Are you looking for the best AR-10 buffer tube? If so, then you’re in the right place. A good buffer tube will definitely improve the overall function of your AR-10 rifle.
And to get you started on your search, we’ve handpicked five of the best AR-10 buffer tubes for this review. One of these might be yours if it somehow has a feature or two that checks off your wishlist.
Before we get to our list, we’ll talk about what a buffer tube is and what kind of purpose it serves for your AR-10 rifle.
We’ll also discuss whether or not these buffer tubes are the same and also provide you a brief list of aspects to consider as you’re shopping around for one.
Comparison Chart of the Best AR-10 Buffer Tubes
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What is a Buffer Tube and What Are They Used For?
A buffer tube is an alternative term for a receiver extension. This is a protrusion that sticks out of your AR-10 rifle. The buffer tube is designed to serve two purposes. First, it will house what is known as the recoil buffer mechanism. Second, it also serves as an attachment to your rifle’s buttstock.
Inside a buffer tube, there is a large spring that is called an action spring. This spring contains the recoil buffer mechanism inside. The buffer tube allows the bolt, buffer tube, and spring itself to go in the tube compressed and shoot itself forward.
Are AR-15 and AR-10 Buffer Tubes The Same?
The short answer: no. To give you an even longer answer, almost all the parts of a buffer tube may not be compatible with each other.
In other words, an AR-15 buffer tube may not be able to function properly in an AR-10 rifle and vice versa. The tube lengths, however, are the same. But other than that, the parts like the lower parts kit or the rail system won’t be compatible with any other AR-style rifle other than its own (i.e. AR-15 or AR-10).
However, some parts like the buttstock, hammer, or pistol grip are most likely compatible for either an AR-15 or AR-10.
Aspects to Consider Before Buying
Of course, it wouldn’t be smart to purchase the first buffer tube you see on the shelf. Or if you’re buying online, you simply can’t just go straight for the “add to cart” button. Before choosing the best buffer tube for you, you’ll need to consider some additional factors that may play a role in your final purchasing decision.
If you’re a first-time buyer, this list should be a must-read for you. This way, you’ll know what you’re looking for while searching for a buffer tube for your AR-10 rifle. With that said, here’s what you’ll need to consider:
Obviously, if you’re on a budget you know the price will play a factor in which buffer tube you’ll choose. While price might be a good reason why you’ll choose a buffer tube, it’s also important to consider some of the other aspects as well.
If the price tag is within your budget range, always make sure that the quality is better than a typical cheap buffer tube. The last thing you’ll want to do is buy a buffer tube that’s low in price and ends up low in quality, as well.
The overall quality of a buffer tube will depend on the material being used for manufacturing. Most of the buffer tubes on the market are made from high-quality materials like aluminum. Types of aluminum like 7075-T6, are among popular choices because they are resistant to all kinds of damage.
Plus, they are also good at absorbing the shock associated with recoil. This kind of aluminum will also be resistant to such things like corrosion.
If you have no gunsmithing skills at all, then you don’t have to worry about installing a buffer tube. Most of the AR-10 buffer tubes that we have listed are easy to install. All it takes are the right tools and minutes of your time in order for you to install a buffer tube properly.
Thankfully, we’ve even included installation instructions so you can follow along and install it without scratching your head and wondering if you’re doing it all wrong.
Review of the Best AR-10 Buffer Tubes
The following is a list of five of the best AR-10 buffer tubes currently available on the market as of this writing. While this list might be subject change, one of these tubes might be yours for a long period of time. But don’t worry, it won’t be something that will go out of style within the next year.
If you’re looking for a buffer tube for a possible upgrade or if you need an addition to a rifle that you’re currently building, this list is a great place to start. With that said, let’s begin by revealing our “best overall” choice:
Aero Precision - AR .308 M5 Carbine Buffer Tube Kit
First on the list, we’ll be taking a look at the Aero Precision AR .308 M5 Carbine Buffer Tube Kit. This is perhaps one of the best quality buffer tubes currently available. And since it’s made in the U.S.A., it will definitely back our previous statement.
This buffer tube features six different positions that will best fit your buttstock of choice. Whether it’s an adjustable stock or a fixed “one-size-fits-all” kind of stock, this buffer tube will have the ability to accommodate it.
This is crafted from high-quality aluminum, making it a very durable addition to your AR-10 rifle. Also included in this kit is your castle nut, spring, and end plate.
These parts are easy to install and won’t take advanced gunsmithing skills. With just minutes of your time and the right tools, will be installed and good to go.
If you’re looking for a product that has all the parts you need to make it function as it should, then the Aero Precision kit might just be exactly what you’re looking for.
If you’re looking for a kit that is considered the best of the best, then the Aero Precision buffer tube kit might be just what you’re looking for. In fact, we are quite satisfied with the kit and it was good enough to give it the “best overall” honor.
If you’re looking for a tube with the whole kit and kaboodle that makes it work, get this kit. The installation is stress-free and will be functional once installed properly.
GUNTEC USA AR-10 Mil-Spec Buffer Tube Set,.308 Cal
Next, we’ll be taking a look at the GUNTEC USA AR-10 Mil-Spec buffer tube. Once again, we’ll be looking at a complete kit that not only consists of a standalone buffer tube but also the parts that will get the thing to work properly.
Aside from the tube, you’ll get the castle nut, end plate, and a .308 CAR short buffer. The material used for the tube is 7075-T6 aluminum. In other words, this will be a tough piece of equipment worth installing on your AR-10 rifle.
On top of that, this will fit most AR-10 buttstocks and it has six different positions you can use to ensure your buffer tube will work with the stock you use most. If the Aero Precision kit doesn’t impress you somehow or if this GUNTEC kit catches your eye, then it’s obvious this is the product for you.
All and all, this is a great alternative kit if the Aero Precision doesn’t seem right for you. However, this product is quite durable and includes the parts that will take only minutes to install.
Plus, it’s a buffer tube that is as close as you can get to a mil-spec style. If you’re a sucker for all things mil-spec, you should give the GUNTEC kit a closer look.
Best For The Money:
2A Armament 8 Position Billet Buffer Tube
There are a lot of AR-10 owners always looking for great accessories. But there's also a handful of those on a budget. If you're one of them, rejoice. Because we've found the best AR-10 buffer tube that will fit almost any budget.
We give you the 2A Armament Eight-Position Billet Buffer Tube. This item is made from billeted aluminum. For added durability, it also includes an anodized coating to ensure it can handle all kinds of punishment.
If you're looking for a product that will last you a long time and won't break the bank, the 2A Armament might be the best thing you've invested in. This has eight adjustable positions designed to work with almost any buttstock you choose for your AR-10 rifle.
So if you have a polymer stock you're dying to add on to your rifle, then a buffer tube like this will make it even more adjustable and easy to use for most shooters.
Like many accessories that are the best for the money, it exceeds expectations. It’s not a “you get what pay for” kind of buffer tube. And for the price it’s going for, we’re shocked it wasn’t priced any higher.
The eight adjustable positions are more than enough for any shooter, but it guarantees that anyone can use an AR-10 rifle if they can find the adjustment that makes them most comfortable.
With the 2A Armament product, you just can’t lose. If you’re looking for something that’s easy to use and easy on the wallet, you’d be insane to pass up on the opportunity to look at this a little further.
4. Luth-AR .308 Rifle Buffer Tube Assembly
Next, we’ll be taking a look at the Luth-AR .308 Rifle Buffer Tube Assembly. Included in this kit is not just the buffer tube itself, but it also includes a buttstock extension tube, standard buttstock spring, and a buffer body assembly.
So in other words, you have a kit that will work best with your .308 caliber AR-10 rifle. Each part of this is light in weight and won’t add any extra weight to your rifle.
So if you’re looking for something that’s easy to install but won’t make your rifle significantly heavier, the Luth-AR buffer tube assembly kit could be yours to own.
You’ll be able to easily install these parts and the tube itself in a matter of minutes. This will complement almost any buttstock you use for your AR-10 rifle.
Adjustable or fixed, you’ll have a reliable tube which will support your buttstock without any issues. This Luth-AR buffer tube assembly might be the best option for your .308 caliber AR-10.
The Luth-AR is probably one of the most reliable buffer tubes you can find that will be the best fit for a .308 caliber AR-10 rifle. If reliability is something you consider a high priority, this might be the best buffer tube to invest in.
This has the additional parts you’ll need to ensure that the buffer tube itself can work properly, however, it won’t take you forever to install.
So if you have minutes to spare, you can assemble this and install it on your rifle without any snags or other issues.
5. Spikes Tactical Buffer Tube - .308
For our last AR-10 buffer tube, we’ll be taking a look at another one fit for .308 caliber rifles. The Spikes Tactical Buffer Tube is also compatible with most mil-spec buffers.
If you’re looking for a good product designed to reduce a good amount of recoil, this might be what you’re looking for.
This is made from high-quality aluminum and has an anodized hard coat added on for extra durability. No buffer tube is complete without having six different adjustable positions. This will make your stock easy to use for most shooters.
Say goodbye to your non-adjustable, standalone stock. So if you’re looking for a good adjustable stock for your .308, the Spike’s Tactical Buffer Tube might be deserving of a closer look.
The Spikes Tactical Buffer Tube to our knowledge is the best that you can get to a tactical-style buffer tube. Of course, it can’t be tactical without the adjustable positions. If you want something that will fit almost any shooter, then a product like the Spikes Tactical might be what you need.
Whether you’re short or tall in height, there’s always an adjustment that will best fit you. Aside from that, this is a tough piece of equipment that will definitely aid you in reducing a good deal of recoil. Of course, less recoil will always mean better accuracy with every shot.
How to Remove and Install a Buffer Tube
Installing and even removing a buffer tube might be a challenge. That is, if you don’t know how to do it. Below are some instructions you can follow so you can easily remove a buffer tube. Likewise, we’ve also included instructions that will show you how to install a buffer tube without any issues.
How to Install a Buffer Tube
- As always, safety first. Make sure your rifle is clear and is not loaded in either the magazine well or the chamber. Once you’re clear, move on to the next step.
- Make sure that your parts like your pins, springs, rings, and tubes are included.
- You can add some lubricant to your springs before installation if you so choose. Now, add your retainer spring followed by the retainer itself.
- Add the takedown pin from left to right.
- Add the detent and the spring in order.
- Take your castle nut and screw it on the right way.
- Install the back pipe with the nub facing outward. Slide it over the threads. Then screw it onto your rifle’s backend. Push the retainer down until the tube flips over.
- Add the spring just below the tube itself. Follow it by installing the backplate. You can add Loctite to ensure it stays tight, but that’s optional.
- Tighten your castle nut down using a castle wrench.
- Grease the buffer spring if needed. Insert it in the buffer tube followed by the buffer itself.
- Add your buttstock onto your rifle. Slide it on as far as it can go. Then screw it on. At this point, check to see if everything is secure. Once all is good, you’re finished.
How to Remove a Buffer Tube
- Once again, make sure your rifle is clear and unloaded.
- The AR-10 should be in a vertical position. The buttstock should be at a resting position on a stable surface.
- Get a drift pin and extract the take-down pin. The take-down pin will be located on the left rear part of your rifle’s receiver right above the fire selector switch. Pull the back of the upper receiver away from the lower receiver.
- Push in the receiver pivot pin and make sure it slides out from left to right. Next, you should separate the upper receiver assembly from the lower receiver assembly.
- Next, find the buffer tube retaining pin. It should be located on the back of the lower receiver and in front of the opening of the receiver extension (which is the tube that will extend into the buttstock).
- Push the buffer tube back with your finger and using a drift pin, depress the retaining pin. Then you should be able to slide out the buffer tube and the action spring.
Finding the best AR-10 buffer tube might be a challenge, but if you know exactly what to look for, you’ll find the buying process a little easier. A good buffer tube will absolutely give your AR-10 rifle better performance. Find one that will be easy to install and easy to adjust. This way, you’ll have a fully functional and adjustable AR-10 to work with no matter what your application.