Rifles Misc All rifles not covered elsewhere!

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Old 12-02-2011, 17:44   #1
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Ruger Mini 14 or Kel-Tec SU-16C?

I'm a new shooter and just starting to build a collection. I've been doing a lot of searching for a rifle in this class and these are the two that have climbed to the top of my short list. Why these two and not an AR or AK variant? Honestly, just to have something different. I know that past Mini 14 haven't been loved but the newer models have been getting great reviews.


Which is easier to maintain/field strip? (I own a glock 23 and a benelli nova so I'm spoiled by their simplicity)
Which has better build quality? (Which is more durable/will last the longest with proper care?)
Which has easier to find parts and budget minded add ons?
Which do you enjoy shooting more? Why?


What I'm looking for:
Fun at the range
Defense - I have a pistol and shotgun already and planning to get a hunting rifle but I'd like another if shtf option
Ease - Something that would be easy for my lady to pick and handle.
Comfort - Something that still feels good to shoot after hours of range time
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Old 12-02-2011, 17:58   #2
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I own a mini. I like my mini.
If I had the extra $$ i would also buy a keltec but I am glad I got my mini first
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Old 12-02-2011, 18:25   #3
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I saw in the nut'n'fancy review that the kel-tec will jam up if you fire from a prone position because the mag gets pushed up into the action too far... To me, that is a deal breaker for any kind of defensive arm.

The mini is a good choice I suppose, but after having owned one for a year, I can honestly say that any half decent AK (or even SKS) will serve you just as well, if not better, for a lot less $.
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Old 12-03-2011, 03:31   #4
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Originally Posted by GDKPIKPWG View Post
I saw in the nut'n'fancy review that the kel-tec will jam up if you fire from a prone position because the mag gets pushed up into the action too far... To me, that is a deal breaker for any kind of defensive arm.

The mini is a good choice I suppose, but after having owned one for a year, I can honestly say that any half decent AK (or even SKS) will serve you just as well, if not better, for a lot less $.
Good advice
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Old 12-03-2011, 08:36   #5
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The Mini-14 is a good rifle that shoots cheap, easy to find ammo. The problem I am having with my SKS right now is that I cannot find 7.62x39 surplus anywhere in the area. And I'm not ready to spend hundreds on a bulk buy. On the other hand, .223 is plentiful and cheap. It may be different where you live though. It sucks to have a rifle and no ammo to shoot, though.
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Old 12-03-2011, 12:59   #6
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The mini is a classic. I would get it first.
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Old 12-05-2011, 19:58   #7
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I have mini 14 and SU 16. Can't make my mind up which to shoot first. Just like having two girlfriends at the same time.
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Old 12-05-2011, 21:16   #8
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Originally Posted by Scout Pilot View Post
The Mini-14 is a good rifle that shoots cheap, easy to find ammo. The problem I am having with my SKS right now is that I cannot find 7.62x39 surplus anywhere in the area. And I'm not ready to spend hundreds on a bulk buy. On the other hand, .223 is plentiful and cheap. It may be different where you live though. It sucks to have a rifle and no ammo to shoot, though.
Saiga in .223, ~$300

Hell of a buy.
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Old 12-06-2011, 09:53   #9
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Easy, go with a Mini...

This is an easy question to answer. Out of the two you are looking at, the Ruger Mini is by far the best option for your money. Now you need to break it down some more. What caliber do you want? Both Mini-14 and Mini-30 come set up as tactical or basic. You have the same issues with both on Magazines and the price cost. Not sure if Tapco is going to making a Mini-30 Gen II mag yet. I am kinda out of the loop on that.
If you have some time. After you have narrowed your focus on a brand and model rifle. Try looking for a cheaper deal then you local corporate sporting good store. You might find a deal in which you can save up to $150 on a rifle. Get a basic retail price and go with that. I have scored some deals by being diligent on price hunting with firearms. Good luck and go with Ruger Mini...
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Old 12-06-2011, 17:38   #10
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any opinions on the Tapco Fusion vs ATI Strikeforce kits?
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Old 12-06-2011, 18:11   #11
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Neither...

Originally Posted by samefly View Post
any opinions on the Tapco Fusion vs ATI Strikeforce kits?
I am not a fan of either of these stocks... That's my personal opinion. I have several Mini's and my favorite is tactical stock that Ruger offers and the runner up the Hogue Hogue, Inc. | www.getgrip.com | The finest gun grips, rifle stocks and accessories stocks.
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Old 12-06-2011, 20:15   #12
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Originally Posted by Scout Pilot View Post
The Mini-14 is a good rifle that shoots cheap, easy to find ammo. The problem I am having with my SKS right now is that I cannot find 7.62x39 surplus anywhere in the area. And I'm not ready to spend hundreds on a bulk buy. On the other hand, .223 is plentiful and cheap. It may be different where you live though. It sucks to have a rifle and no ammo to shoot, though.
For the ammo...check Cabelas its 3.79 per box.
The Mini is a proven workhorse and they are about bullet proof!
The other has a few issues but is half the price? The Saiga is about half price too. It comes down to what you want or need. The folding stock for the Mini's by ButlerCreek would add to the cost but are/seem tougher than the Kel-Tec OE stock...but the Kel-Tec is half the price??? For SHTF I would get the Mini, if your buying lots of guns or can... get both!
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Old 12-06-2011, 23:45   #13
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My mini is equipped with the collapseable tapco stock. I really like the stock. Its a good fit for my mini and I like the bottom rail because I like to use my grip pod.
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Old 12-07-2011, 20:52   #14
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how long is the Mini 14 when the stock is collapsed? I wouldn't mind having a rifle you can bug out with if need be.
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Old 12-07-2011, 22:09   #15
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Mine has the 18.5'' barrel and its just a smidge over 34'' collapsed.
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Old 12-13-2011, 19:49   #16
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Hands down, the Ruger Mini 14. go here and read what Ruger Mini owners have to say about their rifle.

Ruger Mini-14 and Mini-30 - Shooting Sports Forum
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Old 12-26-2011, 16:55   #17
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Throwing a tapco or ATI on a mini seems like the opposite of trying to be different. I can't claim to be a mini fanatic, though I do own a mini 30 in a hogue stock. I do prefer an ak/sks in that caliber, or the ar in 5.56. Nothing wrong with the mini, and it is a good quality weapon, I just have my preferences. I would certainly prefer the mini to the keltec, the mini would be on my "good to go" list, the kel tec would be omitted.
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Old 12-26-2011, 22:40   #18
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If "shtf" is part of the guns' job description, the Kel-tec shouldn't even submit an application for employment, IMO. I just don't think they would stand up to even a moderate amount of rough treatment without failing The mini-14 on the other hand, can take a pretty harsh beating and still keep going, and also needs the barest minimum of upkeep.
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Old 01-01-2012, 12:19   #19
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I have owned several versions of the Mini over the last 30 years and I will never be without one. They may not be the most accurate or the cheapest, the best looking or have the most after market add-ons, but they are tough, simple and reliable just like the M-1 Garand, M-14 and M-1 Carbine they are patterned after. These are the guns I grew up with and feel comfortable with. I am not of the AR-15/M-16 generation even though I like some of them. There are cheaper rifles and certainly more expensive guns, but the Mini, in any caliber, has served me well. I like the .223/5.56 version because ammo is available almost anywhere ammo is sold. Not true of the 7.62x39.
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