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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In October of '94 I bought my first Mini-14, a bluesteel Ranch. Immediately it was a love/hate relationship that I had with this rifle. It functioned perfectly, but I found that the best I could hope for was keeping all of my shots on an 8" paper plate at 100 yards, off of a sandbag rest!
Almost a year later I was reading a gun rag in the barber shop, while waiting my turn for a haircut. I came across an article about accuratizing Mini-14s, at a company called Accuracy Rifle Systems. I asked my barber if I could keep this rag, he said sure, he's got too many laying around. A month or two later, I sent my rifle to Odessa, TX to have ARS rebarrel it. In January of '96 I received my 24" heavy barrel Mini. I was so impressed that I had Tim at ARS rebarrel a 2nd Mini-14, this one a SS Ranch. I ordered it in 6x45mm, a .223 necked up to 6mm. I never shot the SS model when it had the factory barrel, just bought the rifle and sent it out. The 6x45mm also has a 24" barrel. I received the 6x45mm in October of '96.
I made certain claims as to the groups I have achieved with the converted rifles and because of a few(?) doubters I am going to post what I have done with the rifles to make them shoot sub-moa. Hopefully this may be of use to someone with a heavy barrel Mini-14, or someone contemplating one. This will be accomplished in several posts.
Let's start at the top. Optics. Use quality optics. I have had good luck with Simmons, but for the best value and quality my vote is Leupold. Also, they stand behind their product, like a ROCK.
The Ruger Integral Scope Mount is rock solid and true. Rock solid, yes. True, NO! I have had a lot of problems in this area. When I tightened a new scope in the mounted rings, the reticle POA was WAY off on my optical boresighter's grid. If I loosened the rings and retightened them the POA would move. Ditto, if I switched the rings position, front to back. At times the scope did not want to lay true and free of bind, in the bottom ring halves. Bad!
A quality scope has the reticle centered at the factory, when new. After mounting, you should only have to make small adjustments to bring POA to POI, within the rifle's point blank range. If you are sighting through the rifle's optical center, it will be much brighter, with less chance of distortion. Also, you will not get good accuracy using a scope that is in a bind, bent by the misaligned rings.
Lapping the scope rings. I have had communication with other heavy barrel Mini owners. One such shooter tried lapping the rings. When he got them lapped evenly, across the whole surface, the rings would no longer hold the scope when shooting. The minuscule recoil would cause the scope to slip. Another Mini shooter told me that one ring was quite a few thousandths lower than the other. Bad! Also, lapping will not correct any offset of the receiver itself, and you can not shim that particular mount system. If you can, please let me know!
The solution? Burris Signature rings. They have a synthetic insert which grips the scope. The inserts will swivel and compensate for misalignment/offset. They will not put your scope in a bind, and they will not mar your scope. This is important if you upgrade and want to sell your old scope. There is also an offset insert kit to compensate even more, if you need it. I needed it. This allows you to shim the scope within the ring itself. Many BR shooters are going to these rings. They can use the offset kit to raise the rear of the scope and lower the front. This allows them to shoot at long ranges, without exceeding the scope's elevation adjustments and once again keeping the line of sight through the scope's optical center. I am slowly converting all of my scoped firearms to these rings. I have installed them on my .378 WBY Mag, and they handle the recoil beautifully. Also, they look much better on the Mini and they have a tighter fit to the receiver than the factory rings. The Mini-14 Ranch uses the same rings as the 77/22. I have finally found a vendor that carries the stainless rings for my other Mini. They are hard to find and so are the Burris Signature Rings for the SuperRedhawk. The SR takes the same rings as the Model 77, MkII.

[This message has been edited by David M (edited 09-30-2000).]
 

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I have a mini converted by ARS, I've sent a mini-30 down there to be converted to a HBAR 6mmPPC, I use Millet rings they have a lot of adjuctment in them, to straighten the scope on the reciever.

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A voice from the wilderness!
Glad to hear of another solution that you have found to this problem, Ridge Runner. Let me know how your Mini-30 comes out.
 

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The Burris rings are excellent, yes! But you seem to be hung up on Leupold. Have you tried the Burris scopes? They are,in my opinion, a much better value than the Leupold. Read about them at burrisoptics.com. They also have an excellent warranty.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have a 2-7 Burris Posi-Lock(HG) on my SuperRedhawk. It is a very solid scope, but eye relief gets a little short over 4x.
 

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It depends what you are looking for, I was looking for a super sccurate semi auto rifle to varmint hunt with, I already had the mini, it was cheaper than buying a new AR or Valmet.

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
357B,
My first conversion cost $330, but the price has went up since then. For me it was worth it. I wanted an accurate semi-auto in .223 with the look of a M1A. Both of my Minis are reasonably accurate, well functioning rifles. They are not for everyone, but because of that, when I go to the range there isn't a 1/2 dozen other converted Minis on the benches.
That said, for someone looking at buying a semi for a target rifle or a project gun, I would advise an AR. Much better design, much, much more versatile.

[This message has been edited by David M (edited 10-13-2000).]
 
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