New heavier barrel on Mini-14?


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Tony50ae
January 22, 2008, 01:04 AM
Was browsing the forums at perfectunion and looks like Ruger finally put a heavier barrel on the mini 14. I don't mean the target one but the good ol' ranch rifle. Not a whole lot larger but enough where hopefully it will bring the accuracy to where if the barrel gets hot it will not wander all over the place.

It does not show on the Ruger website but if you download the catalog on page 110 it talks about a heavier barrel. Supposedly people have called Ruger and they have stated that yes, for 2008 models a heavier barrel has been installed. I use to own a mini-14 and sold it to a coworker as it was not as accurate as I wanted it to be. Since for me it was mostly a paper puncher I wanted a bit more accuracy. Loved it otherwise though. Might be time to check these new models out. :)

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7mmsavage
January 22, 2008, 05:42 AM
I checked one out at Gander mtn recently. It didn't really look like the barrel was any heavier than my 196. I think the big improvement is that Ruger is using all new tooling and new sights. There was a 6.8mm model there that had a heavier barrel though.

bhk
January 22, 2008, 08:57 AM
Yes, the Ranch Rifles hitting the dealer shelves in 2008 DO have a significantly heavier barrel - the same profile used for their 6.8 and 7.62x39. When you look at these rifles, the difference will be very obvious (we are talking about regular ranch rifles - not the target versions). This is a change from the 580 series guns produced up until this point that had the same barrel profile as the older guns. Some photos of the new barrel and guns are appearing on www.perfectunion.com at this time. The photos also occur in the new Ruger catalogue. My guess is that we will see both versions on the shelves for some time now - depending on how fast dealers and distributors sell the 580s produced in 2007 and before.

I have a 580 with the older, slim barrel. It is more accurate than the older minis. The new barrel should make a real difference in sustained accuracy. This should be a real plus for those that prefer a sporting-style semi over a military-style semi.

It will be interesting to see how the 'mini bashers' handle all these changes. Right now they want to lump all the 580s with the older guns - a mistake. I guess they think: once a mini, always a mini. The new barreled guns will will make such generalizations even more inaccurate.

Tony50ae
January 23, 2008, 12:05 AM
Guess I will have to start looking for the 2008 model now...lol. My safe is filling quickly! The Mini I had was a 196 series so when the barrel got hot it would start to wander. Still enjoyed it but I wanted something a bit more accurate for paper punching. Now my coworker has it and he seems happy with it. I was looking at the 580 series but now that they have the heavier barrel for 2008, I will wait for awhile and make sure I get the 08 model. Something about the mini-14 I have always enjoyed.

Could be the fact that I own a Garand and an m1 carbine though not originals but reproductions. They still shoot and function great though.

chrissmallwood
January 23, 2008, 10:04 PM
Hi all. I just bought a mini a few weeks ago and it has the heavier barrel on it. You can tell the difference because the barrel has a thick section that tapers down right after the gas block. They have also beefed up the chamber. I measured mine an it was .625" at the thinnest point compared to the older models that measured .563". Mine shipped in 2007 and has 580-52xxx serial number. Here are some pics of the barrel.

http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc103/chrissmallwood/Picture005.jpg

http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc103/chrissmallwood/Picture006.jpg

armoredman
January 23, 2008, 10:29 PM
Wish I'd waited a few months. Though I can't complain too much, mine does work very well.

glockman19
January 24, 2008, 01:03 AM
I have a 580 mini-14 and it also has teh heavier barrel. I bought mine in early 2007.

pbrktrt
January 24, 2008, 07:34 AM
if you think about it, it's a win win situation. we get a heavier barrel mini-14, (which we have been suggesting to Ruger for some time) & they only need to produce one barrel for all three configurations. then bore to caliber.

IrvJr
January 24, 2008, 08:00 AM
chrissmallwood and glockman19 - how do your mini 14's with the heavier barerels shoot? do you notice an increase in consistency when shooting with the heavier profile barrel?

asknight
January 24, 2008, 12:03 PM
Looks like a good, usable barrel profile. Say the 6.8SPC is profiled the same? :D

chrissmallwood
January 24, 2008, 05:17 PM
Honestly I couldnt say for sure IrvJr. The only rtimes I have taken it out I havent shot it for accuracy, I was just shooting it to get a feel for it and to have some fun. Whenever It warms up here I plan on going to the range to test its accuracy. I havent shot an older mini so I cant compare how it would shoot once the barrels got hot.

TheGrouch
January 24, 2008, 06:14 PM
I'd like to see a range report/10-shot group before I break out the checkbook.

1KPerDay
January 24, 2008, 06:18 PM
Anyone know if the new barrels will retrofit the old receivers/gas blocks/stocks/handguards/etc?

glockman19
January 24, 2008, 06:26 PM
how do your mini 14's with the heavier barerels shoot?
Just as accurate as my AR's and it has better sights and has never jammed on me failed to feed or failed to eject. I have experienced many issues at different times with my AR's.

I'd like to see a range report/10-shot group before I break out the checkbook.
at what distance?

I'll be happy to provide one as soon as i can get out. Rain Expected through Monday. I'll try t gat to the range on Tuesday.

George S.
January 24, 2008, 06:44 PM
Anyone know if the new barrels will retrofit the old receivers/gas blocks/stocks/handguards/etc?

That would be interesting to see if the new barrel would work in older Mini's. My Mini-14 is only 4 years old but it might be worth a new barrel to see an improvement in accuracy especially with a high rate of fire that builds up heat.

1KPerDay
January 24, 2008, 06:50 PM
I think I'd buy one if the price were reasonable... my ranch rifle is so inaccurate it makes the scope I mounted sort of pointless. Always goes bang, though... and it's a nice flamethrower with 5.56. :D

MIL-DOT
January 24, 2008, 07:31 PM
Well, it's about time. Still....too little, too late. Maybe when they parkerize and make them compatible with AR mags will i re-consider a mini-14.

Tony50ae
January 24, 2008, 09:42 PM
Glockman19 that would be cool if you could show us pics of your groups, say at 100 yards maybe? I do plan on getting an AR soon but also would like to get the Mini-14.

survivalist455
January 27, 2008, 11:36 AM
do the old 580s take the same accessories as the 181s? will these new 08s take the same stocks and flash hiders ect.

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