      • The Tesla P90D is a totally different car than the Saturn or Daewoo. Now take a Saturn, fix everything on it. Reupholster the interior, tune the engine until it sings and then do a $20,000 paint job and that is a high end 1911

  5. Here’s an idea: don’t hide things from your wife. Especially things that are just for you. It can do subtle damage to a relationship that is built on trust. Now obviously I don’t mean never surprise your wife with cool things, but that’s not the context here.

    My wife knows when I’m about to purchase a new gun. She doesn’t really care to talk about them but I mention it to her. I make sure to keep “my” money (anything earned outside the regular paycheck/monthly budget) separate so that I know I’m not spending my family’s money on a personal purchase that I don’t “need” (since I’ve already got enough to defend us properly). And I make sure she does the same thing, so that any extra money she makes she can use on expensive purses or shoes and not feel guilty about it.

    That works well for us, I always like to advocate for honesty.

    • Unless a man goes completely nuts binge buying guns and screwing up family prioritis, buying things for himself is very, very low on the she-will-seriously-hate-you list.

      She’s more pissed at seeing you talking with a female coworker alone at a table (especially dinner table but lunch will do, just make sure it’s not breakfast), than finding out about your secret Glock collection

    • +1000 to this.

      Stop being a selfish turd, be a man, and take care of your family by investing in them financially and relationally first. If your hobby is impacting your budget to a point that it is stressing your marriage then find a new hobby or scale down. Nothing is worth sacrificing your family relationships. If you are afraid to ask then that is a red flag that you don’t need it in the first place. Otherwise communicate clearly about the purchase and begin a savings for it and create some kind of rewards system for yourself to put money towards it.

  6. Just save up and buy what you want or sell some to buy others. That’s what I do. My wife knows not to complain because we both have a fun money budget each month.

  7. I would have a harder time convincing myself than I would my wife. I have a Kia and not a Rolls Royce. I have a RIA 1911 and not a high dollar 1911.

    • I dipped my little toe into the 1911 pond with the SR1911. Now that it’s broke in it seems a very fine shooter at a very reasonable price.

    • The funny part is the Rolls is a totally different car. A high end 1911 is more akin to Miata with a blue printed engine, coilovers and a $50000 paint job

      • Not really. Both the Kia and Rolls will accomplish the exact same objective – getting you from point A to point B. In that respect they are no more different than a cheap 1911 and an expensive one.

        Sure, you can argue that the bill of materials for the cheap 1911 and the expensive one both have the exact same parts whereas the kia and the rolls obviously have different components.

        The fact is however that the quality of the materials can make a difference. A better comparison might be a bespoke (custom) suit versus the Men’s Warehouse Special. Anyone who owns a really nice custom tailored suit will tell you that they last a lot longer than the cheaper varieties. Again, they may have the exact same parts (two arms, torso, buttons, etc.) but the quality of the parts provides two very different experiences.

        If you only wear a suit to weddings and funerals, then by all means, the Men’s warehouse one will last a long time. On the other hand, if you wear your suit daily, you will appreciate the difference if you can afford it.

        Same thing with a high end gun versus an off the rack model. The high end gun will function better and will be more accurate. If you don’t believe it, then please show me one major competitor who shoots with an off the rack 1911. For us mere mortals who will never been as good as the Jesse Duffs of the world, the better quality gun will raise our game as well.

        I have shot the Wilson Combat side by side with a Springfield Armory TRP and the Wilson’s groups are definitely tighter by a good margin. And that’s comparing a $3,000 gun to a $1600 one. I shudder to think how a $500 unmodified 1911 would play.

        One last thing – your Para Ordinace will be worth maybe 80% of what you paid for it when you sell it (if you are lucky) and he resale market is glutted with low end 1911’s. High end guns can be sold fairly quickly and will command a higher percentage of their initial price, so thy are more able to be thought of as investments than lower end guns can be.

        • What you are experiencing the is the “tune” of the gun. And that is what you are paying for. The difference between a well set up Miata and something off the showroom floor will amaze you. But is doesn’t turn it into a 911. No matter how much you tune a 1911, it will not turn it into anything other than a 1911. As long as you have good sites, a good crown and and a trigger you can’t anticipate you will be amazed how good any 1911 is.

        • If you are a serious competitive shooter the increased cost of a Wilson Combat is buying you something but it buys you very little if you are using it for protection. Reducing your group size at 25 yards means nothing when your target is center mass at the range where DGUs take place.

      • Before I retired I bought a Honda S2000 and told my wife I would work until it was paid off. I retired a year later and never looked back. My wife is afraid to drive it even though she has a perfect driving record. My wife enjoys my happiness driving my roadster, so maybe your wife will appreciate your enjoyment of a fine firearm. Have her shoot it after shooting a less enjoyable firearm and go from there.

  8. If you’ve got enough disposable income to drop $3 grand on a pretty pistol (or a race gun) you probably don’t have a lot of problems convincing your wife of much of anything. Or you could convince her that she could also be replaced by an expensive trophy wife – depending on the terms of your pre-nup.

  9. My wife makes significantly more than me. I do okay but we keep our finances separate. She pays the mortgage, I pay all the other bills. I don’t tell her what she can and cannot buy, nor does she me. It’s worked out okay. (Though I told her to buy the Cadillac over the Lincoln, did she listen…nooo.)

    When I bought my Dan Wesson I sold an old PT-92 to reduce the cost. It all works out.

  10. The better question is: how would I convince myself to part with $3k for a gun? If I could convince myself, she would probably go along.

  11. This works both ways when both spouses are shooters. The answer is or argument is as to why you absolutely need two.

    • Tell me, as a woman, would you have been fine with a nice pistol instead of a diamond engagement ring? 🙂

      (The old killing two birds analogy)

  12. $3000? I could never justify that. Honestly I came at this gun thing late in life and really just look at ’em as tools. Fun deadly tools…

  13. Nope that Dude pretty much covered it. I am not actively taking money out of the account but gift moneys go directly into an r2d2 bank for a scar purchase someday. Probably. I may blow it all on a diy ar first, ha!

    • Absolutely not. When, or if by this point, I ever do get that Python you can be absolutely sure I’m going to do everything in my power to test it’s endurance limits. Art my arse. Oh yeah, I’ll keep it pretty, but it ain’t no wall hanger to be ogled and ahhed at, it’s a gun and a guns gotta do what a guns gotta do.

  14. My wife has a Louisville Slugger. Conversation over. I’ve been wanting to buy a 6″ blued Python for years now at about the same cost. Years…
    And my 4″ blued Diamondback sits lonely in the corner, years…

  15. Every few years or so, when doing spring cleaning, we update our homeowners file of expensive things. Jewelry, Gold, Silver, Firearms, etc. This weekend we did the firearms update, oops. Bad idea. On guns and gear not including ammo, well, my collection, and yes, it’s MY collection so she clearly states, grew by $15K. Oops. Not getting that Python this year…
    I’m starting to think it’s an obsession.
    Or not.

  16. Tell her that you spent the money on hookers and blow. Just before she grabs the knife to cut off snoopy, fess up and tell her about the gun. She’ll be relieved and then hit you a few times then it’s over. 🙂

  17. First commenter was spot on.

    1- earn enough so $3k or $6k is not an issue

    2 – keep her happy, prioritize taking care of her. Buy her what SHE wants.

    3 – buy what you want – you earn it. Don’t discuss the cost.

    Permission???? I don’t need no stinking permission!

  18. Another tactic is when you buy something using the debit card, hit yes whenever it asks if you want cash back. Stash those 10’s and 20’s till you have enough.

    • 20 bucks for every ATM visit is known as “folding money” in my circle – as in fold it up and tuck it behind your driver’s license. I’m pretty sure this is written down as a man law somewhere…

  19. Some free unsolicited marital advice; SEPARATE BANK ACCOUNTS. Your money, hsr money. End of argument.

  20. Honestly, if you’re spending more than 2K on a gun, that doesn’t have a giggle switch, you’re doing it wrong.

    • Spoken like someone who has never had serious trigger time behind a $2K+ gun. Shooting it once or twice doesn’t count. If you have the money, it’s no different than any other high quality purchase. And itvwill hold its value better than many.

      ‘Nother thing – if you want a giggle switch plan to spend north of $4K for entry level crap guns like Ingram M-10s. Quality guns will cost a lot more.

      • Spoken like a true idiot. I full well know how much full auto weapons cost, that’s the point of my statement you retard. Clearly reading isn’t a strong suit of yours so I don’t know how you make that kind of cash. But You go ahead and blow all your money on some fine tuned polished knob, I’ll keep laughing at you. You’re being taken for you’re money and your proud of it.

  21. Depends on what % of your discretionary income is represented by $3000. When I want a new gun it usually represents a material portion of our discretionary income. So I talk to my wife about what it will cost and we talk about what else we might want to spend the money on or if there is something she was planning on in a similar time frame to when I was thinking of buying a gun. Generally though, we don’t ask questions about what we each spend money on beyond that. As men, guns can kind of become the “other woman” so I have found that more than anything it is more about how I go about shopping for a new gun (i.e. Not spending days and nights on end searching or hours at a time obsessing over YouTube videos and gun reviews or disappearing for an afternoon at the local gun store) or how I enjoy it once I get it, (i.e. Not leaving for several hours ever single Saturday or Sunday to go to the range) rather than the dollar amount spent on the purchase. We are both pretty disciplined financially so we can afford to splurge (maybe not a $3000 race gun splurge) from time to time and usually don’t have an issue picking up the slack.

    Now for stuff like ammo the discussion usually happens when my wife texts me to ask when exactly I had ordered it and then to let me know that she left the box on the porch when the UPS man knocked because it was too heavy to bring it inside 🙂

  22. Easy. Household budget a la Mr. Dave Ramsay. I’m swimmin’ in guns and suppressors because we were able to agree on a decent monthly gun budget.
    The downside? I think I go out to eat maybe once every 4 months, my truck is held together with electrical tape and gypsy curses, and I got my $30 jeans five years ago at Old Navy.
    Still though… I’m happy, she’s happy, everyone’s happy!

    • “my truck is held together with electrical tape and gypsy curses”

      Lol sounds like you have been snooping around my garage. I pretty much decided at one point a few years ago that I was either going to have guns as a hobby or fixing up cars as a hobby, but not both.

      • He is on to something with that.

        Treat a vehicle well, it could run well past your usual new-trade time. If you usually replaced it every 5 years, stretch that out to 7 or 10 years.

        Considering the depreciation, you could save thousands right there.

        I kept mine running for 300,000 miles and it was still running when I sold it.

        By that point, it was starting to use a quart of oil every 2 weeks.

        But it still started when I twisted the key, and I still saw it around town for a few years after…

        • That’s what I did.

          The only downside is that now the car is 13 years old and soon other cars will be coming around asking her to school dances… ?

        • My truck is an ’01 power stroke. I baby it and it has a whopping 105,000 miles on it.
          My daily driver is a ’94 and has 145,000 on it.
          Just take care of ’em, and they last. Just like guns.

      • Yeah, but that’s what the Car Budget is for. We literally allocate every dollar each month. Want beer? Liquor budget. Movie night? Entertainment budget. Clothes, medical expenses, even the damn dogs have a budget. No stress, no mess, happy wife, gun trust full of goodies.

        Bring on the hate from the old divorced guys 🙂

  23. Budget 3K for the gun and 600 in massages for her and a girlfriend. Everyone gets paid, everyone happy.

    • Or…..Save the $600 and give the wife and her girlfriend the massages yourself. Then everyone’s happy and you my friend have certainly been paid.

  24. I agree with the $10 here, $20 here thing. But, if that pond of cash is discovered, you might have a bad day. I would be honest, and save up. If you really want it that badly, you’ll find a way to make you, and her, happy in the end.

  25. Then use the credit card for the last $200+, tell her you got a hell of a deal on it!” Any other advice for our man Bob?

    Don’t buy it and don’t lie to your spouse?

    My wife wouldn’t care if I bought a $200 gun here or there a couple times a year. But 3k is too substantial. Better to discuss, persuade, and come to an agreement. If your arguments of persuasion aren’t very strong against your current situation in regards to living within your budget – perhaps you don’t need it?

    It doesn’t really feel fair for her to take 3k of our money and blow it on something without us discussing it, right? – maybe I shouldn’t do it either.

  26. This may sound odd, but I’ve found that if I’m supportive of my wife’s endeavors, she is supportive of mine.

  27. My wife and I agreed a while ago to give ourselves a monthly allowance. That money goes into our personal accounts. No permission is needed to spend that money the way we want. Do if I want a 3k gun, I save for a 3k gun and buy it.

  28. That advice reminds me of the old saying, “I’m worried that when I die, she’ll sell my guns for what I told her I spent on them…”

    First off, $3k on a gun is crazy talk. Second, don’t lie to your spouse.

    Of all of my guns, only one is “worth” four figures, and that’s simply just the cumulative cost of what I sunk into building it. I know I’ll likely never get the full value out of it, if I ever find myself in a position to sell it. I love TTAG, but the constant perception by the writers that what they think is a “reasonably priced gun” is reasonable to their readers as well, boggles the mind.

  29. Honesty always.
    If she can’t go for it perhaps you both can’t afford it, you don’t really need it, or she doesn’t get it, which means educating her not deceiving her.

    Work on it until you both are free to discuss anything. If she doesn’t agree that’s got to be okay with you because you are partners.

    Asking her permission or her asking yours is like you married your parents. Change that and enjoy this life together.

    I gave my wife faster and faster cars. Soon she wouldn’t drive anything that didn’t handle well, stop well or haul a&&.

    Even if she doesn’t love your hobby you both should love that the other loves something.

  30. My wife would be more irritated if I came home with a Rock Island than a Les Baer….you get what you pay for.

  31. Someone else mentioned a side job. That’s the, as I see it, the safest way to do it if the current budget doesn’t allow for purchases.

    I understand every marriage is different, both regarding the people and the circumstances. So, take this with that in mind.

    I volunteer at the FD. I get $7 for every run I make, to compensate for gas/mileage. We’ve agreed that the roughly $500 check that comes in every six months I can buy guns with. We feed them from our regular budget, but even that is subject to being careful and looking for deals.

    What I would never do is: 1) lie about the size of the check; 2) withhold that money if it means having trouble paying bills or taking care of the kids; 3) lie and hide extra money. That last is most important – my first thought if Bob is hiding money is mistress. second is divorce. I don’t think he wants her thinking either.

    • “I volunteer at the FD. I get $7 for every run I make, to compensate for gas/mileage.”

      Hmmm. A lawyer who is a first responder.

      Is that considered ambulance chasing if it is part of your duties to be there?

      (Hey, I’m smiling when I say that, OK ? 🙂 )

      • I worked during my first summer of law school for an ambulance chaser. Only one case went to trial, and I think he had a legitimate beef with the hospital (not really against the doctor, though). Still, that was the moment I decided, “never again.”

  32. Jeez Farago…that’s not even hard. Buy her a $3000 gun first!

    That’s what I did with my Sweetie, and she loves her STI EDGE, the complete rig, etc. Works like a charm…

    Michael B

  33. I don’t like to play those games.

    I automatically deduct $20 every week to my toy fund. When I have enough, I purchase what I want. She has her own $20/wk toy fund. I don’t tell her what she can or cannot buy. That is the budget, and that is what we stick to. It was easier when you could make 5% on your money.

    Need more money, sell something you are not going to be using or want anymore. Do something on the side to make more money. She works at a local theater where she make a few hundred extra every year. I do my firearm instruction where I make a bit extra. It would take me 3yrs to save up, but that is what it is.

    No hiding, no convincing no lies.

  34. Simple!

    Kidnap yourself and leave a ransom note.

    It’s a shame that the kidnappers got away with the loot, Honey, but obviously we need a new gun for home protection. /;-)

    If she doesn’t pay the ransom? Divorce her, take 1/2 of her stuff and sell it on eBay… Obviously, she just wasn’t that into you anyway!

  35. Am I the only one that did Bob’s math and came up with – 140 $20 bills = 280 bucks. $200 more = 480 bucks.
    $3000 less 480$ =2520$ still due. What now Bob?

  36. “I have no idea of how to convince the wife that I need a $3k handgun.
    I have no idea how to convince myself that I need a $3K handgun.

  37. I always ask myself why I’m buying a gun. Several times at the $3k mark. If I can’t answer that and believe myself, I don’t buy it.

    As for the wife, I always show her what I bought. If she asks, I tell her how much it cost.

    For those who can afford a $3k gun and still have to explain it to the spouse . . . It’s easier to beg forgiveness than ask permission.

  38. I guess I’m blessed because I don’t have to worry about it. My wife has plenty of guns of her own including a 1911 Government model, a WASR, a tactical 12 gauge pump, a .44 Magnum Desert Eagle, and of course her beloved Beretta 92. A couple of years ago at a gun show I saw a Just Right Carbines Quad Rail in .45ACP that I liked. When I said I didn’t really need it, she took me aside and talked me into buying it. The gun dealer who witnessed the whole thing was astonished and said he’d never seen a wife talk her husband into buying a gun before.

    If I showed my wife a $3000 gun I wanted, she’d ask if we could afford it and then tell me “Sure, go for it,”

  39. This is the one positive thing about not having a significant other. I don’t have to ask someone’s permission to soend money, now if only I could get my bank account on board.

    $3k gun? No. That one gun would cover the purchase of the last 4 on my wish list.

  40. It’s really quite simple: In 2003 I bought a used Emmons D-10 pedal steel guitar. It was advertised as having a straight “Emmons” setup, but it was nothing of the kind. Most of the raises and lowers I needed were not set up on the guitar, and nobody in town worked on pedal steels (neither did I). So in 2004 I found another Emmons D-10 that had the correct setup. I bought that guitar and packed the first one away in the music room. They were the same color, and otherwise identical, so the (now ex) wife never noticed the difference. Later on I needed to change the setup, and learned how to do it from the internet (it was really quite easy with instruction). Then I went back and fixed the first guitar.

    One gun looks very much like another to most women. Just saying.


  41. The wife once told me she doesn’t want to know, although I recently received a “limit”. I had to buy new shelf inserts to rearrange my safe so that things would fit better. The wife took a peek while I had everything out. She said I can’t buy another safe. I’m limited to what the current one holds. I’m OK with that. It’s a big safe. I just might have to get another safe for documents and jewelry when I don’t have room for them.

  42. I could convince my wife – but I couldn’t convince myself, I don’t think. Unless it really WAS an amazing deal.

  43. If your “other” can tell you have added a gun then you do not have enough guns. I’ve noticed that guns are like *insert whatever racial group you aren’t* and they all look the same. Until laser blasters and light sabers I doubt she’ll know it’s different.

  44. Or you could be like me and spend an ungodly amount of money on a Glock turning it into a race gun, hate it, try to sell it and get ridiculously lucky and trade it off for a pretty decent 2011 race gun to a guy who “has too many”. You could also win the lottery. Equal odds.

  45. Mine was a little miffed when I went out to buy saltine crackers, and came back over an hour later having purchased a new .308 semi. Not 3K but slightly over a grand, no small potatoes for us. Didn’t take much for her to see it my way, especially after how much she smiled shooting it at the range. Disclaimer: I MAY have said we can buy purple furniture for the AR.

  46. AHAHAHAHA sometimes you just have to own up to the fact that your wife will be pissed and do what you want. My wife grew up poor and is still super frugal to this day (we’ve been married 10 years). I love her to death but the frugal/cheap thing is irritating sometimes. She worries and frets about spending $40 on a race, or buying a new pair of running shoes that are over $100. Those are her hobbies and I understand that so I encourage it. God forbid she ever finds out what I actually pay for things for my hobbies. I have a wood and metal shop with thousands of dollars invested. I probably easily have over a grand just in reloading supplies. But those are my hobbies and that is what I enjoy doing in my off time from my family. We are both working professionals who live well below what our salaries allow so if I buy a gun a every couple of months so be it. Life is too short to not enjoy the things you love.

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