Other O/S OSX mountain lion, reinstall


Son has a mac mini, older one which has had an HDD failure, unrecoverable, I've installed a new SSD in it, tried the reinstall via the recovery mode on the internet, trouble is, it starts then stops with the pop up box, 'can't install additional components', a look on the web shows it's not uncommon, tried a few of the suggestions, reduce ram size etc, connect via ethernet, etc, been in touch with apple support who just did all the things I'd already tried, so it looks like I will have to get a copy of Mountain lion, unless anyone can give any pointers,