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Beware! Grendel Lurks Nearby

A decade after its unveiling, the 6.5 is still the premier long-range AR-15 rifle cartridge.

by
Bob Owens

Bio

February 16, 2013 - 7:00 am

Hornady’s 123-grain 6.5 Grendel A-MAX target shooting load.

The cartridge itself is designed to take advantage of the long, narrow profile and energy efficiency (called the ballistic coefficient) of the 6.5mm class of bullet, which has long been popular in Europe but had never really caught on in the United States thanks to the established preference of American shooters for .30-caliber rifles. A key development took place when competition shooter Arne Brennan took the nearly dormant 6.5 PPC cartridge developed in the mid-1980s in 1998, and spent two years testing thousands of rounds.

By 2002, Bill Alexander, who was then working for the British Ministry of Defense, heard about the 6.5 PPC cartridge and discovered it would would fit the .50 Beowulf bolt he’d already developed. After some collaborative work between Brennan and Alexander, Alexander took their work to Janne Pohjoispaa to finally devlop specs of what became the 6.5 Grendel cartridge, tweaking to work off an existing .220 Russian case under manufacture by Lapua.

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I have two Swedish Mausers in 6.5x55, one witha 24" barrel and another with a 16" barrel (carbine model). Even though they are almost 100 years old, and are still military-grade rifles, they shoot circles around most standard, out-of-the-box rifles of the larger .308.

I could've used the Grendel when I was in the infantry, as 5.56 ball seriously lacks in penetration.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Interesting, but I think Mr. Owens is lumping all 5.56 rounds together unfairly. Try out the M855A1 or 5.56 Enhanced Performance Round before you totally discount the 5.56 as an effective round. I know it will definitely do more than just be heard at 500 yards on a steel target. Been there, done that.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
A larger diameter / heavier bullet hits harder all other things being equal. Period.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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