Balancing expenditure between hobbies......

D7k1

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I have three hobbies: Photography (including video), Astrophotography (perhaps the same thing?), Music (composition).

Have not spent money on Music since I bought a professional level DAW with a high level digital orchestra last year. My studio is complete, its my skills that need upgrading:)

Have completed my "final" Astrophotography kit except for a couple of filters (next months allowance). Last two years almost all my disposable allowance went here.

Have a pretty complete M43 system, and had not bought anything new in 4 years until I added the G9 in April.

@70 I have in reality completed not only my needs but my wants in my hobbies. And yet I still don't have an answer on how to allocate the monies I do have to spend (my wife and I planned our retirement so we each can spend the same amounts each month or save it for a big expenditure).

I was hoping to give some sage advice on how to this but I've found it is what ever hobby I am focused on at the moment that gets the funds......probably not the best way but I've finally got to where I need and want to be using that system even if it is a bit child like. How do you allocate your hobby funds (realizing that we all have difference budgets)?
 

Julia

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Oh my goodness, I thought I was the only one :D

I love photography, technology, and archery. It seems that my archery equipment is about as expensive (or more) than my photography gear and the new scope/sight combo that I need for my compound bow equals the price of a weekly photography trip to anywhere in Europe.

By now, I try to plan out what I absolutely need for each hobby, and what is just a "want" item. I need new arrows so I can compete for the national team tryouts. I want a purple scope/sight combo :laugh:

In addition, I try to get stuff used and not brand new, which allows me to save yet another few bucks. But it's really hard to forgo something that I really want. Since I've overspend a lot in the last years on my hobbies, I am trying to be more mindful by forcing myself to make lists of what I want throughout the year (expected expenses) and then just see if it all adds up. Usually, it doesn't and then I start to prioritize and remind myself that not spending money on that shiny sight/scope combination will free up funds for a photography vacation that might benefit me more than shiny looks on my bow.

But it's sooooo hard.
 

Brownie

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I have a tendency to rotate hobbies. Vegetable gardening, photography, woodworking, music, camping, fishing, hunting (gun and archery) target shooting (gun and archery). Have also painted and built custom sound speaker cabinets, but those have been abandoned.

Instead of trying to fund them all, I tend to go all-in on one, then become bored and go to the next. Since I have accumulated everything I need over my lifetime redirecting is usually pretty inexpensive. That was not the case when I got back into photography this time though. Having survived on bridge cameras for the most part since film went out of style, I didn't have anything decent to use.

Music is a bit different in that when am playing I do so semi-professionally, kind of a paid hobbyist. Old story: When my wife and I were newly married I was looking at (yet another) guitar. She was poking at me a bit, so I said:

"If it weren't for my guitars, we wouldn't have any extra money."

To which she responded:

"If it weren't for your guitars, we wouldn't need any extra money!" :rofl:
 
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D7k1

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We have a separate travel budget. My and here friend are going to Paris this year, I may go to Iceland or just take some weeks and RV to areas in the US I have not imaged before (few and far between). Until I had a medical issue I was going to the Amazon, but I've been told by my doc's - canoeing or hiking in the jungle at night would be, what was that word, oh ya STUPID. So some kind of photo journey for landscapes is what I am thinking.
 

D7k1

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[
Oh my goodness, I thought I was the only one :D

I love photography, technology, and archery. It seems that my archery equipment is about as expensive (or more) than my photography gear and the new scope/sight combo that I need for my compound bow equals the price of a weekly photography trip to anywhere in Europe.

By now, I try to plan out what I absolutely need for each hobby, and what is just a "want" item. I need new arrows so I can compete for the national team tryouts. I want a purple scope/sight combo :laugh:

In addition, I try to get stuff used and not brand new, which allows me to save yet another few bucks. But it's really hard to forgo something that I really want. Since I've overspend a lot in the last years on my hobbies, I am trying to be more mindful by forcing myself to make lists of what I want throughout the year (expected expenses) and then just see if it all adds up. Usually, it doesn't and then I start to prioritize and remind myself that not spending money on that shiny sight/scope combination will free up funds for a photography vacation that might benefit me more than shiny looks on my bow.

But it's sooooo hard.
Compete while you can, so I say go for the sight. You won't be young forever spend it wisely:)
 

mumu

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I've only got two hobbies: photography (and video) and dirt biking. But it's photography that poses an ongoing desire for new gear because stuff changes so frequently. With dirt biking (which I only got back into last year) the big expense was the bike (duh) and riding gear. After that it's just tires every few years and maybe switch to a tubeless system and maybe a luggage bag for the bike. Beyond that I don't need anything else. BUT the bike WILL wear out over time. So while I'm more conservative with my bike-related spending, the long periods of no-spend will be punctuated by painful replace-or-rebuild expenditures rather than the constant GAS attacks of photography.

I also hunt but that only occupies one week per year so I don't spend any money on it aside from food/gas/license. Ammo is negligible since I only fire 2-6 rounds per year.

Travel is a separate budget so it doesn't factor into my hobby spending. But if it did, it would take precedence over photography.
 

ac12

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As much as I want to buy stuff for my many hobbies. It does not make sense if I do not DO those hobbies.
So as I rotate through doing my hobbies, my spending moves with that.
Right now I have several hobbies that are "on the shelf," for lack of time, or I got bored of them. And my spending on them has dropped close to zero.
The only exception is when something becomes available for sale that normally is not available, then I might buy out of rotation.
 

agentlossing

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For better or for worse, photography is my main hobby that costs the big bucks. Reading (and collecting books/building a library) is another one, but I am always looking for deals on books, and don't usually spend a lot of money on new books. In fact, I like a used book as long as it hasn't been abused, and even appreciate marginalia when it doesn't completely deface the text.

Writing doesn't cost me much, thankfully (I have a Freewrite "smart typewriter" which originally cost $500 and was a gift, but that was five years ago and it isn't going to get upgraded any time soon unless it breaks and can't be repaired). Just a notebook here and there. Target shooting is another hobby both I and my wife enjoy, but we're content with the firearms we have and don't shoot often enough to have much of an ammo bill.

So, I don't know how much help I can be with the original question, but something that I have been doing within photography to control GAS might be of help: I start "scheduling" upgrades to different cameras, lenses and/or types of photography. Lately it has looked like this:
  • Upgraded compact camera to Ricoh GRIII in 2019 - don't sell/upgrade until 2022 or later. 3 years sounds like a good timeframe for enjoying and perfecting the use of this camera.
  • Upgrade M4/3 main body probably in 2020 - got GX85 in 2016 and used it till I sold it end of 2019, so I do need a better M4/3 camera than the Yi M1 and GF3 that I have right now. But it probably won't be till later this year.
  • Upgraded my film rangefinder body to the Voigtlander Bessa T end of 2019 - don't upgrade till 2021 at least, depending on how I take to this unique shooting style offered by the camera. If it works, great, if it doesn't, the value is in the camera and I can swap for something else.
That's how I've been looking at my cameras lately: they fill specific roles and are specific types of cameras. Compact, Fixed-Lens EDC (everyday carry), Mirrorless ILC (everything the compact doesn't do, i.e. normal to tele lenses and faster aperture - lenses and bodies both fit in this category), and Film (for when I want a different experience and end result). You can kind of schedule out when you expect to need (or really want) to upgrade in each of these categories, and if you have other expensive hobbies, just work those in to the schedule. For me, my schedule tells me I don't get to think about changing out my compact fixed-lens camera this year or next year, so don't even waste time reading or browsing for a replacement.
 

ac12

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Those of you that target shoot should look into AIR.
While the guns are NOT inexpensive, the ongoing cost to shoot is MUCH less.
A tin of 500 match grade pellets is less than $20.

And for those of you that think shooting a pellet gun is easy, the 10 "ring" on a 10 meter air rifle target is the size of a "period." Specifically 0.5mm in diameter.
 

Mike Wingate

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Cycling, walking, target archery, woodworking and photography are my hobbies. There is no balance. I just research, look at and either buy or not buy what I think I need. Consumables such as tyres and arrows are necessities. A folding Japanese 10 or/and 12” saw will wait. Just fitting lasers to the pillar drill and bandsaw, cost £4.60p plus batteries. Plus I have not been paid my Teachers Pension for the last 5 months.
 

Brownie

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Those of you that target shoot should look into AIR.
While the guns are NOT inexpensive, the ongoing cost to shoot is MUCH less.
A tin of 500 match grade pellets is less than $20.

And for those of you that think shooting a pellet gun is easy, the 10 "ring" on a 10 meter air rifle target is the size of a "period." Specifically 0.5mm in diameter.
I load my own so not as bad, but it still costs more. I do have a pellet gun. Yes the 10 is tiny, but you shoot from much closer. It's all relevant.
 

agentlossing

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Those of you that target shoot should look into AIR.
While the guns are NOT inexpensive, the ongoing cost to shoot is MUCH less.
A tin of 500 match grade pellets is less than $20.

And for those of you that think shooting a pellet gun is easy, the 10 "ring" on a 10 meter air rifle target is the size of a "period." Specifically 0.5mm in diameter.
I loved air guns as a teen. Plus they were the only type legal to discharge in the area of CA where I grew up. Certainly the modern precharged pneumatic rifles available these days are quite a bit fancier than the ones I had, however! I should pull out my rusty Crosman .22 air pistol and see if it still works...
 

ac12

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I loved air guns as a teen. Plus they were the only type legal to discharge in the area of CA where I grew up. Certainly the modern precharged pneumatic rifles available these days are quite a bit fancier than the ones I had, however! I should pull out my rusty Crosman .22 air pistol and see if it still works...
That is another rabbit hole to fall into.
I did.
 

ac12

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Writing doesn't cost me much, thankfully (I have a Freewrite "smart typewriter" which originally cost $500 and was a gift, but that was five years ago and it isn't going to get upgraded any time soon unless it breaks and can't be repaired). Just a notebook here and there. Target shooting is another hobby both I and my wife enjoy, but we're content with the firearms we have and don't shoot often enough to have much of an ammo bill.
You should take up writing with a fountain pen.
I write, just for the pleasure of writing with a fountain pen.
That is another rabbit hole to fall into.
 

agentlossing

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You should take up writing with a fountain pen.
I write, just for the pleasure of writing with a fountain pen.
That is another rabbit hole to fall into.
Oh, I have, but so far I haven't gone off the deep end. I have a Parker Jotter and a couple of Kaweco Sports (just the plastic ones, but I will probably buy a brass one sometime). Both these types write really well - but I will probably never write longform by hand with a fountain pen, as I'm left-handed, and anything longer than a few pages in a notebook becomes an exercise in avoiding ink as much as creativity.
 

ac12

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Oh, I have, but so far I haven't gone off the deep end. I have a Parker Jotter and a couple of Kaweco Sports (just the plastic ones, but I will probably buy a brass one sometime). Both these types write really well - but I will probably never write longform by hand with a fountain pen, as I'm left-handed, and anything longer than a few pages in a notebook becomes an exercise in avoiding ink as much as creativity.
Welcome to one of my hobbies.

In my experience, a brass pen is too heavy to write more than a couple of paragraphs. My hand gets tired holding it up.
All my "writing" pens are light, so that I can and have written for hours.

Are you an overhook writer or under writer?
The trick is to write so your hand does not go over the wet ink.
I hated writing Japanese with a fountain pen, top to bottom, right to left. The ink rarely dried before my hand was on it. So it was ball pen or pencil.
 

agentlossing

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Welcome to one of my hobbies.

In my experience, a brass pen is too heavy to write more than a couple of paragraphs. My hand gets tired holding it up.
All my "writing" pens are light, so that I can and have written for hours.

Are you an overhook writer or under writer?
The trick is to write so your hand does not go over the wet ink.
I hated writing Japanese with a fountain pen, top to bottom, right to left. The ink rarely dried before my hand was on it. So it was ball pen or pencil.
That is true, the brass Sport model is definitely heavy. I can go under or over if I must, but generally I just keep my hand in the same position for as much line writing as I can and then advance. So I am used to using quick-drying pens, and most of the time when I'm writing with a fountain pen it's on paper not larger than a Moleskine journal.
 
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OMG! Do people actually try to balance their interests?

Photography, check. Astrophotography, check. Music, check. Gardening, check. Woodworking, check. Books, check. Fountain pens, check.

No archery or firearms… so far!

I'm surprised no one mentioned metalworking (think woodworking tools are expensive? But metalworking THROWS SPARKS!) nor electronics and ham radio, nor bicycles, nor cheese making.

I agree with buying used. The minute you buy something new, you're losing money. If you carefully shop used, you can even make money on the deal. I just bought a 20-year-old digital oscilloscope for $160 with some minor problems that I know how to fix. This was $14,000 new, and still sells refurbished for several thousand dollars!

On the other had, nearly 20 years ago, I spent $14,000 on a brand-new, 1.4 metre, six-colour, archival printer. It's sitting in a shed, along with thousands of dollars of media. Hasn't been used in six years. Anyone need a Roland HiFi Jet?

Put the money in the bank, and someday, buy a farm. Then, you won't have either time, nor money — problem solved!

Gotta go milk goats now… bye…
 

ac12

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OMG! Do people actually try to balance their interests?

Photography, check. Astrophotography, check. Music, check. Gardening, check. Woodworking, check. Books, check. Fountain pens, check.

No archery or firearms… so far!

I'm surprised no one mentioned metalworking (think woodworking tools are expensive? But metalworking THROWS SPARKS!) nor electronics and ham radio, nor bicycles, nor cheese making.

I agree with buying used. The minute you buy something new, you're losing money. If you carefully shop used, you can even make money on the deal. I just bought a 20-year-old digital oscilloscope for $160 with some minor problems that I know how to fix. This was $14,000 new, and still sells refurbished for several thousand dollars!

On the other had, nearly 20 years ago, I spent $14,000 on a brand-new, 1.4 metre, six-colour, archival printer. It's sitting in a shed, along with thousands of dollars of media. Hasn't been used in six years. Anyone need a Roland HiFi Jet?

Put the money in the bank, and someday, buy a farm. Then, you won't have either time, nor money — problem solved!

Gotta go milk goats now… bye…
I have not used my HF rig in maybe 10 YEARS, and my VHF in several years.
Blasted new cars are a PITA to install a rig into. My last and current car, I looked at it then gave up before trying.
Most of my interest died when the last high orbit OSCAR satellite died.

I have three oscilloscopes (two Techtronics), and I have yet to learn how to use a scope.

I have five enlargers, but the darkroom has been stuck in planning stage for years.

I have an HP pen plotter in the garage, collecting dust. Win10 does not support a pen plotter, so fooey. XP was the last version of Windows to support a pen plotter.

I started collecting free Kindle books. It is amazing how many free books you can get.

I'm on my third bread machine. This is the machine that I should have gotten in the beginning.

Model railroad. That is on the shelf since I had to put the layout away many years ago.

Fresh water aquarium. Shut down over 5 years ago. My wife want me to start it up again. It was nice and peaceful to watch the fishes. This might get restarted.

Gardening is a sore subject. I spend a couple thousand dollars on my front yard, then the drought and not allowed to water, and it all died. So now I am hesitant about doing much to the yard/garden, fearing that it will all be lost at the next drought. I have been thinking about a ROCK garden.
 

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