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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have located a used mini 14 LE (with bayonet lug and flash hider) guy don't know how old. said it is in perfect condition. wood stock, 18.5 in barrel, blue. does this gun have the 'pencil barrel' or one of the newer heavier barrel? anything I should look for before I go inspect this gun? tks to all. also, were the newer 'ranch rifles' the only ones to get the 'heavy barrels? again, my thanks.
 

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Find out the serial number. I picked up an LE model in a Scar stock. It was a 580 series stainless and had the regular profile barrel. It was worth it as it came with a 5 rounder, (7) 30 rounders, (11) 20 rounders still new in the old white boxes!

Best of LUCK!
 

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Odd Pachyderm thingy
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I have located a used mini 14 LE (with bayonet lug and flash hider) guy don't know how old. said it is in perfect condition. wood stock, 18.5 in barrel, blue. does this gun have the 'pencil barrel' or one of the newer heavier barrel? anything I should look for before I go inspect this gun? tks to all. also, were the newer 'ranch rifles' the only ones to get the 'heavy barrels? again, my thanks.
the 580+ series ranch rifles are the only ones to get the medium contour barrel.

the mini 14 GB (that's the correct designation by the way) that you are looking at

it will have the flash hider and bayonet lug on a "pencil" barrel
it will also have NO scope mount scallops on it. the front sight is winged type similar to what is on the 580 series guns, integral to the bayonet lug instead of the standard for that time blade sight on the end of the barrel.

inspection of the rifle should be the same as any other mini - look for rust, look for extractor wear, make sure the chamber looks good, and the bore is shiny and pit free.

if you can get the first digits of the serial number you can check it's age against the master list found on this site (use the search feature and you'll dig it up)

MOST of these GB rifles were armory rack guns - many only sat in prison armories waiting for SHTF prison riots that never came. consequently, many of them were in almost unused condition when they were sold as surplus.
the guns that were issued to police officers as patrol rifles can be a little more rough around the edges - but usually they are mechanically fit for duty, with only finish wear and stock scratches and dings as issues.
It's hard to actually ruin a mini - you pretty much have to intentionally abuse it to get it to stop working right.

I have Mini 14 GB of 185 series vintage, so it was produced somewhere between 1987 and 1990.

stock, it was a decent shooter maybe a 2.5 MOA gun- it is said by some that the Mini 14 GB guns were better out of the box shooters than the standard mini 14 models of the same time, something to do with the flash hider and bayonet lug mounted to the barrel improving harmonics slightly. 2.5 MOA for a stock 185 series mini is actually pretty good - when 3MOA was the norm, and pie plate groups were not uncommon... this was the time period that earned the mini its (incorrect) reputation of being "inaccurate"

with a modified accustrut (to clear the bayo lug), trigger work, re torqued gas block, TROY MCS chassis, and a 1911 pistol buffer on the op rod.
it is now a "better than decent" but not a MOA gun... maybe a 1.5 MOA gun, I'll put it up against a cheap AR any day and still score well... I'll pop man sized targets in the COM at 300 every time all day... which is good enough for me.

The only problems I came up against is - it's hard to mount modern optics on a "non ranch" mini 14
(hence the troy mcs chassis)

basically - what you have there in a mini 14 GB is the "Yankee's AK" (tough hard to break, goes boom every time, not the most accurate but still very useable) rifle chambered in an american caliber.

hope this helps :D
 

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Be sure to ask about any mods done, check trigger is heavy stock.
 

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Odd Pachyderm thingy
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WOW!! thank u guys very much. I will eyeball it tomorrow and report back. cheers.
that's what we are here for ;)

lets hope the gun is as promised and we have another mini 14 owner to hang out with :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Perhaps I can draw upon the wealth of knowledge on this forum once again. Today I inspected the Mini 14 described above. the ser number is 181-33374 and it has the bayonet lug/integral sight with flash hider. they are part of the barrel, not aftermarket. the wood stock is 98%, has a curved buttplate and unmolested. Has pencil barrel and bluing is worn what you would expect from a 30 yr old gun. However, there is no inscription such as "Goverment issued, or Goverment barrel. ' anywhere on receiver. sling swivels are both standard placement, facing down. Dealer not real familiar with gun. has had for quite some time and can't sell. bought it with sev others in a 'collection'. price is 850.00 to include sales tax of 8%. Bore looks fair. looks like it needs a good cleaning, Prob 800.00 total would buy it. However, I have ordered one ,tentatively, from walmart for 667.00 plus 8%tax but not arrived. sales mgr said no problem with Ruger, just have to wait til they are caught up with orders. still don't know if gun is legit GB model. what do u guys think?
 

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Odd Pachyderm thingy
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the only way to really tell if it's a Legit GB model is to run the serial number through ruger... there is no LE markings on the rifle itself.

however as you describe the rifle it sounds like one.


IMHO -850.00 is a little steep.

it is a "pre ban" rifle with some features you can no longer get on a more modern model. and we are in the midst of a kind of autoloader crisis... so prices have jumped a bit due to the current political climate.

to put it into perspective I paid $500 for mine (a younger 185 model) about 3 years ago -stock was 98% or better, bore was shiny as all get out, and the previous owner cleaned and lubed it to "new rifle" status there was not a speck of carbon or crud on the gun. - the only two issues were some wear on the bluing of the receiver, (at the sight "ears" and in the track for the op rod) and a little bit of corrosion on the forearm liner.

he even threw in an M7 bayonet, and a couple aftermarket 20 round mags (that worked well)

for 850, you may want to see if he can sweeten the deal a little - a half dozen 20-30 round mags might help... those are hard to come by right now... and with the way things are going, once the current buying spree is over they may never be available again legally for a reasonable cost.

if the rifle is sold slick, with no sweeteners of the deal I'd pay no more than 550 for it... you say the guy has had it for a while and can't sell it - that should give you some leverage

but then again -things ARE a little nuts right now.
 

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Yea, I was thinking $500 unless it has a bunch of extra factory mags and ammo! Or he is throwing in a 10/22 to boot!
 

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again, thank you for your comments.
Sounds like your looking at an early factory GB mini. I'd snap it up now, even though the price is a little steep. With the current political situation, this could be your last chance at a detach mag semi-auto that can take hi cap mags. The flashider and bayonet lug could put this mini into a banned category in the next few months. There is no guarentee that Ruger will catch up with the demand before the politicians decide that mini 14's and 30's are evil and should no longer be made (In a detach mag format). I have seen NIB stainless ranch models going for $1500 - 1790 on gunbroker.com in the last week. I have also seen any mini 14/30 at the local gun shops for less than $1000 get snapped up. Even SKS's are going for more than $500. If the Wal-mart order gun comes through, thank your lucky stars.

Good luck
 

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Just as a point of reference, I recently bought basically the same rifle (185 series GB) in stainless for $625.A blued version would have slightly less value.
Granted this was before the current buying frenzy, But still $800 seems a little steep.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
took your advice. bought GB model for 750.00. stock is 98%. receiver 90%. got 2 mags. 1-5 rd 1-20 rds. this is early 181 series (1978). seems like I saw a pic of a 181 series just this week with wood handguard. Could this be? or, are they for 180 series only? tks to all for your commen ts and suggestions in my search for a mini 14.
 

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Odd Pachyderm thingy
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took your advice. bought GB model for 750.00. stock is 98%. receiver 90%. got 2 mags. 1-5 rd 1-20 rds. this is early 181 series (1978). seems like I saw a pic of a 181 series just this week with wood handguard. Could this be? or, are they for 180 series only? tks to all for your commen ts and suggestions in my search for a mini 14.
unless you are trying to preserve the "collector value" of youe new early mini - something to consider:
The Mini looks damn good in Duracoat... spruce it up and make it your own :lol: and protect that metal (your "new" gun is almost as old as I am :lol:)

My 185 is Ultra flat OD... when I unwrapped it after getting it back from Gundoc it looked BRAND NEW :)

I also have a stainless 581 Mini 30 in Ultra Flat Black he did for me - great Conservative color for a mini IMHO, no sheen/reflective value at all. would look good with factory wood if you are not into the " evil plastic gun look"
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
tks for info on refinishing tips from Gundoc. I plan to use his skill snd expertise if this gun is not a shooter, Actually, the finish overall is nice. someone took care of it. I hesitate to spend money on duracote unless it really needs it. I think the wood handguard looks neat, but, is it reserved for only 180 series? I am almost sure I saw a 181-xxxxx (early one) a few days ago with orig wood handguard. I have had limited luck in getting thru to Ruger on phone to ask about this. What do you think? thanks so much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
You know, this thing is so nice, even tho I have not even fired it yet, bore cleaned up perfect with a couple applications of bore scrubber , then mopping with dry swab, shines like all get out. rifling sharp and well defined, but don't know about condition of crown, because of flash hider. It always goes against my grain to clean a barrel from muzzle end. I have a couple of win 94 and marlin 336 and same problem. I am 74 yrs old and eyesight not what it used to be. I will try a scope on this 'antique' . S&K has a nice, albeit pricey, mount for the non ranch model. Anyone care to chime in on any other ,less expensive mounts. What a wealth of knowledge available here for free!! hard to believe sometimes. Only other place I have found people so nice is on Sunday morning at church. Thanks to all.
 

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took your advice. bought GB model for 750.00. stock is 98%. receiver 90%. got 2 mags. 1-5 rd 1-20 rds. this is early 181 series (1978). seems like I saw a pic of a 181 series just this week with wood handguard. Could this be? or, are they for 180 series only? tks to all for your commen ts and suggestions in my search for a mini 14.
Wood handguards were standard issue on 180 to early 182 prefix minis. All 180 and 181's had them from the factory. Good luck with your new mini!
 

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Odd Pachyderm thingy
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pretty much if you want quality, S and K is the only choice...

the other option is going to a scout mount and replacing your heat shield. with an Ameaga or Ultimak.

both of those are top quality.


you could have a drilled and tapped setup put on there (if you have the skill equipment to do it yourself , or have it done by a smith.)
 
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