View Full Version : Ruger MINI 14

03-04-2002, 07:36 PM
What do you guys think about the mini-14 for a coyote gun? I can pick one up like new cond. for about $350 US.The guys broke,but I want a reasonably accurate gun

Are they any good?

03-04-2002, 07:51 PM
###Sounds like you got a good deal Davered1. $400 is about as cheap as I've seen a nice one, and most of what I've seen around $350 didn't look that great.
### I have a couple of friends that use them for yotes. Kills them as dead as they need to be. They're great for thick brush or when you call in more than one. ### ENJOY
### ### ### Scott

03-04-2002, 07:52 PM
davered1, I have had at least one for 15 or so years. $350.00 is a pretty decent price. Don't expect tack driving results and you'll be happy. Iv'e taken tons of yotes with mine. They are fun to shoot and very reliable.
I don't know how you define "reasonably accurate" but it will be good enough to kill dogs with. They are a handy rifle to have around and the price is right.

03-04-2002, 07:54 PM
Two weeks ago I put about 300rnds through a freinds , It functioned perfect . we were plinking so I cant say for sure on the accuracy , hitting paint cans at 100 yards was no problem but that is a large target. I would be looking for a set of after market sights as I did not care for the rear sight, it slings brass a ways and was dinging the case mouth half shut so reloading could be difficult .
$350 is probally a ok price for one in real nice condition.

03-04-2002, 08:01 PM
I've had one for a number of years now. ###They're very reliable. ###Accuracy varies from gun to gun and is not typically stellar. ###Most folks are shooting old military surplus ammo too which doesn't necessarily help the accuracy situation. ###Even the "bad" ones will still shoot into 3" @ 100 yards which is minute of coyote out to 200 or so yards.

Just realizing that you're buying something that is designed for a quick follow up shot and not 1/4 MOA and you won't be disappointed.

03-04-2002, 08:53 PM
Is it a Ranch model? That is a good price even if it is'nt. I have a ranch model that can shoot 1" to 1.5" ###groups at 100 yards. They are great for 100-200 yards shots.

(Edited by Hook at 8:53 pm on Mar. 4, 2002)

03-04-2002, 09:45 PM

I agree with everyone else. If it's a ranch model, it's a good price. I bought my ranch maybe 9 months ago for $449.00.

I love it and think it's an excellent coyote gun and killed one with it so far at about 200 yds. PMC 55 gr hollow point did a nasty job on him.

While it is not a tack driver, it is plenty accurate for coyotes in my opinion. Mine will put 10 rounds in about 1 3/4" at 100yds & 5 shots much smaller. ###

I have put hundreds of rounds through mine without a single jam or malfunction. Very reliable!

I am considering installing a 20" heavy custom barrel with glass bedding & trigger job, for better accuracy, weight /staying on target better. ###

A rule I live by is, "if your too undecided, don't do it". ###You'll make the right choice, either way.

Good Hunting!


03-05-2002, 05:57 PM

The guy is broke flat. It looks brand new and he says it has shot only a handful of rounds through it. I will have some fairly long shots (300 yds)at some yotes here. If I scope it up and use good ammo It should be allright eh?

We get some long shots because we drive the highway after morning calling and we catch them out mousing on the wetlands. We can stalk them sometimes but sometimes the snow has a crust that they can hear break at about 300+ yds.

What do you think?

(Edited by davered1 at 8:02 pm on Mar. 5, 2002)

03-05-2002, 06:15 PM
I'm not sure I'd take a 300yd shot with mine and expect a clean kill. If it's an honest 300 yrd. that may be stretching the limits for that weapon. Some may disagree and that's ok. Just my opinion based on shooting a ton out of mini's.

On the other hand I'm not going to say that your'e particular rifle won't or can't do it.

I think that if you have the extra cash to get this rifle, get it. It's a whole lot cheaper than say a Rem. 700VS. But as Songdog said, it's accuracy is not typically steller. If you can keep the shots under 200 yrds. I think you'll be happy. Start missing alot at 300 and maybe you wont be so happy......

03-05-2002, 07:22 PM
Kernhuntr is right. ###If you're buying a long range (300 yards is a long way to me) coyote rifle, you'll be able to do better than a mini. ###Keep it under 200 and you're in a lot better shape. ###300 or more and I'd be looking at a bolt or single shot as well as a .22-250 or .243.

I've seen a lot of guys buy minis for coyotes because of the "quick follow up shot". ###I must be really bad at running shots or something but I'd much rather take a 300 yard shot at a stationary coyote than 5 running shots from 100 yards out to 250 on his way out of Dodge.

But if your buddy is down on his luck and hurting for some cash, pick it up... ###Or at least take it out and put 10 rounds through it. ###You'll know very quickly if it's shooting 1" or 3" at 100 yards.

03-05-2002, 07:23 PM
I agree with Kernhuntr. For me 300 yds would be strecthing it with my mini 14. ###Not saying it can't be done, but believe I would prefer a more accurate bolt action in that instance. 223, 22-250 or 243 to name a few good calibers.

Since your friend is short on cash, good chance he will take less than $350, however won't be worth it if your not completely happy with it.

You've got a (nice) dilemma.

Frank ###

03-05-2002, 08:27 PM
this is a great post.. i have a mini 14 and to be honest with you it doesnt shoot worth a damn.. but i am using that old cheap military .223 ammo... i have a ton of it.. is that stuf just not accurate?? what should i buy to shoot out of it that may improve the accuracy.. is there anything else you can do for them? ### any ideas.. if not any ideas on what to do with that old military ammo..

03-05-2002, 08:47 PM
davered 1,
These guys are once again right on the money. I have a Mini-14 and I wouldn't count on it for a 300 yrd shot. like these guys said a .223 isn't probably up to a 300 yrd reliable kill. But what the heck, the price is nice!

03-05-2002, 08:58 PM

Just like any other rifle, you have to get a hold of as many types of ammo as you can and give them a test drive. Some of that old stuff is accurate and some isn't. May just be you're rifle doesn't like it. Before you give up on the rifle try some different brands of good quality. Fed. Premium, Hornady Custom, etc. One thing we discussed in another post (can't remember what thread) is getting a trigger job done. Those triggers are terrible. It makes it really hard to get a good smooth trigger press when it's a crappy trigger. Those triggers are hard to work on, so give it to somebody you can trust. It will make a big difference.

There is a place in Bend Or.? that does accurizing jobs. I'll try to locate the name and post it for you. Foremost get some different ammo.

That mil. ammo is good for farting around when you're not worried about groups. Use it to work on breathing techniques, trigger press, or save it for when Osama comes callin'.


(Edited by Kernhuntr at 9:03 pm on Mar. 5, 2002)

03-05-2002, 09:10 PM

I would think the military ammo may be causing you the grief / lousy accuracy.

I use 2 types of PMC ammo in my mini 14. The cheaper 55gr fmj in their red & white box for plinking, horsing around. ###For varmint hunting and best accuracy so far, I use the expensive ###PMC 55 (not 52) gr hollow point, Sierra Game king in their grey & black box (#223VB).

As I mentioned in another thread, whenever I go to the range & others see how well it shoots, there is always at least one person that tells me they would have never gotten rid of their's if they would have gotten that kind of accuracy. ###

The cheapest place I have found for PMC ammo only is a place called Mtn States in New Mexico, at 1-800-826-0709 and ask for Buck. His price includes UPS shipping, tax, the whole 9 yards & is about 40% cheaper than Turners.

And again, one could put a heavy custom barrel on the mini 14 that should make it pretty accurate?!

Frank ### ###

03-05-2002, 09:22 PM
p.s. ###For accurizing the mini 14, there is a place called ARS, (Accuracy Rifle Systems) in Texas at phone #1-915-362-6840. I already called for their brochure & price list.

They have been installing custom heay barrels, glass bedding & trigger work for nearly 20 years for various government agencies & the public.

03-06-2002, 08:35 AM
I had some old military .223 ammo (Chinese or Russian or something) that wouldn't shoot for anything out of my mini. ###I started shooting it at paper and started seeing holes that weren't round but the shape of the bullet going through sideways.

Depending on the twist rate of the barrel, the bullet has to be going fast enough for it to stabilize. ###These weren't. ###I'm just guessing but I'd bet that they held minimal powder and the 55gr bullets just weren't getting pushed fast enough to stabilize.

Also, military ammo is almost always crimped... and crimped really hard. ###To the point where you can't pull a bullet with a kinetic puller. ###This also hurts accuracy in any gun that's shooting it.

When I switched to the .223 ammo that I shoot out of a Ruger #1 varmint gun, the holes were all nice and round and in a 1.5" group @ 100 yards.

Your mileage may vary but just make sure that it isn't the ammo that's making that mini shoot poorly.

03-06-2002, 04:14 PM

Am I better off buying a remington in .22-250 for 300 yard shots? My trapping check is in the mail and I got enough to buy 2 (since that mini is pretty cheap). We got pretty good money for everything this year


03-06-2002, 05:26 PM
Absolutely, davered1. I get the gut feeling that is what sounds best for you / your situation and will be the most happiest with. ###

I had one many years ago and it was a great rifle. Hind sight being 20/20 I should never had sold it. Incredibly accurate & fast / flat shooting.

Don't know if you are going to handload, but here's one to get you started with just in case. 42gr of H-414 with the 52 gr Speer HPFB that would consistently put 5 shots under 1/2" group at 100yds. ###I suppose the Sierra 52gr HPBT would do just as well if not better, but I never made it that far.


03-06-2002, 06:48 PM
seems like it would make a great coyote gun and it has just been collecting dust in the closet.. ###i am gonna try some different ammo and if that doesnt work i may take it into gruning to work on.

03-06-2002, 10:33 PM
For a long time the my mini was my coyote gun. I wish I had the ranch model, but I can't complain since my dad gave it to me about 8 years ago. The b-square mount for the mini isn't that great.