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Old October 18, 2020, 01:09 AM   #1
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Do AR buffer tubes ever wear out?

You hear talk of how many x1000s of rounds it will take to wear out a barrel. What about the buffer tube? Steel spring on aluminum. Maybe it's a non-issue.
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Old October 18, 2020, 12:04 PM   #2
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I’m sure they do, but I’m thinking it is more likely they are bent before wearing out in combat.

Most civilians probably don’t have the money/time to wear one out!
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Old October 18, 2020, 12:21 PM   #3
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It's a non issue.

Buffer and spring are a loose fit inside the tube (so they slide back and forth easily) and not the tight fit that a bullet in a barrel is.

AR buffer tubes don't "wear out", but they can fail, crack, break, corrode, and are (relatively) easily damaged.

Where the tube screws into the receiver, the threads are fine, and the metal of the tube is THIN!!

Strong enough to do the job, but not much more. It should be clear from the design and construction that the AR 15 was never intended to be a hand to hand combat weapon. IT's not a good choice for bayonet use (its too short) and its not built sturdy enough for you to be able to beat an enemy to death, or defend yourself from the same, with the buttstock and still count on having a functional rifle afterwards.

Earlier military rifles, sturdy, heavily built, 8-9lbs+ of steel and solid hardwood were made with the idea that they would be used hand to hand, and survive as functioning rifles, as well.

ARs are great for shooting, and light or easier carry (or the used to be..) but if you ever need to use the rifle as a club, or to block one, or an axe, etc., odds are high the AR will sustain serious damage in the process,

You could have the buttstock of a Garand, Mauser, Moisin, etc., break completely off and the rifle will still be emergency use shootable. Break the buttstock off an AR (which would include the buffer tube) and the gun is done. One shot, POSSIBLY if you already had a round chambered, but then your bolt carrier is gone walkabout, maybe through part of you on the way...
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
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Old October 18, 2020, 01:07 PM   #4
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Yes! I change mine out every 1000 rounds just to be safe.
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Old October 18, 2020, 01:26 PM   #5
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Do AR buffer tubes ever wear out?
Ever is a long long time. It contains moving parts so, yes it will wear out. You won't live to see it happen, and your great grandchildren probably wont either.
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Old October 20, 2020, 08:55 AM   #6
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I don't think it's an issue. I've seen quite a few 50k or more ARs break bolt lugs or other parts, but the buffer tube hasn't been a problem.

The only AR buffer tube issue I'm aware of is a piston conversion that can induce some off-center force that can cant the bolt and wear strangely. I don't have first hand experience with this as I have no piston ARs.
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