AR15.Com Archives
 Ok, so why is the Ruger Mini 14 so inaccurate?
supersy1  [Member]
11/5/2009 9:39:28 PM

Ok, so why is the Ruger Mini 14 so inaccurate?

All I have ever heard is that this rifle is inaccurate so please someone school me on this and tell me why.

Thank you
Paid Advertisement
--
Wyzardd  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 9:54:57 PM
It's because Bill sold out to the helmet law folks. That made the gun sloppy.


(ETA - just getting a shot in before the Bill Ruger bashers. "A shot in"... that's a joke son, a knee slapper)
RedFalconBill  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 10:06:21 PM
Since Ruger redesigned the Mini production line, went to in-house hammer forged barrels of a larger diameter, and more consistent gas block attachment, the Mini-14 is a better rifle.

The old stories were true for a variety of reasons.

One thing I wish Ruger would do was introduce 10 and 20 round magazines for the Mini-30, and the Mini-14 in 6.8 SPC.
P08  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 10:07:28 PM
Poor accuracy has always been tied to the barrels.
BillofRights  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 10:12:34 PM
Nobody knows HOW they could be so inaccurate. It's a mystery, and that is why it's an enduring legend.

You just have to accept the fact that they are absolute shit, or ignore all advice and find out for yourself. I confirmed it in two different rifles. (It was before Arfcom, and I was a slow learner)

MOP (Minute of pieplate) accuracy. +12 MOA, slow fire, off a bench, with a scope. But only if you do your part.
UncleMike  [Member]
11/5/2009 10:21:01 PM

Originally Posted By RedFalconBill:
Since Ruger redesigned the Mini production line, went to in-house hammer forged barrels of a larger diameter, and more consistent gas block attachment, the Mini-14 is a better rifle.

The old stories were true for a variety of reasons.

One thing I wish Ruger would do was introduce 10 and 20 round magazines for the Mini-30, and the Mini-14 in 6.8 SPC.
Check Ruger's web site. they now sell 20 round Mini 30 mags.

RedFalconBill  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 10:29:59 PM
Originally Posted By UncleMike:

Originally Posted By RedFalconBill:
Since Ruger redesigned the Mini production line, went to in-house hammer forged barrels of a larger diameter, and more consistent gas block attachment, the Mini-14 is a better rifle.

The old stories were true for a variety of reasons.

One thing I wish Ruger would do was introduce 10 and 20 round magazines for the Mini-30, and the Mini-14 in 6.8 SPC.
Check Ruger's web site. they now sell 20 round Mini 30 mags.


Really? I checked last Tuesday and nothing!

ETA: Still not high caps in 6.8, though.
AL_Safety  [Member]
11/5/2009 10:33:29 PM
I've always felt that the mini-14's I've owned have been inaccurate due to a combo of the poor sights (a big, thick blade front and wide aperture rear sight) coupled with a lightweight barrel that has tension on it at the gas block. The barrel isn't free floated, and I personally think the ruger gas block / stock combo puts more pressure on the barrel than a standard AR. Add to that a 1/10 barrel twist in the guns I owned means you need to shoot light weight bullets. Biggest problem IMO is the sights though. I never put a scope on the minis I owned, maybe they would have been better.
machinisttx  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 10:39:42 PM
Barrel whip, reciprocating mass, and sometimes poor stock fit.
machinisttx  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 10:40:13 PM
Originally Posted By UncleMike:

Originally Posted By RedFalconBill:
Since Ruger redesigned the Mini production line, went to in-house hammer forged barrels of a larger diameter, and more consistent gas block attachment, the Mini-14 is a better rifle.

The old stories were true for a variety of reasons.

One thing I wish Ruger would do was introduce 10 and 20 round magazines for the Mini-30, and the Mini-14 in 6.8 SPC.
Check Ruger's web site. they now sell 20 round Mini 30 mags.



I'm gonna have to buy some I guess. ETA: Mini 30 page lists 20 rounders but the only ones listed in the accessories section are five rounds.
AlanP  [Member]
11/5/2009 10:51:32 PM
This again?
Old ones were random whether or not they would hit a 55gal drum. New ones normally get 2-3moa depending on the model. Alot of folks say the short "tacticals" get better accuracy due to less barrel to whip around.
B44T  [Team Member]
11/5/2009 11:11:06 PM
Why the mini doesn't generally group as tight as an AR ?
Before the new improved mini:
Barrels were full of stress and heated up quickly, gas blocks were not fitted consistently, wood stocks warped and shrank with changes in weather, the action was over gassed/overpowered, the rear sights apertures were sloppy in the sight base, triggers were not great, barrels were a bit thin and whipped, stock to receiver fit was serviceable but not great.
Just my opinion based on my experience with a half dozen Mini-14's.
That said, I still think its worth having one in the collection. They are decent sturdy dependable rifle.
I have no experience with the new improved Mini.


ntmid8r333  [Member]
11/5/2009 11:18:00 PM
I have a mini 14 that has killed deer every season for the past 12 years. I am not shooting @ Camp Perry with it. Just deer. Therefore, if you can shoot well, then I consider it a great little gun to deer hunt with. YMMV
JIP  [Team Member]
11/6/2009 12:14:31 AM
I have never fired one but I guess that would explain why noone ever got shot on the A-team...

asddff33  [Member]
11/6/2009 12:28:44 AM
The mini 14 isn't that bad if you want something for home defense. Target shooters and long range shooters need not apply. My old man bought me one for my b-day and we had a red dot scope attached to it. My family and I shot 5 round bursts at the target a few times (about 100 rounds of ammo were expended). The bursts were able to group at minute of mayo jar lid as long as we did our part.

EDIT: I am referring to the new mini 14
NVGdude  [Member]
11/6/2009 2:57:36 AM
There are a couple of reasons.

1) the attachment of the gas system to the barrel can distort the barrel slightly.
2) whippy barrel that is not free floated
3) poor ammo selection.
4) really crappy iron sights. I hate the Mini front sight.

Re 3) above. The very early minis had a 1:12 twist, but Ruger changed to 1:7 early on. Either with the 181 or 182 series. They then switched to 1:9 with the series 186. The 1:7 twist really overstressed 55 grain bullets. I've even seen a mini with a 1:7 disintegrate 55 grain varmint bullets before. Several LEO agencies found that the 55 grain ammo they were using would group really well at 50 yards and then open up to a pattern instead of a group. Go up to 62 or heavier and the 1:7 Minis are a lot more accurate than most people think.
M1A4ME  [Member]
11/6/2009 6:33:47 AM
I bought my SS mini14 back in '83 or '84. I put a scope on it eventually and I thought it was less accurate with the scope. I assumed it was the way the mount attached to the side of the receiver (replaced the plate over the bolt hold open mechanism) and I took the scope/mount off of it.

Either the Ruger manual or the reloading manual I was using back then warned against using the thin jacketed varmint bullets in the rifle due to the twist (1 turn in 9 inches I believe, but it could be faster). Sure enough, when firing them you can see a wild spiral smoke trail off the bullet and 2 or 3 out of 10 come apart before the reach the 100 yd. target.

It was the first semi-auto centerfire rifle my son's ever fired and they really liked it. It's been 10 years or so since my youngest son fired it and he now has an assortment of centerfire rifles (AR, FAL, M1A, Savage) and he was talking about the mini the other day and how much he enjoyed shooting it.

Use it for what it was intended for vs. trying to make it into what it is not.
Para069  [Team Member]
11/6/2009 7:34:27 PM
Because its a piece of shit
Colin224  [Member]
11/6/2009 8:50:26 PM
What ammo are you using? I have had nothing but bad luck shooting anything much bigger than the 55 grain options. What type of optics if any are you using and what also what size groups are you getting at what range. Remember this was never meant to be a MOA rifle.
Weldingrod  [Member]
11/7/2009 4:13:17 PM
I think the new ones ought to do about 2 MOA or better with quality ammo, even with the design issues mentioned above (thin non-floated barrel with attached gas system, poor trigger break quality, etc).

I think another factor is that many who purchase a Mini are not very sophisticated or skilled as shooters. So they have an exceptionally poor experience. A light weight rifle with a poor trigger break, being shot with iron sights and bargain ammo, probably without adequate time between shots to allow the light barrel to cool, by a someone who isn't already a very skilled marksman is likely to produce very, very poor results on paper.

Plus in my experience, the Mini can change POI substantially with a change of load. I have seen a change of POI of about 6 inches at 100 yards when changing from 52 or 55 grain ammo to 75 grain match ammo. Even between lighter factory loads there were some pretty noticeable changes in POI. Something some may overlook when busting cans or whatever.

All that said, I have no use for a rifle that is won't do sub MOA with a high powered optic and match ammo. I have bought two Minis, one in the 80s and one of the new ones a year or so ago, and have sold them both. Personally I found the accuracy of the new not too bad given the poor trigger and its light weight. However the trigger pull was just aweful with a mile of creep in the second stage which made precise shooting much more demanding than should have been the case. I wasn't interested in trying to fix it.
wesmerc  [Team Member]
11/7/2009 5:01:40 PM
I would love Mini's if they were $300. At the price they sell for I have no idea why people buy them.
BallisticTip  [Team Member]
11/7/2009 5:54:26 PM
I like them, very reliable.
Gravity3694  [Member]
11/7/2009 6:29:46 PM
Originally Posted By wesmerc:
I would love Mini's if they were $300. At the price they sell for I have no idea why people buy them.


For a few hundred $ more you can't just buy an AR15 instead.
Keith_J  [Team Member]
11/8/2009 3:27:16 PM
Design, plain and simple. It was a bastardized scale-down of the M14, hence its name. It was not engineered because James Sullivan, its designer, was just a glorified drafter. And when Stoner had him scale down the AR10 to 5.56, he thought a better idea was to scale down the M14.

Because the AR10 was engineered to isolate the operating system from the barrel, it didn't suffer from scale down process. But the Mini 14? Major fail since barrel stiffness decreases far more rapidly than linear scaling down.

When the bullet passes the gas port, the reciprocating masses are accelerated, producing an equal and opposite reaction in the barrel. This causes great barrel flex in the whippy .2245" bore. And when the Mini 30 was introduced, it proved this since the barrel regained its lost stiffness.
TheEngineer  [Member]
11/8/2009 7:16:16 PM
Originally Posted By Gravity3694:
Originally Posted By wesmerc:
I would love Mini's if they were $300. At the price they sell for I have no idea why people buy them.


For a few hundred $ more you can't just buy an AR15 instead.


Or an SR-556 .

Steve_Canyon  [Member]
11/9/2009 5:37:09 AM
Mini 14 "inaccuracy" comes from a number of factors.

1. Stock/action interface. If your action will freely dislodge itself from the stock during cleaning, you need a new stock or a bedding job. This is an issue with both the M1 Garand and M14 also. Sloppy receiver/stock fit doesn't make for an accurate rifle.

2. Terribulous sights. Standard, of course we are talking pre 586 rifles here, have horrible sights. The rear sight is adequate but the front blade is way to big for precision, then again it was designed to be robust, highly visable and quick to use not for Camp Perry. The Ranch model's sights are barely adequate for thier intended purposes, which was to supplement a scope. Bad sights make for bad groups.

3. Disruptive harmonics. The fixed piston/reciprocating cylander design bangs against the barrel/receiver as does the op-rod. This causes harmonics/reverbirations in the barrel than adversely affect accuracy. This is also an issue with the Garand and M14 but to a slightly lesser degree.

4. Not great triggers. Pretty self explanitory.... Its an evolution of the M1 Carbine, not M25 people...

5. Poor fitting of operating components. Several components must be hand fit and thus some are good, some not so much. GB models are great in this aspect. They use select components, sized and gauged for maximum accuracy and are hand fit/trued by a master gunsmith. GB/AC production was different than standard rifles.

6. Barrel optimized for handling, not accuracy. Thus, its much to light considering the rapid fire design and the quirks of the operating system.

7. Weapon not optimized or designed to be a NM rifle. This is probably the biggest thing... Seems like the people who own Mini 14's understand them the least.

These are just a few of the big offenders. Naturally, we are talking pre 586 Standard and Ranch models, not GB's. Its possible to make an accurate Standard or Ranch model. Trim the barrel to 16 inches to improve ridgitidy. Add a flashider and better front sight. Replace OEM stock with a Choate or Butler Creek. With these changes, not to hard to make a Mini 14 shoot 2 MOA with good .223 ammo.


supersy1  [Member]
11/9/2009 7:07:29 AM
Thank you. All very interesting replies. I will skip the M14 for now.
riceshooter  [Member]
11/9/2009 3:48:10 PM
Great thread! I don't have the best understanding of the Ruger's action, but could the Mini-14 deliver more

acceptable performance if it was better engineered from the start like Keith suggests? I have read that

Ruger added a better barrel to the new guns which has improved performance. However, could Ruger

have changed something else like the gas system to increase performance without increasing costs?

I like the idea of the mini-14, and I think it could be a great alternative to their more expensive SR-556 if

it had better performance. Also, a .308 "XGI" version would easily compete with M1a rifles.
wessono  [Team Member]
11/9/2009 5:11:11 PM
The new models are MUCH better than the old ones. I'm actually kind of pleased with how my new model one shoots, compared to the one I had 15 years ago.
seargeantjim  [Member]
11/9/2009 5:22:36 PM
I recently sighted in a stainless Ranch model that was scoped, I did multiple 1.5 MOA groups with it using XM-193.
monkeyman  [Member]
11/10/2009 8:18:50 PM
Al Gore invented the internet and screwed them all up.
oxnardkid  [Member]
11/11/2009 2:26:51 PM
There is no doubt that the newer (Previous 10-15 years) mini-14s are a different animal than they used to be. The old wood stocks were there for looks and not put on well. Modern day minis espicially with the synthetic stocks are very accurate, 1.5 moa. I have always been very happy with my mini-14. And at the risk of getting booted off this site after getting cused at a few times I will say that the mini-14 is more reliable and requires less maintenance than the AR platform.

And the A-team always hit what they were aiming at, they were just not interested in shooting people. If you were chasing the A-team and you were a front tire or radiator your life was very short.
lithgow303  [Member]
11/11/2009 2:48:30 PM
Bill Ruger designed it that way so he could never be shot with a rifle he created...
Sgt911  [Member]
11/11/2009 3:44:45 PM
I just bought one of the regular stock tactical versions and it is surprisingly accurate.
mallard100  [Member]
11/12/2009 3:43:40 PM
Originally Posted By AL_Safety:
I've always felt that the mini-14's I've owned have been inaccurate due to a combo of the poor sights (a big, thick blade front and wide aperture rear sight) coupled with a lightweight barrel that has tension on it at the gas block. The barrel isn't free floated, and I personally think the ruger gas block / stock combo puts more pressure on the barrel than a standard AR. Add to that a 1/10 barrel twist in the guns I owned means you need to shoot light weight bullets. Biggest problem IMO is the sights though. I never put a scope on the minis I owned, maybe they would have been better.


hey hiram, cool av
JamesP81  [Team Member]
11/12/2009 3:45:46 PM
I think the Mini-14s achilles heal is the gas block.

It puts a lot of pressure on the barrel and creates additional stresses. This situation has improved a lot lately, especially the rifles with the tapered barrel just ahead of the gas block.

Furthermore, the Mini needs a good bedding job, ESPECIALLY the ones with wood stocks. Unbedded Minis with wood stocks have a habit of throwing fliers. The synthetic hogue stock largely eliminates this problem, as does bedding a wood stock.
JamesP81  [Team Member]
11/12/2009 3:51:21 PM
Further thought.

Someone upthread suggested re-designing the Mini. I've considered just that as a project, since I have access to a few machine tools

I had two lines of thought on this.

The Mini-14 is based on the M14 / M1 Garand long stroke gas piston action. The Garand and the M14 both have a somewhat different gas block set up. If you look at an M14, you'll notice that the gas travels further before impinging the piston, probably 3 inches or so. With a Mini-14, the gas probably travels less than an inch. This suggests to me that the Mini's gas system is too violent. Re working the gas block to sit further forward, more like the Garand set up, might yield a good result.

My other thought was, instead of using the Garand action, would be to use a slide and tappet set up based on the 30 Carbine. This has a couple of advantages, not least of which being that the 30 Carbine gas system generally is lighter than the long stroke Garand-type system.

I would also include pillar bedding of the action as a standard feature in either case.
SamK  [Member]
11/12/2009 4:16:22 PM
There are gas "bushings" that correct the over-gassed mini. The new, thicker bbl.'s seem to correct the bad harmonics the older, thinner bbl.'s had. The accu-strut was a bolt on part known fix to dampen the harmonics on older rifles. All things said about the mini, I've never had one choke. I may be the only gun owner EVER to regret getting rid my mini (at least, the only one to admit it). The new ones look real nice with the better sights and flash suppressor. It'd be hard to pass one up for a good price ($450-$600).
Wyzardd  [Team Member]
11/12/2009 4:37:16 PM
After my post, I now have to admit that I've never shot one. I owned one for a couple of years but sold it, unfired, and bought a Remington 700VLS. That was an old model Mini14 so I went from a probable 3+ MOA to a sub 1 MOA and was well pleased. But if the new Mini's are pushing 1.5 or so, I might consider picking up another one. I'm kind of bored with the AR platform lately and need a new toy. Either a Colt SAA or a Mini would fill that void ... for a few months
WIZZO_ARAKM14  [Team Member]
11/12/2009 7:13:33 PM
Originally Posted By oxnardkid:
And at the risk of getting booted off this site after getting cused at a few times I will say that the mini-14 is more reliable and requires less maintenance than the AR platform.


Right.....
cosmos556  [Member]
11/12/2009 7:39:38 PM
Originally Posted By WIZZO_ARAKM14:
Originally Posted By oxnardkid:
And at the risk of getting booted off this site after getting cused at a few times I will say that the mini-14 is more reliable and requires less maintenance than the AR platform.


Right.....


Huh? More reliable? I need to see some empirical evidence on this claim. If it's the cat's meow, why is the DoD wasting the past 40 years with the less reliable and maintenance needy M16/M4?? Hell, tell the DoD to close their new carbine trials, you have the solution they've waited almost 50 years for!
JamesP81  [Team Member]
11/13/2009 11:08:00 AM
Originally Posted By cosmos556:
Originally Posted By WIZZO_ARAKM14:
Originally Posted By oxnardkid:
And at the risk of getting booted off this site after getting cused at a few times I will say that the mini-14 is more reliable and requires less maintenance than the AR platform.


Right.....


Huh? More reliable? I need to see some empirical evidence on this claim. If it's the cat's meow, why is the DoD wasting the past 40 years with the less reliable and maintenance needy M16/M4?? Hell, tell the DoD to close their new carbine trials, you have the solution they've waited almost 50 years for!


There is some truth to this claim, but some misinformation as well.

It's well known that gas piston rifles foul at a slower rate than DI rifles. The Mini-14, being a gas piston gun, stays cleaner in the action for a lot longer. However, reliability is more than just cleanliness.

The Mini has a few small parts that Ruger cheaped out on that are prone to breaking, the firing pin and the ranch rifle's rear sight's being two of the bigger culprits. Problem is that the firing pins in these rifles have to be fitted and Ruger won't even sell one to you.

The Mini-14 has potential to have superior reliability to the AR platform, but it's execution has not achieved that level of reliability.
nhsport  [Team Member]
11/13/2009 12:49:28 PM
Originally Posted By BillofRights:
Nobody knows HOW they could be so inaccurate. It's a mystery, and that is why it's an enduring legend.

You just have to accept the fact that they are absolute shit, or ignore all advice and find out for yourself. I confirmed it in two different rifles. (It was before Arfcom, and I was a slow learner)

MOP (Minute of pieplate) accuracy. +12 MOA, slow fire, off a bench, with a scope. But only if you do your part.


Me too. I learned with just one, could barely hold a trash can lid off the bench at 50 yards. To be fair a buddy had a bashed up one he bought used that would shoot ball ammo with iron sights into 4" or so at 100yds

Killed me that a Mosin that had been through at least two wars with corrisive ammo and had a barrel that looked like a old water pipe on the inside and a trigger that was worse than the Ruger could outshoot it by a factor of ten.

The way Ruger absolutely gets under my skin is they have a near perfect concept and design along with a vast manufacturing empire that should result in a great reasonably priced rifle but they screwed it up about ten ways to hell. The new ones are supposed to better but why bother for the price?

Maineyack  [Member]
11/14/2009 9:20:22 AM
Very interesting thread.

I bought a stainless Mini-30 back in 1998 and have always enjoyed shooting it because I enjoy shooting period. Now, hitting what you aim at can be fun too, but Ruger has always been infinately better at the fun part and not-so-much the hitting what you aim at part.

My $79.00 SKS that I purchased back in 1992 out-shoots my $679.00 Mini-30 by about 100%. 2-3 inch groups for the SKS as apposed to 4-5 inch groups for the Mini-30. I tried several scopes and many handload combos to no avail.

Three weeks ago a buddy of mine and I had a really fun day at the range, especially when my newly minted home-built Frankenplinker went up against his 18 year old, rarely fired Mini-14. With equal optics my AR Frankenplinker consistantly put five rounds of '07 dated Lake City 55 grainers into 1.25 inches. The Mini-14 used PMC 55gr. FMJ and never could even get on paper. It was embarrassing. The Mini-14 was flinging brass all over the range while my AR was putting its brass into neat little piles. The Mini-14 was seriously dinging up the brass too. Both rifles were 100% in function though. The Mini-14 can burn ammo.
Lindy_Hoppin_Gun_Nut  [Member]
11/15/2009 12:13:12 PM
Originally Posted By JamesP81:
Originally Posted By cosmos556:
Originally Posted By WIZZO_ARAKM14:
Originally Posted By oxnardkid:
And at the risk of getting booted off this site after getting cused at a few times I will say that the mini-14 is more reliable and requires less maintenance than the AR platform.


Right.....


Huh? More reliable? I need to see some empirical evidence on this claim. If it's the cat's meow, why is the DoD wasting the past 40 years with the less reliable and maintenance needy M16/M4?? Hell, tell the DoD to close their new carbine trials, you have the solution they've waited almost 50 years for!


There is some truth to this claim, but some misinformation as well.

It's well known that gas piston rifles foul at a slower rate than DI rifles. The Mini-14, being a gas piston gun, stays cleaner in the action for a lot longer. However, reliability is more than just cleanliness.

The Mini has a few small parts that Ruger cheaped out on that are prone to breaking, the firing pin and the ranch rifle's rear sight's being two of the bigger culprits. Problem is that the firing pins in these rifles have to be fitted and Ruger won't even sell one to you.

The Mini-14 has potential to have superior reliability to the AR platform, but it's execution has not achieved that level of reliability.


That is a very good and valid point, James. How are things at the perfect union?

Having played with both platforms a lot, I can attest to the fact that an AR-15 (well built with good parts) is just as reliable as as a Mini-14 and I do prefer the AR platform. But I really love the Mini-14 and I wish people would speak more kindly about it. I have owned four of them and I really adore those little carbines. Mine had always been good for "minute of silhouette" out to 200 yards. What more do people want out of the poor little carbine, anyway? I have always regard Mini-14's as "swash bucklers", not refined musketeers.

As I have stated above, I like AR-15's better than Mini-14's, and given the choice, I'd grab an AR before a Mini, but I will not feel under armed in any way by having a Mini instead of an AR.



GAU-8  [Member]
11/22/2009 1:38:07 PM
I can't believe some of the internet lore being repeated in this thread about the mini-14.

If the gun was seriously as bad as everyone says how do you explain this rifle being produced and sold for so long? I'm sorry but stories about 12 inch and 30 inch groups at less than 100 yards are just BS or the result of someone who does not know what they are doing. There is no other explanation. Ruger would have pulled this gun from production many years ago if this were true.

Me too. I learned with just one, could barely hold a trash can lid off the bench at 50 yards. To be fair a buddy had a bashed up one he bought used that would shoot ball ammo with iron sights into 4" or so at 100yds


50 Yards barely staying on a trash can lid? I have to call complete BS. The only possible explanation is the person behind the trigger did not know how to shoot. You do realize it's near impossible to get a modern rifled barrel to do this without severe damage or completely inappropriate ammo.

Someone else posted missing a 55 gal drum... Yeah right, at what distance and with what shooter?

Funny how over the years I've seen many many minis and never saw one that did not display acceptable accuracy for the rifles intended purpose. They are not as accurate as an AR but then again almost no other self loading design is so what is the point.
riceshooter  [Member]
11/22/2009 10:23:16 PM
I still hope Ruger solves the issues that plagued the XGI. It seems that the improvements applied to the mini-14 could

easily be added to their old XGI prototype and it might produce a better rifle. A garand type .308 in the size

category of the mini-14 would be an instant hit.
agillig  [Team Member]
11/24/2009 9:32:17 AM

Originally Posted By supersy1:
Thank you. All very interesting replies. I will skip the M14 for now.


I don't know if I would be so quick to give up on it. I've got one of the old 1:7 barrelled Mini's. It will do better than 2 MOA with no problem. The kicker is that I had to do a bit of work to it. I put on a choate flash hider, which is supposed to reduce barrel harmonics. I also put on an accu-strut. I re-torqued the gas bushings, which cost me absolutely nothing other than 5-10 minutes of time.


If you look around Gunbroker, or EE, you can probably find the older ones pretty cheap. It might be worth it to get one, shoot it, and then see what you can do to bring it up to your standards.
JamesP81  [Team Member]
11/24/2009 5:37:21 PM
Originally Posted By Lindy_Hoppin_Gun_Nut:
Originally Posted By JamesP81:
Originally Posted By cosmos556:
Originally Posted By WIZZO_ARAKM14:
Originally Posted By oxnardkid:
And at the risk of getting booted off this site after getting cused at a few times I will say that the mini-14 is more reliable and requires less maintenance than the AR platform.


Right.....


Huh? More reliable? I need to see some empirical evidence on this claim. If it's the cat's meow, why is the DoD wasting the past 40 years with the less reliable and maintenance needy M16/M4?? Hell, tell the DoD to close their new carbine trials, you have the solution they've waited almost 50 years for!


There is some truth to this claim, but some misinformation as well.

It's well known that gas piston rifles foul at a slower rate than DI rifles. The Mini-14, being a gas piston gun, stays cleaner in the action for a lot longer. However, reliability is more than just cleanliness.

The Mini has a few small parts that Ruger cheaped out on that are prone to breaking, the firing pin and the ranch rifle's rear sight's being two of the bigger culprits. Problem is that the firing pins in these rifles have to be fitted and Ruger won't even sell one to you.

The Mini-14 has potential to have superior reliability to the AR platform, but it's execution has not achieved that level of reliability.


That is a very good and valid point, James. How are things at the perfect union?

Having played with both platforms a lot, I can attest to the fact that an AR-15 (well built with good parts) is just as reliable as as a Mini-14 and I do prefer the AR platform. But I really love the Mini-14 and I wish people would speak more kindly about it. I have owned four of them and I really adore those little carbines. Mine had always been good for "minute of silhouette" out to 200 yards. What more do people want out of the poor little carbine, anyway? I have always regard Mini-14's as "swash bucklers", not refined musketeers.

As I have stated above, I like AR-15's better than Mini-14's, and given the choice, I'd grab an AR before a Mini, but I will not feel under armed in any way by having a Mini instead of an AR.





Haven't been to perfect union in a while....after some tuning and research, I've got my Mini shooting about 2 inch groups at 50 yards with iron sights and an improvied rest. It's also not throwing fliers. I'm going to put some Warne QD scope rings on it and one of the smaller 1-4x "tactical" scopes and use it a coyote rifle. I think I can get it down to 1.5 MOA with some load development and decent glass.

The secret, in my case, was replacing the factory gas block with ASI's adjustable model. It doesn't put stress on the barrel as the barrel heats due to a better fit. This eliminated the vertical stringing. The stock bedding job I got done on it eliminated the fliers and improved groups a bit.
Lindy_Hoppin_Gun_Nut  [Member]
11/25/2009 3:49:18 PM
Originally Posted By JamesP81:

Haven't been to perfect union in a while....after some tuning and research, I've got my Mini shooting about 2 inch groups at 50 yards with iron sights and an improvied rest. It's also not throwing fliers. I'm going to put some Warne QD scope rings on it and one of the smaller 1-4x "tactical" scopes and use it a coyote rifle. I think I can get it down to 1.5 MOA with some load development and decent glass.

The secret, in my case, was replacing the factory gas block with ASI's adjustable model. It doesn't put stress on the barrel as the barrel heats due to a better fit. This eliminated the vertical stringing. The stock bedding job I got done on it eliminated the fliers and improved groups a bit.


That's a really outstanding job you did with the Mini! You must have spent lots of time doing your research and tinkering with the Mini. I am not saying it was not well worth it, but why? I don't think Mini's are really horrible in accuracy - I just think that people expect too much out of the poor little carbine. I think it's a perfect little carbine for what it was intended for and people's hatred toward the Mini's is largely unfounded, IMHO.

The optic set up you're going for, it sounds like something I'd want to have, but I have heard that Mini's like to "eat" scopes . I had the old Ranch Rifle about 16 years ago, and it never ate my scope. I installed the super cheap $25 Tasco from K-Mart with a broken reticle (a Mauser 98K "ate" that scope) and the gun / scope combo worked for years until I sold the carbine.

I was thinking about getting see through rings (so I can also use the irons) and get myself the Aimpoint 9XXXX - the "hunting" version. I wonder if the Mini will "eat" that Aimpint.


JamesP81  [Team Member]
11/25/2009 11:18:11 PM
Originally Posted By Lindy_Hoppin_Gun_Nut:
Originally Posted By JamesP81:

Haven't been to perfect union in a while....after some tuning and research, I've got my Mini shooting about 2 inch groups at 50 yards with iron sights and an improvied rest. It's also not throwing fliers. I'm going to put some Warne QD scope rings on it and one of the smaller 1-4x "tactical" scopes and use it a coyote rifle. I think I can get it down to 1.5 MOA with some load development and decent glass.

The secret, in my case, was replacing the factory gas block with ASI's adjustable model. It doesn't put stress on the barrel as the barrel heats due to a better fit. This eliminated the vertical stringing. The stock bedding job I got done on it eliminated the fliers and improved groups a bit.


That's a really outstanding job you did with the Mini! You must have spent lots of time doing your research and tinkering with the Mini. I am not saying it was not well worth it, but why? I don't think Mini's are really horrible in accuracy - I just think that people expect too much out of the poor little carbine. I think it's a perfect little carbine for what it was intended for and people's hatred toward the Mini's is largely unfounded, IMHO.

The optic set up you're going for, it sounds like something I'd want to have, but I have heard that Mini's like to "eat" scopes . I had the old Ranch Rifle about 16 years ago, and it never ate my scope. I installed the super cheap $25 Tasco from K-Mart with a broken reticle (a Mauser 98K "ate" that scope) and the gun / scope combo worked for years until I sold the carbine.

I was thinking about getting see through rings (so I can also use the irons) and get myself the Aimpoint 9XXXX - the "hunting" version. I wonder if the Mini will "eat" that Aimpint.




I doubt it. The Mini's reputation for eating scopes stems from the oprod banging against the receiver. The newer Minis have more buffering that mitigates this effect. I also had rubber recoil buffers installed in mine, which really tamps down the recoil pulse that gets transferred to the receiver. My Mini doesn't even eat cheap Bushnell scopes anymore.
Paid Advertisement
--