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Thread: Thinking aout a Mini 14

  1. #1
    Boolit Master Thumbcocker's Avatar
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    Thinking aout a Mini 14

    Many years ago we had a mini 14. Mrs. Thumbcocker liked it for blasting water jugs and other fun. Never ran lead in it and never tried to make it a target gun. I am toying with getting another one since I hear that the accuracy has gotten much better over the years. I just can't warm up to the AR platform. I would like to load bolts for plinnking and general shooting because I try to load cast in everything we shoot, yup I'm persistent, Mrs. Thumbcocker uses another word starring with s but we disagree.
    So what type of realistic boolit accuracy can I wring out of a current production standard mini 14? I have molds up to 72 grains but am open to buying a new mold.

    Thanks
    You'll go far providin' you ain't burnt alive or scalped."

    Will Geer as Bear Claw in "Jeramiah Johnson"

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    What I like about the mini is it is one of the few non-commercial platforms that can safely shoot 556, it's durable and comes in stainless steel & polymer

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    I would love one of the new improved ones-especially if they reintrduced the 6.8SPC. They are darn expensive though.

  4. #4
    PAPERPATCH MASTER


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    Don`t know about current manf. mini`s gas port system for changing. I have a 2nd year made old model and was always having to go into the next county looking for my fired cases. I got a 3 piece port kit from Brownell`s that had different sized port holes for gas operation of the rifle. The factory port is basically a wide open port. I swapped it out for the smallest size port and now the cases drop about 5 feet away from me and the accuracy has shown a marked betterment.Robert

  5. #5
    Boolit Master


    thegatman's Avatar
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    The new ones are much more accurate. Modify the gas port and you are not chasing brass. Brass is also not dinged up. Very nice gun based on the Garand.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I have one of the early stainless steel guns always works, accuracy is minute of commie invader at 200 yards does every thing I ask of it but never shot cast in it .223 ammo was allways to cheap.But I think they are a solid gun just dont buy cheap mags get good ones.Paid $179.00 brand new for it on sale 1981 or 82.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

    Loudenboomer's Avatar
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    I chose the Mini 30. I wore out a couple dodge cummins diesel pickups with the same ol ss mini 30 under the back seat. At the time I bought mine Russian 7.62X39 ammo was $77 PER 1000. I put in a wolf extra power spring kit and I was in business. Shot about every thing around the farm that needs shootin with cheap HP ammo. For more serious shooting I have the Hornady Steel case SST ammo. See a patern here. The beauty of this and only auto is I don't pick up brass.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    Durable as a sledge hammer but never known as a tack driver. Nice to shoot in .223/5.56 and I shoot cast. 70 grain from an NOE mold using Lyman #2 alloy +/- (homemade) with gas check and PC coating. Mine is pretty old and has the faster twist so it likes a heavy bullet. No problems so far with that. Using 24.5 grains of Varget it still throws brass a bit but at least keeps it mostly in same zip code as the shooter. Cycles down to 23 grains with that weight bullet and Varget.

    I know some folks are into the high capacity mags and such but with 20 round or less it has a nice balance and isn't too awkward looking. Stick a 30 round magazine in it and the shape gets awkward looking. Works but look just seems "wrong" to me.

    Barrel whip is something they are noted for, bull barrel models are reasonably expected to reduce that barrel end whipping around. More weight but reported to be more accurate. There are also a stiffening device that can be added, with some reporting more accuracy with it. Me I'm happy if 20 rounds end up all in the paper plate or 8 inch target using the peep sight. Which is a bit different and some have an adjustment period before it becomes natural. But my older eyes mostly like the peep site.

    Hoot to shoot and price isn't too awful....
    Je suis Charlie
    Scrap.... because all the really pithy and emphatic four letter words were taken and we had to describe this way of getting casting material somehow.
    Feedback page http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...light=RogerDat I do trade a bit from time to time.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master

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    First three shots are right on the money. After that.......I have a .223 and a Mini 30 Tactical, the tactical is much more accurate than an older version that it replaced.


    We accumulate our opinions at an age when our understanding is at its weakest. Georg C. Lichtenberg

    At what point, then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, If it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us; it cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time, or die by suicide. A. Lincoln

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

    Loudenboomer's Avatar
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    I've always considered this to be a short range platform. Part of the reason for the Mini 30. 6 moa red dot sight, commy ammo, off hand fast shooting are all minute of skunk. I've got plenty of precision guns this one doesn't have to be.

  11. #11
    Boolit Mold
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    I've always liked minis. Never owned one. But, i have shot a couple in the past,that friends have owned. If Ruger came out with a mini 14 that took M16 mags. And, a mini 30 that took AK mags. I would think alot harder about buying one.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master Thumbcocker's Avatar
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    How do they do with boolits?
    You'll go far providin' you ain't burnt alive or scalped."

    Will Geer as Bear Claw in "Jeramiah Johnson"

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    You can buy bulk .223 bullets FMJ, SP & a little more for HP for about $.07 each we've decided they are too cheap to spend the time, energy, alloy, lube and effort to cast them.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    I really hope for Ruger's sake and for the shooting community at large that the new ones are as good as they say.

    I had one in the 80's that was a certified POS. Pie plate accuracy at 50 yards. It almost cost me the valued friendship of a guy I have known forever. He was convinced the problems were with the operator, not the equipment. I sold it to him and he later said, half jokingly, that I had ripped him off.

    As far as the barrel stiffeners and other aftermarket fixes my position is that no firearm should have to be re-engineered out of the box to get acceptable performance.

    I have been kicking around the idea of trying another mini 14 so I have checked the forums. The newer ones seem to make people happy.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master Artful's Avatar
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    New model Mini-14's Average under 2 MOA per people that own them.
    je suis charlie

    It is better to live one day as a LION than a dozen days as a Sheep.

    Thomas Jefferson Quotations:
    "The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Awesome!

    Thank you Artful.

    That is in line with the reviews I have been reading on other forums.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master woodbutcher's Avatar
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    Hi Artful.Nice video.Thanks for posting.Also liked the ending audio."The Thunderer"by John Phillip Sousa.
    Good luck.Have fun.Be safe.
    Leo
    People never lie so much as after a hunt,during a war,or before an election.
    Otto von Bismarck

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    Can I talk you out of that? Compared to an AR the Mini is:

    1. much more expensive
    2. pretty much a fixed platform
    3. needs the services of a gunsmith
    4. an awful lot more accurate with a bit of tinkering

    You can buy one AR and add uppers in about ten other calibers and barrel lengths from 16" to 30". We won't even talk about magazine cost and availability.

  19. #19
    Perma-Banned



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    I have had one for 3 decades...it is still coyote accurate for the first 3 shots...that is good enough for me. I have AR's, also...I just prefer the Mini...much easier for me to carry and quieter to handle in the woods than an AR.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master Thumbcocker's Avatar
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    I have an Essential Arms J15 in the A2 configuration that I bought before the Clinton assault ban. Supposedly with mostly Colt parts. Runs ok with boolits and with a scope does under 2" at 100 with J words. Just never warmed up to it. Maybe I should look at a Savage bolt gun and go happily on my way. Still have fond memories of the handiness of the Mini 14 and Mrs. Thumbcocker handled it well and loved the muzzle flash.
    You'll go far providin' you ain't burnt alive or scalped."

    Will Geer as Bear Claw in "Jeramiah Johnson"

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check