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Centerfire Rifles - Semiautomatic or Gas Operated Centerfire rifles, carbines and other gas operated rifles.

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  #1  
Old 05-18-2019, 5:01 PM
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imarangemaster imarangemaster is offline
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Default A funny thing happened when I went into my local gunshop

I have been missing my 186 Mini-14 with its 1/7 twist barrel that I threaded the muzzle 1/2x28 and added a Cav Arms Break and installed a 580 series post and wing front sight. I had traded the 186 for a USGI Quality Hardware M1 Carbine (CMP Service Grade) after I got the Mini-30 earlier this year. Sure I have an AR in 5.56, but it is not my Mini-14.

Last month at the Sportsman's range when I was shooting my 584 series Mini-30, another member (an older gentleman than me and I am 67!) had the opportunity to shoot my Mini-30. He was smitten, and said it was more accurate than the last Mini-30 he had shot! He wanted to buy it on the spot, but I declined. Note: The older guy is also a friend of my friend that owns the local gun shop that I traded that 186 Mini-14 for the Quality Hardware USGI M1 Carbine to a couple months ago.

Fast forward to a coup[le days ago. I was in the gunshop, as was the that older gentleman that badly wanted my Mini-30. He again asked if I wanted to sell the Mini-30. He REALLY wanted it.

To give the Readers Digest version, he wanted the Mini-30 so bad that I got my original 186 Mini-14 (which surprisingly was still on the rack for sale), 1,000 rounds of Lake City M193 5.56mm in a 50 cal ammo can, and my accessories I had originally traded in with the Mini-14. All I ended up giving was the Mini-30 with two 5 round mags! It was too good to pass up! The 186 always functioned 100%, gave me 1.5 MOA with MK262 MOD1 77 grainers.

I still have my 7.62x39 ammo, components and mags, so I know later that I'll eventuallypick up another used Mini-30, but I am tickled to have my MK262 MOD1 pumping Mini-14 back!

My baby came home!!!! Of all the Minis I have owned since 1982, the 186 is the most bad @ss! In several thousand rounds when I first had it, I never had a single malfunction, even with non-factory mags (USA Magazine and Western brand 20s and 30s with Ruger followers.).

Yeah, I know, I am as fickle as a junior high girl! LOL (I still have the M1 Carbine and 16" AR15).




Last edited by imarangemaster; 05-18-2019 at 5:34 PM..
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Old 05-18-2019, 5:05 PM
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Old 05-18-2019, 6:43 PM
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That's awesome. But, is that a flash hider on it?
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Old 05-18-2019, 6:48 PM
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Nope, a Cav Arms Comp Muzzle break. Closed end and three slots. Actually helps with muzzle rise. I have an A1 and A2 flash hider for out of state use.

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Old 05-19-2019, 7:17 AM
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I do agree that I am fickle, but if it were not for being able to recapture my 186, I would not have done it. It was not about replacing the Mini-30 with a Mini-14, it was about having the 186 again!

I really loved the quality of the old 186. The casting and machining is far superior and smoother, and the craftsmanship better than todays Minis. The slide action is smooth as silk. It is a joy to shoot with front and rear buffers, of which the new Mini-30 did not like either. Todays Minis are 1/9 twist and the 186 is 1/7.

I put a lot of love and energy into the 186: threading the barrel and installing a muzzle break, opening the rear sight aperture to my length of pull eye placement to have a perfect circle around the 580 series post and wing front sight, that I also installed on it. It was like rediscovering an old friend.

I do plan on getting another Mini-30, but think I will do what Sandog on Perfect Union did, look for a a nice "16 year old virgin" Mini-30, and install a Tech rear sight and a current production post and wing front. While Ruger has improved the Mini platform in some ways (especially the Mini-14), I do believe the quality was better pre-1998 or so.
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:52 PM
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Had some time to kill, so I thought I would try a Ruger factory poly stock on the 186. I still have the poly I got for the Mini-30. I was worried about the mag well being too wide, since it is a Mini-30 stock. After I popped it together, I realized that the front of the mag well is the same and the trigger guard bottom plate, being from the 186, was correct for the Mini-14 magazines. A little more wiggle than the 186 wood stock, but I think I will give it a try Sunday at the range.

I went from just a smidge over 7 lbs even with the wood stock , to 6 a nice pounds, 9 ounces, almost 1/2 pound lighter! It hefts noticeably lighter. I am a big wood and steel fan for rifles, but I think I'll try this and see how it does. I will say it was a nicer, direct fit with the 186 Mini-14 than it was with the 584 Mini-30.

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Old 05-23-2019, 12:56 PM
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I like seeing experienced gun owners still get excited over getting another firearm.....even better that you're getting it BACK.
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Old 05-23-2019, 4:03 PM
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Sounds like a good topic for another thread...selling guns that you'd like to get back. I sold a Buck Mark...while I couldn't get the original back...years latter I got another Browning Buck Mark....I sold a Mini-30...years later...I got another one. I sold a bunch of "Assault rifles" before I had to register them when the Category 3 "Assault Weapons defined by characteristics" law went into effect ...and then when the bullet button versions came out...I bought the same guns...thus getting them back in a way. I think I can totally understand OP's affection for a favorite firearm.
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Old 05-23-2019, 5:06 PM
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That's cool you got it back! I hope you don't have as hard of a time finding a good 30 like I did. I had been looking for the last two years. I didn't want to spend 1,000 dollars or more like some had advertised. I am very excited to say I picked mine up this week and anxiously wait until this weekend. Part of my finding one was wanting the wood stock and not stainless. Not really a stainless fan.
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Old 05-23-2019, 6:13 PM
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Two or three years ago the LGS had a blue/wood early Mini-30 with the funky leaf rear sight for $650. That was the time I picked up a 580 series MINI-14. Maybe I'll find one like that sometime.
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Old 05-24-2019, 3:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imarangemaster View Post
Two or three years ago the LGS had a blue/wood early Mini-30 with the funky leaf rear sight for $650. That was the time I picked up a 580 series MINI-14. Maybe I'll find one like that sometime.
With your luck the way it’s going I bet you do!
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Old 05-24-2019, 3:28 PM
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Nice how does she shoot?
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Old 05-24-2019, 3:47 PM
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Originally Posted by wpage View Post
Nice how does she shoot?
On a good day, 2 MOA or under with iron sights and MK262 MOD1 77 grainers. That is with 67 year old eyes and iron sights. It cloverleafs at 25 yards. It will break clay pigeons at 100 yards with iron sights, and hit the 12" 200 yard gong every time, also with iron. That's is definitely better than Minute of troll or zombie! Certainly better than I need. That is about the same as I can do with my 16" AR15 with iron sights and the same ammo.

NOTE: Until last year, I have pretty much had an AK of some flavor or another since the mid-1980s when the Chinese were coming in. I NEVER had any AK, including Saiga, that would do better than 3-4 MOA with iron sights, so don't start griping about how inaccurate "2 MOA" is. My Colt upper AR15 doesn't shoot any better than that with iron sights!

Last edited by imarangemaster; 05-24-2019 at 5:08 PM..
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Old 05-26-2019, 11:07 AM
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I had toyed with the idea of chopping the barrel to 16", but was undecided until this morning. I AM NOT CHANGING A THING!!!!!! It is crazy accurate as is with the 18.5" barrel! I went to the range today to see if putting it in the Ruger factory poly stock I had for the Mini-30, changed POI from the 186 factory wood stock. ZERO change in point of impact. First I started with clay pigeons on the berm at 100 yards.

MK262 MOD IMI 77 grain OTMs. Mini is zeroed at 250 yards. Using a 6 o'clock hold at 100 yards, I hit clay pigeons 100% of the time first shot. The I started shooting the pieces of clay pigeons I had shattered. 100% hits every shot.

Then I moved on to my Nosler 77 grain BLC(2) loads. exactly the same as the MK262 MOD1, including 100% hits on pieces of clay pigeons. Report and recoil felt identical to the factory loads.

Then I grabbed a 30 round USA Magazine full of my 55 grain IMR 4064, M193 clone loads. Same performance, 100% hits on clay pigeons at 100 yard. The only difference was than when shooting pieces of the shattered clay pigeons, I had to hold slightly right to hit the pieces. I seem to remember they printed about 1.5 inch left of the 77s when I shot paper. Still well less than minute of bad guy/troll/zombie/goblin/raving insurrectionist out to 200 yards!

Shooting the 186 Mini-14, as always, was an absolute joy. After 100+ rounds, I was still hitting pieces of clay pigeons at 100 yards 100% I really think the weight and harmonics of the muzzle brake mitigates the barrel whip and stringing pencil barrels usually have. The 580 series post and wing front sight that I installed is also a factor, giving a superior consistent sight picture than the mile high blade sight that the 186 series originally had. I was never a fan of the original blade sights.

At 6 pounds, 9 ounces in the poly stock, I did not notice any more recoil than the 7 pounds it was in the factory wood stock. If anything, I think the poly absorbs more recoil. I also ran a Wilson 1911 buffer on the front and on the rear.
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Old 05-26-2019, 4:22 PM
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I have had at least 10 Minis (both 14s and 30s) since my first Bi-Centenial Model 180 series I bought use in 1982. (I was an FFL for 25 years, so I had lots of different guns go through my books then). I have NEVER had a smoother, slicker, better shooting Mini (or any rifle) than this 186. This little guy is amazing! The 1/7 twist LOVES 77 grainers!
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