Well during my initial Mini-14 ATI Tactical clean-up (never fired) last Sunday, I did a rookie (dumb
) thing and removed the gas block (this in spite of reviewing a number of videos on the disassembly - BUT all
were for the ranch model - so I'll plead this as my reason for the goof
So after several hours of high anxiety and making preparations to send the barrel or entire gun back to Ruger, I decided what the heck and thought how to re-attach the block.
I partially assembled the gun with the bolt slide pressed forward on the gas tube by the spring. Used an automotive feeler gauge and slowly rotated the tightening the four screws side to side/front to back, all the while adjusting the gauges utilized to assure equal balance on both sides (plus occassionaly tested the bolt slide for continued line-up). Though did not have a torque wrench, I tightened all screws by feel.
Read that if I was off, the gun would not eject or operate properly. So I went to the range on Monday morning and shot two twenty and one thirty magazine loads of Rem. & Fed. FMJ 223 without a single problem.
Gun operated flawlessly and accuracy was outstanding (40 yds max at indoor) with iron sites and old eyes. Note: Went home and checked all components, screws, and cleaned rifle and saw no problems.
If anyone with more experience in these matters can offer advice to this novice, I'd be grateful. Hopefully I didn't mess up this great rifle.