ASI Mini 14 Barrel Replacement - Shooting Sports Forum


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

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Old 11-21-2020, 16:43   #1
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ASI Mini 14 Barrel Replacement

I've noticed that ASI sells factory new mini 14/30 barrels for between $99-$149. It mentioned that it would need to be headspaced and indexed. I was wondering if it was possible for someone who is not a gun-smith to be able to install the barrel themselves. Would a barrel vice, head space gauges, and an action/torque wrench be all that's needed? If not what else would I need? I hope to never have to replace the barrel on my mini but I would like to have a spare barrel and know how to put it on myself if the need ever arose. Kind of a SHTF kind of scenario where a gunsmith isn't available (or affordable). Any help is very much appreciated, Thank you!
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Old 11-21-2020, 19:37   #2
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Google "rebarreling mini14 with used barrel perfectunion"--
one hit is this one.
https://www.perfectunion.com/vb/ruge...placement.html
Gundoc authored a great piece on the subject on that thread. A lathe and mill
would be needed. MM
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Old 11-22-2020, 05:23   #3
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If you feel the need to have a spare barrel, go ahead and get it now. You'll be able to find someone that has the lathe and mill and machining experience even if they aren't necessarily a "gunsmith".
I have a retired neighbor that does air rifle repair for side work, and he has quite the machine shop and a big lathe.

Both of my Mini-30s are 30 years old, and show no signs of being shot out yet.
I'd rather spend money on a few spare parts like extractors and firing pins and more ammo.
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Old 11-22-2020, 10:13   #4
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I have 2 Mini's that have ASI barrels on them. They have been doing this for a very long time and are really good at it. Yes, you will need some expensive tools to do a barrel swap. A lathe and a mill are two of them.

I did my own swap a few years ago when I had access to a really good lathe and mill. You will also need a barrel vice and the correct fixtures to spin the receiver off and on. It is possible to do the barrel without the vice but you have to cut a flat spot on top of the barrel to match the flat spot on the bottom of the Mini barrel.

You will also have to cut the op rod to ride under the barrel. You may have to reshape the outside of the chamber to allow the bolt to completely close. This means you will have to ream the chamber to head space the ammo.

If you currently have a skinny barrel Mini you would be more cheaply served by an Accu-Strut. They do make a big difference. I did not go with the Accu-Strut because I had access to the lathe and mill and it was a learning experience. If money is an issue the Accu-Strut is the answer.

The last thing you will need to know is how to use numbers and applying them to your cutting tools and the lathe and the mill. If you have no skill in using a micrometer and thinking in thousands, you will be blindly cutting metal. That is a recipe for disaster.

That is why having ASI do your barrel is so expensive. They have the tools and you are paying for the knowledge.

kwg
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Last edited by kwg020; 11-26-2020 at 20:47.
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Old 11-22-2020, 13:21   #5
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I think you are going to have to get up pretty early in the morning to shoot out a Mini 14 barrel.

I could easily see 15,000+ rounds needed, and that is alot of shooting.

Now if you bent the barrel, like if a truck rolled over it, or ruined it by some kind of misuse then fine. However I think it would be much easier to just have another gun to go to than to go to the trouble of changing out a barrel.

It is no big deal to do it to a AR and just about anyone can do it with simple hand tools. No so much on a Mini..

Randy
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Old 11-22-2020, 13:34   #6
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^^^Yes^^^.
I hedge my bets by having a second Mini set up exactly like the first.
If 15,000 rounds is the barrel life of a Mini (conservative estimate), then I can do 30,000 total for the pair of mine, no barrel changing or major gunsmithing needed.
And being able to continue the fight immediately.
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Old 11-22-2020, 14:52   #7
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Nice to think ahead for worst case SHTF scenario with the spare barrel idea, but at the cost of the barrel and having it properly installed, I would just buy a complete Mini-14/30 as a spare.

Mounting a barrel is one thing I will never attempt. I would just as soon go back to school and become a surgeon. Try my hand at heart surgery.
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Old 11-22-2020, 15:27   #8
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Originally Posted by Beck View Post
Nice to think ahead for worst case SHTF scenario with the spare barrel idea, but at the cost of the barrel and having it properly installed, I would just buy a complete Mini-14/30 as a spare.

Mounting a barrel is one thing I will never attempt. I would just as soon go back to school and become a surgeon. Try my hand at heart surgery.
That's exactly what I did, but with two Minis! My ole 181 is 43+ years old. I never kept round-count, but suspect it is in the 2-3K range, maybe a little higher. Wanted to give it a rest for a bit.
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Old 11-22-2020, 16:25   #9
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Originally Posted by Beck View Post
Nice to think ahead for worst case SHTF scenario with the spare barrel idea, but at the cost of the barrel and having it properly installed, I would just buy a complete Mini-14/30 as a spare.

Mounting a barrel is one thing I will never attempt. I would just as soon go back to school and become a surgeon. Try my hand at heart surgery.
I'm sure like with heart surgery if you have the right tools every job becomes easier. Just be prepared to pay a large premium for those tools. What I know now I could do a Mini barrel swap in an afternoon. It would just take about $40,000 worth of the right tools.

Buy the second Mini and put the rest in the bank.

kwg
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Old 11-22-2020, 16:29   #10
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I wonder if Ruger will replace a worn out mini 14 barrel and what it would charge?
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Old 11-22-2020, 16:45   #11
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Originally Posted by CZMAN View Post
I wonder if Ruger will replace a worn out mini 14 barrel and what it would charge?
I have never heard of them doing it. They will repair and replace if the part is defective or dangerous but not normal wear and tear that I am aware of. Make the call and ask. Good luck.
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Old 11-22-2020, 20:49   #12
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Originally Posted by CZMAN View Post
I wonder if Ruger will replace a worn out mini 14 barrel and what it would charge?
I talked to Ruger about this very thing a couple months ago.
Yes they will do it, about $450-$500
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Old 11-26-2020, 16:18   #13
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15,000 x .65/ round is $9,750!
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