1. If you enjoy the forum please consider supporting it by signing up for a NES Membership  The benefits pay for the membership many times over.

  2. Dismiss Notice

Mini 14 Rifle

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by joeb41, Jul 1, 2018.

  1. amm5061

    amm5061 NES Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2016
    Messages:
    6,344
    Likes Received:
    3,929
    Location:
    Holliston, MA
    Yeah, it's a $400-500 rifle, not $800-900 that it's going for currently. I swear they used to be much cheaper and only recently have the prices soared.
     
  2. wmass

    wmass NES Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2012
    Messages:
    1,184
    Likes Received:
    309
    Location:
    01020
    Agreed. I picked up my stainless 182 series with 4 preban mags and a butler creek folder for $630. That was back around ‘06. Normally I don’t like after market folders but was easily able to tighten up the locking mech. to remove play. Funny thing is I picked up a factory folder but sold it not long after because it was too nice to get dinged up. I found it sat on a shelf in bubble wrap and I used the aftermarket instead.
     
  3. mac1911

    mac1911 NES Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Messages:
    26,393
    Likes Received:
    3,875
    They where always a bit more than other guns. I think that was to make up for old bills military contract loss. IIRC the ranch rifle was close to $300 in 1990. I paid $250 for a used one in 1993. Came with several mags. Traded for one in 1995 and bought a 3rd as part of and estate. All of them sold off for one reason or another
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2018
    Squib308 likes this.
  4. hbennett

    hbennett

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2006
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    172
    Well this just sucks. I am giving MY Mini-14 a fail on reliability. After about 1000 total rounds.. and most of it commercial Federal Golden Eagle .223 purchased at W---t... I started getting intermittent failures to fire, then no ignition whatsoever. It turns out that the firing pin is frozen, and there is slight dimpling outward around the firing pin hole. There also appears to be some peening at the rear of the bolt.

    Interesting, and not in a good way. What reloads I fired generated less blast and felt recoil than the commercial ammo. And, the only modification to the rifle was a trigger job to smooth the trigger pull.

    A call has already been placed to Ruger. The Mini-14 will be taking a ride back to NH..
     
    SKumar likes this.
  5. mac1911

    mac1911 NES Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Messages:
    26,393
    Likes Received:
    3,875
    reloads...omg you ruined it....:rolleyes:
     
  6. mrmike7189

    mrmike7189

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2013
    Messages:
    457
    Likes Received:
    74
    Location:
    Essex County
    They are the only option in MA now that Maura Healey banned AR15/Ak47's......... I have one, paid 700 bucks back in 2011 for it, I like it, I could have had a AR15 then, but I wanted something different, that could still shoot the 5.56 NATO round and I like wood/blued steel rifles. (try finding an AR in wood/blued!)
    I use it at 100 yards and it is fun ,not fancy, but still challenges my marksmanship skills.
     
  7. Squib308

    Squib308 NES Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2014
    Messages:
    7,283
    Likes Received:
    3,212
    Location:
    Pangea
    the bolt face flaring around firing pin hole is normal, as is some peening at rear of bolt where it contacts the hammer. however stuck firing pin is not. my guess is that the bolt wasnt fitted to the firing pin correctly. this is largely why ruger doesn’t sell pins and bolts because they require some matching up.

    you could disassemble the bolt to inspect it, but honestly i would just get your rifle back to ruger and they will take care of you. but this does highlight the overall crappy QC of the minis.
     
  8. hbennett

    hbennett

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2006
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    172
    I called Ruger Customer service, and received a case number. I opted to deliver the rifle to Ruger rather than go through FFLs and shipping and such. I was instructed to drop the rifle off at Rody's Gun Shop in Newport, NH, an did so on 7/20. I received a call that my rifle was back at Rody's and ready for pickup on 7/26. Since I was already in NH attending scout camp, a few extra miles drive after camp week ended was no big deal.

    Ruger replaced the entire bolt assembly, proof tested, and range tested the rifle. The only cost to me was in time and gas. What I need now is some range time to see how the rifle performs.

    Rody's Gun Shop gets a huge thank you from me. The gentleman at Rody's took in my rifle and Rody's personally delivered it to the Ruger factory for service. I don't know what, if any, compensation Rody's gets for their efforts, but the cost to me was nothing but a thank you. What fine gentleman they are! They are among the nicest people you could have the good fortune to meet.

    Rody's has to be the tiniest gun shop I have ever seen. My living room is probably bigger. However, there is a trap and a rifle range out back. I have yet to see any gun shop in MA so well equipped.

    Should I have occasion to find myself in the Newport NH area, I will definitely be stopping back in for a look. I picked up and put back an older but really nice Marlin 30-30, that really should have followed me home. Could-a, would-a, should-a..
     
    Squib308 likes this.
  9. Sevenrats

    Sevenrats

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2016
    Messages:
    143
    Likes Received:
    73
    With iron sights they're plenty accurate. I shot one once and it did a 8 inch group off hand at 100 yards with irons. Nothing wrong with that. Scoped probably not so much. If you want to shoot 1/2 inch groups off a rest, nope.
     
    hbennett likes this.
  10. Squib308

    Squib308 NES Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2014
    Messages:
    7,283
    Likes Received:
    3,212
    Location:
    Pangea
    yup this is why despite poor quality control I've remained a ruger fan. their CS is just top notch. if your mini 14 is anything other than perfect then i would request a replacement rifle. on 2nd trip they will typically honor it. that being said your rifle is probably fine now. if you shoot enough rounds to waste the barrel or bolt, ruger will again fix it.

    looking at the ruger precision rifle and some of their new handguns, I'm reassured that Ruger is stepping up their game in terms of materials quality. unfortunately the investment cast and MIM parts that go into the mini 14 remain highly inconsistent, as highlighted by your rifle. if they had better machined bolts then the fitting to firing pin would be non-issue rather than needing band-aid solution.
     
    hbennett likes this.
  11. Radtekk

    Radtekk NES Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    8,110
    Likes Received:
    5,655
    Location:
    Breathing free in Tennessee!
    I really need to get mine to the range and see how she works. Is there a generally recommended weight/bullet? I don't want match grade, and I know "different guns like different ammo" I just want to avoid "WTF were you shooting THAT for, EVERYBODY knows you don't shoot that out of a mini!"
     
  12. wmass

    wmass NES Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2012
    Messages:
    1,184
    Likes Received:
    309
    Location:
    01020
    ^ all depends on what barrel you have. Mine is a 182 series pencil barrel in 1:10 twist. 55’s shoot very well out of it but 62’s and up not so much.
     
  13. Radtekk

    Radtekk NES Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    8,110
    Likes Received:
    5,655
    Location:
    Breathing free in Tennessee!
    I'll have to check next time I see the inside of my safe. Working tonight until 11, then a docs appointment at 8am followed by a double... May be a while...
     
  14. SKumar

    SKumar NES Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2017
    Messages:
    2,940
    Likes Received:
    3,020
    Location:
    Middlesex
    Took the Mini to the range on friday. The rear sight needs to be all the way to the right to shoot straight. I'm thinking of readjusting the front sight, if possible. I won't be surprised if it's welded down from all the heat.
    fyi I shoot wolf steel using aftermarket 20rnd mags. I get a FT feed every 40 rnds of so. The AR is undoubtly superior, but it is cool to have it around (although I'm considering selling it to clear up the safe).
     
  15. hbennett

    hbennett

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2006
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    172
    For ammo choices, do your research. Practice the art of Google-Fu, but remember YMMV, and you and you alone accept the risks of what YOU choose to do.

    That being said, the report that was included in the box when my rifle came back from the factory stated that it was test fired with proof rounds, and 20 rounds of Federal 55 gr. ammo. The report stated that the group was 1.25" and 6" high (most likely because I "upgraded" my rear sight to a Tech-sight, and sighted it in at 25M with lower velocity ammo).

    A Google of Ruger Range Test found a video on "How it's made" showing Mini-14s being test fired on a 50yd range. So, I assume my rifle grouped 1.25" at 50yds. That's about 2.5 MOA, which is more than acceptable for my purposes. YMMV, etc., etc.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2018
  16. mac1911

    mac1911 NES Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Messages:
    26,393
    Likes Received:
    3,875
    What ammo where you using that was low velocity or how much lower?
    6" high at 50 yards is pretty high. Then again not nowing how they aim it would help. If you listen closely and if the narrator is correct a Mini 14 is good to go if three shots impact with in a 4" radius or 8" circle from point of aim. Thats pretty friken loose. Even a old worn out rebuilt M1 garand out of the arsenal was suposed to hold a 5 consecutive shot group under 5 .5" @ 100 yards. Good to see ruger has decent customer support. Honeslty though there is no real excuse to put out a crappy rifle that they have been building for close to 50 years. Watching that video series and seeing them cram the headspace guage in there was a bit much. Some of those nice grandmothers on the line could likely tell you what needs to be improved.
    Waiting on a range report
     
  17. hbennett

    hbennett

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2006
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    172
    At the time the rifle was sighted in I was using my handloaded ammo . The bullet was 69gr. HPBT Match King and the powder charge was a moderate load according to the Lyman Manual. I was looking to find a more accurate load for the Mini-14 than the standard 55gr. bulk ammo. I had good luck with both the Match Kings and Hornady V-Max 60gr, in that both grouped noticeably better than bulk 55gr. ammo The sights are non-standard Tech-sights which I installed after removing the scope prior to sending the rifle back to the factory. I did not have a chance to re-zero the rifle after putting the Tech-sight back on. Prior to adding the scope, (and removing the Tech-sight because it interfered with the installation of the scope) I had zeroed the rifle for 25M using that lower velocity ammo with the heavier bullets. And, FWIW, my chronograph was showing that my handloads were moving at about 450 fps less velocity than the factory loads.

    The original intent of tuning the ammo to the rifle was to see if I could find a load that would make it better capable of delivering consistent Rifleman's scores for Appleseed events. Given that Ruger tested the rifle and demonstrated 2.5 MOA with basically bulk, that should be good enough, although I would prefer to tighten up the group just a tad more if possible.

    I am done with a scope on that rifle. For my purposes, the Mini-14 works just fine as a short-range, quick-handling carbine. The scope, IMO, adds too much weight and too much bulk, and is unnecessary. The scope was good for doing load-testing, but I find this little rifle is way more handy, and much more fun to shoot with iron sights. YMMV.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2018
  18. mac1911

    mac1911 NES Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Messages:
    26,393
    Likes Received:
    3,875
    what twist do you have on the mini 14. Alomost anything you hand load will be better than bulk M193.
    FWIW my 1/9 pencil barrel AR likes the 50 grain varmint tip by noslers a lot.
     
  19. hbennett

    hbennett

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2006
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    172
    Mine is the SS model 5805 with the newer and heavier than old-style "pencil" barrel and a 1:9 twist.
    I agree that most handloads shoot more consistently, especially since the handloader has total control over the variables.

    IME, some handloads shoot much better in my rifle than others. For me, half the fun is figuring out what the rifle likes.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2018

Share This Page