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A Mini-14 Question

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by RedneckRampage, Dec 11, 2013.

  1. RedneckRampage

    RedneckRampage Newberg Well-Known Member

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    So I've decided I want a Mini-14 for my next rifle. I really like the Stainless/wood Ranch Rifles. I have heard there are good ones and bad ones. What should I look for when buying one? Which series is the best? Which is worst?

    I have no experience with them, except for shooting a friends and holding a few.
  2. oli700

    oli700 Rogue Valley Well-Known Member

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    I like all Mini’s. The older pencil barrel models have the reputation of not being accurate. I guess it depends on what you’re looking for, my pencil barrel is battle accurate all day meaning I feel I can confidently get rounds on target than make a difference.
    If you are expecting to match an average AR15’s grouping capabilities look into the newer versions as they are said to hold better groups these days. I would not feel under gunned with my old Mini but it’s not my first grab for impressing friends with grouping, I haven’t shot the newer thicker barrel models……I actually like everything about the older one better like the sights and such

    f I could give only on piece of advice about Mini 14's is to stay away from Pro Mag magazines. Mini's like good mags, factory is best but spendy and sometimes not that available
  3. simon99

    simon99 Central Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Hi RR,

    There was a pretty big thread on Mini's a few weeks back. You might want to check it out as it discussed your questions pretty well.
    Have fun...
  4. Medic!

    Medic! What just happened? Has eagle eyes. But cant remember what he saw. Bronze Supporter

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    Make sure you check the twist rate. They are all over the place. I read 1978-85 had 1/10. 1986-94 were 1/7! Then 1/9'' from 95 on. Not all agree on the dates. But twist rate did include at least all the above.
    My experience was wit the 1/7'' guns. The three I had were probably 3'' guns. At the time I knew nothing about the twist rates. I just shot 55 grain cheep ammo and found that combo to be lacking. The guns Fault? No. While I think 1/7 is a stupid twist rate for the ammo of that time period. I did not understand the tool in my hands completely. And so did not use it correctly. Just a head up.
    Sgt Nambu and (deleted member) like this.
  5. erudne

    erudne The Pie Matrix PPL Say Sleeping W/Your Rifle Is A bad Thing? Bronze Supporter

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    I have 2 old ranch models w/pencil barrel one is a 223 the other is a mini-30 following the thread on The High Road I cut the barrels down to 16 1/4"
    and added a bird cadge MB for added mass. I added recoil spring buffers front and rear plus had the triggers re-done by Trigger Specialty. re-torqued the gas block.
    I could have installed a reduced size gas port for less recoil and bedded the stock and gas block, but since they now shoot MOA w/bulk ammo why bother?
    Save yourself the trouble and buy the thick barrel version (500 series), have the trigger tuned, add a decent optic and she will shoot well.
  6. best defense

    best defense Beaverton, OR Active Member

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    I had one of the old ranch rifles. Had a hard time hitting the broad side of a barn from the inside.
    The newer ones are better. They made the barrel walls thicker, read that heavier. When you go to buy one, try to get a recent model.
    I have a friend who bought a newer one and she is quite happy with hers.

    OLDNEWBIE State of Flux Well-Known Member

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    I've got the 580 series (tapered barrel) ss all weather ranch and find it plenty accurate. Look at the gas block when you buy it, make sure its evenly gapped. I had to look around a bit before I found one that looked even. Some people say this can hurt accuracy.
    This is my 2nd mini and if I were to replace it I would get another. If you're looking for a sniper rifle get something else. If consistent under 2" groups at 100 or 200yds and no jamming issues in my experience is what you want then get a mini. Look it over before you buy though because Q.C. has been lacking in recent years.
  8. Kevatc

    Kevatc Oregon Well-Known Member

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    i got rid of mine due to really crummy accuracy. Loudest gun I've shot. I don't know anything about the newer versions but I'd recommend looking at a variety of options before purchasing a Mini.
  9. oli700

    oli700 Rogue Valley Well-Known Member

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    they do bark pretty good
  10. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    Some of the old barrel style had accuracy issues. But I do have one that is 1 MOA with M855 and another that is 2.5 to 3 MOA, both reliable as rocks. That's with irons. IMO it was a QC issue at Ruger. The new heavier barrels are a real improvement. Look for John Mason mags. If you get one of the older barrel types like mine then definitely install the drop in Mini version of the M14 front sight/FS from Choate, they are not just a flash hider but they dampen barrel harmonics and help accuracy

    3MTA3 and (deleted member) like this.