New186 series Mini 14; bedding, barrel strut? - Shooting Sports Forum


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

Like Tree29Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-14-2020, 15:36   #1
Full Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 29
New186 series Mini 14; bedding, barrel strut?

Just bought a NIB #186-771xx Mini 14, 1-9 twist? I think that's around a 1998 mfg.

I haven't shot it yet. I'm hoping to keep any modifications to a minimum but will probably do what it takes to get a relatively "accurate" open sight plinker The only thing I'm sure of doing for starters is a trigger job. After that if I can figure out a load that'll keep it around 4" at 100 yards I'll probably leave it alone. If it won't shoot 4" at a 100 what would you recommend next for the greatest possible improvement, bed the receiver, barrel strut, etc?
Sparkie likes this.
0311 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2020, 15:52   #2
Full Member
 
imarangemaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Northern California Gold Country
Posts: 1,210
Check your barrel twist. You rifle is right the the serial number change from 1/7 twist to 1/9 twist. If it is a 1/7 twist it will love 75-77 grain bullets.

You can check by taking a cleaning rod with a jig and a patch tight to the bore. Place the rifler in something to hold it upright, with the sight up. Push the rod in from the muzzle until the joint between the rod and the jig is even with the crown, and stop. Then put a mark on the top side of the rod exactly 7 inches from the end where the jig screws in and again on the top at 9 inches. Push it in from the muzzle until the rod and the jig rotate until it lines up with either the 7 or the 9 right at the edge of the crown.
Jazzsax8, Sparkie, Gray and 1 others like this.
imarangemaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2020, 10:46   #3
Full Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 29
Thanks imarangemaster. Hoping it's a 1-9, I don't have any bullets heavier than 63 gr.
Sparkie likes this.
0311 is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Old 08-15-2020, 17:26   #4
Full Member
 
imarangemaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Northern California Gold Country
Posts: 1,210
My 1/7 shot M193 5.56 (55 grain) almost as good as the 77s...
Sparkie likes this.
imarangemaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2020, 18:49   #5
Full Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 29
Rangemaster, thanks for the info. Haven't been able to check the twist yet as it's still going through the Ca 10 day waiting period. Based on the serial # it's a later mfg. for 1998 and those supposedly had 1-9 twist. I won't know for sure till the end of next week.

Good to know 55s might work well enough if it's a 1-7. Seeing that I'm going to shoot it with open sights it might not make much difference anyway.
0311 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2020, 06:13   #6
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
First and foremost, make NO irreversible modifications to your Mini until you have shot it sufficiently to satisfy yourself that it functions properly. In the unlikely event you need to send it back to Ruger, be advised Ruger takes a very dim view of people making modifications to their products, and you will need to remove the mods and re-install OEM parts.

If making any mods and/or repairs, try to do them one thing at a time, so the before/after difference will be plain to see.

Clean and lube the rifle, by the book. If needed, download the owner's manual for your specific rifle from Ruger, and read it front-to-back. Twice. Brownells has a decent set of free vids on the Mini-14/30. While you're waiting, watch them.

Examine the muzzle of the rifle carefully, for signs of damage caused by improper cleaning technique/tools. The very ends of the rifling must be sharp, and not rounded-off. Ask an expert if uncertain what to look for. If damaged, have the muzzle repaired as required.

Getting a quality trigger job is almost always a good idea. See first paragraph.

After ascertaining your barrel's Rate-Of-Twist, do some experimentation to determine which brand/type of ammo your rifle prefers. By all means try-out different bullet weights, even those nominally not "ideal". Surprises happen.

TechSights and Nodak Spud make much-improved front and rear iron sights.

Many wooden-stocked Minis have a loose stock-to-receiver fit, with concomitant adverse effect on accuracy. You can glue metal shims inside the stock, or skip the hassle by buying a synthetic stock, which stocks are almost always a tighter fit than the vast majority of wooden stocks. Syn stocks can also be shimmed, but seldom need it.
IMHO, a syn stock is only a bit more expensive, and a lot less hassle than bedding.

The barrel strut seems to be very useful in conjunction with older pencil barrel rifles.

These are just my opinions, and I'm sure I've omitted something or perhaps made an error. Someone will be along who can provide additional info for you.

Good luck, and please report back with your experiences.
RJF likes this.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2020, 07:17   #7
Full Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 29
RIBob, thanks for the info. Any synthetic stock you would recommend for a good fit that's reasonably priced.
0311 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2020, 09:12   #8
RJF
Full Member
 
RJF's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Spotsylvania, VA
Posts: 5,624
0211, frankly, the OEM Ruger synthetics are pretty good, the lightest around, and very reasonably priced (better than Hogue and much lighter). A "credit-card-shim" does wonders for zero cost.

Keep in mind the Mini-14 is a wonderful CARBINE - but NOT a sniper rifle. Manage your expectations.

I have not modified any of my trigger actions and am pleased with their performance (then again, most of my shooting was with military rifles). They are set up as a carbine would be, not as a bolt gun.

I stick with 55gr FMJ as it works with all my guns in that calibre, so interchangeable. I have one bolt gun that only does .223REM (not 5.56), but all of them shoot .223REM reliably and are pretty consistent with M193 NATO (55gr). Different interests for different folks, and I generally tend to gravitate toward .223REM PMC Bronze as it will work in all things .223/5.56 chambered. The difference of .5 MOA doesn't matter to me (even 1 or 2 MOA doesn't). COM on a man-sized silhouette is what does matter to me and every one of them does that easily - even with an impatient shooter (me).

There are some accurizing tips/mods that will make your 183 a 2 MOA shooter, but try it out first and go from there! Accustrut is worth looking into, as well as chopping your barrel to 16.5". There is a world of opportunities to make your 186 a very sweet shooter. All depends on your expectations...
jumpluff, r80rt, Jazzsax8 and 1 others like this.
RJF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2020, 05:45   #9
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by 0311 View Post
RIBob, thanks for the info. Any synthetic stock you would recommend for a good fit that's reasonably priced.
Are there any restrictions in your State concerning firearms stocks? Folders? Pistol Grips?

In a possibly related vein, any State restrictions on muzzle devices? Threaded muzzles OK or NG? Flash suppressors allowed or not?

By way of very general advice, be alert to the length of pull of the stock compared to your wooden one. Some aftermarket stocks are about 1" longer, some the same length.

The base plastic should ideally have no less than 30% glass fiber content. The exact composition of the plastic is molded-in to modern plastic items.

While otherwise a good item, the full-length "overmolding" on the Hogue stocks draws criticism from some users for being a bit "sticky" YMMV.

I have personal experience with a number of syn stocks for the Mini. The Choate Machine and Tool conventional stock is a good item IMHO, but I have not compared it to some others, such as the conventional syn stock Ruger now offers, and mentioned above.

https://www.riflestock.com/store/?s=...t_type=product

There are many Mini-14 stocks no longer being offered new, and in some cases, this is not a bad thing, as the Ram-Line stocks for the Mini were made of an inferior plastic, compared to modern Glass-Reinforced-Plastic (GRP).

By all means shoot your wooden-stocked Mini as-is. Experiment with some thin plastic shims if need be. It's always possible that your wooden stock is a good fit.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2020, 07:00   #10
Full Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Greeley, CO
Posts: 26
The 580 pencil barrel with Accu-strut I acquired this year shot my handloads under 2" at 100 yards. I finally put it into an old Choate Folder expecting it to degrade a little. Well last week on the prairie I put a cheap Tasco EXP 3-9 scope on it to test and it was fabulous. 4 of 5 went into 15/16" with the 5th at 1 7/16". This was at 100 yards with Midway 55gr S.P. blem bullets (looked like Hornadys) Rem 7 1/2 primer, LC brass and 27.2gr of CFE 223, OAL by memory at 2.260. Do not use this load info without working up carefully in your rifle. I also have a comparable Varget load but the case is too full to use the progressive. Looking forward to removing the scope getting back to the aperature!
Jazzsax8 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2020, 08:59   #11
Full Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 29
RIBob & Jazzsax8, thanks for the info.

Right now I'm doing some loading and looking forward to getting to the range next week. Could be interesting, it's my understanding the 186 series Mini 14s ejects pretty much straight up. Our range has metal roofing over all the shooting benches.
0311 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2020, 09:09   #12
Full Member
 
jumpluff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: southern Indiana
Posts: 683
It doesn't have enough force to hurt the metal roof. At worst I will just bounce back down on the bench. Consider it brass rain.
RJF likes this.
__________________
The dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.
jumpluff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2020, 11:47   #13
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by 0311 View Post
RIBob & Jazzsax8, thanks for the info.

Right now I'm doing some loading and looking forward to getting to the range next week. Could be interesting, it's my understanding the 186 series Mini 14s ejects pretty much straight up. Our range has metal roofing over all the shooting benches.
Simple fix for violently ejected brass is available from Accuracy Systems Inc:
https://www.accuratemini14.com/

Either an adjustable gas block, or a relatively inexpensive gas bushing kit will do. But that is something to consider after you have shot the thing for a while.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2020, 12:31   #14
RJF
Full Member
 
RJF's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Spotsylvania, VA
Posts: 5,624
Earlier non-Ranch Mini-14s eject via a spring in the bolt. Gas pressure reductions (aka reduced gas bushings) won't do any good. A lighter eject spring in the bolt will but...good luck on that!
jumpluff and RIBob like this.
RJF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2020, 11:44   #15
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by RJF View Post
Earlier non-Ranch Mini-14s eject via a spring in the bolt. Gas pressure reductions (aka reduced gas bushings) won't do any good. A lighter eject spring in the bolt will but...good luck on that!
Not arguing with you, and certainly not disputing your comment, but my 185-series, Standard (non-Ranch) Mini definitely placed the ejected brass a lot closer to me after replacing the gas bushing, vice the OEM gas bushing.

I never looked at the exact trajectory of the spent cases, being more focused on the target, and (initially) the proper function of the rifle with the down-sized gas bushing. That omission is my fault.

Concur that replacing the Ejector spring will likely change overall trajectory of the ejected brass, and that substituting reliable different-rate/length springs is quite problematic. It's also understood that cutting/trimming springs is not a good substitute for the proper length/rate spring in the first place. Pulling on springs to lengthen them is a destructive practice. Might work, might not, and longevity/reliability must be demonstrated.

So, no offense, but I think I differ--a little-- from your opinion. But, I'm no expert, that's for sure.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2020, 13:40   #16
RJF
Full Member
 
RJF's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Spotsylvania, VA
Posts: 5,624
RIBob, my sole early experience is with a 181GB I bought in 1980. It drops brass about 3-4'. There are no mechanical mods to it since I got it. I haven't felt any need to screw with it. Having two 583s, I can see the difference in how the ejections happen, and tampering the cyclic function will help reduce the eject range.

But it all gets down to the ejection process: non-Ranch models depend on the bolt's ejection spring, Ranch models (including today's Mini-14s) depend on the cyclic function interacting with the bolt-stop. Taming that down will affect the eject range.

I'm not "from out of town - making me an "expert"", just one who has both models/generations and understand how they differ. The cyclic function is unlikely to change the ejection of a non-ranch model. Then again, I have no experience with screwing with the gas port for my 181GB as I am happy with it as-is.

It is just the mechanical differences with ejection to me, IMHO. A non-Ranch model uses the bolt-emplaced spring - not the bolt stop - for ejection.

This is a good discussion! If there are differences, it is a function of timing of when the bolt ejects.
r80rt likes this.
RJF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2020, 14:28   #17
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by RJF View Post
RIBob, my sole early experience is with a 181GB I bought in 1980. It drops brass about 3-4'. There are no mechanical mods to it since I got it. I haven't felt any need to screw with it. Having two 583s, I can see the difference in how the ejections happen, and tampering the cyclic function will help reduce the eject range.

But it all gets down to the ejection process: non-Ranch models depend on the bolt's ejection spring, Ranch models (including today's Mini-14s) depend on the cyclic function interacting with the bolt-stop. Taming that down will affect the eject range.

I'm not "from out of town - making me an "expert"", just one who has both models/generations and understand how they differ. The cyclic function is unlikely to change the ejection of a non-ranch model. Then again, I have no experience with screwing with the gas port for my 181GB as I am happy with it as-is.

It is just the mechanical differences with ejection to me, IMHO. A non-Ranch model uses the bolt-emplaced spring - not the bolt stop - for ejection.

This is a good discussion! If there are differences, it is a function of timing of when the bolt ejects.
RJF, I don't disagree with anything you've said in the above post. I've modded the ejector on my DSA StG58A FAL with a very slight filing-down of a certain part of the case ejector, with excellent results. So simple...., and so effective!

So, a very slight mod can make a great difference, if done properly.

I've also modded the gas orifice on my 185 series Mini, using a much smaller orifice than OEM, and have seen the brass cases extract flawlessly, and drop reasonably close--certainly closer than the OEM gas orifice allowed, but with some confidence the substituted gas orifice is GTG in conjunction with "Mil-spec" replica ammo in Arctic temps; Most ammo being much less "energetic" in very cold temps. The other, concomitant benefits of reduced gas orifices being aside from this specific discussion, but being understood, and inarguable, IMHO.

Every Mini is different, and my experiences are certainly NOT anything others should blindly follow.

Submitted with ALL due respect.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2020, 17:07   #18
Full Member
 
Sparkie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: State of Confusion
Posts: 1,419
My 183 ejects brass at 1:00 o'clock about 7 feet.
Has done this since I took it out of the box.
No bushing change or any mod to the gas system.
They come out flat going forward so I have never understood
why everyone says they eject up.
It ejects this way no matter what ammo or brand of 223 or 556.
Guess I got lucky.
RJF likes this.
__________________
Socialism is a disease of the affluent perpetrated on others to control life and liberty.
Duckduckgo.com search engine no tracking.
Sparkie is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2020, 17:46   #19
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by Sparkie View Post
My 183 ejects brass at 1:00 o'clock about 7 feet.
Has done this since I took it out of the box.
No bushing change or any mod to the gas system.
They come out flat going forward so I have never understood
why everyone says they eject up.
It ejects this way no matter what ammo or brand of 223 or 556.
Guess I got lucky.
There are some folks who claim they can tell if an M1 or an M1A is improperly lubed, simply by observing how the brass ejects and where it falls. IIRC, proper lubing allows the brass to fall at about 1 o'clock, as seen by the user.

While not being an expert, once I was made aware of this, I paid attention to the "fall" of the brass, and tried to observe how the user lubed their rifle. The experts always had a 1 o'clock brass dispersion with properly-lubed M1s/M1As, and the newbies something different, not to mention some additional functioning problems.

Take it for what it's worth, and YMMV.
Sparkie likes this.

Last edited by RIBob; 08-18-2020 at 18:01.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2020, 03:25   #20
Full Member
 
Sparkie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: State of Confusion
Posts: 1,419
What is YMMV?
I know most people I ask have never pulled the ejector and spring to clean and lube.
RJF likes this.
__________________
Socialism is a disease of the affluent perpetrated on others to control life and liberty.
Duckduckgo.com search engine no tracking.
Sparkie is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2020, 04:28   #21
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by Sparkie View Post
What is YMMV?
I know most people I ask have never pulled the ejector and spring to clean and lube.

YMMV= Your Mileage May Vary. Shorthand for saying that it is understood, and expected, that the experiences and opinions of others may differ.
Sparkie likes this.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2020, 09:12   #22
RJF
Full Member
 
RJF's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Spotsylvania, VA
Posts: 5,624
Sparkie, et al: I have never disassembled my bolt to clean the ejector or pin slide. There are instruction videos on the web on how to do this, but cleaning the bolt first with Carb cleaner, then blowing out with compressed air and then just a hint of dry-lube works for me.

Mine ejects at about the 1430-1500 position, 3-4'. It is certainly more vertical than horizontal I'm good with that and as the old adage goes "if it ain't broken, don't fix it"...

My 583s, however, launch into the next county (depending on where I am and what direction I'm shooting). Then again, my property line is also the county line...
jumpluff and Sparkie like this.
RJF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2020, 04:35   #23
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
How do people dis-assemble the Mini-14/30 bolt?

I use a hand-held M1/M1A bolt assy/dis-assy tool, set it for the shorter M1A bolt, and insert a carefully-selected 1/4" drive socket to make up for the even shorter Mini bolt. Even the dis-assembly plunger in the tool works properly, using the right length socket.

How do others do it?
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2020, 10:39   #24
RJF
Full Member
 
RJF's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Spotsylvania, VA
Posts: 5,624
RIBob, can't help you there. Over 40 years of ownership, I've never had the occasion to clean my bolt in detail, but rather cleared it out with Carb cleaner and compressed air and called it good, with a judicious application of Marvel Mystery oil for everything except the firing pin.
r80rt likes this.
RJF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2020, 11:33   #25
Formerly "raf"
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by RJF View Post
RIBob, can't help you there. Over 40 years of ownership, I've never had the occasion to clean my bolt in detail, but rather cleared it out with Carb cleaner and compressed air and called it good, with a judicious application of Marvel Mystery oil for everything except the firing pin.
I do much the same, but maybe once a year I'll completely dismantle it and inspect. Every few years, I'll replace the springs, "just because".
RJF likes this.

Last edited by RIBob; 08-20-2020 at 14:28.
RIBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:05.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.1
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
All information is copyright by Perfectunion.com unless already under copyright.