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Old May 10, 2014, 09:09 PM   #1
J270
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Disappointment with my new Mini 14

New 582 mini 14 at the range could not get a group under six inches at 50 yards.
I was shooting American Eagle Ar 556 55 grain, with sand bags. I am a good shot and I know the second I pull the trigger if it's a good shot. New to this caliber and any advise would help

A few Questions

How good is this ammo.
Are minis ammo sensitive.
Should I go to a heavier bullet
556/223 do the tend to like one over another.
Is their a decently priced accurate plunking ammo.

Thanks Jason
P.s I am saving for a colt 6920, so no (should of bought a AR)
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:02 PM   #2
Jim567
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Back around 1985 I had a mini 14.
With a nice 4 power scope sandbagged,
It would do 6 inches plus at best 100 yards.
My 1952 international Harvestor Garand with open sights would do 2".
I was very disappointed in the mini 14.
I did function flawlessly.
Unexceptably inaccurate though.
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:02 PM   #3
jmr40
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The Mini's are known for less than stellar accuracy, but this is bad for even a Mini. I'd try another ammo first. If it doesn't improve I'd contact Ruger. I use that ammo some in my AR's. It is not the most accurate, but I usually get at least 2" @ 100 yards with it.
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:05 PM   #4
Jim567
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My new Smith and Wesson AR-15 Sport shot 2" groups at 50 yards last weekend.
Open sights.
I was shooting the American Eagle .223
With my now 60 year old eyes.
Can't wait to put glass on it and go for 100.
My eyes can't do 100 open sights any more for group.
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:09 PM   #5
johnwilliamson062
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Something is wrong. Minis aren't super accurate out of box, are not cheap to accurize and won't ever get to the level of a competition ar, but 6" at 50 yards is way outside normal. Half that is outside normal.
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:27 PM   #6
SVTCobra306
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Is this with any kind of optic or is it open sights? I know the newer Mini's have a little bit better sights, but my older Ranch Rifle has terrible open sights on it.. I am pretty good with open sights, particularly with factory AR Peep sights, but I am horrible with the Mini's peep sight. Achieving a good cheek weld is difficult at best, let alone maintaining and repeating it.

Off a sandbag with a red dot, my Mini will shoot under 1 inch at 25 yards, and right about an inch, maybe a bit over at 50 yards, using hunting ammo.

If you want to eliminate ammo out of the equation, try Hornady FMJ's. They're a touch pricey, I pay $29 for a 50 pack normally, but they have proven to be as accurate as any FMJ out there, and very consistent for me. My ArmaLite shot a 50 round group inside of 3/4" using this ammo, with a couple of flyers that were my fault but were still within 1".
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:29 PM   #7
J270
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This was the first 100 rounds,do they get tighter as they get broke in??
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:31 PM   #8
Sarge
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The worst Mini-anything I ever fired was an awful Mini 30 with a decent 3x9 on it, that strained for 5" groups- 5 shots at 100 yards. 580 and later Mini 14's are light years better than that, often crowding an inch at that distance.


http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=426354
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:40 PM   #9
SVTCobra306
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I kind of doubt it will get much tighter past the first 100 rounds. Did you clean the barrel before you shot it? I always make a point of at least swabbing the bore once on a new rifle, who knows what has gotten in there before you got it
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:50 PM   #10
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I checked it with a bore light, but was to excited and forgot to run a patch through the bore,hope I did not damage anything.
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Old May 10, 2014, 10:53 PM   #11
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One thing with the mini 14, it has a very large rear diopter (ghost ring, whatever its called), so you have to be very carful when you line up the sights.

I have the same 580 series rifle, mine shoots really well. I haven't actually grouped it in a while, but if I miss a target, I consider it my fault. You should be able to shoot a soda can at 100 yards all day.

I shoot cheap ammo out of mine. I'll be completely honest, Tula ammo groups better than federal for me. don't ask why, but it does.
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Old May 10, 2014, 11:18 PM   #12
J270
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I would love to hunt beer cans at 100 yards.
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Old May 10, 2014, 11:30 PM   #13
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I can't speak for the newer Mini-14, but the older ones I have experience with prefered 62gr. bullets.

Clean your barrel and shoot it dry (your barrel that is).
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Old May 11, 2014, 09:26 AM   #14
Art Eatman
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The newer Minis should do better than that. Even the old "skinnies" would let me put three into 1.5 to 2 inches at a hundred yards, even with irons.
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Old May 11, 2014, 10:02 AM   #15
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Experiment with different ammo brands and bullet weights. Which should be standard practice for any new firearm
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Old May 11, 2014, 10:17 AM   #16
J270
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Is their a big difference between 556 and 223 is one more accurate out of the Mini.
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Old May 11, 2014, 10:58 AM   #17
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How well do you shoot other rifles? Bases on some of your questions you sound newer to the sport, no offense. But before I would look at something being wrong with the gun or ammo (a Mini is chamber spec'd for 5.56 but shoots .223 fine, and have a 1:9 twist which is ideal for 55gr ball.) I would assume it was the shooter, as is often the case. Mini's aren't known for good triggers, or sight, or stellar accuracy anyways. Couple that with an inexperienced shooter, I would presumably expect the same results.

I am not trying to offend you in anyway at all, but this is often the case we run into when people bring guns back for repair due to poor grouping. Even more so with handguns.

The short answer to you question for 5.56 vs .223 is NO... the long answer... yes there is a difference, however it would not affect your rifle because it is chambered properly. Guns chamber spec'd for 5.56 have a longer lead in them, basically for full auto and suppressed operation. 5.56 spec ammo runs at a little bit higher of a pressure, the only difference you would really notice is the way the brass ejects. I have never seen any huge accuracy difference good or bad switching between two similar types. Now when you start throwing match grade ammo vs the cheap bulk pack stuff is different.

The major concern with the different chamber spec'd are to NOT use 5.56 ammo in a gun that is chambered specifically to .223 Rem. 5.56 chambered guns is FINE like your Mini, to run .223 ammo. It is recommended not to run 5.56 ammo through a .223 spec'd rifle, however it has been VERY HARD to find any reports of failures due to it.

The American Eagle 55gr is more accurate than people give it credit for. I through a 12x Scope on my BCM 14.5'' mid upper to test some loads one day, and at 100 yards I could consistently group under an inch with the 55gr AE bulk pack. This does not mean your Ruger likes that ammo ofcourse.

Last edited by HKFan9; May 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM.
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Old May 11, 2014, 11:00 AM   #18
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Have you tried using a scope on it----even if you plan on using the irons, a scope will help show the accuracy potential of the rifle.

Also clean the gun and try different ammo---if all that fails---call Ruger.
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Old May 11, 2014, 11:38 AM   #19
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Only so much you can do

Yours sounds exceptionally bad, but they have never been known for anything but subpar accuracy.
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Old May 11, 2014, 12:25 PM   #20
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Sounds like you got a lemon.

Rugers already have a bad reputation for poor accuracy because of their inconsistent barrels, a few decades ago, some of which had major problems and they would often have very poor accuracy.

The new ones are supposed to be fairly accurate. If you're getting significantly worse groups than 2-3MOA, with the shooter doing their part, there's likely something wrong with the rifle IMO.


The Mini platform, even with cheap-o ammo SHOULD NOT be shooting 12+MOA something is wrong, and it's not the mini platform, something is going on. First thing I'd check are the irons (or scope) and the stock. If the stock is loose enough, it could cause your groups to open up significantly.
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Old May 11, 2014, 12:44 PM   #21
J270
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No offense taken HK, but yes I can shoot well.This far from my first Rodeo. I have a few deer rifles that are 10ยข killers at 100 yards. I put a timiny trigger in a older 110 and I can shoot that better than my Rem 700.

I have experienced different accuracy with different ammo, and I have seen guns be particular in what they like best. I have seen $14 dollar ammo have better groups than $34 ammo.

I have no problem eating humble pie until I learn this weapon. I am going to get a snapcap and learn the trigger, I do not have the time with open sights that I do with scopes, so I will throw one on as a last resort .

I know the hole 556 223 chamber thing, I just wanted to know if one was inherently more accurate than the other.

I know that it may take a few brands of ammo to find the right one but that outing was crazy bad.

Thanks for all you're input people

Last edited by J270; May 11, 2014 at 12:50 PM.
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Old May 11, 2014, 07:05 PM   #22
Art Eatman
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Just as a generality, most of the posts about results with the newer Minis don't offer much commentary about their being picky about ammo.
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Old May 11, 2014, 07:39 PM   #23
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More information the better I understand. As I said I was not trying to poke fun, its just its very common in the shop when we get complaints on accuracy its 9/10 times the shooter, some of them even good shooters. I get a lot of guys complain about the light weight Kimber Rifles, because they are not used to a ~4-5lb gun.

It is true, different guns like different loads... but I have yet to see a Mini dislike a factory load that much. I would venture a guess as to what could be wrong, I would say like someone else did... make sure the stock and everything is torqued down properly.

Ruger has no written warranty, but they will take anything back for a warranty inspection. This will be your best course of action, I do this a lot for customers. You have no shot hand loads or did something stupid, which are the only events I have EVER seen Ruger charge a customer for a repair, and even that is rare. I have seen a few S&W handguns with barrels bored off axis, so strange and non apparent things can and do happen.

If you send it to Ruger I would imagine 1 of 2 things happening.. They test fire it, it groups fine, they will send you the test target with the ammo they used information and you have a starting point.

OR

They test fire it, see how bad it is, and probably re-barrel the rifle. No cost to you.

We got a Winchester rifle once that the chamber wasn't even bored out yet. As I said, strange things do happen, we actually got a call from one of their Exec's about that one because it was apparently a huge deal that the gun was never test fired... because it was impossible to feed a round.
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Old May 11, 2014, 07:49 PM   #24
J270
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Got back from the range today and I have a smile on my face. I was able to actually hit something today. I had no time restraint so I could take more time I had some sunglasses witch helped with the glare.

I had a six inch group at 100yds miles better than yesterday.

Bottom line is I may have ben a little arrogant in thinking I could just grab and be accurate with it. I think with some more range time she will be a favorite.
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Old May 11, 2014, 07:51 PM   #25
johnwilliamson062
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The irons being loose or the stock loose would explain it. If you have used sights with a rear diopter I would be surprised if that is the problem. Rugers is large, but centering should be pretty natural anyways. If you have only used patridge sights and buckhorns then maybe.
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