Anyway, I was taking my LC9 down when the guide rod and recoil springs (not a captive unit) slipped from my fingers due to some oil on them and ZOING!!! Straight across the room and into relative oblivion. I was able to locate both springs but the guide rod must of ended up in a box or crevice that I have neither the time nor patience to explore. Trouble is, I have no spares. Its a $2 part and I will have to wait a week to get it. That got me thinking...
You know, I am not a huge prepper by any stretch of the term. I have some "stuff" but as far as any long term commitment to self sustainability, it just isn't there. Despite this there is no good reason I shouldn't have a stash of spare parts on the shelf for stuff like this. A machine that operates under the high pressures, temperatures and parts that move as violently against one another is eventually going to need serviced. Any spring will loose tension over time through repeated compression, metal subject to great forces will fatigue and other materials (polymer parts) will break down as well. No firearm will last forever, but with some foresight and spare parts on hand making them run longer is well within most owners' grasp.
A "Glock first Aid Kit" found on the blog "Notes From The bunker..."
This is especially true for my Glocks, which are my de facto SHTF go-to guns. The Glock only has 37 parts, including the magazine, and they all can be removed either by hand or with the aid of a simple punch, the famous "Glock tool"...or just any old 3/16 punch you have lying around. Actually, with parts that I have from pieces that I have replaced with "better" parts I bet I have a nice collection of OEM and other parts just sitting there in a box right now. Recoil springs, trigger springs, trigger connectors, firing pin springs, and frame pins all ready for use if need be. Heck I might even have a spare barrel somewhere if I look for it. I know where they are, I just need to organize and store them.
But don't stop there...that $1600 AR build you have sitting there goes from being an EBR to a EBSSR (Evil black single shot rifle) if the extractor breaks after being jammed into thousands of rounds of steel case practice ammo or the spring wears out. More likely though is that you will try and clean your rifle down to the point of taking the extractor out of the bolt somewhere and lose the small parts in the grass or ground...then having a few parts like that would be nice to have. Some people even go as far as keeping an entire assembled bolt as a spare. Those "non-tactical" round handguards that you took off of it for a quad rail setup would be nice to have later if that Chinese made quad rail cracks under use and abuse on the "battlefield". And that carrying handle rear sight that you replaced with a LMT BUIS and Aimpoint...well, it doesn't run out of batteries.
Guess I need to get started on putting together another box for the "box of boxes" in the basement with my other gun stuff....oh yeah, and order that recoil guide rod for the Ruger too...
While it sounds like just one more item to pack "for the end of the world", its just not for bad times. Many competition shooters always carry spare parts, hunters as well. Its the unprepared that come home without the trophy or meat on the hoof when things break down....see Mr. Murphy for the law about that.