Eureka, the mini14 load

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by N555, May 13, 2022.

  1. N555

    N555 Member

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    One mini14 load to rule them all, one load to find; In the Land of Enchantment where the coyotes lie.

    I finally got around to load development for the mini14. First logical test is try all the loads developed a for AR15. My expectations were the mini14 would like the AR15 carbine loads better than the full power 5.56 rifle loads.
    Loads were developed for carbines and mid lengths that were accurate, didn't beat up the AR15 with silencer and H3 carbine buffer.

    The AR15 carbine silencer and 18.5'' 180 series mini14 load is in a federal case, cci400 primer, 22gr of H322 and I believe +0.02" over book coal. No annealing or any special case prep vodoo. Cases trimmed to 1.75'', FL sized.
    This is fairly close to the start load to middle of the load chart for H332 with that style bullet.
    It was the only consist 1 hole group with no fliers at 25 yards. Looks like it has great potential to make sub 2 inch groups at 100'', actually the 25 yard shots were really close to 1moa wide by 1.25moa tall , but I'll believe it when I see it at 100yd
    Was doing 5 shot groups because the barrel heats up a lot after just that many shots.
    People who make excuses for the mini14 usually are shooting 3 shot groups which imo are useless and cream them selves when they get anything under a 2 inch, 3 shot group. I was wanting to do 7 or 10 shot groups, I had the ammo but not the time.
    The worst was definitely factory loaded fed "xm193".
    Most of my AR15 loads were pushing around 4 moa and the worst one "fed xm193" was more like 6 moa.
    My 2 H322 loads were the best. The start load of H322 with a 55gr fmj bt did real well too.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2022
  2. AJC1

    AJC1 Member

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    Is velocity important or just holes in paper. A single base extruded powder may give you better case fill, more stable ignition and cooler ignition for more consistent strings. The mass of the mini-14 barrel is not helping stability in longer strings.
     
  3. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    I have three SS ranch rifles of late manufacture. I find my best loads with a better 55 grain bullet over a middle range load of TAC. They all are a bit different as far as loads go but MOA as long as the barrel does not heat up. Then I get stringing and accuracy goes to crap.
     
    higgite likes this.
  4. N555

    N555 Member

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    Velocity is meaningless if you can't hit what you're aiming at.
    Hmmm what would I rather have a 64gr Tipped match king that shoots around 2 moa but only hits 2,600fps or the "fed xm193" that shoots like 6 moa but hey its going in excess of 3,000fps. Hmmm, that's not a tough one at all.
     
  5. AJC1

    AJC1 Member

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    Of one needs velocity for terminal performance it matters. If using 2400 behind a cast bullet for poking paper it really doesn't. Your talking a 600fps difference and I'm talking 1800fps total speed.
     
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  6. N555

    N555 Member

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    I found an Ed Harris article revised in 5-25-94 that recommends a 52gr bullet with the start load of H322.
     
    horsey300 and Walkalong like this.
  7. CarJunkieLS1

    CarJunkieLS1 Member

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    Mini 14 and accuracy have never been able to be placed in the same sentence. You take the most accurate Mini 14 and best load for it, and you'll not do any better than a standard off the shelf AR-15 and a decent factory load.
     
  8. N555

    N555 Member

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    I have seen AR15s with accuracy as bad as a mini14. But the AR15 is easier to fix.
     
    mokin likes this.
  9. mokin

    mokin Member

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    I'm happy for you, N555. I like hearing success stories about the Mini-14. I really like my mine and trust it. If I get a 5-10 shot group at 50 yards I can cover with one hand I'm happy. I know it can shoot better than that, it has, and at farther distances, but things have to fall into place just right....

    Keep us posted :)
     
  10. N555

    N555 Member

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    This load should definitely be under an inch at 50 yards. I doubt anything drastic would change from 25 to 50yd.
    From 25yd to 100yd, maybe.
     
  11. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    I had a Mini 14 Ranch Rifle a very long time, dependable, fun, had fun at the range with it. I recently gave it to my youngest nephew who helped us move some heavy stuff. Great kid.
     
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  12. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    My best friend got a pair of Ruger Mini-14 Ranch rifles when they first came out in early’90’s. I had been loading 23.0 of some surplus H322 under the Nosler 55gr Ballistic Tip.
    The Mini14 (had folding stamped reciever sight and red rubber recoil pad on stock, very distinctive) shot 1.5” 5-shot groups! The Mini-30 however shot pie plate size groups.

    We could never duplicate that performance with any other powder.

    Same keg of powder would shoot 1”groups with a Marlin M337A and 3x Leupold scope, and a Remington M760 .35Rem w/200gr Sierra RN’s.
    I sure was disappointed when I used the last of that 8lb jug!
     
    Walkalong likes this.
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