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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for some suggested loads for a 2000 Ruger Mini-14 using Sierra 60 gr (or any other) bulles and Winchester 748 powder. I also have some Sierra 69 gr MK bullets I might try if they aren't too long for the magazine.

Also, do you folks crimp the Mini's rounds? I have just started relaoding for rifles although I've done pistols for 20 years. The Mini is the only self-loader I own, and I don't plan to crimp the rounds for my other bolt action CFs.

Thanks.
 

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Hey Doug, my mini didn't like the 69 gr. maby yours will. No don't crimp your cases, it raises the pressure, and decreases the accuracy. From my Sierra Reloading manual
.224 60 gr. HP
Cartridge OAL: 2.250"
Win 748: 24.3 gr/2800 fps, 25.0 gr/2900 fps, 25.7 gr/3000 fps, 26.4 gr/3100 fps

Accuracy Load: 25.0 grn.; 2900 fps/1120 ft.lbs.

.224 69 gr. MatchKing HPBT
Cartridge OAL: 2.260"
Win 748: 24.2 gr/2500 fps, 24.9 gr/2600 fps, 25.5gr/2700 fps, 26.0 gr/2800 fps

Accuracy Load" 748/25.5.; 2700 fps/1117 ft. lbs.
Sierra does not recommend MK bullets for hunting

*Doug, wou probably already know these specs, are from a test barrel, so its highly recommended to start with lower loads, and work up, looking for case pressure signs, to be safe.
 

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Excuse me Cajungeo (I value your opinions), but I respectfully disagree with the crimping issue in regards to the mini 14 and 30. In the case that you will be using high capacity magazines to fulfill your god given right to blast away. You may find that the last couple of rounds from yor reloads seem to go where they want. Thats because they are forced forward and back with each recoil of the weapon. I have measured a substancial difference in just a 5 round mag, between the first and last overall case length when using uncrimped ammo. I wish I could say the difference was always shorter or longer but I have experienced both.
I use a Lee factory crimp die and never exceed 90% of load data unless the recipe calls for crimping and is from a reliable source. I have not had any issues with bullet travel since.

http://www.leeprecision.com/catalog/dies-p3.html

the above link will help you understand how it works.

I use 55 grain nosler balistic tip projectiles and 23.5 grains of Winchester 788

I prefer the IMR 4198 at 22 grains as a reliably accurate round for my mini.

If you are using the rounds for accuracy in a bolt action rifle please disregard these procedures.
As always consult a reliable reloading manual before using anyone elses data.

usa: :usa:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
cajungeo, thanks for the two loads and recommendation. So you aren't crimping rounds for your Mini. I'm getting about 50/50 pro/con crimping for the Mini-14. Confusing......I'll just have to try both, won't I! If I do crimp, I will be doing a very light crimp, light I do with my 45acp loads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That 2.260 round fits in the magazines okay? Sounds a little long but I haven't measured it. Have you ever measured the distance from the bolt to the rifling? I'm in the process of doing that on another rifle (Savage 223), but have yet to do the Ruger.
 

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Doug, I have reduced the recoil in my mini by my gustiment, by 70% (it kicks a little more than my 10/22) by installing a smaller gas bushing, and installing a muzzle brake. I have taken a dial caliper to the range, and have measured bullet seating. On my mini it does not change! If you have not reduced your recoil, then I agree with Ivan. (I suguest you measure yours aswell)

If I were to crimp, it would be a taper crimp. Again, if you crimp, watch for high pressure signs, as it will increase with a crimped bullet.

The main problem with bullet seating depth on the mini, is your really limited by the mag. Don't quote me but my best recollection of bullet to lands on my mini was .90". How much more accurate would the mini be if we had a mag where we could seat the bullet to .010 or closer. The mag on my Remington .308 exceeds the distance to the lands, so I can load it for max accuracy, to the point where the recoil unseated a bullet in my mag. So recoil is a big factor of you choose not to deal with it. Hope this clears things up.

Tip: A simple way to measure bullet to lands: Split the neck of a case, Smoke a bullet with a candle, Barely seat a bullet, put bullet/case in chamber, and slam the bolt shut, Remove carefully, and measure, OAL , you will see land marks on the smoke! Repeat 3 times to get a steady reading.
My mag measures 2.283" so a 2.260" bullet fits nicely.

Good point Ivan! Reduce recoil, or crimp! ;)
 

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What ever load your using,use a Lee factory crimp die.Its the greatest thing since sliced bread.Try it,its not expensive.The bullets will STAY where you seated them.It dosen't matter if the bullet has a cannular or not,it will make one.:sniper:
 

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PSG1 is right. I bought a Lee Factory crimp die to do 44 mags, I paid $14 for it at my local gun shop & it is a fine tool. It is adjustable for the amount of crimp. A must have tool for anyone loading for a heavy recoil weapons or high shock recoil weapons like the Mini-14. In case you don't think you need one just wait till you get a jam & find that several of your prize reloads have dumped bullets & powder fouling your magazine.

Good shooting
Bushwack
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks guys. I ordered a 223 Remington Lee factory crimp die Friday. I'll plan on putting a very light crimp on the Mini-14 rounds and test them for movement. I won't crimp the rounds for my Savage which I load singley.

"Split the neck of a case, Smoke a bullet with a candle, Barely seat a bullet, put bullet/case in chamber, and slam the bolt shut, Remove carefully, and measure, OAL , you will see land marks on the smoke! "
> I am going to have to try that. I spent about an hour (with the bolt action Savage) trying to get a measurement. I have a Stoney Point gauge. When I use it I get measurements anyway from abou 1.978 to 2.004 inches. The later is when I really push the bullet into the rifling, which does show the rifling. If I did any less, I can never see any marks on a 'clean' bullet. I will have to try the smoking routine.

Someone recommended an overall cartridge length with the Sierra 69 gr MK bullet of 2.260. However, that's about a 1.868 inchdistance from the bullet's ogive to bolt. In my rifle (Savage) the distance is more like 1.990 inch. That length would seem to be pretty far off the lands......about 0.1 inch, which I think is quite a bit, but I am no expert.
 

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DK, I do not crimp my bullets for my .223, because I was in search of the most accurate load my mini would shoot reliably. The shifting of the seated bullets was a concern, so I took the calipers to the range to moniter the cartridge OAL many times. As it could greatly reduce accuracy. I feel the std mini would be much better off crimping as the average recoil is pretty severe. Here is what my Lyman Reloading manual says "Always use bullets with a cannelure, and crimp the cases to them when assembling ammo to be used in a semi-auto rifle"; "Some Conditions That Can Raise Pressure : Crimping cases can alter chamber pressure. NEVER crimp a load unless the load is developed with a crimp." The Lyman Manual is very conservative, and safe. The first 185 pages explain reloading in depth so you really undersand cause, and effect. I have several others, but they mostly are specs. Hopes this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
cajungeo, thanks for the info on crimping. I did order the Lee factory crimp die, so plan to use it when I actually get around to doing some reloading. <g> First I will be developing a load for my bolt action Savage, whose rounds I will not crimp.
 

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The Lee factory crimp die will only allow you to crimp just so hard/much.Thats why you never have to worry about bending a case with it.It puts four even 1/4 round crimps on the neck,just like a factory round.THIS crimp tool won't create any more pressure than a factory round will(equal load of course).:sniper:
 

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I heartily disagree any crimp will add pressure. Try shooting a crinped round followed by a non crimped round or vice versa. You will feel the difference. Any good reloading book will have information on this factor.:usa:

Also the Factory crimp from Lee that I have will allow you to over crimp, beware of this and lock it down when you have found the best pressure for your needs.

Another factor no one has mentioned is the need for same sized cases. The crimp die will not distinguish between one case length or another mor case means more crimp/pressure.:usa:
 

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Thanks for the safety tips Ivan. Above all else we can agree on is safety is first.

Just a word to clarify my view on crimped ammo. I didn't intend to imply that I was against it, all the mil spec ammo is crimped. It is for reliability, which for the military is Number 1. Just use the extra cautions, and common sense, and you will be fine. It pays to study the cautions in your reloading manual, start low, and watch for high pressure signs as you near the max safe load. I love reloading, except for working up the brass. Its kinda like washing dishes. Take care.
 

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I didn't write it wouldn't creat more pressure,I wrote it wouldn't creat more pressure than a factory crimp does.Thats what it is.The Lee I have puts pressure on the case mouth at a horizonal level,not downward like a roll or taper crimp.So its imposable to bend the case.Is yours for the 223?:sniper:
 

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Yes I have them for the 223, 303 and 308 all can be adjusted down or up by twisting the die. When this is done you can create a longer crimp the same as a roll or taper. Also the pressure can be increased by twisting the crimp adjustment down.:usa:
 

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Its NOT the same as a roll or taper crimp.Lee even states in their ad "It is impossible to buckle the case as with regular roll crimp dies.Trim length is not critical".Its more of a stamping of the case mouth than a bending or folding of the brass.Thats why its so strong.Its the strongest crimp out there.As I'm sure you know,it'll even push the brass case mouth INTO the copper jacket creating a cannular even if the bullet dosen't have one.When I get home I'll look at the part number on mine and see if its the same as yours.I got mine when they FIRST came out so there may have been some changes.:sniper:


P.S.
How do you like that 303?
 

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I can put a 1/8" ring around my 223 neck with my die. It may be that they improved the veristility of the product while adding a dimension of danger, I can only speak for the series I use.

The 303 Die came with a factory set for the 303 British, I have used it mostly for the reloading of SKS loads. It works the exact same way as the 223 die.

The 308 die however has considerably more travel in the up and down length. I like it because it can be used for a lot of different applications. To give you an example of the pressure varience of the die I have used the 308 die for 7.5mm reloads. never exceeding maximum pressure or adjustment.:usa:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I thought the rifle "Lee Factory Crimpt Die" is a taper crimp die. Is it different from the typical taper crimp die?

I've used taper crimps on my handgun loads (jacketted 9mm, 10mm and 45 acp) loads for thousands of rounds. The taper crimp is so nice as it never bulges the case, and makes the case length pretty much a non-issues.

I'll have to take a closer look at the Lee crimp die I just ordered and last week. <g> More money than sense I guess, eh?
 

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DK---Like I said I use the 44 Mag die which is a factory roll crimp. If you use the die made for 45 ACP it'd be a taper crimp because the round headspaces on the case mouth. I've never used the rifle die but I would imagine that it would be a taper crimp as well. Anyway that's what I get from the little instruction sheet that came with mine.

Later
Bushwack
 
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