New 50 Beowulf upper


April 29, 2005, 08:24 PM
I typed a long story about my experience with my new 50 Beowulf upper but I wasn’t sure it would fit here so I condensed it down to this.

DO NOT use a buttstock weight with a Beowulf. They will mess up function.

Use CLP on the bolt lugs as recommended by Alexander Arms.

When loading make sure to follow the recommended loads.

I tried 2 different mags other than the mag that came with the upper. One was a Thermold 30 round preban made in the USA. One was an older USGI 20 round mag with an aluminum follower. All 3 types of mags worked perfectly with no alterations or tweaking.

Bill Alexander at Alexander Arms is very helpful and answered all my questions.

The 50 Beowulf is a blast and I would recommend these to anyone. Be ready for a BANG these are not 223’s.

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The Undertoad
April 30, 2005, 04:14 PM
I have been thinking of picking one of these up in the future. I'd be interested in reading your full writeup if you've still got it saved somewhere :)

May 1, 2005, 10:54 AM
I sent my original story (private message) to The Undertoad and it fit. If anyone else wants a copy just let me know.
May 1, 2005, 03:31 PM
I read an article about the .50 Beowulf and I was left with one burning question, Isn't this essentially the same thing as a 20g slug? I know it works on an AR lower and everything but ballistically...

May 1, 2005, 05:25 PM
Beowulf penetrates more than a 20guage foster slug. If you shot a big hog with a 20 guage, youd suceed in make him mad. The Beowulf on the otherhand, will hold together much better and penetrate to the vitals.

as far as i can tell its similar to the 5.7x28 vs 22Mag Debate. YES, caliber and Energy levels are SIMILAR, but one penetrates alot better due to better bullet construction.

Yes? No? Maybee?

May 1, 2005, 05:33 PM
Bullet, I'd like to see your full write up. I am contemplating a Beo upper for my AR.

May 1, 2005, 07:23 PM
i'd also like the full story. probably won't even be considering a .50 Beo for a long time, but it dosn't hurt to learn!


May 1, 2005, 09:03 PM
The only problems I had at first were probably my fault. I have a RRA lower that already had a buttstock weight in it. So from what I had read about the Beowulf’s recoil I decided to leave the weight in and try it that way. I figured I could take it out and try it both ways. I loaded my own cartridges 300gr Speer Gold Dots with H4227 powder. When I loaded these I wasn’t sure about how much powder to use since Alexander Arms data didn’t say if the load they list was a starting charge or a Max charge. Alexander Arms web sight said recommended load. Since I was in a hurry to try my Beowulf out I decided to load my cartridges ½ gr under what was listed just encase their data was a Max load. I did clean the barrel before I went to shoot and put a little CLP on the bolt. I fired a few shots less than 10 when the bolt locked shut. I managed to get it open and there was a lot of unburned powder on the bolt and in the chamber and barrel. I shot a couple more shots and the bolt locked again. I thought maybe the bolt needed some grease to stop it from locking shut or that the load I was shooting with all the unburned powder might have caused the bolt to lock or it just needed to wear in a little. I got the bolt open before I left the range that day and figured I’d come back tomorrow. The next day I greased the bolt a little and went to the range again. The bolt still locked and there was still a lot of unburned powder. The next time I went to the range I tried a different load with different bullets and powder. I e-mailed Alexander Arms about their loading data and found out their load was a Max load but they said you could down load some loads 5% and see if they functioned right. The dies that I have Lee (the only ones available I believe) come with 4 dies. The die that flares the case mouth also has an open top where you can drop powder through to your case. I flared or belled the cases all at once before I put powder in them. When I went to put powder in I took the flaring die and set it on top of my case and found a small funnel that I stuck in the top of the die. The die was not in my press since the case had already been flared. I thought this would work but when I started to put powder in for my second load I saw some powder already in the die from my last load. So I didn’t use the flaring die as a powder funnel this time. Instead I found another funnel and dumped the powder in the case without the flaring die. I believe the flaring die has a sleeve and if the sleeve is not all the way up in the die when you put powder in then powder gets caught in the die. This time I loaded to the recommended amount of powder too. I didn’t use grease on the bolt this time just CLP. This time the bolt worked right (no locking shut) but my rifle wasn’t feeding right. I had trouble with the rounds not chambering. I wondered if the stock weight was making the bolt go a little faster causing my failures to feed but this didn’t seem right because they sell muzzle brakes for the Beowulf. I also had read that some people reported that their factory mag didn’t work right and that Thermold mags worked good. I talked to a friend of mine and he thought my feeding problem was the mag too. So I did a little searching and bought 3 – 30 round Thermold mags. The ones made in the USA not the Canadian made mags, which didn’t use the right materials. The Canadian soldiers nicknamed theirs Thermelts because they would melt if the rifle got to hot (fullauto I believe). I tried to take out the stock weight and it wouldn’t come out. I grabbed it with pliers but the lead was to soft and it still wouldn’t come out. I tried tapping the stock on my workbench but it still wouldn’t come out. I decided to use a different lower that didn’t have a stock weight in it (my Colt). I read the manual about lubrication this time and went by their recommendations. I went to the range again with 3 different kinds of mags. Finally everything worked perfect. NO stuck bolt, NO failures to feed (with any mags), NO unburned powder. When I got home I called Alexander Arms and talked to Bill Alexander. I asked him about the stock weight and he said they were problems because the recoil drives the weight forward towards the muzzle hard enough to put pressure on the tube that holds the recoil spring causing the spring to bind, making the rifle not function right (feeding problems in my case). Bill Alexander seemed real nice and was helpful. If you get a Beowulf and have any questions don’t hesitate to call him. So what did I learn from this?

Don’t use a buttstock weight.
Use the data from Alexander Arms web page or the data that comes with the dies (it’s the same). Don’t download your cartridges and don’t leave powder in the flaring die (or maybe better don’t use the flaring die to put powder in).
All quality mags should work (USGI or Thermolds made in the USA)
Make sure to go by the recommended lubrications that are in the manual.

PS - I went to the range today. The 300gr Speer Gold Dots with H4227 powder locked the bolt again. To much unburned powder. Also there was a guy with a chronograph there. He shot my loads of the Hornady 350gr XTP/HP's using Lil' Gun powder and the average was 1725 FPS. The load using Lil' Gun worked every time (no bolt locking & no unburned powder). Both these loads are listed on Alexander Arms web page. Next time I'll try to see how the Lil' Gun load groups. I took my stock off my RRA and pounded it on my bench and the weight finally came out.

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