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Discussion Starter #1
On another board there have been a few posts referring to how cheap it was to produce modern polymer pistols. I'm sure most have you have caught some heat for it as well since our chosen brand costs so much more than all the others.

I'm looking for numbers not why they are more expensive. I don't care why people think they are more expensive, I just want to know what actual cost is to make them. (USP's, P30's, HK45 etc.)

Thanks
 

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Cost of manufacture is not a good measure of value. How much does it cost to produce a prescription medicine pill? Almost nothing. It's the cost of research & development, testing, marketing, etc. as well as paying for all the product development costs of other items that never made it to market that comes into play. Would it make you feel better to know that a P30 is just $20 worth of parts?
 

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It's probably much cheaper than it once was. At some point, you would be to the year where they pre-date modern CNC machinery. Everything was machined by hand from a raw casting or forging. Now it's all automated. You may have a machine operator making $15 an hour to run a CNC machining center that cranks out a slide an hour, whereas when they were machined by hand you had a machinist making $30 an hour to make 1 every 4 hours.

Then look at the most complex part - the frame. It would take hours and hours to machine one by hand, less time to machine one on CNC. But for polymer, they're injection molded with some steel inserts that are overmolded. The cost of the plastic itself is very inexpensive - maybe a few dollars. But the mold, especially if it's a multi-cavity mold, could easily run $100,000-$200,000. They they're run on an injection molding machine that may cost $250,000-$500,000. I used to work for a company that made electrical connectors. The molds were quite simple compared to a HK pistol frame mold, and they were $50,000.

The actual cost to produce one pistol would have to include salaries, sales commissions, distribution, materials, labor, etc. Anybody that gives you a specific number is making a wild guess that in no way could be considered accurate.
 

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$1.99 parts and other materials
$1.00 proofing
$50.00 exportation
$375.00 for the letter 'H' on the slide
$375.00 for the letter 'K' on the slide

Comfort in knowing that your sidearm will work, priceless!!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I do.t care about the "value". I just want to know the numbers.
 

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I just want to know what actual cost is to make them
I was involved in firearms manufacturing business (not HK).
A unit cost to produce a gun (actual cost?) consists of material and labor (several dollars per gun), amortization of the plant and the tooling, amortization of the design, marketing and distribution costs, and the manufacturer's profit.
The price you pay is at least twice that, after the middlemen have taken their cut. I am not privy to H&Ks costs, and you are unlikely to ever know those numbers as H&K carefully guards their costs for obvious reasons.
The HK guns are not more expensive to manufacture than their competitors, yet cost more.

our chosen brand costs so much more than all the others
because we are willing to pay for a reliable, well-made and good-looking (in a functional sorta way) gun.

LT
 

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Cost of manufacture is not a good measure of value. How much does it cost to produce a prescription medicine pill? Almost nothing. It's the cost of research & development, testing, marketing, etc. as well as paying for all the product development costs of other items that never made it to market that comes into play. Would it make you feel better to know that a P30 is just $20 worth of parts?
+1

Don't forget the awesome machinery that they had to pay for in order to make the pistols at lower cost but had to mark up prices to pay for the costs. ;)
 

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Don't forget the awesome machinery that they had to pay for in order to make the pistols at lower cost but had to mark up prices to pay for the costs. ;)
Indeed, also research and development is an expensive mistress. REALLY difficult to come up with a definitive "cost" that's not just speculation.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Indeed, also research and development is an expensive mistress. REALLY difficult to come up with a definitive "cost" that's not just speculation.
Research has nothing to do with my question.
 

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Making all parts and components in house has its price. Extreme quality control along the entire process is not cheap either. Bill
 

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Your question will never get a true answer. Why? Simple. Nobody knows and those who do (HK), won't tell you.
But he wants it.
 

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Research has nothing to do with my question.
How does I don't even? Without the research you wouldn't have a gun. They had to spend money on the research. So does that not add into the cost to produce a handgun?
 

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How does I don't even? Without the research you wouldn't have a gun. They had to spend money on the research. So does that not add into the cost to produce a handgun?
You're not reading his question correctly.

Cost of R&D is factored into the sale price in order to make the gun profitable. I don't think he'd deny that.

Wolvee is asking what the cost of manufacture is. Don't think about what they need to sell it at in order to make a buck. It's a VERY simple question, and not the least bit hard to understand.

Wolvee,

Unfortunately, as has been pointed out, you're not going to find out for the reasons specified. I think it'd also be
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Someone in the industry told me today that M&P's are around $100-150 for production and there has been threads previously about Gblocks being somewhere around $65. I would imagine that most of the HK's are around the $200 mark but that's just an uneducated guess based on the others cost and my imagination. Not technical at all I admit but it's the best I can come up with.

I've read a few people say that the civilian market is an afterthought to the Military or Law enforcement need. This makes me think that most of the R&D would be assumed by the units that requested the pistols. selling to the civilian market would be recouping the left over cost and to make a continual profit. Like a lot of the other pistols like M&P's. (Not comparing the quality of an M&P & HK.)

The facts are is they are worth what we're willing to pay. I'm willing to pay any amount for what I think is the best for me.
 

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Only Heckler und Koch has the exact numbers ... think they will actually 'spill the beans'? Doubt it
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I'm not asking for the exact numbers, just something close.
 

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Someone in the industry told me today that M&P's are around $100-150 for production and there has been threads previously about Gblocks being somewhere around $65. I would imagine that most of the HK's are around the $200 mark but that's just an uneducated guess based on the others cost and my imagination. Not technical at all I admit but it's the best I can come up with.

I've read a few people say that the civilian market is an afterthought to the Military or Law enforcement need. This makes me think that most of the R&D would be assumed by the units that requested the pistols. selling to the civilian market would be recouping the left over cost and to make a continual profit. Like a lot of the other pistols like M&P's. (Not comparing the quality of an M&P & HK.)

The facts are is they are worth what we're willing to pay. I'm willing to pay any amount for what I think is the best for me.
There was an interview on NPR, with author of "Glock: The Rise of America's Gun", Paul Barrett. (You could probably Google search it and get a pod cast; I did and it was very interesting.) He backed up your number that a Glock, at least when they were introduced, cost about $65 to build. He said Gaston originally wanted to sell the guns for $300, but his financial adviser disagreed because he said people would think it's cheap and not reliable. Since they were the first of their kind, Glock was able to sell the guns at a much higher price, just as they do today. This allowed Glock to literally give their guns to PDs, knowing it would come back to them once PDs realized the numerous advantages over their revolvers. Genius, really.

I wouldn't imagine much has changed with the price thing... I am sure most, if not all guns manufactures are using a similar mark up but I can only speak for what I heard about Glock during the interview. Either way, kind of made that $600 G21 Gen4 I was looking at a lot less desirable.
 

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I'm not asking for the exact numbers, just something close.
Okay. $50. hehe. If HK has any business sense, this info will NEVER see the light of day. I've run a business since 1985. I would never divulge my profit margin. Once that happens, the entire price structure is vulnerable to collapse. This is also why I tell my employees not to discuss compensation with each other. Once that happens, the employee earning less will eventually self destruct. In fact I would question the value of the info you were given relative to other manufacturers.
 
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