March 29, 2003, 11:44 AM
I recently read some derogatory remarks about Mini-14's on this site, and although I am not expert in such things, I thought they were pretty good semi-autos. Are they really POS's as some have posted or is that the minority opinion? And what are the major complaints about them?

Although I don't currently own a Mini-14, I do have an AC-556 with factory folding stock and short barrel that I was proud of. Is it also a POS?

Opinions, please.

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March 29, 2003, 11:49 AM
I don't think the Mini-14 or AC556 are POSs. I've owned a stainless Mini for years and have shot the AC556 that the local sheriff department used to carry. Love them both. With quality magazines, the work fine. My only regret is that I didn't by one of the AC556s when the department sold them off.

Most people complain because they aren't as accurate as an AR-15. However, they weren't designed to be a long distance target rifle.

Dave Markowitz
March 29, 2003, 11:59 AM
Mini-14s are definitely NOT POSes. Stock rifles are not as accurate as ARs, but they can be tuned to give decent accuracy relatively inexpensively.

Minis tend to heat up very quickly in rapdi fire due to the very thin barrel. This affects accuracy and barrel life.

The real Achilles heel of the rifle, though, is the lack of quality standard cap (>10 round) magazines. Ruger factory mags are rare and astronomically priced. PMIs and Thermolds have a good rep, though. The reputation of the Mini-14 among certain folks as a jam-o-matic is largely due to the use of poor quality magazines. Use good mags and the rifle should be almost as reliable as an AK.

Remember, it wasn't designed as a military rifle, although Ruger has tried to get military sales (mostly foriegn). It was designed as a truck gun and rifle for LEOs. In these roles it's accurate enough and more than reliable enough.

March 29, 2003, 12:32 PM
I am planning to attend a shooting school in late April. The first three days are for handgun training, and the 4th day is for assault rifle training. I was thinking about taking the AC556 (for which I have 3 Ruger brand 20-round mags); will the AC556 be an embarressment for me? I don't mean how well I shoot it, just whether it will be seen by other students as a relic or a joke?

Marko Kloos
March 29, 2003, 01:15 PM
Who cares what other people think of your rifle? Some people take lever action guns to Urban Carbine classes. Nobody worth listening to will bad-mouth another shooter's equipment. (If the guy with the "relic" outshoots you with your space gun, you have no excuse to justify your worse score. ;) )

El Tejon
March 29, 2003, 01:47 PM
trace, it's your weapon, bring it if you want to. Maybe I'm just being a damn Yankee, but that's what education is for--to see what works. I have yet to see a Mini-14 make it through a class. Possible they may, don't know. YMMV.

The Mini-14 was designed as a plinker, a fun gun. Treat it as such.:)

So, where are you going and how can I help?

Sylvilagus Aquaticus
March 29, 2003, 01:59 PM
One thing I leared years ago is to never make fun of certain things a man has.

1). his gun.

2). his dog.

3). his woman.


"If we could just get everyone to close their eyes and visualize world
peace for an hour, imagine how serene and quiet it would be until
the looting started..."

March 29, 2003, 03:07 PM
Actually, the AC556 may play off of the strengths of the mini design better than the mini does, since it is allowed to have (1) a considerably shorter barrel, and (2) a folding stock. Because the mini's/AC556's action is so short rearward of the magazine, the AC556 is one of the most compact of all assault rifles for a given barrel length.

Since most "tactical rifle" shooting is at relatively close ranges (50 yd or less), the accuracy problem is less of an issue. My mini-14 does about 6 MOA on a good day (6" at 100 yd), but that's only 3" at 50, 1.5" at 25. At CQB range, you can still shoot the center out of a quarter. Your AC556 may do even better, since the short barrel is relatively much stiffer than my 18.5" barrel.

March 29, 2003, 03:13 PM
and (2) a folding stock.

My Mini-14 has a folding stock! :D If you think the shorter barrel would help, you can register your Mini as a SBR and have it cut down.

I wonder what the AC556 sell for these days....

March 29, 2003, 05:37 PM
Now I know where Mr. Kirk Freeman has been hiding.:D

Even Pat Rogers said the Mini 14 couldn't cut it.

Treat it as a hunting/plinking/SHTF gun.

I have two and I love them both.

The AC556 I see are usually in the $2800-$4000 range.

April 1, 2003, 06:51 PM
My Mini-14 has a folding stock! If you think the shorter barrel would help, you can register your Mini as a SBR and have it cut down.
I WISH my mini had a folding stock. I almost bought one in 1994, right before the vote on Pork 'n Bans, but didn't because I strongly felt "it can't pass--this is America." Well, I was wrong, it passed (thanks largely to media ignorance/dishonesty), and I'm stuck with a non-folding pistol grip stock until (hopefully) the ban sunsets in 2004.

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