I was at my favorite gun store recently. I got into a conversation with another customer about our favorite guns. He was bragging about his Mini-30. He says that it is light, dependable and just fun to shoot.
I agreed with him. I told him how I once purchased a brand new Mini-30. I wanted it because it shoots the same ammo as my SKS's and AK47. Another gun in a caliber that I already have. It is a good thing not to get too many calibers. I like the way that this rifle handles. It seems to be a very good weapon for survivalists. I thought that it would fit right into my collection.
But, then I started doing some research on the internet. I read that many people who own this rifle have had problems when they use the foreign cheap "JUNK" ammo. It seems that this rifle is prone to breaking firing pins when shooting junk. In their manual, Ruger says to use only American made ammo in this gun. SAY, WHAT? Why do they make a gun to shoot a FOREIGN caliber but not make it to shoot foreign ammo? Seems strange to me.
But, if I could get a couple of replacement firing pins to keep for spares, then there would be no problem, right? If one breaks, I'll just replace it. So, I contacted Ruger (I eMailed the question to "Ask the CEO") about replacement firing pins. They were very resistant to selling me any. After a little bit of eMail exchanges, they said that they would do it, but, I would have to send the rifle back to them, paying for the new firing pin(s) and having them fitted, and, paying shipping both ways. I decided to get rid of that gun. I went back to the dealer and asked if I could trade it straight across for a Mini-14 (I had never fired it or done anything with it. It still looked like a new Mint firearm). Normally, you cannot return firearms, but, he allowed me to do it, so that, now, I have a mini-14 instead. I have heard that they, too, can break firing pins. But, I already had one so, now I have two (James Rawles says that "One is none and two is one!"). So, I believe I am better off this way. But, if I could find the right deal, I might trade both Mini's for ONE AR. You can buy handfuls of firing pins for them in the range of $8.00m each.
Anyhow, I told the customer my story and recommended that he not use junk, foreign ammo in it. His reply was that he does it all the time and he is going to keep doing it. He's been lucky so far. But, if he ever does have a firing pin break and has to send it back to Ruger for replacement, he'll probably spend all the money he save by using junk.
I will only use American made ammo in my two Rugers. I have some foreign made ammo, but, I plan to sell it and buy more American made. I think I'll be better off in the long run
And, I might add that Midway sells after-market firing pins for the Mini-14. I may order a couple of them for spares.
I love the way that both Mini's (14 and 30) look and handle, but, in a survival situation, I'm not sure that I would want to have to rely on either of them as my "One and only!"