View Full Version : Mini 14 Bolt Stuck In Open Position

06-26-2010, 1:10 PM
Hello All,

At the range my bolt on my mini 14 ended up stuck to the rear (open) position. Magazine removes OK, able to break down and remove from stock OK...however not able to get the bolt to release and not sure what to do next. Is this something I can fix on my own or should I just take it to a gunsmith?

No rust, excellent condition, stainless steel model which has worked reliably for me over the past 8 years.

Any advise is appreciated.

06-26-2010, 1:19 PM
is the operating handle stuck in the groove that is used to remove it? give that baby a good whack in and down, making sure the bolt is lined up properly. thats what it sounds like to me. pics?

06-26-2010, 1:20 PM
Is the op rod still engaged with the bolt?

762 beat me by 1 minute.

06-26-2010, 2:01 PM
Here are a few pics...looks like the op rod is ok?

06-26-2010, 2:16 PM
so, when you wiggle the parts, the operating rod feels stuck, and the bolt is free to move a little, correct? if it were my rifle, i would tap the op handle forward with a deadblow hammer or rubber mallet, and then get rid of that buffer thing...

06-26-2010, 2:18 PM
going out on a limb here, but is the bolt catch stuck in the up position? It kinda looks like it from the pictures

06-26-2010, 2:25 PM
That is exactly what I was going to ask, It looks stuck

06-26-2010, 2:36 PM
Got it free....ended up all I needed to do was remove the bolt lock cover plate and the bolt released. Guess the lock was somehow caught up inside although the plunger moved up and down. Thanks to all for your assistance.

06-26-2010, 3:31 PM
I was going to post no advice at all to your problem, so it's a good thing you fixed it:cool2:

06-26-2010, 3:35 PM
Sweet, now I know what to do if it ever happens to mine :D

06-26-2010, 3:37 PM
next time,just hit the buttstock on the carpet:D

06-26-2010, 4:36 PM
That's an interesting problem. Glad you got it resolved and I added your solution to the ol mental tool box. Minis are great fun to shoot, and tinker with.

06-26-2010, 5:09 PM
next time,just hit the buttstock on the carpet:D

the funny thing is it would work too.

06-26-2010, 5:13 PM
^^^ this. The bolt catch on the mini-14 (at least on mine), is very sensitive to shock. Next time just give the butt a good whack. :p

06-26-2010, 5:31 PM
it looks like the bolt carrier popped out of the lower track the area under the bolt handle you need to jiggle it back and forth and push it back in

01-13-2013, 4:02 AM
Hi everyone new here and Im having the same problem with my new mini 14 tactical.
Cleaned it after last shooting, didnt take anything apart, and have only shot about 80 rounds through it, left the slide open when i put it up went to shoot yesterday, and the thing wont budge. Looks like the bolt is free to move, but I cannot budge this darned slide.
Help anyone, this is brand new.

Joshua Tree
01-13-2013, 9:06 AM
Hi everyone new here and Im having the same problem with my new mini 14 tactical.
Cleaned it after last shooting, didnt take anything apart, and have only shot about 80 rounds through it, left the slide open when i put it up went to shoot yesterday, and the thing wont budge. Looks like the bolt is free to move, but I cannot budge this darned slide.
Help anyone, this is brand new.

You probably have the same problem the OP had. The bolt stop lever is stuck in the up postion, and won't release the bolt. The lever that acts as the bolt stop, relies on spring pressure to push it down. All associated parts are behind the removable slide plate on the receiver.

You are likely able to release the bolt manually by inserting the empty magazine, and examining where the "horn" on the magazine's plastic follower contacts the bolt stop lever. Remove the magazine. Hold the bolt back so it doesn't slam shut, and manually push down the lever with pen. Shoot it with the tiny blast of aerosol lube, and work the action and bolt stop.

The method above is only a temp fix. The carbine should be taken down, and the parts behind receiver's metal plate should be degummed with a solvent and brush, inpected for metal burrs and rough spots, then relubed to assure freedom of movement. It really is an easy fix.

If the operating arm is out of its track as Bohoki suggests, just follow the owner's manual (available online as well) to get it back on track. Don't worry, large Mini parts are tough. Nothing is going to break. One suggestion: No matter what, the Mini-14's operating arm should never be pulled back-and-away from the receiver to avoid de-tracking the action. This has never happed to me, but others have said it has happened to them.

01-13-2013, 9:19 AM
Thanks Joshua, I took it to a local guy, but if he cant fix it Ill try that. Thanks much.

01-13-2013, 9:34 AM
Could you show me what the bolt stop lever looks like?
I have the manual but dont see anthing called that.

Joshua Tree
01-13-2013, 10:16 AM

bolt stop lever:

Page 30, figure 20, part "C".

They also call it an "ejector bolt lock" in the parts list, which is odd because the cartridge ejector is in the bolt face on the older Mini's I know. The bolt looks simpler too. Must be a later redesign:

Page 48, part 26.

01-13-2013, 10:46 AM
Thank you. I sincerely appreciate your help.

Joshua Tree
01-13-2013, 3:44 PM
Thank you. I sincerely appreciate your help.

No problem. I found an example pic of the part. The part is flipped upside down, and the surface shown is assembled against the receiver. The thin wire is a straight piece of spring wire the diameter of a medium paperclip.


BTW, if your local guy can't fix it, I would doubt his ability to walk and chew gum at the same time. The fact is, Mini-14's are way simpler than an AK or AR, although re-installing the the bolt assembly after a serious cleaning seems to be a tricky hula dance that takes a minute. No hammers are EVER needed for disassemby/re-assembly. The parts will fall into place without force, or they won't.

01-14-2013, 1:01 AM
Thanks for going to all the trouble to help. Still waiting on gun guy. Be safe.

01-15-2013, 1:09 AM
Now, as i think about it, the plunger seemed like it wasnt working, kinda sloppy. Could be it is inside there.

01-25-2013, 10:52 AM
Still waiting. sorry i didnt mail it back to ruger. If I dont have it by next weekend, thats what Ill do

01-25-2013, 10:57 AM
Redneck. Check to make sure the buffer guide rod is not upside down. I did that once when reassembling it and it makes it so the bolt wont go into battery.

02-02-2013, 3:27 AM
buffer guide rod?

02-02-2013, 3:58 AM

02-02-2013, 4:13 AM
Got it, thats what I thought. This is very new to me. Thank you.

02-03-2013, 3:44 AM
I picked up the gun yesterday, and did what service at Ruger told me, and some folks on forums. Put the slide against the table and whack the butt hard with the palm of my hand. That freed it, some, but something is still sticking there somewhere. A burr, perhaps?
Any way, I going to box it up and send it back early this week. Will keep you posted.

03-03-2013, 2:16 AM
Well, Ruger sent the gun back earlier this week.
The paperwork with it says they replaced the stock,bolt, slide and bolt lock. Saftey check and test fired. While I have not yet had a chance to shoot it, Im impressed with the service from them. Disapointed that there was a problem to begin with though.
Just wish they would have said what caused the issue. Funny they repaced the stock.
Will keep you updated after i get a chance to shoot.

Joshua Tree
03-03-2013, 2:42 PM
Very nice. Hope you get it back on the range soon!

03-04-2013, 12:49 AM
Thanks Joshua

03-17-2013, 2:15 AM
Went out last week and blasted off 4 mags with the new scope, and repaired rifle.
The gun performed as it should, and Im impressed with Ruger service.
Thanks for all the advice.
Good site.
Happy shooting.