Ruger Mini-14 and Mini-30 Ruger Mini-14 and Mini-30 family of rifles

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Old 01-06-2010, 20:49   #1
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Manual Round Loading

With no magazine in the Mini-14 and with the bolt locked back can you manually chamber a round and then release the bolt like you can with a manual bolt-action rifle? I'm just wondering if the bolt will properly seat over the round and if this would be safe to do? Just curious.
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Old 01-06-2010, 22:51   #2
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I don't see why not. But be careful of your fingers, so as not to release the bolt accidentally while loading.

As long as the round is lined up in the chamber about 50% or more chambering should go fine.
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Old 01-06-2010, 23:21   #3
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You can do it but I wouldn't recommend making a habit of it.
Cartridges loading from the magazine slide the rim up behind the extractor.
Placing the cartridge in the chamber and then allowing the action to slam shut forces the extractor to cam around the rim. The extractor was not designed for that. I've seen several handguns with broken extractors caused by repeatedly slamming the slide shut with a cartridge in the chamber. (Police Officers are the worst offenders.)
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Old 01-07-2010, 00:04   #4
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Originally Posted by ctyankee View Post
With no magazine in the Mini-14 and with the bolt locked back can you manually chamber a round and then release the bolt like you can with a manual bolt-action rifle? I'm just wondering if the bolt will properly seat over the round and if this would be safe to do? Just curious.
DO NOT do this.

On the garand style guns (Like the M1 Garage, and the M14) this is a BAD THING to do. (Mini is based off this action)

When the rounds are in the magazine, the bolt comes forward, and grabs a round out of the magazine/clip and this results in slowing the bolt down.

Now if you remove the mag/clip and put in a round in the chamber and let the bolt slam forward, you can run the risk of a slam fire with the garand style guns (It may set the round off before your bolt is locked in). I've never heard of a Mini-14 running into this, but I personally WILL NOT do this. (I do own a Springfield M1A).

If I want to manually load 1 round, I put it in a magazine, and let the bolt strip it off.

If I don't have a mag handy, I will put a bullet in the chamber, grab the bolt, manually push it 3/4 the way and let it fly the last 1/4 on its own. This will not allow the bolt to slam forward with full force.

Last edited by Dacotua; 01-07-2010 at 00:06.
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:12   #5
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The instruction manual specifically says this is OK to do. However, I also think this is a little hard on the extractor and wouldn't make a habit of it.
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:27   #6
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purchase a spare extractor, plunger and spring, and have at it. I would not drop the bolt all the way however, just enough to lock the bolt closed.

I dont think its going to hurt anything, or you could use a mag so the bolt locks back after each shot.
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Old 01-07-2010, 10:22   #7
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Ummm the Garand is a pushfeed system, and the extractor dosn't close over the rim until the round is in the chamber. The same thing is true of the M-700 Rem rifles. The Mauser type rifles (including the M-70 Win, 1903 Sprg, 03a3, M-1917 etc) and the 1911 Colt pistols are controled round feeds, and on those the rim slips under the extractor as the bolt closes.
Your point about not letting the bolt slam all the way forward is a good one however
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Old 01-07-2010, 14:57   #8
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I have done the single feed one session, due to the pouch of magazines that I inadvertantly left on the bench at home.
When I got to the range, it was either feed single or go home bang-free.
It works fine. It's slow. I eased the bolt forward a little slowly. If you hold the op rod with the side of your hand Garand-style when you push the bolt release, there's no real worry about slam fire.
I do recommend knocking the op rod forward after loading each round to make sure the bolt is seated properly.
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Old 01-07-2010, 20:08   #9
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Thanks for the info guys. My take away is... it's okay to do but infrequently, and ease the bolt forward and confirm it's properly seated.

I don't see much need to ever do this but I'm gonna try it with spent case the next time I have the Mini out.
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Old 01-07-2010, 20:20   #10
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Originally Posted by Tailgunner View Post
Ummm the Garand is a pushfeed system, and the extractor dosn't close over the rim until the round is in the chamber. The same thing is true of the M-700 Rem rifles. The Mauser type rifles (including the M-70 Win, 1903 Sprg, 03a3, M-1917 etc) and the 1911 Colt pistols are controled round feeds, and on those the rim slips under the extractor as the bolt closes.
Your point about not letting the bolt slam all the way forward is a good one however
Yup!
I was focused on the issue of broken extractors with our Department sidearms and didn't take the pushfeed mechanism into account.
Mike
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