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Ruger Mini-14 and Mini-30 Ruger Mini-14 and Mini-30 family of rifles

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Old 03-23-2020, 22:37   #1
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Thinking about Buying a New Mini

So I am thinking about a new Mini.
Been looking for a near new one for weeks, hate to spend $900 for a new Mini.
However, all the used ones are priced $700-$800, so might as well buy new.
Here is where I need help, Which model to get.
Also Mini-14, Mini-30 or 300 BO
I already have everything to load .223, so if Mini-30 or BO I have to get all the stuff to load for it, don't really want to load another caliber.
Not real big on to Tactical, like to keep things simple.
Also Blued or SS?
What say you?
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Old 03-24-2020, 04:23   #2
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Just my two cents, but if I didn't have a mini right now, I would go with a standard Ranch Rifle in .223 in stainless on their polymer stock. Then I would add in the Tech-Sights package to replace the rear sight, and put a decent adjustable 2 point sling and call it a day. Put any other money into magazines (sounds like you already have .223/5.56 so you're GTG there). If you're in an unrestricted state, I would get the Ruger brand mags in either 20 or 30 shot capacity depending on which you like better. I'm partial to the 20 bangers, make the weapon very handy, sort of like an M1 Carbine on steroids.

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Old 03-24-2020, 05:06   #3
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I'd advise against getting a Mini-30, cause if you did, you'd lose interest in your Mini-14.

That happened to me. I had dies, lots of loading components for .223, lots of Ruger 20 round mags and a few 30's for the Mini-14, but after I got that first Mini-30, I lost all interest in the .22 cal Mini. I sold it, and all the stuff that went with it, and then bought a second Mini-30.
No you don't want a Mini-30, they are too addicting !
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:05   #4
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Hmmmm. I got a mini 6.8 first. Loved it and then got a mini 30 loved it too, and then got a mini 14. Love my mini family. Now to add a blackout to the mix.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:10   #5
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List is not what you usually pay, is it.

Sold a NIB Mini-14 for $599 and could not get a buyer for 2 months.

Had it listed for $599 Firm though.

When Walmart had them for $569 they sat and had to be reduced to $399 to get rid of them.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:23   #6
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Originally Posted by dh1633pm View Post
Hmmmm. I got a mini 6.8 first. Loved it and then got a mini 30 loved it too, and then got a mini 14. Love my mini family. Now to add a blackout to the mix.
Variety can be nice. I've had an interest in the 6.8, and I'd really like to have ASI rechamber a Mini-30 to 6.5 Grendel.

But then I think about keeping my supply lines simple, and that I can get 7.62 x 39 anywhere in the world. Not so with 6.8 or 6.5.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:45   #7
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Good point on the supply lines. I keep it simple by not worrying too much about off caliber rifles. Just keep the more important ammo in greater stock. Like blackout, I have a Remington Model 7. I keep a good supply of brass (made it myself) and 30 caliber bullets. I make these to order. I do like the Mini 30 especially after I got the firing pin fixed to better shoot steel cased ammo.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:48   #8
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A bunch of people have had good success buying used Mini-14 from ClydesArmory.
Contact the stores directly as their website is often not updated.
Ask them what they have in inventory for used Mini-14. They handle LEO trades.
I bet they can find you a nice example. Lots of people swear by them.

I see currently on their web site they some Mini-14 GB blued models for $659
Add a Samson and you got a special nice carbine.
Just be sure to inquire by phone first. They may have something better.
Good luck.
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Old 03-24-2020, 11:43   #9
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hylander, your post caused me to pull up Bud's Gun shop. MY!!!The prices have gone up over the past month or two!

Used is okay, but stay away from 180, as they are no longer supported and it is challenging to come by parts...181 and higher are still good for now.

Tapered barrel (about midway through the 580-series) are preferred, but earlier ones can be very sweet with a few tweaks - which you can do over time depending on your accuracy desires. Spreading out the cost helps...

I personally prefer the Tactical model - which does not necessarily come with the clunky ATI stock. My 583 Tactical (blued) came in a Ruger Synthetic stock and weighs in (with a loaded 20-round mag) at under seven pounds. A very sweet carbine! I paid much less (new, through Bud's) than currently listed, and the prices will come down again.

But pretty much any Mini-14 after the 180- model can be made into a very sweet-shooting carbine for little coin (more if you want to make it a target-shooter).

Wholly understand Sandog's comments, as he loves his '30s. But I'm a .223/5.56 kinda guy and don't hunt and have three Mini-14s. Not willing to expand my ammo stocks with another caliber...

The LEs aspect is a good one worthy of consideration. I'd normally recommend a new one, but the latest prices seem to be absurd - about $200 more than what I paid just a few months ago...

Be patient, and the price will get back to a reasonable price-range...
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Old 03-24-2020, 18:33   #10
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What about these:
Stainless Mini-14GBs.
Sell off the stock they come in and then add a Samson folding stock.
You should get $75-$100 for the stock.

https://www.gunbroker.com/item/862879501
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Old 03-24-2020, 20:18   #11
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What about this? it is a 182 with low mileage and local to me.
Value?

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1Q...Izck5yN3NBcEhn

Also found a new 5802
SS with wood stock.
However I do not want a wood stock, so if I was to sell the wood stock what
might I expect to get for it?
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Old 03-25-2020, 10:40   #12
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I'll reiterate what I said in the other two recent posts about the Mini-30. It's basically the most versatile and capable in the Mini line. We all love the Mini-14 in .223, if for no other reason than it's what started it all. But IMO when Ruger chambered the Mini in 7.62x39, it took the Mini to the next level. Since that time people have been trying to reinvent the 7.62x39 without calling it 7.62x39. There's good reason for that. A medium power 30 cal just plain works!

7.62x39 in the Mini-30 is more powerful than either .223 or 300 BLK. We're far beyond the days when even Ruger vastly underestimated the capabilities of 7.62x39 in their new Mini-30. Looking at those old ads makes me feel like laughing and crying at the same time.

The modern 7.62x39 achieves velocities that are 200 to 300 fps faster than Ruger's early expectations, and with great accuracy, depending on the factory ammo or handloads in question.

7.62x39 is a handloader's dream. You can really maximize it's potential for your purposes. You can also buy decent plinking ammo at low cost made in C.I.P. regulated countries. It performs very well.

With a couple of exceptions, x39 factory ammo from C.I.P. countries is Superior to what is made in the USA under SAAMI guidelines, and except for Lapua (Finland) it's less expensive too. Go figure.

Since you already handload you have most of what you need. I gradually got into hanloading 7.62x39 at pretty low cost, using mostly LEE products. I didn't have so much as a powder funnel in the beginning, and I still didn't spend too much to get setup for loading x39.

If you're looking to buy one Mini, get a Mini-30. You won't be sorry. If you're a collector, get one of each... .223/5.56, 7.62x39, 300 BLK, and 6.8 SPC. And if you're really serious, grab one in .222 as well.

I like both blued and stainless. I'd have to toss a coin to decide what finish.

The Mini-30 has been my "one-gun" solution for over 30 years now. If I could go back and make that decision again I wouldn't change a thing... except maybe look farther ahead and buy two Mini-30s at those sweet 1989 prices.
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Old 03-26-2020, 17:15   #13
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Leaning toward a Tactical for the shorter thicker barrel.

Blued or Stainless?
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Old 03-27-2020, 12:39   #14
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stainless.....says I. i think a fully stainless semi auto is quite the rarity in rifles these days. and the tactical model (with standard stock) is my fave mini set up.

14 or 30. probably all good either way....but i'm not in the "mini 30 is so much better fan club,"...though.

i'm sure the 30 is great....but FACT! so is the mini 14.

truth is....you probably can't get cheap ammo for either right now.
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Old 03-27-2020, 12:47   #15
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Originally Posted by sandog View Post
Variety can be nice. I've had an interest in the 6.8, and I'd really like to have ASI rechamber a Mini-30 to 6.5 Grendel.

But then I think about keeping my supply lines simple, and that I can get 7.62 x 39 anywhere in the world. Not so with 6.8 or 6.5.
i agree, sandog....but another factor to consider.

you, like most of us, have been through a few ammo scares.

the first ammo to vanish: 5.56, 9mm, 22, and yes...7.62x39. these are almost always cleaned out first and fasted. 6.8 and 6.5 will probably be there on the shelves. non nato rounds like 30-30 and other "old timey" or hunting rounds seem to stick around all the way through these panics.
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Old 03-27-2020, 17:40   #16
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Thanks for the replies,
What kind of real world accuracy can I expect from the new Mini's?

Also what is the Barrel OD at muzzle:
Tactical Mini-30
Tactical Mini-14
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Old 03-27-2020, 18:41   #17
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Originally Posted by hawkguy View Post
i agree, sandog....but another factor to consider.

you, like most of us, have been through a few ammo scares.

the first ammo to vanish: 5.56, 9mm, 22, and yes...7.62x39. these are almost always cleaned out first and fasted. 6.8 and 6.5 will probably be there on the shelves. non nato rounds like 30-30 and other "old timey" or hunting rounds seem to stick around all the way through these panics.
That's why we've learned to buy cheap and stack deep. Americans shouldn't be caught with their pants down anymore. We know the drill. We've seen things go to hell in a hand-basket many times and in various ways if we've been around a few years.

Any ammo, including the least popular could dry up, be banned, or some natural disaster or world war make ammo of any caliber difficult or impossible to find. 7.62x39 is everywhere, and nice to see it's already coming back in stock for those vendors who recently ran out of most brands.

Some time in the not too distant future, a lot of new gun and ammo buyers will become complacent again. We'll be buying their ammo on Gunbroker at a discount. I can't wait for the inevitable sale.
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Old 03-27-2020, 18:46   #18
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Originally Posted by hylander View Post
Thanks for the replies,
What kind of real world accuracy can I expect from the new Mini's?

Also what is the Barrel OD at muzzle:
Tactical Mini-30
Tactical Mini-14
Not sure about new Mini-14 out-of-the-box accuracy, but the new Mini-30s are pretty tight... around 2" groups or a little better @ 100 yards once broken in and you match it to the right ammo. And you can tweak it from there.

Muzzle OD depends on the year. Some older Mini-30s tapper down to around .610 inch at the muzzle. Newer Mini-30s and Mini-14s are .625 inch at the muzzle. I'm not certain what the cutoff date is for those differences.
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Old 03-27-2020, 19:14   #19
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Beck;1619088]That's why we've learned to buy cheap and stack deep. Americans shouldn't be caught with their pants down anymore. We know the drill. We've seen things go to hell in a hand-basket many times and in various ways if we've been around a few years.
i agree & i have learned my lesson for sure.

Any ammo, including the least popular could dry up, be banned, or some natural disaster or world war make ammo of any caliber difficult or impossible to find. 7.62x39 is everywhere, and nice to see it's already coming back in stock for those vendors who recently ran out of most brands.
here we disagree. i personally think its naive to think an ammo will be around because its "popular." in many ways, i think that's a great reason to conclude that it WON'T be everywhere when times get really bad.

if you reload...you are ahead of the curve. if you buy factory ammo...7.62 is just as likely to be gone as everything else...and imo...probably more so, based on the first hand panic buying i have seen.

Some time in the not too distant future, a lot of new gun and ammo buyers will become complacent again. We'll be buying their ammo on Gunbroker at a discount. I can't wait for the inevitable sale.
unless of course they find a need to hold onto it....i won't pretend to have any crystal ball in this situation.

my opinion stands...diversifying your calibers makes more sense than counting on the popular calibers to have ammo "everywhere." i'd shy away from all your eggs in one basket personally.

not that i have ever been, or ever will be...an expert on these matters.
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Old 03-27-2020, 19:16   #20
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Originally Posted by Beck View Post
Not sure about new Mini-14 out-of-the-box accuracy, but the new Mini-30s are pretty tight... around 2" groups or a little better @ 100 yards....
took a bit of work, some trigger time, & ammo testing....but my mini 14 came in at around the same accuracy consistently. just my experience.
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Old 03-27-2020, 22:47   #21
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Originally Posted by Beck View Post
Any ammo, including the least popular could dry up, be banned, or some natural disaster or world war make ammo of any caliber difficult or impossible to find. 7.62x39 is everywhere, and nice to see it's already coming back in stock for those vendors who recently ran out of most brands.

Originally Posted by hawkguy View Post
here we disagree. i personally think its naive to think an ammo will be around because its "popular." in many ways, i think that's a great reason to conclude that it WON'T be everywhere when times get really bad.

if you reload...you are ahead of the curve. if you buy factory ammo... 7.62 is just as likely to be gone as everything else...and imo...probably more so, based on the first hand panic buying i have seen.
Which is why I said any ammo could be scarce to unavailable, including 7.62x39 and .223/5.56, as well as less popular types like 6.8 and 6.5.

So we agree to be prepared beforehand is the best approach.

But the most popular stuff will still be out there even if you have to take it from your enemy, which is part of Finland's philosophy of war. They standardized to 7.62x39 because that's what Russia used. Finland's thinking was that if they went to war with Russia they would use captured Russian ammo in their weapons. Israel took the same approach for a couple decades after they captured truck loads of AKs and 7.62x39 from Egypt.

Somewhat related is if you have more common ammo and weapons chambered in 7.62x39 and 5.56 you can both lend and borrow ammo from your allies. In my case I have enough to lend out. If you need to borrow some 6.5 Creedmoor I couldn't help you, and very few people could.
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Old 03-28-2020, 08:40   #22
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Beck;1619106]Which is why I said any ammo could be scarce to unavailable, including 7.62x39 and .223/5.56, as well as less popular types like 6.8 and 6.5.

So we agree to be prepared beforehand is the best approach.
yes , i totally agree with this. my mindset for having extra ammo right now is really about being able to enjoy range time during the panic droughts. but if things got really, really messed up...i will thankful that i thought ahead and had plenty.

But the most popular stuff will still be out there even if you have to take it from your enemy, which is part of Finland's philosophy of war. They standardized to 7.62x39 because that's what Russia used. Finland's thinking was that if they went to war with Russia they would use captured Russian ammo in their weapons. Israel took the same approach for a couple decades after they captured truck loads of AKs and 7.62x39 from Egypt.
makes sense. but on the other side of that coin, large numbers of people with popular AKs and ARs with minimal ammo and resources might be seeking out people like you to come and take it from. i suppose there is never any 100% correct answer, but i understand your point and its valid.

i still think having a few less popular calibers could help you to find bits here and there if things dry....and i have seen this over in over in ammo wipes (not end of world, just panic hoarding). the ONLY guns i can't get ANY ammo for at the store during this time is 5.56/223, 7.62, 22, and 9mm....the most popular semi auto rounds. and in these last few ammo droughts, i most often find myself revisiting my "old timey," less popular, non-nato calibers.....because they are on the shelf still.

again, if you reload and you have plenty of supplies...this is the safest bet imo.

but both of those hypothetical scenarios depend on your ability to stay and fortify....which may or may not be possible. again, who really knows?

Somewhat related is if you have more common ammo and weapons chambered in 7.62x39 and 5.56 you can both lend and borrow ammo from your allies. In my case I have enough to lend out. If you need to borrow some 6.5 Creedmoor I couldn't help you, and very few people could.
that's a good point to consider, i didn't think about that.
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Old 03-28-2020, 08:43   #23
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sorry for the drift on ammo, sign of the times....

so...hylander, are you taking a new mini out of the box as we discuss the end of the world?
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Old 03-28-2020, 09:20   #24
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Originally Posted by hawkguy View Post
sorry for the drift on ammo, sign of the times....

so...hylander, are you taking a new mini out of the box as we discuss the end of the world?
I still can't decide Mini-14 or Mini-30
I like the idea of the 30, but still keep coming back to 14.

Mini-14:
1: I already reload for .223 and have tons of components ready to load.
2: I already have factory ammo.
3: Have already worked up several very accurate loads including Lead Free.
4: Already have several Mags.
5: My first Mini shot right at MOA no flyers all day with hand loads, this was after I bedded, trigger job, gas bushing, buffer and home made strut.
Shot under 2 Moa with occasional flyer before work using factory Winchester white box 45gr HP.

Mini-30:
1: I have no reloading components for the 30 except H-4198 powder
2: Factory name brand ammo is not that plentiful, easy to find or cheap when you do find it.
3: The last one I had which was many years ago, could not hit paper 8.5X11 at 50yds (Seriously) even with hand loads
4: But I just want one, but don't want to be disappointed after shelling out $1,000, I'm kind on a budget.
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Old 03-28-2020, 11:32   #25
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hylander;1619140]I still can't decide Mini-14 or Mini-30
I like the idea of the 30, but still keep coming back to 14.

Mini-14:
1: I already reload for .223 and have tons of components ready to load.
2: I already have factory ammo.
3: Have already worked up several very accurate loads including Lead Free.
4: Already have several Mags.
5: My first Mini shot right at MOA no flyers all day with hand loads, this was after I bedded, trigger job, gas bushing, buffer and home made strut.
Shot under 2 Moa with occasional flyer before work using factory Winchester white box 45gr HP.
sounds like, for you, the mini 14 is the practical choice.

not sure why there is so much much doubt of the 5.56 capabilities lately. reminds me a bit of when everyone was down on the 9mm...a mindset that quickly changed when people starting demonstrating its capabilities with the right ammo. 5.56 is a very, very nasty and effective round. unfortunately, current tragedies have only reinforced how nasty it is.

Mini-30:
1: I have no reloading components for the 30 except H-4198 powder
2: Factory name brand ammo is not that plentiful, easy to find or cheap when you do find it.
3: The last one I had which was many years ago, could not hit paper 8.5X11 at 50yds (Seriously) even with hand loads
4: But I just want one, but don't want to be disappointed after shelling out $1,000, I'm kind on a budget.
now THAT is the problem! once you are itching for something, its hard to let it go. practical or not.

and that 30 you had before had to be seriously defective. take a look at some of the targets posted here by mini 30 owners. from my understanding, like the 14, it takes some TLC, but they appear to be able to shoot purty straight.

good luck deciding!
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