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I just recently got an LC9 but since they're not for sale here in California I was pkeased to see that the serial number is only on the metal insert, which means any other oart is replaceable if it breaks down. However, I'm wondering what the typical life of the slide rails on the metal insert is? Do the slide rails thin with each firing? So let's say 200k rounds through it, will the metal slide rails wear down to the point that the pistol is no longer usable? I'm not concerned about the polymer frame cracking because that part is easily replaceable. However, the alide rails are not.
 

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The frame insert is aluminum. Hopefully 7075, but not mentioned anywhere. This is the piece with the serial number which requires the atf paperwork and background check if purchased from a retailer. These are only available assembled as a firearm.

The plastic grip frame does not have a serial number. It is not controlled. But Ruger does not sell them separately. These can be obtained as part of a parts kit from a decommissioned firearm from places like one of the Gunbusters franchises on GunBroker.

A parts kit is usually everything but the frame insert, disassembled and in a bag. The LC9s kits usually sell for $~60-80 as long as I am not bidding. Once I try to buy one, they go up to $125+.

The slide rails (and complete frames) of the P Series P85, P89, P90, P91, P93, and P94, were all aluminum. Aluminum has a pretty good reputation for long life as slide rails.
The later P Series P95, P97, and P345 slide rails and firearms were glass filled nylon. They seemed to function with long lives without complaint.
Ruger pistols have a bit of a reputation for the slides rattling on the rails. Anything that would prevent this movement would also interfere with the free movement of the slide through it's range of motion, back and forth. Really, the only thing to dampen the movement is the spring pushing up the top round in the magazine, pressing against the bottom of the slide.
It's nice if it doesn't rattle, but there isn't anything necessarily wrong with it, if it does.
 
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