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Thread: The 6.5 Grendel, is it right for you?

  1. #21
    Site Supporter PNWTO's Avatar
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    Oct 2012
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    WA
    SLG,

    Observations with a suppressor?
    "... working on my elite line of shit that deals with being a sheep-badger honey wolf crusader of percentages."
    - Mike Lamb

  2. #22
    Member
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    Oct 2014
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    Sharon, SC
    I've got both 6.8's and 6.5G's. In my experience, it has been easier to get 6.8's to run reliably, and while they are basically equally impressive out to, or just beyond, about 300 yards.....the 6.5G certainly leaves the 6.8 in the dust past that because of high BC bullets. If I could only have one, it would be my 19"Lilja barreled 6.5G. YMMV.

  3. #23
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pittsburg, KS
    Quote Originally Posted by SLG View Post
    LJ,

    I'm the last person to consolidate guns, but I do like having a 5.56, 6.5G and a .22LR, all for the same lower. Makes for a nice versatile "platform."
    I've been thinking that's a handy way to go as when I'd use a .22 I'm probably not worrying about dual wielding a 6.5G or 5.56 but it's nice to be able to grab the upper I want for the job at hand and pop it on the lower.

  4. #24
    Over the years, I've had many .308 semi-autos: various forms of the M1A, HK91, FAL, FNAR, AR10, SR25, Larue, Remington, Winchester, some oddballs. Virtually all of them turned out to be too big and heavy for what I wanted to do, and I spent time and money trying to make them smaller and lighter. The SCAR was probably the best of the bunch, but it still had some negatives, in my view. I was an early advocate of the 6.5G, loved the concept of greatly improved ballistic performance in an AR-15, but had too many hardware issues (broken bolts, reliability issues) to take it seriously. Like SLG, I found the 6.8 underwhelming. Couple years ago, he convinced me to take another look at the 6.5G, and I had Performance Firearms rebarrel an upper. The result exceeded my expectations which were pretty high. Hundreds of rounds of different bullet types and weights, no function issues. I've only shot it out to 400 yards, but it is easily sub-MOA with factory ammo. I've always had a thing for 6.5 bullets; high BC and SD means they fly well and kill out of all proportion to diameter and weight. Now I can admit that there is such a thing as a reliable, accurate, ballistically improved AR-15. Here's mine with it's SLG sling:

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    As far as cans go, I'm not the biggest fan on field guns. Unless I'm shooting subsonic, which, for me, means 9mm or .300 BKT, in a short rifle, I find the sound reduction unimpressive. I also don't like hanging a pound of metal on the muzzle end of my light, handy AR. I understand, though, that some guys are willing to make the compromise because of hearing issues. I put an AAC brake on my 6.5G so that I could use my 762-SDN-6 can, but it not only results in an ungainly rifle, I get a fair amount of blowback; YMMV:

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    Last edited by SteveB; 01-08-2017 at 07:24 AM.

  5. #25
    Love my 6.5G CZ, and should get an AR upper in that caliber. Seems like the ultimate "I want to hunt small to medium size game with an AR" cartridge.

    Aside from wanting to hunt with an AR, are we to the point where an informed person would choose an AR, in any caliber, over a high quality bolt gun, for trophy hunting, say for bull elk out west, or sheep hunting in the big mountains? Should make for an interesting discussion.
    Likes pretty much everything in every caliber.

  6. #26
    I see no reason to reject the AR for big-game hunting IF it fires a cartridge appropriate to the game in question.


    Okie John
    Thanks for everything, ToddG.

  7. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by PNWTO View Post
    SLG,

    Observations with a suppressor?
    I don't have many centerfire cans, and most of my experience is with work equipment. That said, I intended to suppress the G when it was built, which is why the otherwise totally useless TBAC brake attach brake is on the gun. My gun just isn't setup to run with that can afaict. There is too much backpressure, and I would likely have to go to heavier buffers and an adj. gas block. I decided not to mess with it, for the reasons SteveB outlined. I like hunting suppressed, but the extra weight and length where I am now is not appealing. If I was back out west, I would likely get a short light can dedicated for it and give it another try.

    Also, there is the issue of blowback, which is more serious than I had previously thought. The new flow through cans are very appealing in that regard, and I would need to do more research. As of now, I will only suppress bolt guns for my own use.
    Easily concealable with no sporting purpose.

  8. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by GJM View Post
    Love my 6.5G CZ, and should get an AR upper in that caliber. Seems like the ultimate "I want to hunt small to medium size game with an AR" cartridge.

    Aside from wanting to hunt with an AR, are we to the point where an informed person would choose an AR, in any caliber, over a high quality bolt gun, for trophy hunting, say for bull elk out west, or sheep hunting in the big mountains? Should make for an interesting discussion.
    Well, there's the rub. In my view, the answer to this question is no. I think the 6.5G AR is a great eastern whitetail rifle, but the scenarios you describe require a lot more than the 6.5G can give. As you know, I had a 6.5G CZ 527, but came to realize that the whole raison d'être for this cartridge is to beef up the AR15. If you can have an ultralight bolt rifle in .260 or 6.5CM, for example, what advantage does a 6.5G bolt rifle give you? I see the cartridge as a long-range paper puncher and as a 200 to maybe 300 yard deer rifle. The brilliant thing about it is that you get that performance out of an AR15, which is as light and handy a semi-auto as you can get. Having said that, an AR-15 with a top-quality hunting scope is going to be heavier with more sharp angles and edges than a bolt-action mountain rifle, and the bolt gun will launch legitimate big-game bullets. While they sell 300 WM AR's, I wouldn't want to carry one. At the end of the day, seems like the principal virtue of the semi-auto is to be able to shoot lots of bullets rapidly, not a necessity for hunting.

  9. #29
    The 6.5G does nothing that another gun or cartridge can't do "better". The reason the 6.5G is so good, is the acceptable big game ballistics, combined with the ergos of the AR. The semi auto feature means nothing to me personally.

    The ergos are what allow me to optimize my field shooting under any and all conditions. If hunting to you means laying prone and shooting off a backpack or a bipod, then ergos matter relatively less. If the ability to shoot from improvised positions, as well as standing, kneeling, squatting and sitting matter, then the AR is king. Obviously the others will also work, so it just depends what priority you place on things.

    As for the G's ballistics on "trophy" hunts. I've never been on a "trophy" hunt. Conversely, all the hunting I've done is for a trophy that mattered to me. Most people are not burdened by having to choose a set up for a true trophy hunt. The G is a generalists rifle. It would not be good for 3 gun. It would not be good for PRS. It would not be good for F class. Nor for issued use by tactical organizations.

    It is the modern day scout rifle, to my mind.

    If bigger game is on the menu, choose a more appropriate weapon. If specific competition is the order of the day, choose a more competitive set up. If fighting is what needs to be done, pick a time tested setup.

    If you don't know what you'll be doing, or want to do most things pretty well, while sticking with AR ergos, than the G has a lot to offer. Is it better than the guy who has a 300blk or 5.56 AR for defensive use and a Tikka for hunting? No. It's just another choice, and I personally like have a match grade AR-15 that can not only reach out there for fun, but can also drop North American big game. I can use it for just about anything I need a rifle to do, even if it is not ideal for some of those things. And boy does it shoot. And allow me to shoot to my potential. Which, at the end of the day, is what I really want a gun to do.
    Easily concealable with no sporting purpose.

  10. #30
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    Oct 2013
    Location
    Canton GA
    Over the last few years, I built multiple 6.8SPC and 6.5Grendel AR uppers. I have had no issues in reliability with any of them. Currently, I have one 14.5 inch 6.8SPC upper with the AAC 51T flash hider suppressor mount so I can use a 30 suppressor - it has a Leopold 1.5x5 scope on an Aero mount. I enjoy shooting it and think it has great merit for hog or deer hunting out to 200 yards - maybe 300 yards. It would excel in a HD mode also. I also have a 20 inch 6.5G upper built up for PRS like shooting with a 4-14 scope - it is amazingly accurate and fun to shoot. I am moderately active on the main 6.8 and 6.5 forums - it is a hoot "watching" the 6.8 and 6.5G communities "hate" on each other - in particular, the 6.8 community is very protective. Interestingly, one of the main proponents for 6.8 and "haters" of 6.5G from the 6.8SPC community is now selling 6.5G barrels (they may call them some derivative of 264 but they are 6.5G) and other 6.5 wildcats.

    Two years ago, I took my 6.5G AR (in a much lighter form) to Wyoming and successfully harvested a nice antelope with the Hornady 123 SST factory load. But, I learned a personal lesson - I do not think the AR platform is the optimal hunting rifle out west. Can an AR be used - absolutely. Is it the best rifle for hunting out west - not for me. Unless you spend a lot of money on exotic parts, a full size AR is not heavy but it is not light either. I came to the conclusion that I wanted a much lighter bolt action rifle in a 6.5 (260) caliber. I bought a Weatherby Vanguard S2 6.5CM but still wanted something lighter - one of the forum members sold his Kimber Montana 260 Remington and I bought it then sold the Weatherby. I took the 260 Kimber hunting this year in Wyoming and it was a JOY to carry and I was confident that the Kimber 260 would do it part if I had seen a mule deer worth shooting.

    If I was buying one non-223/5.56 AR - it would be a 6.5 Grendel. The beauty of the 6.5G is it fits in the AR platform. But, for a pure hunting rifle, I would go with a 260 Remington (or 6.5 Creedmoor) bolt action. I am a heretic on the 6.5G forum as they are all waxing poetic over the Howa 6.5G bolt action rifles - you can get a 6.5 CM, 260, or even 6.5x55 for same weight and better performance.

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