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AR15/M-4 VS. Mini 14 The .223 WAR

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AR15/M-4 VS. Mini 14 The .223 WAR

Postby beltbuckle » Tue Feb 02, 2010 3:41 pm

A question that comes up often: What should I get? How about a little discussion on the matter! Pro's and cons of each or general discussion of these two firearm platforms.

I'm personally a fan of the AR platform.

I'll touch on this in more detail later.... If there's any interest anyway.
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Postby judgeparker » Tue Feb 02, 2010 8:07 pm

Hi BeltBuckle

This topic can open up a whole can of worms. So lets get started. Back in the early 80's I bought the Mini 14 Ranch Rifle for several reasons the primary being cost it was almost half of what an EBR ( evil black rifle ) Ha Ha cost. This was pre Clinton so i was able to pick up several 30 round mags for cheap. I'm kinda old school and like the ability to smash things with a good solid wood stock. I never liked the suitcase handle and because of that handle the front sight stuck up above barrel way too high and could snag on just about anything.as for the forward assist like my Marine buddy said all it was good for is to make a jamb harder to clear. I could go on but honestly one of these days I am going to get myself one.
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Postby beltbuckle » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:42 pm

Ahhh... a can of worms it may be, but thats half the fun!

Whats a Mini going for these days? $700 and up I believe, and the AR's start around $800 with several decent entry models in the $900 range.

LOL, It appears you haven't been around AR's lately. Not only have they done away with the "suite case" handle on some models as well as a front site and forward assist, you can even get a wood stock for one if your so inclined, although they look hilarious that way.

accessories and the ability to change anything, I'll give the AR a +1
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Postby yee-man » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:20 am

im thinkin of gettin something in the 223; all rifle i got is a 10/22, haha. two of my friends gots bushmaster AR's. those things are mighty fun to shoot, might i add. both got theres for around 1100$.

Mini-14's were a lil shakey for a while in years past concerning accuracy, so ive heard. but apparently the new ones are better, comin with thicker barrels n shit to help that out.

I like both platforms. i know a mini can cost about as much as a cheap AR, so i was more leanin towards a mini: i found a place thatll give me a mini for 650$.

Any advice on the ".223 war" would be awesome. And any advice on good AR brands would be appreciated, too
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Postby beltbuckle » Wed Feb 03, 2010 8:58 am

You can get a new complete Rifle from Delton that requires some assembly for ~$600. Delton along with companies such as olympic arms, bushmaster, DPMS, RRA, and a few others are not what I'd call top tier company's in the AR world but each makes a pretty good rifle. Starting out with somthing like this is a great way to go about it, this way you can learn about the rifle and change out parts as you require and can afford.

Part of the beauty of an AR is that parts from most any manufacturer will will in most any brand. So if you want to upgrade a trigger per say, just go online and order one from about 50 different companies making them. Want different grips/stocks swap em out!

Want a different caliber? Swap out the upper (two push pins) insert the mag and your off. Want to shoot .22lr? swap out the BCG (takes less than 30 seconds) throw a mag in and your off!

How adaptable is the Mini?

Here's a list of the calibers I know about available to the AR platform:

223/5.56 and based upon that case

6 x 45

7 x 40

357 Mag Rimless

300 Whisper / .300Fireball / 300-.221

6.5 x 40

.30 Coyote (30 x 45)

.17 Remington

.17 Mach IV

.20 Tactical

.19 Calhoun

5.7 FN (developed by Rhinland Arms - no word yet on who is going to mfg it)

.204 Ruger

6.8 SPC

30 HRT

338 Spectre

10 mm Mag


219 WASP-C

7.62 x 40


7.62 x 39

.338 x 39


6.5 Grendel / 6.5 AR / 6.5 PPC Improved

22 PPC

7 sCAR ....

30 Carbine

5.45x39 / .21 Ghengis

7 BR

6.5 BR

300 Sabre

8mm (belt fed upper)

.308 (again a belt fed upper - no longer available)


44 Mag

440 CorBon

44 AMP

.475 Tremor



50 Beowulf

.50 BMG (single shot)

.50 Blackpowder (1 made)




22 LR

17 HV



224 BoZ



.357 Sig

.357 Auto


223 WSSM

243 WSSM
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Postby tigwelder56 » Wed Feb 03, 2010 3:53 pm

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Postby judgeparker » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:14 pm

I had been fondling a nice flat top in 223 at the local gun shop until he got in a real nice M1 Garand today and it was love at first sight. I'd buy both but can't afford ether one yet. As for the AR the choices and accessory's list make my old head spin. But it sure is fun.
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Postby agonist » Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:11 am

The Mini is a more traditional type action, it's actually based on the Garand/M14. It's very reliable and durable. The Mini's accuracy issues are generally attributed to barrel overheating but I believed this is less pronounced in the newer ''Ranch" versions.

That being said, anything the Mini can do the AR can do and miles more. The AR can be endlessly accessorized and accurized. It's also modular so as mentioned earlier is adaptable to multiple calibers.

Many may choose the Mini-14 for it's classic aesthetics but it really doesn't come close to being the AR's equal.
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Postby judgeparker » Sat May 15, 2010 2:47 pm

Ok I traded off my mini for an M4 style AR flat top. Sorry Tig I got a Stag I know how much you like your bushy. The fit and finish is vary good and I read that Stag actually makes the lowers for several other company's.Being a flat top I do not have any sights on it yet but give me a couple of weeks and I will fix that problem. Then I will let you know how she runs.
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Postby whitehood » Sat May 15, 2010 3:56 pm

There is no comparison to the mini vs the AR15. The AR wins hands down. Make sure you get a BUIS aka back up iron sights to to along with any optical sight you get.
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