I've come across a statement recently (no, I can't remember where) that implied that it is NOT SAFE to fire military 5.56x45mm ammo in a rifle chambered for .223 cal.
I have a pre-ban Ruger Mini-14 that I treasure, and would hate to damage it (or ME) in any way, by firing the wrong ammo...
Does military 5.56 ammo develop chamber pressures that are dangerously high for a Mini-14?
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June 4, 2008, 09:43 PM
Yes, 5.56 is fine in the Mini.
June 4, 2008, 09:48 PM
I don't know about the Mini-14 specifically, but I know that 5.56x45 operates at higher pressures than .223 and that it's generally unsafe to fire 5.56 in a .223 chambered gun.
June 4, 2008, 09:58 PM
I'm concerned because I have a great deal of military ammo, and I LOVE to take the Mini out and pop off a few hundred rounds at a time...:evil:
June 4, 2008, 10:13 PM
if the mini is chambered for .223 (it would have this stamped on the bbl); .556 might cause problems. I highlight might because SAAMI put out a statement saying it might, personally I've never seen pictures of a .556 blowing up a .223 receiver.
OTOH, if the mini is chambered for .556, you can shoot .556 or .223 all you want.
June 4, 2008, 10:16 PM
According to the owners manual the Mini-14 is designed to fire both.
June 4, 2008, 10:17 PM
My Mini 14, a 184 series made in 1985 in stainless fires military ammo with no problem, maybe I should refrase that, it did fire military issue ammo from the 80's thru about 1995, haven't tried any newer ammo in it, the rest I fire are reloads.
June 4, 2008, 10:23 PM
All Mini 14's have a 5.56 chamber...call Ruger if you want to ease your mind...but I assure you.....they have a 5.56x45mm chamber.
So do the Ruger #1's.
June 4, 2008, 10:25 PM
I put a bunch of GI stuff through my Minis. Never any sort of problem. Folks have posted here that the instruction book with their Mini said it was okay, but I haven't seen a "Minibook" in years and years. :)
June 5, 2008, 02:05 PM
Thanks, gents - you've gone a long way toward easing my mind.
I do think it would be a good idea to call Ruger, just to get the official stance on the issue (can you tell it's an election year?)
Just read the owner's manual, it's VERY clear that it's fine in a Mini.
You can call them all you want, but they already put it in the manual.
June 5, 2008, 07:19 PM
The Ruger Mini-14 has always been able to use 5.56 GI ammo, since the first one was made.
It says so on Page 11 of the owners manual:
They have always been marketed to law enforcement & even foreign governments, for military & LEO use, and as such are perfectly capable of safely shooting any 5.56 NATO ammo.
June 5, 2008, 07:44 PM
As rcmodel said, middle of page 11 (http://www.ruger.com/Firearms/PDF/InstructionManuals/55.pdf).
The RUGER® MINI-14® RANCH RIFLES are chambered for the .223 Remington (5.56mm) cartridge. The Mini-14 Ranch Rifle is designed to use either standardized U.S. military, or factory loaded sporting .223 (5.56mm) cartridges manufactured in accordance with U.S. industry practice.
June 8, 2008, 02:44 PM
I'm not sure it makes much difference, but the Owner's Manual posted here stipulates that it covers Ranch Rifles from series 580-XXXXX...
Mine is a stainless in the 181-XXXXX series, for which I have no manual.