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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Took the mini to the range this afternoon to try out the new 30 round magazines that I purchased from Cabelas... which didn't fit properly. Anyways, the real problem is that when I fire a round the bolt never retracts and the shell stays in the barrel. I recently took it completely apart to put a tactical stock on and while it was in pieces I cleaned it thoroughly. after reassembly I oiled it and put it away until today. I am shooting factory rounds and have not shot steel through it at all. any thoughts on what could be the culprit?
 

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What series is the gun ??? , Is the new mag a Factory Ruger 30 rnd mag ?. Did it do this before you changed the stock ? More info would be great , I'am guessing its the mag. Ruger mini14 + Factory mags for the win. The only Mini14 mags I've seen at Cabelas were Pro Mags.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
they are promags. I don't know anything about the ports, so I just disassembled and put it all back together. as far as the series... It's a very old model, probably early 80's.
 

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Exalted One
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Did it function okay before you cleaned it?

How much did you disassemble it?

Series/model number is the first three digits of the serial number. Let us know.
 

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I wonder if the return spring guide rod is installed upside down. I have to double check myself all the time. Usually the photos showing what to do are also with the gun upside down so it is confusing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don't know if it was functioning properly or not... I got is from my dad because he said it had been sitting in his closet for a decade and he hadn't used it. I don't have it in front of me but when I get home I will get the series number off of it. when I cleaned it I took the barrel and soaked it Hoppes and then took the lower trigger assembly and all of its moving parts and sprayed it down well with cleaning solution and then wiped it all down before applying oil liberally. I let it all sit on my work bench for several days while I awaited the stock to arrive and then reassembled it. I didn't have the mags for it so that is why I ordered them from Cabelas. I will order a Ruger mag to see if that is the issue first but I really feel like it has a deeper problem. The gun wasn't greatly taken care prior to my owning it.
 

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I have an old Mini. The only real problems I've ever had over all the years of shooting have been with the after market mags.

"the bolt never retracts and the shell stays in the barrel" Sounds like something is misaligned, missing or plugged.
 

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I don't see where the magazine would have anything to do with why the action wont cycle. I'd say something got put together wrong rendering your semi auto rifle into a single shot.
 

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If you have not dissembled the Mini before , there could be a good chance that you put the guide rod spring in upside down , like Hellgate mentioned. Ruger has a video on u tube on how to dissemble and reassemble the mini. Could be a combo of the guide rod and the mags. When the gun is upside down the little tang on the end of the rod where the spring goes needs to be on the bottom of the buffer that it slides into. Sandog has a pic and hopefully he will post it for you.
 

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I don't see where the magazine would have anything to do with why the action wont cycle. I'd say something got put together wrong rendering your semi auto rifle into a single shot.
Your right it shouldn't, We were out shooting one day and the guy next to us had a new Mini30 tactical with an AK magazine jambed into the receiver. The guy at the local gun store where he bought it said that the AKmags worked fine in the minis. My point is that crappy mags or the wrong mags will effect the function of a mini14. Thats why everyone agrees that factory mags work the best . The OP stated that he bought aftermarket mags.
 

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My Mini does not like a lot of oil. Just a light oil from a oily rag, after cleaning. Only time I put a lot of oil is it it is going to be setting up for a long time. I would clean up the oil and get a factory ruger mag. I also vote for checking your return spring guide rod orientation.
 

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Agree that the mag will not give the problems he is mentioning.

But the comments about the aftermarket mags brought to mind some issues I had. Yes, they can give problems feeding, but that is easily fixed. Look at the front of the mag, right where the shells SHOULD feed out of it into the barrel. Many times, when they fold the metal around to the front and weld it, the metal does not match up correctly. I've seen some where there is actually a point where there should be a groove. The solution is simple: File the front of the magazine flat, then use a round file and file a small dip in it. I have done this to my aftermarket mags for my 183- series Mini and have had no feeding problems since.

When I worked at Cabela's call center in Product Information, this came up quite often. I would tell the customer to try the above first. If they did not like the shiny area left after filing, I told them to use a black Sharpie (it's amazing how well those things work on all guns for minor scratches!!). Some would object to "altering" the mags; what if they STILL didn't work? No problem, I'd document my recommendation on their file, which would inform whoever dealt with the return to accept the altered mags. Then I'd call back later to see how they worked. We never had any returned that the above was tried.
 

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If the bolt never retracts and the empty is staying in the barrel, the Mini is not getting enough gas to work the action. When it was disassembled, was the gas block taken apart ?
It could also be that the guide rod was put back in upside down, but this would result in the brass being extracted but the bolt not being able to go back all the way, and the gun short stroking would fail to pick up another round.
Here is how the guide rod goes back in, if your bolt won't go all the way back when manually working the action, then it is reversed. The little tip of the end of the rod must be up when it goes into the receiver.

BTW, ditch the ProMags, and buy only Ruger factory mags. The Ruger 20 rounders are the best, the 30 rounders are O.K.
 

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Just a question for the collective: Is it possible that with the cleaning and letting it soak overnight, the the OP kept the rifle right-side-up and that the gas port/bushing got all gunked up, thereby not allowing sufficient gas through the port to enable op rod? I realize there is a LOT of gas pressure. It just sounds like, to me, the gas isn't getting to the gas port (assuming the bolt is properly locking to the op rod), so there is no cycling going on. If it was a failed ejector, he would at least have a double-feed, so it sounds like the op rod isn't moving at all..
 

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I'm gonna say that if the action operates smoothly by hand, check the gas port. Also, try loading a round in the chamber and remove the magazine. Fire the weapon and if the action cycles properly, it's the mag.

Also, make sure the new stock is not binding the action somewhere.

If you end up sending it back to Ruger for repair, put the original stock back on it first.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
ok, Series is 187. it pulls back with ease, no rubbing. I will check gas ports and see what they look like. I tried firing a round without the mag in and it functioned the same... didn't eject shell. it doesn't retract at all.
 

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Did the op rod move at all? " it doesn't retract at all." Is what you said , if so than its a gas problem. The gas port bushing could be completely plugged, there for no gas to move the op rod to the rear and eject spent rnd.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
New discovery... The gas plunger was not installed. I'm guessing when I rebuilt it it wasn't seated correctly or something but it is now back in the proper position. I will try to fire a few rounds tomorrow morning to see if this fixed the problem.
 

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New discovery... The gas plunger was not installed. I'm guessing when I rebuilt it it wasn't seated correctly or something but it is now back in the proper position. I will try to fire a few rounds tomorrow morning to see if this fixed the problem.
Are you talking about the gas port bushing, or the gas tube that sits in the gas block. Pictures would sure help. " gas plunger ??? " could mean anything.
 
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