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Discussion Starter #1
The Mini factory handguard is homely, no, fugly and hideous.
It serves the purpose of keeping your hand off the hot barrel, but that's about it.

A $14 Choate handguard does the same thing, and is trimmer and way better looking. And the Choate has cooling slots down it's whole length, not just 40% of it like the Ruger one.
Then there is the Ultimak. Machined aluminum, and factory coated with Graphite Black Cerakote.

Not just a good place to mount a scope or red dot, but a fantastic place.
80% of the Ultimak has Picatinny slots.
With it, you can mount your optic down low, very close to your iron sight height. The Mini's stock has some drop to it, in order to get down and use your irons.

Mount a scope over the action, even as low as you can get it, and you have to scoot your head up on the stock a bit to see through the scope. Depending on the size of your scope, and the height of your rings, you might even have to put a riser pad on the stock.
You won't be able to mount the scope much lower either, or it will hit your rear sight, interfere with ejection, and make cleaning the action more difficult.

The Ultimak allow you to mount a scope or dot low to the bore.
Now when you shoulder the Mini quickly you are looking right through the center of the scope ( or dot).
The optic, being out over the barrel, is never, ever going to get hit by ejecting brass, make you have to remove your rear sight, and you don't have to remove your scope to do a good action cleaning.

It helps stiffen the barrel aiding accuracy, and acts as a heat sink as well.
Much like a strut. But as nice as struts are, you can't mount an optic on them.
Besides minor mods like taming the excess gas by using a smaller bushing, adding fore and aft bushings to cushion metal to metal parts, and improving the trigger, my greatest accuracy gains have been after I added the Ultimak.
With good loads, groups like this are possible.


Even with cheap steel case Silver Bear:

I feel the best advantage of getting your optic away from the action is having a great increase in your peripheral vision.
Most of us grew up having a scope 3 inches from our eye, and keeping the other eye closed when shooting. Can't get any more "tunnel vision" than that.

With the optic 8 to 11 inches from your eye, and shooting with both eyes open, you are much more likely to see additional threats off to the side, or see that bigger buck that you didn't notice at first.

I slap on a Nikon 2.5-8x scope for load testing, but dislike the extra pound of weight on the handy Minis. Most of the time all my Minis have a FastFire dot, the size of your thumb and weighs less than an ounce.

I still shoot irons and scopes on occasion, but once you try a quality dot on the Ultimak, you won't go back.
Super quick for multiple targets, great in low light, and plenty accurate enough for minute of bad guy out past 300 yards.

I put a Fastfire/Ultimak combo on my daughter's Mini-30 too.

It's gonna cost more than just slapping a scope or dot on using the factory rail or supplied scope rings.
The Ultimak runs $140, and if you like a scope, you'll need to get a long eye relief version, but there are a good dozen choices.
Of course, red dot optics have no set eye relief, so you can use any of the good ones, Leupold Deltapoint, Trijicon RMR, Aimpoint Micro.
But for half the money of those, the Burris FastFire III is also a quality optic that you can depend on.


 

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yes, thanks. The Ultimak is pretty popular in other platforms and I'd expect no less from the Mini version, but this is the first write up I'd seen that's longer than "I like mine".

Mounting optics over the action isn't a good idea, at best it's hard to clear a malfunction and at worst it causes them. I'd just finished reading a post where someone mounted a full pic rail over the action and a spent case bounced off the rail and back in the action breaking the extractor.
 

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I had been looking for years for a way to mount a scope or red dot sight on my 183 series Mini 14. There were a small variety of mounts available, but they seemed cheap and flimsy. 4 years ago I came across a couple that looked very promising. The Ultimak was one and the Amega Mini Scout Mount was the other.

I couldn't decide between the two, but ultimately went with the Amega mount. It has worked well for me, but I always wonder if I should have gone with the Ultimak. The price was virtually the same and they both had good reviews. Would the Ultimak have been a better choice, or are they pretty much the same? I suppose I picked the Amega because I liked the way it looked.

I didn't notice any improvement with the accuracy after installing the Amega mount. The biggest improvement was when I installed the Accu Strut. With a 3 MOA red dot sight and 70 year old eyes, I still struggle to get a 3 inch group at 100 yds, but prior to the Accu Strut, it was more like 6-8 inch groups. Shown here with a Bushnell TRS-25, which has been replaced with a Primary Arms MD-RBG-II.

IMG_1916
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks, all, glad the info is appreciated.
My threads get long winded ( with lots of pics) but I try to include all the details.
When I decide to leave something out, someone will come along and say " that's great but you forgot to mention this....."
Seems the guys that object to a long post are the ones that consistently reply to a thread with two or three words, providing no feedback or real opinion, just to get their post count up.
If my threads contain 1,000 words, and a picture is also worth a thousand words, then they end up being 80,000 words !

Bozz, the Amega is pretty similar. Your optic sits higher with the Amega, they put a groove down it so you can see your irons.
It is easier to mount a short rail on the Amega via the holes on the sides, if you don't mind the rail being at an angle.
The same can be done with the Ultimak, the holes are there, but you'd have to tap them so they have a thread. ( or else just use a small bolt and a T-nut on the inside ).
I just bolt or screw the short pieces of rail onto the fore end, for my preferred side sling mount on one side, and a light mount on the other.

Yes, with an older Mini-14 like your 183 series, a strut will almost cut your groups in half. They have the .560" "pencil" barrel, and see the most benefit by use of a strut.
My 196 series Mini-14 was similarly helped.

But all Mini-30's no matter how old, always came with the thicker .625" diameter barrel, and aren't helped much by a strut.
 

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I have a Nikon .300 Blackout 3x9x40 scope on my Mini 30. It’s a nice scope and works great.
It’s very accurate and I have harvested several deer with it. All the deer have been inside 100 yards so the scope I am using is overkill.
If I buy the Ultimak can I use a Bushnell 2x6x32 Elite 3200 pistol scope?
I have a Thompson Center.22 lr pistol barrel that it was on. I am going to sell the pistol barrel on EBay, so I will have an extra scope



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #8
You probably can. A Nikon pistol scope is what I use, the Force XR 2.5-8x.
The handgun scope is meant to be a bit further from your eye, but mine works fine.
Try holding your 2x6x Elite out about 8 to 11 inches and see how it does.

One thing that might help is "tweaking" the focus ring. I read about that trick in a review of the Nikon 2.5-8x and it does help you get a bit more/less eye relief.
The Nikon on a Mini-14, Mini-30, and my GSR:


 

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Great review. I purchesed the Amega rail (I have the Target Model, Ultimak wont fit...) and am pleased with its performance. I run a red dot and the field of view is great and target aquisition is quick and intuitive. A friend of mine has a mini 30 with the Ultimak and the Cerakote finish is a great touch. The finish of the Altimak is a basic aluminum coating and scratces easily. All in all, "scout rails" are a great way to freshen up your Mini 14 and really utilize it well.
 

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sandog, first I would like say thanks for the information as I'm trying to make the decision on the UltiMAK or Amega mounting system for my Mini Thirty.

You stated about the Amega rail: "It is easier to mount a short rail on the Amega via the holes on the sides, if you don't mind the rail being at an angle."

Can you elaborate on "...if you don't mind the rail being at an angle"? Thanks again.
 

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sandog, first I would like say thanks for the information as I'm trying to make the decision on the UltiMAK or Amega mounting system for my Mini Thirty.

You stated about the Amega rail: "It is easier to mount a short rail on the Amega via the holes on the sides, if you don't mind the rail being at an angle."

Can you elaborate on "...if you don't mind the rail being at an angle"? Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The mounting holes for the rail are at an angle. Not exactly sure what angle, but if you look at the pic Bozz provided above, you can see the angle where your rail would mount.

There are some similar holes on the Ultimak at 90 degrees, but they are not tapped, you'd have to tap them.

Easy enough to mount the rails on the front of the stock, no matter which hand guard you go with.

Above view of the rails on my daughter's Mini-30. She's right handed so the sling swivel socket mount is on the left, the opposite of mine.
 
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