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I was out a week or so back firing an AR-15 when I was approached by a shooter who was shooting a mini-14.  

We were comparing notes and talking about the pluses/minuses of each rifle, when the topic of accuracy came up.  I mentioned that I had also looked at the mini-14, but didn't like the thought of 4-5" groups at 100m.  He stated that his would do 1.5-3" depending on ammo, but that he was a little dissapointed in it (common story, huh...?).

He then asked a very good question that I honestly couldn't answer, and actually, one that I have never heard asked directly.  Here is is:  

Is there any truth to the word that the stainless versions in .223 are more accurate than the blued versions?  

Never heard that come up before...rumor?  Wives tale? True?  

All right mini-14 owners, share your observations.

BZiel
 

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BZiel; Sorry took so long to reply. I have a mini 14. It will shoot 1 to 2 inch groups at 100 yds. That is off sandbags at a range with stock sites. I have not had the pleasure of shooting a AR. I would like to.. I can't see as a blued or stainless barrel would make a difference. I am very pleased with the mini. Never failed to function for me.. I use 55gr hollow points for most of my shooting. I have soft points that I wanted to try, they will shoot about 3in groups at 100 with point of impact just a little different . I also believe that if It remains within a 6 inch group with all ammo at that range, it will be fine. I am going to try match grade next time also.. Using stock open sites on any rifle, I feel that the groups are excellent. Elliot:D
 

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I have owned both,and as a whole I can't see a dime's difference.The AR will shoot rings around the Mini-14,with out doing major improvements to the mini it is bascily a pull and shoot weapon,a couple of farmers i know keep them on their tractors, [they are the ranch version ],to pop the unexpected gropher,ground hog or stray dog,and it seems to take care of it for them well.
 

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In theory, stainless steel and carbon steel differ in their structural microscopic makeup. Stainless is sort of like fibre threads or longer layers in it's structure as compared to carbon steel that has slightly more integrity. When working with stainless and viewing cuts or milling work under a microscope you see more tearing or shreading as compared to a cleaner cut or milling with carbon steel. So, again in theory, there is a small advantage of carbon steel over stainless. In practice with modern techniques I don't think there is much practical difference and as for the mini 14...I've seen really accurate ones out of the box and really crappy ones. I don't know what the deal is, but the mini 14 and ranch rifle both have noticable accuracy deviations of exactly the same model rifle. It not a question of type of steel used in the manufacture of the mini 14, stainless or carbon steel, ranch rifle or standard model, it's something else.
 

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Tried a few Mini-14's (and one Mini-30) and never was impressed by their accuracy...were reliable enough, and pretty good for two rounds. Believe it's that whippy barrel and big hog-tie gas assembly that give fits.

Had a freind that was convienced the .222 version of the ranche rifle would be better. They made a few in that caliber right when the ranch rifle came out...over run for some European contract?. Didn't make a bit of differnce.

Are places that specialize in accuracy work on the mini14...but generally, would not invest the equilivant of a match AR getting oen to shoot "almost" as well.
 

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Not having a dog in this race, I'll relate that a friend from Africa notes that the mini will function and fire while being quite "filty" inside and out. Aparently they are used in the bush quite a bit where neglect is commonplace! and Gee they sure are a lot less expensive.

I think the mini would be a good kitchen gun! I like a pump 12 ga better though. Allows more for the old eyes!
 

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Mini 14???????????

Accuracy with a mini 14? I had both a mini 14 and 30. The 30 would get 4" groups at best and the 14 gets 6" groups all at 100 yds. They both stink. What good is a gun that will always shoot if you can't hit a barn door at 300YDs.? I still keep the '14 for a house gun. I feel able to hit a man sized target with the mini at 10 feet from the hip or preferrably through the sights. Not my favorite waste of money. Later. Bandito
 

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From my experience in highpower match shooting, there really isn't that much of an accuracy difference between stainless and carbon steel. It isn't so much the material as the quality of the barrel itself. What I have noticed, however, and so have many of the rifle builders and shooters I know, is that stainless barrels generally last a bit longer than carbon as far as long distance accuracy potential and rounds fired.

Another thing that I find odd is that it seems that carbon barrels slowly lose their accuracy potential over time and wear, and stainless barrels still wear close to the same amount or a little less, but they shoot good right up to the point where they go bad, then the bullets spray all over (well, comparatively speaking given that we shoot out to 1000 yds). A worn out stainless barrel may shoot great, then 20 rounds later, it's a lost cause. Not really sure what causes this, but it more or less seems to hold true.

Hope this helps answer your question.
 

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I have a stainless Mini 14 with factory folding stock that gives me 4" with factory ball at 100 yd. Had a stainless Ranch Mini 14 that gave me 4" at 100 yds with factory ball, sold it to a friend who loves it. Had a blued Mini 30 that gave me 4" groups at 100 yds with S&B ball, sold that one to a friend who also loves it. Seems that my Mini's were/are 4" @ 100 yd guns with ball ammo and minute of human at all ranges at which the .223 and 7.62x39 are effective.

Supremely reliable when using Ruger magazines, so so when not. I have 5 Ruger 20 round mags, and 6 PMI 20 rd mags, and these are reliable. The Triple K and USA mags are abysmal. I would and did get an SKS to replace the Mini 30, and have no regrets. It is a better rifle given the magazine situation, and I can get 3 SKS's for the same money that the Mini 30 costs. No difference in accuracy. The AR 15 is a superior weapon to the Mini 14 because of the magazine situation, which impacts reliability, and has a significant edge in the accuracy department. I have 3 AR's, and each is 1.5 MOA with M855 at all ranges.

I don't think that there is much difference in accuracy between blue/stainless because of the manufacturing techniques used in the making of the barrels. The only superiority that stainless would have is corrosion resistance.
 

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Bandito said:
Accuracy with a mini 14? I had both a mini 14 and 30. The 30 would get 4" groups at best and the 14 gets 6" groups all at 100 yds. They both stink. What good is a gun that will always shoot if you can't hit a barn door at 300YDs.? I still keep the '14 for a house gun. I feel able to hit a man sized target with the mini at 10 feet from the hip or preferrably through the sights. Not my favorite waste of money. Later. Bandito
6 inch groups at 100 yards ??? I'm just a casual shooter, but I have owned two different mini 14's and never saw that kind of poor performance. I currently have a stainless/synthetic ranch mini-14. Anyhow, I had scopes on both and I could shoot all day at 100 yards and always hit between 1 and 2 inch groups (usually closer to 1) - with standard 55gr FMJ ammo. I'm shocked to hear about 6 inch groups, I can do better than that with my remington 1100 20ga. shotgun. Are you telling me a Mini-14 is less accurate than a shotgun ?? Something sounds fishy to me- I think it must be the shooter, not the rifle.
 

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1976 Model 180 Series MINI....

I've got an old 1976 model 180 series that does real good with a wide variety of surplus or over the counter factory loads.

I think Ruger will come out with a NEW Mini-6.8mm soon that shoots the new 6.8mm SPC Remington. This one has more power than a .243, but operates at 10% less pressure than the 5.56mm. It's a full fledged medium caliber round that will be good for deer or hog hunting down here in the Southern States - and the cartridge has been tested on big Mule Deer with excellent results.

It throws a 270 caliber 115gr spitzer bullet @ 2800fps - compare that to any .243 you want. It's even close to the .260 Remington in performance. If BOTH CZ (527) and Ruger offer rifles in this caliber, it will be a tough choice for me - I really like the little CZ Mini Mauser, but the Ruger Mini can be made to shoot good enough! ;)

FINALLY! A US Military Cartridge that does double duty as an excellent hunting round too! Is the .223 & 7.62 Russian DEAD now?

FIRST LOOK @ NEW REMINGTON 6.8mm X 43mm SPC CARTRIDGE

(On link below)


http://www.rifleshootermag.com/ammunition/remington_0303/


"...........After selecting the .30 Remington as the parent case--a decision that required only slight modification to the M16's bolt face--the case was shortened, given a new shoulder and blown out to maximum capacity for a new high-performance propellant. After testing a variety of bullets in 5.56mm, 6mm, 6.5mm, 7mm and 7.62mm, a bullet of 6.8mm was selected. This .270-caliber, 115-grain projectile has a ballistic coefficient of .350, offering optimum lethality and range.


Using the handloaded Hornady 110-grain V-Max bullets, the Custom CZ Model 527 produced excellent accuracy at 100 yards.
(Proof is below!)



Remington began to develop the 6.8x43 back in 2002 and is officially introducing it this year as the 6.8mm Rem SPC. As this is written, the cartridge has not been released to the public, but I can tell you that it provides one MOA accuracy out to more than 600 meters. It has a flight path almost identical to that of the .308 Winchester, less chamber pressure than the .223 and fits into the M16 magazine envelope. Tests in 10 percent ballistic gelatin show incapacitation as good or better than the .308....."



GOOD LUCK!
 

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Have no doubt the round is a fine one...and a step in the right direction for military use, but doubt it will improve the accuracy of the Mini14 system (unless they do some modifications).

The Mini-14 is accurate enough for its intended use...wasn't made to be a target gun. Can be made to be a lot more accurate than it is, but out-of-the0box there just doesn't seem to be much differece in the 222, 223, 7.62X39 versions. If a change in caliber was to make a drastic difference, would think the .222 verwsions of the Ranch Rifle would have shown it... didn't.

PErsonal opintion, but the light whippy heat sensitive barrel, hod gied in the middle by a massive gas block, seems to be the accuracy stumbling block.
 

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What I Meant About The NEW Round...

This new one has enough power to make it worthwhile for Ruger to finally do something about the accuracy issues. The other calibers are not really HUNTING calibers to me - people, pests or paper, sure, but not serious hunting. The NEW round with more power than a .243 and approaching the effectiveness of the 260 Rem or 308s, gives the little Ruger a whole new character as a serious rifle (My opinion). ;)



Rem30-6.8mmSPC-5.56mm

GOOD LUCK!
 

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I noticed in the above article that the new and improved military round will be loaded with a "...new high performance propellant." Will this propellant be available to the shooting public or limited to factory ammunition? How does the new wonder round compare to the standard calibers mentioned when used with standard canister reloading powders? A 115 gr bullet at 2800 fps is right in there with the .250 Savage and the .257 Roberts, both of which are effective rounds, but will the new 6.8 perform to advertised levels with commonly available components? Not trying to pick a fight, just curious.
 

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I'm Wondering Too!

Mike, that interests me too. ONLY thing I could get from one of the manufacturers who is offering new uppers, was that one of their ammo suppliers was using a powder called "Ramshot". It could be 'cos the supplier is close to this powder manufacturer, but I don't know. Remington sure isn't saying, but the full water capacity of the cartridge (to the top) is only 35gr. This is far less capacity than the .308 family of cartridges, but its performance is right up there - and (relatively) low pressures too! Keep in mind, the powder they use for the Military is probably buffered with some kinda' flash reducing chemical for military needs, which would not concern sport users...

Remington is proud of their work, but still being very coy and not revealing publicly, much about what they intend for this new round.

My personal opinion is this round will be the final nail to end some of the similar power cartridges - might be the last ALL Metallic cartridge OUR Military ever procures. I can see it necked down to 6.5mm for even better hunting performance. Here's a picture of the different style bullets that were tried in the M-16 & M4 Platforms...




Here's some snippets of what has been written about the new cartridge by some of the people who designed it and tested it...

A .30 caliber SPC version was tested--as this did not perform as well as other SPC variants, it was not vigorously pursued. The 6.8 mm and 7 mm SPC versions offered the best terminal performance from 0 to 500 yards, however, the 6.8 mm was a bit more accurate. For pure long range competition, a 6.5 mm variant offers nice external ballistics, however, for combat use at CQB to 500 yard distances, the 6.8 mm is a better choice. Beyond around 500-600 yards, a precision rifle in .30 cal or .338 cal will likely prove superior.

Different bullet diameters from 6 mm to 7.62 mm were tested, using multiple bullet types, shapes, and weights from 90 to 140 gr--the 6.8 mm was selected because it offered the BEST combination of combat accuracy, reliability, and terminal performance for 0-500 yard engagements in an M4 size package."


"......THE 6.8 REMINGTON SPC OPERATES AT 10% LESS CHAMBER PRESSURE THAN THE 5.56MM.
IT USES SAME RECOIL SPRING AND BUFFER AS THE 5.56MM. NO CHANGES THERE.

THE FULL AUTO CYCLIC RATE OF EITHER A 16" OR 18" BARREL 6.8 REM SPC IS ( IN OUR UPPERS AT LEAST ) THE SAME AS OR SLIGHTLY LOWER THAN THAT OF THE 5.56MM.

WES"


What interests me so much about this cartridge, is the performance and package size - it will easily fit in the little CZ Mini-Mauser action which can be finished as a very lightweight, accurate rifle...

GOOD LUCK!
 

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Gowge,
Thanks for the info. The Ramshot powder is from Western Powder Company out of Wyoming, and is supposed to be pretty good stuff. It's imported from somewhere overseas, and repackaged and sold here. Sort of like Hodgdons. I guess we won't know how good this cartridge is to handloaders 'til it hits the streets.
 
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