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If you would -not- buy your mini 14 again-

This is a discussion on If you would -not- buy your mini 14 again- within the Ruger Semi-Auto forums, part of the Rifle & Shotgun Forum category; Originally Posted by sam wheeler I keep my Mini14 around just because we should all have a semi-auto rifle? I really do like it. But ...


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Old April 4th, 2016, 06:30 PM   #61
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sam wheeler View Post
I keep my Mini14 around just because we should all have a semi-auto rifle? I really do like it. But it never gets shot in favor of my bolt rifles. I shot an AR the other day and got the same "meh" feeling. YMMV.
I agree. I love my Mini just because I want to have a semi-auto and I like the wood and steel style and feel. After years in the Army an AR is just meh as far as I'm concerned. I love my bolt actions and ordered a CZ 527 in 223 last week. I'm getting anxious waiting for it to come in.



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Old April 4th, 2016, 07:58 PM   #62
 
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Would I buy one? Not as long as I have my Garand. I'll take it over any Mini14/30 or AR rifle. Only drawback of the Garand is you only get 8 shots, but I'll live with that. My Garand is my favorite weapon.
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Old April 5th, 2016, 09:03 AM   #63
 
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Originally Posted by Bear56 View Post
I agree. I love my Mini just because I want to have a semi-auto and I like the wood and steel style and feel. After years in the Army an AR is just meh as far as I'm concerned. I love my bolt actions and ordered a CZ 527 in 223 last week. I'm getting anxious waiting for it to come in.
I agree regarding AR's, after years of shooting them in the Army just no interest in them. Also AR type are restricted in Canada which means a special permit to go to a licensed range and back home. While the Mini is in the governments sights for an outright ban, I'll keep shooting it until it dies or I'm forced to turn it in. Like my bolts as well, fun guns.
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Old April 6th, 2016, 03:34 AM   #64
 
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mavracer, could you list the performance mods and the extent of improvement (scale of 1-10 with ten being the best) tnks.
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Old April 6th, 2016, 06:08 AM   #65
 
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No

Despite two barrels, several different types of ammunition, many hours at the range on hot days, cold days, rainy days and nice days and with several different sighting configurations, the best accuracy I can get out of my 582 series Mini Thirty is minute of pie plate at 100 yards. Period.
That said, I like the design, the rifle runs great and is a hoot to shoot.
But, as Townsend Whelen once said "Only accurate rifles are interesting".
Mine is just not accurate. So, no I would not buy another.
By contrast, my Ruger AR556 has been a complete all around success.
Thanks

Last edited by Spitnine; April 6th, 2016 at 06:23 AM.
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Old April 6th, 2016, 04:50 PM   #66
 
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I cut the barrel back to 16.1" and installed a linear compensator/faux suppressor, put the laminate stock you see and pillar beaded the action, I also installed a smaller gas port bushing and did some trigger work. It really doesn't shoot that much better but it's a lot easier to shoot as good or better than it did before if that makes sense.
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Old April 7th, 2016, 03:13 AM   #67
 
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I think I know exactly what you mean, tnks.
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Old April 7th, 2016, 04:19 AM   #68
 
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Some do report accuracy issues, not many but enough where a prospective buyer should take notice. Does anyone have direct experience that they would share with regard to aftermarket barrels and where to have this change done?; again the use is strictly reactive plinking at whatever distance the gun works at.
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Old April 7th, 2016, 04:46 AM   #69
 
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I've shot several of my friend's minis, and after those experiences I wouldn't ever consider buying one. Both were terribly inaccurate to the point of producing shotgun type patterns on a 100 yd target instead of a group.
Both guys stuck on oodles of costly modifications to get them to shoot just mediocre.
IMO a mini is a huge waste of money. Save up extra dollars and buy a Garand. You won't be sorry.
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Old April 7th, 2016, 10:08 AM   #70
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shootbrownelk View Post
I've shot several of my friend's minis, and after those experiences I wouldn't ever consider buying one. Both were terribly inaccurate to the point of producing shotgun type patterns on a 100 yd target instead of a group.
Both guys stuck on oodles of costly modifications to get them to shoot just mediocre.
IMO a mini is a huge waste of money. Save up extra dollars and buy a Garand. You won't be sorry.
Spoken by a gentleman who doesn't own one and doesn't know of what he speaks. Likely the ones he shot were early 'pencil barrel' versions with aftermarket mods that didn't address the fundamental issues. The current Minis have addressed the issues to a large extent and further, there are simple, straightforward methods and mods that can turn the Mini into a piece more accurate that shootbrownelk's suggested M1 Garand.

How do I know? Not only do I have a 583 Series Mini Ranch Rifle that I've added mods to to get it to a 1-1 MOA shooter with irons, but I also own and shoot 2 M1 Garands (one a Criterion barreled Special Service), 2 M1 Carbines, and a Springfield M1A with NM sights. So I know what my Mini will do against bowling pins at 200 and 300 yds compared to my M1A at them, both wearing 'NM' level precision iron sights (.042"/.052" rear apertures / thinned front sight posts) because I actually own and shoot both.

Properly tweaked, a Mini is a fine carbine. No, it's not a precision shooter but neither is any M1 Garand or M1A, and certainly not a M1 Carbine. BTW, I also have 3 ARs including 2ea mid gas carbines and an A4 that is my long range, scoped setup I shoot at medium sized apples with at 400+yds with almost exclusively.

There are a lot of junk add-on parts that do very little if anything to enhance the Mini's performance and accuracy. The ones that have demonstrated that they actually work are:
  • Accu-Strut, either SOCOM length or better the LT: $80 - acts as both a barrel stabilizer and heat sink to both provide harmonic dampening and reduce heating.
  • Trigger job or at least smoothing of the sears: $0 - $60 - smooths out the break at least and shortens, lightens, and crisps up the trigger pull at best.
  • Choate Hand Guard: $15 - allows considerably more air circulation than stock Ruger Handguard aiding in barrel cooling which increases accuracy.
  • Reduced size gas bushing: $10 - reducing the Mini-14's to .045" and Mini-30's to .060" reduces the violent cycling forces Ruger insists on using because some shooters insist on using cheap, junk, commie ammo with it's inconsistent pressures.
  • Torque the gas block: $0 - when reassembling the gas block after inserting the smaller aperture gas bushings, torque the screws to 30in/lbs evenly has shown to improve accuracy as Ruger just tightens up the screws at random levels.
  • Wilson 1911 bushings: $6 for 3 sets - eliminates the metal-to-metal clanging at both ends of the action's cycling, quieting the cycling forces further.
  • Tech Sights Mini200 rear sight: $65 - for irons shooters these sights are an upgrade overs Ruger's stock ones, especially the pre-58X series Minis.
  • Tightening the action in the stock: $0 - can be done with card stock to solidly fix the action in the stock to eliminate movement for better accuracy.
  • Shorten and re-crown Pencil Barrels: $0 - Gunsmith - on early pencil barreled Minis, shortening the barrel to 16", adding a target crown, and sometimes a flash hider like the $49 Choate front sight/flash hider has been shown to reduce barrel whip and improve accuracy. Coupled with an Accu-Strut, some pencil barreled Minis produce sub-MOA performance with handloaded ammo.
  • Throw out the junk commie, steel cased ammo and use quality ammo in your Mini. Mil XM193 and M855 ammo is good quality, however, it's bullets are not spec'd by the military to be especially accurate. For accuracy, good quality commercial ammo in weights best for your Mini's barrel twist (early 1:10; after 1988 twist changed 1:7; in mid-1994 twist changed to 1:9) will produce considerable better accuracy and much better groups.
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Old April 7th, 2016, 10:23 AM   #71
 
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Steve covered it perfectly, My 583 with those mods get 1 1/2-2in. at 100yrds and that is all I expected form it.Like he said if your looking for a tack driver get something else.
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Old April 8th, 2016, 02:45 AM   #72
 
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If someone was looking for a smith of high repute to do work on a mini or purchase a complete custom gun who might one contact?
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Old April 8th, 2016, 03:26 AM   #73
 
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Originally Posted by snubby View Post
If someone was looking for a smith of high repute to do work on a mini or purchase a complete custom gun who might one contact?
I live in Mississippi and I used Dixie Precision Rifles out of Brandon, MS to put a Shilen Heavy Barrel on my Mini. They do great work, and they told me if I had any problems out of my Mini 14 they can fix it. They fabricate rifles, and can smith on any firearm you would need them to. Fair warning, the guy that owns the place is kinda high in price, but quality is unmatched. here are a few links to his shop.

main website: Dixie Precision Rifles, LLC
face book: https://www.facebook.com/DixiePrecisionRifles/
And if you want to get to know about them a little better here is one of the gunsmith's youtube channel. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCI7...?nohtml5=False

Do a google search for Dixie Precision Rifles and you will get all the info you need. reviews, forums, all kinds of details.

Here is just a small example of what DPR did for me.

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Old April 8th, 2016, 08:12 AM   #74
 
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My 582 series Tactical Mini has never had a problem. The only change I did was swap the sights. The only downside to the mini is removing the bolt. Maybe I'm stupid, but I think field stripping the mini 14 is a pain in the butt.
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Old April 8th, 2016, 01:32 PM   #75
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vip torture View Post
My 582 series Tactical Mini has never had a problem. The only change I did was swap the sights. The only downside to the mini is removing the bolt. Maybe I'm stupid, but I think field stripping the mini 14 is a pain in the butt.
Hope this helps.

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