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A few questions I need answered!

1067 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  cajungeo
Greetings. I just stumbled onto this board, and already decided I needed to register so I could post a question or two. I am a reserve deputy, and am looking for a patrol rifle. Kicking around the idea of an AR-15, but the Mini 14 keeps jumping up at me. I know nothing about either one, so here are a couple of questions for those that are in the know:

1. What is the difference in a regular mini 14 and a ranch mini 14?
2. Given the big difference in price between the ar and mini, is the accuracy really that much better in an ar?
3. I found a 183 model(I think it is a 183) for $350, might take less. If the barrel is not rusted and pitted, is this a good price? Don't care about the condition of the stock as I can replace it with synthetic stock.

Thanks in advance for any info you can provide.
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Welcome to the board, TexReserve. There is much to learn at this site.

1. Other than slight mechanical differences in the action, the RANCH version has built-in locations designed for the mounting of a scope. Ruger provides these rings with the rifle when you buy it new. If the gun is used, you may not get the rings. The RANCH also has a peep-sight like the STANDARD Mini-14, although it is of a poor design and is flimsy.

The STANDARD mini-14 has no place to mount a scope, so you end up buying an add-on to mount it to the bolt retainer cover (on the left-hand side) of the gun, or you might have to modify it some other way. The STANDARD's peep-sight is slightly better than the RANCH, with incremental settings for the sight. If you are going to end up with a scope on your gun, get the Ranch, for a little extra $.

2. This is a question which should be weighted personally. If I were Bill Gates, then the price diffence is immaterial. If I am broke which is more like it for me, the difference is a factor of 2. A new Mini-14 Ranch is about $500, a new Bushmaster AR Varminter is about $1000. Is an AR twice as accurate? Depends how you do the math, I guess... Its up to you how much accuracy is worth to you. To answer that, ask yourself what you intend to use the gun for. If you want to shoot Prarie Dogs at 300+ yards, you probably want more accuracy than the Mini gives you out of the box. If you are shooting soda cans at 50 yards, the mini is plenty accurate.

3. For price shopping, I would suggest you locate an auction site like and try to find something that is a close match to what you are looking at buying. Which model is it - a Ranch or a Standard? Stainless or Blued? I think they may only have made the Standard Mini- in that serial range.

Hope this helps.
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