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Side to side movement is what you want to look for. On the wood stock you shim under the stock reinforcement bracket. I used a paper hole puncher to punch a hole in the shim so the bracket screw could be inserted. It also helps in holding the shims in place. On the poly stock you will have to fit your shims and then hit with a dab of glue to hold them.

Check the movement with the trigger assembly out. If shimming is needed keep even on both sides.

Bepe
 

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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
Side to side movement is what you want to look for. On the wood stock you shim under the stock reinforcement bracket. I used a paper hole puncher to punch a hole in the shim so the bracket screw could be inserted. It also helps in holding the shims in place. On the poly stock you will have to fit your shims and then hit with a dab of glue to hold them.

Check the movement with the trigger assembly out. If shimming is needed keep even on both sides.

Bepe
Will do. Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #63 ·
So, I got the reloading components I was waiting for, and loaded up some hand loads. Individually weighted charges with Varmageddon bullets. I once again mounted the scope, this time being careful to make sure it fully seated. The factory rings are a goofy design. As you tighten them onto the rifle, they try to turn themselves loose, and stick before they’re all the way seated. This is especially problematic with stainless, because it’s “stickier” than blue steel. Some slip 2000 and turning it tighter, then backing off a bit, then turning tighter over and over got it seated the way it’s supposed to. Then I removed all the screws and douse them with loctite. Then off to the range. This time it stayed on until I took it off.

It shot better than before, and consistently, but the best I can get out of it is a ten shot group of about 5” at 100 yards.
The hand loads provided the best accuracy so far. I had one fail to feed out of the 12 hand loaded rounds, and when I ran the ammo over the chrono the 125 grain bullets we’re only going about 2000 fps. Turns out load data for x39 is all over the place. Hornady‘s max load for the powder/bullet combination I was using is actually below another manufacture’s minimum load. I’m bumping up the load for next time, but…with the reduced gas bushing AND significantly underpowered ammo, if still only failed to feed one round. I have no doubt this is an extremely reliable rifle.

I took off the scope and confirmed zero with the tech sights, and got about the same accuracy as with the scope. This is sufficient for my needs, and to be fair, I did not follow Bebe’s advice and shim the stock, nor did I apply an accurizing strut, or do a trigger job. As I said, this is to be a truck gun, so 5” will work. I may re-address things down the road, but for now I am satisfied it will do what I need it to, namely remain functional and sighted in despite being banged around in a truck day-in and day-out for a decade or so. Thanks again for your learned advice. Phineas
 

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Curious as to what your powder and load were? I use the Varmageddon bullet with 25.7 H4198. Hornadys max load in their manual. No chrono so I can't give any velocity info. I recently grabbed a pound of RL7. Max load of 27 grains has given good accuracy and recoil and ejection seems about equal to the 4198 load. Maybe a little hotter. Last few range trips, I've been shooting the Hornady FMJ bullet. Surprisingly, I honestly believe that it may be a little more accurate than the V-Max.

5" at 100 yards is minute of combat. Plenty good in my book as acceptable. I shoot a 6" bull target at 100 yards. If I put all of my shots in the black.....I'm happy.

A quick pic of the Hornady FMJ as compared to the V-Max bullet. As you can see...the FMJ has a lot more bullet (bearing surface) up in front of the crimp groove. It also sits shallower in the case. I'm thinking that this bullet has less of a "jump" to get to the barrel rifling. Thus the improved accuracy. More testing to be done.
Bepe
Font Gas Cylinder Tobacco Drink
 

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IIRC, typical accuracy acceptance standards for the GI M1/M-14 rifles, using GI ammo, were about 4 MOA.

It would not surprise me any to find that with reloaded ammo better tailored to your Mini, and perhaps with some careful shimming, your overall accuracy will improve. Best of luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
I was using 23 grains of 1680 on the varmageddon bullet. I got some SSTs since then and I’m planning on trying them with a smidge more 1680.

I’d love to try some 4198, as it seems to be a good powder for this application, but it’s hard to find right now. (I saw a pack of a thousand small rifle primers for sale at bass pro yesterday for $125.00!)

Shimming seems pretty simple. Next time I get the rifle out I’ll try it.

I got the rifle a wilderness Rhodesian sling and took it for a walk in the woods yesterday. It carries comfortably and works well with the sling. Not sure I’m ready to be dropped in the Amazon with just the rifle and a knife yet, but we’re getting closer. :)
 

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Sandog loves the 1680. I picked up a pound of it a bit back and was going to try it. I saw the load data was light as far as load weight. I contacted SD and inquired. He is loading above listed data. He said no pressure indications. I've been using the IMR 4198 since the 80's. Switched to the H4198 a few years back. Both are excellent in the x39mm. The Hogdon gives higher velocity. As I posted earlier, I got into the RL7. That appears to be outstanding also. I didn't want to get too distracted so I gave the 1680 to a buddy. I'll use the H4198 and the RL7. Max load of RL7 is listed at just under 2500 fps. No chrono to verify.

With your trigger assembly out of the rifle try and move the receiver side to side while in the stock. If it has movement then shimming will help.

Bepe
 

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you might consider checking the muzzle crown with a magnifying glass. a small burr or gouge there can really mess up accuracy. I loaded a firm felt cone on a 1/4" mandrel with fine lapping compound to polish the crown of my 189 series.
can't say whether + result as I added the HK type front sight on the Eagle brand brake (really improved the iron sight picture) and bedded the fore stock/gas block juncture same time but something definitely helped.
 
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you might consider checking the muzzle crown with a magnifying glass. a small burr or gouge there can really mess up accuracy. I loaded a firm felt cone on a 1/4" mandrel with fine lapping compound to polish the crown of my 189 series.
can't say whether + result as I added the HK type front sight on the Eagle brand brake (really improved the iron sight picture) and bedded the fore stock/gas block juncture same time but something definitely helped.
I concur. In many cases very slight damage to the crown/rifling can only be detected by a practiced eye, usually under good light and magnification. If you don't know what to look for, you probably won't find it. Re-crowning the muzzle is easily within the capabilities of most Mini owners, and the tools used to do so are relatively inexpensive.
 

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.065" is what I used for years for the longer factory length barrels. When I installed the Choate on "Maggie", I cut the barrel somewhat down to 17", she still likes the .065".
I finally got around to cutting the other Mini, "Sasha" down to 16.5" and she needs the full .100" bushing for sure.

Phineas, after shooting, does the "starburst" fouling pattern on the muzzle look even at all points ? I can send you the hand tools to re-crown after I get them back from Hylander. As others have said, it's hard to discern any slight defects in the crown, easier just to re-do it. I've not been impressed with the factory crowns I've seen.

I like my Tech sights and shooting with irons occasionally, but you should try a micro red dot. Better in low light, faster to engage one target or multiple ones, and when mounted forward away from your head, greatly improved peripheral vision.
Burris or Vortex make good, middle of the price range micro dots.

Bepe, I've never used A1680, I think it was A2015 you meant. That's all I've ever used in the x39.
Had meant to try some H4198 as you have had good results with it, but haven't done any more x39 loading the last 2 years.
When I started to load for the x39, Hornady bullets were readily available, were the proper diameter not undersize, and are known for accuracy.
I stocked up on the SST for my defense stash, and used the Hornady FMJ for range use. Their FMJ (now discountinued) was made with care, unlike other FMJ bullets, and I got great accuracy with them. Not as good as the SST, but still great.

This was with my wood stock gun and Nikon scout scope mounted on the Ultimak. For some reason I haven't been able to figure out, "Maggie" gets a good 150 fps. less with my SST handload than the other Mini. Other loads she shoots at normal velocity though. Weird.

I got good results with the Varmeggeddon bullet too. Both the Nosler and the SST shot the best with 28.6 grains of A2015. (Hornady shows a max of 28.5)
I find Hornady data to be more "normal" than most, not hot or too conservative.

I have to disagree with A1680 being known as the "go to" powder for the x39. I'm sure accuracy is as good as other powders but Hornady shows a full 2400 fps possible with H4198 and A2015, while A1680 tops out at 2200 fps.
Seems the slower burning H4198 and A2015 are optimal.
If your x39 loads are only 2000 to 2200 you are getting down to .30 Carbine power.

Handloading allows more options as well. These are some tracer rounds I loaded. I got the bullets from a supplier in Phoenix, he got tracer bullets pulled from AK ammo imported. I guess it was legal for him to import the bullets but not loaded tracer ammo.
 

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dog is that off a bench? obvious slow fire, and what magazine?
I had some WW 680 years back - is 1680 the same? if so then it's a 'ball' shape powder.
I don't own a chrono so can't say the FPS but years back I loaded some 147 gr FMJBT .308 bullets made for the .308 and .30-06 over 4895 (only powder I've ever used for my '06, a 'stick' shape) for my 30 and surprise me got decent groups. this is with my gas pipe plugged and feeding straight pull bolt, the rounds barely fit into the magazine due to seating length.
also loaded .308 150 gr Speer SP flat base to use for white tail over 680 with good results on paper @ 100 but haven't gotten around to going hunting with as I switched to muzzle loader for doe tags
 
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Yes, off the bench, and for bench shooting I usually use the 5 round mag. For accuracy testing like that I use the Nikon 2.5-8x cranked up.
I kept several nice groups to show those guys that say a Mini can't hit a barn door or 55 gal drum.
 

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I have good shooting Mini 14. Being a VN Era vet I've always been anti anything related to the enemy. But darn if you guy aren't making me want a Mini 30 in the safe!
 
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I'm also a VN era Vet, and used to have the same issues with using commie hardware, but then I got a Colt AR in 7.62 x 39. That made me want to try a Mini-30.
I had had several Mini-14s from when they first came out, but once I tried a Mini-30 my Mini-14 never got used again.

You give up flatter trajectory for a big boost in striking power with a fatter, twice as heavy bullet hitting with an extra 400 ft.lbs. Since most of us end up shooting well under 300 yards, most likely under 100 yards, that flat trajectory thing isn't so important.
 

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Well even tho I don't have one any longer, I'm a .30-30 fan. Seems you have a semi auto thirty thirty with Russian round?
 

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Yes, close to the 30-30 but with pointy bullets.
One nice thing about the x39 is there isn't a great velocity loss with the handy 16" barrels like there is with 5.56mm
Some of the loads I tried actually got more velocity with the shortest barrel.

One thing I notice is that velocities listed for 30/30 loads are out of 20 inch or longer barrels, whereas the x39 is almost always a 16 inch one. Shoot a 30/30 out of a trapper length lever and the difference won't be much if any.

(96) Velocity Loss Vs. Barrel Length in the Mini-30 | Perfect Union
(96) More 7.62 x 39 Testing | Perfect Union
 
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