View Full Version : what to do with a Mini-14
November 28, 2009, 09:31 AM
Have moved to a position where I'm only interested in accurate weapons that shoot a lot straighter than my capabilities currently. I do have some good ones but my Mini 14 isn't one of them. Heard over the Forum that many experience the same thing. What would best do fix this gun to be sub 1" at 100 yds". If you can give a starting place to really improve this neat little carbine. Maybe I need to just move to bolt or single shot> Thanks Normb263
November 28, 2009, 09:42 AM
move on to a bolt. money wise.
November 28, 2009, 09:44 AM
Try an Accu-Strut. They really do boost the accuracy of your Mini. To what degree depends on the gun. 1.5 MOA is closer to the typical result.
Another things that can be done is to swap out the gas port bushing. There are kits available with different sized bushings to tune the gas system so your brass gets thrown 3 feet, not 3 miles. This alone can significantly increase accuracy.
November 28, 2009, 09:49 AM
This is easy.
1. Remove the Flash hider
2. Attach to a suitable AR
3. Tell people your AR is now a Mini-14/ AR since it has Mini-14 parts
Seriously though there are websites that claim for big dollars they can do what you want (equalize the gas block, rebarrel, Barrel clamps, heat sinks etc) to get the accuracy you want seems unlikely.
Someone will wander by shortly and tell you how their Mini shoots sub "1/2 MOA out of the box and that all the blasphemers will die soon and enjoy a fiery after life.
I just live with my Mini the way it is and save it for rainy day, when nothing else is working. For $350, you can't beat it.
November 28, 2009, 09:58 AM
You don't have to spend a boat-load of money to bring that Mini-14 into an acceptable level of performance. I recommend 3 inexpensive fixes first:
1. Swap out the gas port bushing with a smaller-inside-diameter bushing. The oversized factory bushing pushes too much gas (energy) back into the rifle when cycling, which will impact accuracy. Try a bushing with an ID of .040", which is about half the size of the factory bushing. If the rifle fails to cycle properly, just drill out the new bushing in small increments. Chances are the .040" bushing will work, and also keep your spent brass much closer.
2. Try a barrel stabilizer. Accu-Strut has already been mentioned. I use the Mo-Rod myself...less expensive & looks better on the rifle (IMO).
3. Swap out the recoil spring with a Wolff extra power spring. This will also lighten the recoil and help with accuracy.
4. Install a 1911 pistol-style recoil buffer (they fit well & work better than those made for the Mini).
You can do all four above for barely $100, and see some improvement.
November 28, 2009, 10:39 AM
I picked up a browning A Bolt 223 two weeks ago as my accurate 223 and the Mini 14 223 now is just a fun plinker/urban assualt weapon. There are guns that are fun to shoot and the mini 14 is one of them.
November 28, 2009, 11:16 AM
I hear of inaccurate mini's and it amazes me. My Mini 14 ranch stainless model with plastic folding stock is so accurate it isn't even funny. At 100 yards I can get 2 inch groups or less. And the thing is from the mid 90's, I bought it new.
My opinion with all these inaccurate mini's is the same issue that plagues the M1a and garand. The wood stocks when weathered can adversely affect accuracy. I have seen it with an old M1a I had, that thing could not hit the broadside of a barn after several years of use. I sold it to a friend, who put a plastic stock on it and accuracy went back to what it originally was. Not saying this is your problem, but it was my experience. My mini is accurate but the first thing I did was remove the wood stock.
November 28, 2009, 11:24 AM
I share your affection for accurate rifles and agree that only accurate rifles are fun to shoot a lot - but it's important (at least to me) to have a balanced collection. Accurate tack drivers and looser defensive arms. The mini falls into the latter category. That said a few hundred dollars can do wondoers for a mini. Contact Great West Gunsmithing (http://www.greatwestgunsmithing.com/mini14.htm) and talk to them about your goals. John specializes in accurrizing the Mini-14. Ask anyone on Perfect Union (the Home of the Mini fanatics) about GunDoc.
John's "B" Package:
Upgraded stock bedding
Gas port bushings
Barrel cut & crown and your choice of muzzle threading or machining for slip on compensators (parts extra).
This is one of mine after a "B" package and a few custom ideas of my own. The shortened barrel and the weight of the compensator aids accuracy.
November 28, 2009, 12:21 PM
These are all pretty low cost suggestions.
Try an Accu-Strut or Mo-Rod, the new heavy recoil spring suggested above, clean all the copper out of your bore if you've never done so, and then get some good ammo (I suggest Federal Premium or Hornady) to see how it groups. With those improvements I suspect you'll have a 1" rifle for three shots, maybe even five. Mine is now and I just tossed four targets yesterday that were all sub-MOA from my 25 year old Mini (I posted a picture here of one in another thread).
And here's the thing, it's still a fun plinker despite now being accurate enough for some good quality coyote hunting. It'll never be a sniper rifle but sheesh, it's more accurate than I am now and importantly it puts the first hunting shot to exactly the same point of aim now every time. Previously it was about a 3-4" gun and I found that frustrating.
November 28, 2009, 12:55 PM
The OP lists sub-MOA as important, so I wouldn't mess with a Mini for that. Mostly, it's a cost issue for me. How much gain for how much money...
Some accurizing effort to improve hunting and plinking seems justified, of course.
I've always found that the Mini is a great coyote and jackrabbit gun. It would work as well as any other .223 for plinking or home defense. But I just never have figured it for a benchrest paper-puncher.
November 28, 2009, 01:10 PM
Another option is to find one of these. Unfortunately they have been discontinued so you'll have to find one used. I had very good results.
Also, I know its common sense but often times (from the factory) the four gas block fasteners are unevenly torqued and are not blue loctited. Ensure even torque on all and be sure to clean fasteners and threaded holes. Apply blue loctite and not red. Make sure the gap is even on both sides.
Sub moa accuracy? Heck most AR15s will not achieve that even unless you are talking bull barreled uppers with primo ammunition and good glass.
That is all.
November 28, 2009, 01:16 PM
Appreciate the mini for what it is. Buy a new gun for what you are looking to do. Learn to reload if you are not doing so.
November 28, 2009, 04:50 PM
Many thanks for your input. I put a adjustable gas port on it and a Boyd's thumbhole stock that free floats. I may have lost a bit of accuracy with addition of the new stock although it sure feels better. I think I'll do the the Accustrut and be happy with that. Fun cheap shooter for a reloader. Not a bad gun for critters but I kinda like the accuracy idea to be able to smoke at least 3 of 4 shots at ground squirrels. Thanks again and happy empty brass creatin'. Normb263
November 28, 2009, 05:05 PM
Pull your trigger group out. However much the receiver moves from side to side in the stock greatly affects accuracy. I shimmed mine up and it made a huge difference.
sholling, may I ask were you got that compensator?
November 29, 2009, 01:38 AM
Sub MOA w/ a mini is probably asking a lot. They sure can be improved on and other posts are viable proof. (nobody fibs on line, right?)
Also, make sure the one you've got is clean and copper free. Many have been shot a bunch and are badly copper fouled. A bare metal cleaning usually helps accuracy w/ any rifle as a rule.
If you HAVE to have sub MOA, a bolt , heavy bbl and decent scope will get you there easiest.
The Mini is a great little rifle, just don't ask to much of it.
November 29, 2009, 01:59 AM
Like a few people have said, you ought to get rid of it. Send it to me, I'll "dispose" it for you, and I won't even charge ya for it. ;)
November 29, 2009, 02:05 AM
A lot of the problem is in the barrel. I gather the new ones have seen a great deal of attention in this area.
November 29, 2009, 02:36 AM
MTT TL: Excellent sense of humour.
Any Mini 30 or 14 is always fun to shoot, and mine was more reliable than a buddy's AK "clone".
Only sold it to justify (to the wife) buying my first LE ("Jungle Carbine"), and still have the Mini 30.
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