Gear Review: Backup Tactical Thread Protectors


Threaded barrels. They just make every gun a little bit cooler, don’t they? Slap a threaded barrel on even the common GLOCK 19 and it instantly stands out on the range. Not to mention all the options it opens up for muzzle devices. But what if you have a threaded barrel and aren’t using a muzzle device at the moment? Enter Backup Tactical’s line of spiffy looking thread protectors.

Threaded barrels are cool, but if you aren’t careful, things can go sideways quickly. You could accidentally drop your threaded gun and bend one of the threads out of alignment, rendering the threads instantly useless. Or if they become clogged after thousands of rounds it could take some a chunk of time and elbow grease to clean the gunk out and make it serviceable again.


To keep the threads in good working order, prudent owners slot a thread protector onto their barrel when not in use. Most threaded barrels don’t come with a thread protector out of the box so you’ll need to find one on your own. Most companies out there make boring standard thread protectors, nothing more than black metal tubes. But for those looking for something a little more stylish, Backup Tactical may have just the ticket.


Backup Tactical machines their thread protectors out of aluminum, a material soft enough to not gouge or scratch your threads but tough enough to stand up to the typical wear and tear you would expect on the barrel of a gun. Not only are they functional, but the biggest selling point for Backup Tactical’s product is that they add a little extra flair to your already pimped out gun. Whether you want a laser-etched Spartan, a utilitarian cross-hatch, or even a hot pink camo pattern it’s all possible.

Backup Tactical’s protectors are available in the following pitches:

  • 1/2×28
  • 13.5×1 LH
  • .578×28
  • 16×1 LH
  • 5/8×24

Out on the range, the thread protectors work as advertised. They slot on easily and, just as important, stay put. And they don’t scratch easily.


What more do you need? Not every design is my cup of tea, but…horses for courses. There are a few Backup Tactical looks that I’d totally pay $30 for. If there’s one that would look good on your gat, go for it.

Specifications: Backup Tactical Thread Protector
MSRP: $29.99

Overall: * * * *
I’ve seen thread protectors for less, but not much less. The style is where Backup Tactical’s protectors really stand out.


  1. avatar pwrserge says:

    I would hesitate about the smooth ones. Getting a thread protector off of your barrel after a few months of running it hard can be a challenge. Without some grippy surface to help transfer the torque, I can see some of these becoming effectively permanent muzzle devices.

    1. avatar Anon in CT says:

      I seem to have the opposite problem – after a while the thread protector just vibrates loose.

      1. avatar sagebrushracer says:

        a very small dab of purple low strength locktite (222 i think) will do the trick. My r/c cars and trucks all get certain parts with blue or purple locktite. Because if its important to the function, it will only fall off during race time, never during practice.

  2. avatar 2A approved says:

    No aluminum either, might become gummy and not want come off.

    1. avatar OODAloop says:

      I tend to use anti-seize on mine, especially after a particularly heinous Noveske KX5 incident. I still shudder at the forces required to get that thing off my barrel for cleaning. I now buy anti-seize by the ounce, instead of by the gram.

    2. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      Fine internal threads in aluminum are generally considered a dubious proposition by machinists, unless they’re created with a forming tap. I have no idea whether these are cut or formed threads.

      On top of that, if this were left on the muzzle for a long time without removal, one should use some form of anti-seize goop, because aluminum in intimate contact with steel tends to corrode.

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        I have both copper and aluminum anti-seize compound.

        Anything I need to be aware of before using one or the other?

        1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

          In this application, not really. I prefer copper anti-seize in most applications.

  3. avatar strych9 says:

    I’ll stick with my boring old black protectors with a grip pattern on the outside, thanks though.

    Pro Tip: Don’t drop money on a thread protector for a rifle like an AR. Just thread the OEM muzzle device back on to hand tight or a bit less and use the crush washer that came on the rifle. It’s free and it works just as well.

    1. avatar Snake Plisskin says:

      I agree. I put a LWD threaded barrel in my G17 and ordered one of their garden-variety thread protectors. Seems like it was about 15 bucks. works fine for me.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        That is one thing that annoys me about Glock. My wife’s G21 came with this crap slip on plasticking ring.

  4. avatar OODAloop says:

    So $30 for a “tacticool” thread protector? We’ve seriously moved into the arena of spending money for the sake of spending money. You can get a perfectly functional protector off Amazon for $7 with free shipping. Especially with the graphics, I can see the plastic wraps (or even paint) boiling off after a day in a 800-900 round class, and all you’ll have to show for it is a sooty Ol’ Glory thread protector. Thank you, but no. I’ll buy another 2 or 3 boxes of ammo for a training class instead.

    1. avatar doesky2 says:

      I happened to buy some of those $7 Ebay ones and they work great. The particular ones I ordered were from vendor downrangeproducts. Their knurled ones are grippy and deep.

  5. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    In for Glock with A2 style birdcage.

    1. avatar OODAloop says:

      Heck yeah! ‘cept make sure it’s a .458 SOCOM-sized A2-style birdcage or you’ll be in trouble.

    2. avatar NineShooter says:

      Andrew, I don’t think you can get A2-style birdcage flash hiders for the factory-threaded M13.5 X 1LH barrel.

      But if you have a source, I’m listening…

      1. avatar Andrew Lias says:

        A quick internet search says that HK style ones will fit as do seem Steyer AUG with some mods possibly. I was half kidding but I need a cheap 1/2-36 for my AR. May chop the barrel to 13, thread it and attach a flash can to get the 3″ back.

        Why no one makes a barrel like that as is for 9mm is beyond me.

  6. avatar Charlie Mike says:

    Geeze ladies. When you’re done with your makeup, can we get back to operating?

  7. avatar Michael says:

    Operators operating operationally go with black….just saying

    1. avatar Doug says:

      Glad I didn’t see any in orange….

  8. avatar Locke_n_Load says:

    “You could accidentally drop your threaded gun and bend one of the threads out of alignment, rendering the threads instantly useless. Or if they become clogged after thousands of rounds it could take some a chunk of time and elbow grease to clean the gunk out and make it serviceable again.”

    Ever heard of taps and dies?

    1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      For the finer threads (ie, > 24 TPI), I’d recommend not using a die, especially if the damage is (as it often is) near muzzle on the threads. If you do, you should use a die alignment spud, available from Brownells.

    2. avatar Curtis in IL says:

      I’ve had better luck over the years with a thread file on various bolts. A die can just make things worse, because the damaged threads are always on the end and the die doesn’t have any good threads to index on.

      1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

        Thread files work well on coarser threads, and most bolts are Class 2A threads. Most thread files won’t be fine enough for most muzzle threads. You can, with sufficient skill, use a triangle needle file to work the threads – but as I say, you will need skill.

        Most muzzle threads for suppressors now are Class 3A threads. If you use a thread file (and even most dies) on them, you’re going to turn them into less than Class 3 threads. Many suppressors are now using the pitch diameter of the threads for coaxial alignment of the can – so if you degrade the threads, you can cause misalignment of the can, resulting in baffle strikes. Therefore, I would not recommend filing on muzzle threads if you’ve dinged the threads and you mount a suppressor on the barrel. The threads will need to be single-pointed on a lathe again.

        For a flash hider or brake – it isn’t as big a deal, and you can repair the threads with a file or die.

  9. avatar Frank says:

    I use such backup tactical thread protector for almost a year and happy with the choice.

  10. avatar gargoil says:

    its amazing, and kinda homoerotic, what men will do to impress other men. glad im not like that.

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