6.5 grendel for deer?


January 6, 2008, 11:23 PM
i've decided to go with an ar platform rifle for deer hunting this next season. i was considering buying a .50 beowulf or .450 bushmaster that would fit for my .223 lower receiver but i don't really like the range they offer. i however am intrested in the 6.5 grendel version and was wonder if this would be ideal for deer? range of 200-150 yards.

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January 6, 2008, 11:29 PM
I am not sure about the power of the 6.5 Grendel, but you may be interested in the 6.8 Remington special.

January 7, 2008, 12:24 AM
120gr 6.5mm bullet if I remember right. Buddy of mine shoots caribou with it. has every year for quite some time. Those 6.5 bullets carry very well downrange. It would probly shoot way farther that I could

January 7, 2008, 04:33 AM
the 6.5 grendel is a heck of a deer round, and of course if you handload, there is a ton of 6.5 bullets out there to choose from. The swedes have been useing it for about a million years now, as in the 6.5 x55, and the grendel is very similar, just made for the ar platform. If I ever get a new ar this will be the caliber I get it in. Remember that ballistically, it surpasses the 308 after about, oh, right at the muzzle, in every category, except for energy. In other words, it has better velocity, drops less, drifts less, literally right away, over the 308.
check here;

January 7, 2008, 07:56 AM
The 6.5 Grendel will work just fine on deer, so long as you stay away from the FMJ and Match rounds.

Since you don't have a rifle yet, you might want to consider other choices as well/ I am partial to the 6.8SPC for deer hunting, since the primary goal of the 6.5 Grendel was long range (600+ yard) shooting and the case design/bullet designs are optimized for that.

But either will do the job you ask.

January 7, 2008, 08:20 AM
That ballistics chart is great. It compares only the best 6.5mm bullets (Laupa) fired out of long barrels.

For a better take on what it'll actually do from YOUR gun, head over to Brassfetcher (http://www.brassfetcher.com).

120gr. Norma FMJ from 14.5" Barrel: 2405 feet per second
120gr. Sierra Matchking from 16" Alexander Arms rifle: 2393 feet per second

(Before anyone claims bias, note that that test was sponsored in full by 6.5Grendel.com, Sierra, and Alexander Arms.)

Use a 20-24" barrel and you'll get better velocity. In other words, with proper bullet type (soft point, JHP, or other hunting round) it'll do fine on deer. In terms of bullet weight and initial velocity, it's a little better than 7.62x39mm. It will hold its velocity better than the Russian round, though, especially if you use the Lapua long range match rounds (though I don't think these are expanding rounds and may not be suitable for hunting).

It's not superior (for hunting) to .308, .30-06, .243, or .270. None of those cartridges will fit into an M16 magazine, however, which is what the 6.5 was designed for. 6.5 was designed to give better range and more power to something the size of an M4 carbine, and it does that well enough.

Ballistic coefficient never killed anything, though, and there are excellent, highly aerodynamic bullets with superior ballistic coefficients available for nearly every caliber rifle if you're going to be handloading anyway. Not really a concern with deer hunting, though, since your shots *most likely* aren't going to be all that long. (That depends on the terrain and your marksmanship, of course.)

Less than 200 meters? The deer's good as dead. :cool:

January 7, 2008, 08:24 AM
120-140 gr 6.5 mm bullets running at 2500-2300 fps (Grendelites claim 2700-2400 fps but I'm making allowances for "marketing")....gives you that magic 1000 ft-lbs of energy right out to and beyond 300 yards. That is PLENTY for deer.

6.5 mm bullets have long been known as a ballistic jewel...both external ballistic and terminal ballistic-wise. They usually have great BCs so they shoot flat and high SDs so they penetrate deep. At 150-200 yards (that's pretty short range) it will do fine.

I'm going to be picking up an AA Overwatch upper later this year. It will be my 1) antelope gun for Wyoming, 2) deer gun for northern WI and 3) "tactical" LR gun.

January 7, 2008, 08:38 AM
I was thinking the same line, but what about the cost and availability of brass? Who makes 6.5 brass besides alexander arms?

January 7, 2008, 08:46 AM
Wolf Gold line

January 7, 2008, 09:11 AM
Wolf Gold is available in quantity from the Ammoman: Click Me! (http://www.ammoman.com/index.htm)

$270 for 500 rounds. Not bad! Little bit more than $0.50 per round, but considering that it's kind of an oddball cartridge, the price is probably as good as you're going to get without handloading.

January 7, 2008, 09:30 AM
no i don't plan to hand loading and i plan on using jhp as the primary for deer. no one sells the 6.5 around here, i can however find the 6.8 at gander mountain for a fair price. do they make 6.8 spc in wolf? if however i choose the 6.8, is this cartridge just as good as the 6.5?

January 7, 2008, 09:52 AM
if however i choose the 6.8, is this cartridge just as good as the 6.5?

Yikes! That's opening a can of worms. Might as well ask, "is the M16 just as good as the AK?"

Here's what I've gleaned in researching the two cartridges:
* Inside of 200-300 yards, the differences in external ballistics are going to be negligble
* 6.5G will have a slight edge in SD
* 6.5G will have better long range ballistics
* 6.8SPC has a slightly more tapered case which may mean more reliable feeding in full auto arms
* At the short ranges you're talking about...there really won't be any difference

January 7, 2008, 10:09 AM
Which is typically cheaper per round? 6.5 Grendel or 6.8 SPC?

January 7, 2008, 07:08 PM
the 6.5 is more appealing to me except for the fact that i can only get their ammo online sucks. it's much cheaper for what i want it for... plus it is available in wolf... (i go to the range a lot) hard decision...

January 7, 2008, 09:12 PM
Research the 250 Savage it's been called the classic deer cartridge. Sends 100 grain bullets out at around 2900-3000. 120s at 2600.

The 6.5 Grendel sends 100 grain bullets out at 2900. 120s at 2600.

For the 6.8 SPC SSA loads the 110 grain TSX to 2800. It's a great hog load too.

Deer killin machines all.

January 7, 2008, 09:36 PM
Why is comparing the two like comparing M-16 to AK? These are two rounds that are enough different to warrant a comparison. I would like to know what is the better round for:
1. hunting
2. target shooting
3. Best value (i.e cost for reloading and/or commercial)
I think that would be nice to see. Just my .02

January 7, 2008, 10:15 PM
Why is comparing the two like comparing M-16 to AK?

Because there are adherents to each platform, who are very committed to their cause and like nothing better to show why theirs is better. And there are pages and pages of these "discussions".

Sound a bit like M16 vs AK now? (or .45 vs 9mm or .308 vs 5.56 or Glock vs. 1911 or...)

January 7, 2008, 10:48 PM
The Grendel would still be supersonic at 1000 yds. It has plenty of energy for the job. They are taking out milk jugs at 800 yds with the round. Great deal on loaded brass, too. Will fit on any mil-spec.

January 7, 2008, 11:03 PM
Yes, the 6.5 Grendel gives great deer-hunting capability to the AR. Cabela's (and, I would think, anyone else who sells Wolf) has the Wolf 6.5 Grendel hunting load.

The following charts compare match bullets, but they provide some food for thought. Hunters would be most concerned with the energy and velocity charts, because those most directly affect on-game performance.





Regarding the 6.5 Grendel as a hunting cartridge, it's going to do everything it's bigger brother, the 6.5x55 Swede, can do (of course, at slightly shorter ranges because the case is smaller and the velocity less).

And below, for your enjoyment, is a photo from a 6.5 Grendel hunter in Kentucky:



January 8, 2008, 12:02 AM
very appealing, i've been checking their site for more info on the upper receivers but not a lot of pix on them... ideally i just want this "sniper" look to my platform. (pix of an ar10 through google but you get the idea)
guess i'll contact them on specific pictures of the item.

January 8, 2008, 07:37 AM
No it does not sound like the AK vs M-16 debate. I think Grendelizer pretty much answered most questions with those charts. Thanks...

January 8, 2008, 11:16 AM
No it does not sound like the AK vs M-16 debate

Good heavens...I think you are missing my point.

If you have been following the 6.8 vs 6.5 discussions over the last 18 months, you'll see that each side is very "spirited" in the defense of their cartridge. Very similar to the M16 vs AK discussions.

I didn't say that is a bad thing,

It is not in the comparison of the two, it is just how people have historically argued their points.

Got it, now?

January 9, 2008, 12:35 AM
i guess the fancy rail and all are a bit out of my budget. how would the 16" barrel do at 100-150 yards with the grendel? i'm trusting my eyes enough to see what i can hit, so i'm planning on maybe getting their cheapest set up which is the 16" barrel tatical version with a eotech my dealer is giving me a deal on... what are your thoughts? longer barrel? scope?

George Hill
January 9, 2008, 01:21 AM
There is an outfit that is converting CZ 527 Carbines over to 6.5 and I'm very tempted to buy another 527 just for that purpose.

January 9, 2008, 01:27 AM

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