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Old September 5, 2012, 10:43 PM   #1
silvermane_1
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Ruger Mini-14 Ranch Rifle questions

i just got a mini-14 ranch rifle, it has the cal. as .223, but was wondering if i could use 5.56X45 NATO rounds in it?, sn is 188-XXXXX, any info or feedback would be welcome, thanks.

P.S. is it also possible to thread the tip of the barrel for a birdcage style flash suppressor?
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Ruger:SR1911 CMD,MK 3 .22lr 6",Sec. Six '76 liberty .357 4",SRH .480 Ruger 7.5",Mini-14 188 5.56/.233 18.5", Marlin: 795 .22lr 16.5",30aw 30-30 20",Mossberg:Mav. 88 Tact. 12 ga, 18.5",ATR 100 .270 Win. 22",S&W:SW9VE
9mm 4",Springfeild:XD .357sig 4",CAI PSL-54C, WASR 10/63

Last edited by silvermane_1; September 7, 2012 at 04:00 AM.
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Old September 6, 2012, 12:50 AM   #2
Bamashooter
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All mini-14's are 5.56 nato chambered except the target model which is a true .223 chamber. I shoot mostly 5.56 ammo in mine if Im not shooting reloads. Yes its fine to shoot nato ammo in your mini-14. Blast away.
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Old September 6, 2012, 02:41 AM   #3
silvermane_1
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thanks bamashooter, but should have mentioned that if a target mode lwhere would it be indicated as a target model? , because it only says ruger ranch rifle cal 223, i know it could handle the power of a 5.56 nato, it's a ruger, but want to be sure that when i buy some 5,56 nato ammo and find out that it is a .223 only target model.
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Ruger:SR1911 CMD,MK 3 .22lr 6",Sec. Six '76 liberty .357 4",SRH .480 Ruger 7.5",Mini-14 188 5.56/.233 18.5", Marlin: 795 .22lr 16.5",30aw 30-30 20",Mossberg:Mav. 88 Tact. 12 ga, 18.5",ATR 100 .270 Win. 22",S&W:SW9VE
9mm 4",Springfeild:XD .357sig 4",CAI PSL-54C, WASR 10/63

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Old September 6, 2012, 07:51 AM   #4
NickySantoro
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The 188 series pre-dates the introduction of the target model by many years, so you are good to go with 5.56.
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Old September 6, 2012, 08:34 AM   #5
tobnpr
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Yup.
I had a 188 series Mini- it was one with a 1 in 7 twist barrel, there was a short period when Ruger changed the Mini to that twist...
Check your SN online at the Ruger site. You can shoot heavier bullets with the 7 twist barrel.
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Old September 6, 2012, 09:31 PM   #6
silvermane_1
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thanks for all of the the input and feedback so far.
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Ruger:SR1911 CMD,MK 3 .22lr 6",Sec. Six '76 liberty .357 4",SRH .480 Ruger 7.5",Mini-14 188 5.56/.233 18.5", Marlin: 795 .22lr 16.5",30aw 30-30 20",Mossberg:Mav. 88 Tact. 12 ga, 18.5",ATR 100 .270 Win. 22",S&W:SW9VE
9mm 4",Springfeild:XD .357sig 4",CAI PSL-54C, WASR 10/63
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Old September 7, 2012, 01:02 AM   #7
Edward429451
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Quote:
I had a 188 series Mini- it was one with a 1 in 7 twist barrel, there was a short period when Ruger changed the Mini to that twist...
Ruger told me on the phone that Mini's were introduced with the 1-7" twist and were all 5.56 chambered, and 1-7". This was before the Target models came out so I don't know if they have changed the twist or chambers since then.

It's easy to check the twist rate with a cleaning rod. Make a mark on the rod with a sharpie at the muzzle and then pull it out while watching the mark rotate with the rod to make a full revolution. Make another mark on the rod when it makes the full turn and measure the length between the marks. All of the pre target models were 1-7".
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Old September 7, 2012, 03:14 AM   #8
Ignition Override
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About two years ago the on-line Ruger factory manual for the Mini 14 stated that the chamber is designed for both 5.56 and commercial .223 ammo.

It must still be valid.
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Old September 7, 2012, 03:21 AM   #9
silvermane_1
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thanks again for all info and feedback, now i heard that the mini-14 is rugged, but on a local area forum one person posted that a mini-14 is as rugged as a ak-47/74, is true or just an embellishment?
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Ruger:SR1911 CMD,MK 3 .22lr 6",Sec. Six '76 liberty .357 4",SRH .480 Ruger 7.5",Mini-14 188 5.56/.233 18.5", Marlin: 795 .22lr 16.5",30aw 30-30 20",Mossberg:Mav. 88 Tact. 12 ga, 18.5",ATR 100 .270 Win. 22",S&W:SW9VE
9mm 4",Springfeild:XD .357sig 4",CAI PSL-54C, WASR 10/63
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Old September 7, 2012, 05:58 AM   #10
jmr40
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The Mini is a good gun when used for what it was desiged for. An inexpensive gun for farmers and ranchers to keep on their tractors or pickups for shooting varmits such as coyote and fox. They take a lot of dirt and neglect and still shoot, but have never been known as accurate rifles.

If shooting lots of rounds through them is your goal, they are not a good choice. Back in the 80's several LE agencies and even some smaller militaries tried them as a cheaper alternative to AR's. When used in that role they did not hold up well and were quickly dropped.
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Old September 7, 2012, 09:08 AM   #11
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Quote:
If shooting lots of rounds through them is your goal, they are not a good choice. Back in the 80's several LE agencies and even some smaller militaries tried them as a cheaper alternative to AR's. When used in that role they did not hold up well and were quickly dropped.
Urban legend. Not so. What is so is that the Mini platform operating system is not suitable for being adapted to full auto due to heat considerations. But round for round on semi-auto I have never seen any test case that showed that a Mini had a greater mean time to failure than an AR. Quite the contrary, ARs are notorious for needing to be run "wet" with a lot of oil on the bolt and a lot of cleaning. of the bolt carrier group. Cops don't fire their rifles all that much anyway.
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Old September 7, 2012, 07:11 PM   #12
tobnpr
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Quote:
All of the pre target models were 1-7".
Not so.
Mini's were originally 1 in 10 twist.
They were changed to 1 in 7 twist for a brief period- 1989 to sometime in 1994, when they were changed to 9 twist- where all models remain today.

My 188 series Ranch was a '90 model with a 7 twist.
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Old September 7, 2012, 11:43 PM   #13
silvermane_1
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i' have checked the ruger's site for the producton date for my mini-14 it said that the production of my mini-14 was '91, well at least that was the closest SN could indicate, so im guessing that the rifling is 1-7" twist, also another question i have could have tip of the barrel threaded for a flash suppressor, becuase i plan on using the scope mount and using 5.56 NATO ammo, and thanks again for all of the info and feedback.
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Ruger:SR1911 CMD,MK 3 .22lr 6",Sec. Six '76 liberty .357 4",SRH .480 Ruger 7.5",Mini-14 188 5.56/.233 18.5", Marlin: 795 .22lr 16.5",30aw 30-30 20",Mossberg:Mav. 88 Tact. 12 ga, 18.5",ATR 100 .270 Win. 22",S&W:SW9VE
9mm 4",Springfeild:XD .357sig 4",CAI PSL-54C, WASR 10/63
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Old September 8, 2012, 09:27 AM   #14
Crazy88Fingers
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You can thread just about any barrel.

Also, you'll notice that the receiver is stamped ".223 CAL" not ".223 REM". So, as already stated, it isn't really .223 Remington only and will handle 5.56.
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Old September 8, 2012, 11:38 AM   #15
tobnpr
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Quote:
could have tip of the barrel threaded for a flash suppressor
You would need to have the barrel cut, re-crowned, and then threaded. There is not enough room (as memory serves-sold mine last year) ahead of the front sight to thread it...

If that's your goal, I'd suggest selling it- and getting a newer tactical model with the flash suppressor.
The newer models with the heavier barrels are more accurate than those of old...and by the time you spend the money to have a smith do the necessary work, and buy a flash hider for it- you'll have far more money into the gun that it's worth.
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Old September 10, 2012, 02:49 AM   #16
silvermane_1
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thanks again for all of the feedback and info, i have also found that there are flash hiders that can be atached to the end of the barrel and front site via by a longer site pin, has anyone had one these setups and if so, what brand would be recomended?
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Ruger:SR1911 CMD,MK 3 .22lr 6",Sec. Six '76 liberty .357 4",SRH .480 Ruger 7.5",Mini-14 188 5.56/.233 18.5", Marlin: 795 .22lr 16.5",30aw 30-30 20",Mossberg:Mav. 88 Tact. 12 ga, 18.5",ATR 100 .270 Win. 22",S&W:SW9VE
9mm 4",Springfeild:XD .357sig 4",CAI PSL-54C, WASR 10/63
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Old September 10, 2012, 10:51 PM   #17
K1500
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I have a comp like that, but it isn't a flash hider. I bought it because there is a general consensus that hanging a bit of weight on the end of the barrel of a Mini makes it more accurate. It made mine shoot a bit better, but it wasn't a game changer.
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Old September 10, 2012, 10:56 PM   #18
couillon
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I had the pin on flash hider for a while. Never had a problem with it. Just did not like the look anymore so took it off. Brand should not matter. Pick whatever looks good to you.
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Old September 11, 2012, 08:27 AM   #19
Edward429451
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I have the Eagle pin on flash hider that looks like an HK front sight. It works well and does make it more shootable and faster to aquire. Looks a little funny but is ok.
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