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JWIII 07-28-2008 06:40 AM

Thinking about getting a Grendel Upper.
Thinking about it... Anyone have detailed info; pros, cons, alternatives, etc?

Dillinger hoping you should have some good input.

I like the fact I can use my standard AR lower; correct?

Dillinger 07-28-2008 02:13 PM

Definitely. I was really looking at building my current project up into a 6.5 Grendel, but reasons that I will share made me change gears just a bit.

First off, yes. You can use your existing lower, which is a great savings and one of the truly great things about the AR platform. God I love them... LOL

However, you will need a bifferent bolt, different bolt head and, obviously, a different chambered barrel. It's far easier to get a whole different upper and just swap them back and forth, but if cash is super tight, you can break down your existing upper and put those parts in to transform it into a Grendel. More work, and obviously with the removing of the barrel, don't expect your zero to be anywhere near where it was the last time you had your last caliber on that upper... LOL

My 'smith and I really discussed the 6.5 Grendel, and I was really leaning that way, but after some ballistic comparisons, it came down to the 6.5 Creedmoor by more than a nose to be honest. I guess the Grendel cartridge has a large primer, where the Creedmoor has a small primer. One of the differences is that the pressure builds SLIGHTLY slower with the smaller primer, so you get a more even ignition. More even ignition leads to more consistency between fired rounds, leads to the rounds heading down range the same way, leads to tighter groups if I do my part.

In any event, the Creedmoor has some great ballistics and the guru's from benchrest land have already done ALL the work for me, where the Grendel is pretty much brand new and there are only a couple of brands ( Hornady I think, Black Hills and some stuff from Les Baer ) that are making "factory ammo" for it. I saw a post where one guy bought like 500 rounds for like $600 from Les Baer, but his rationale was that it came with Lapua brass, so he could reload it. I don't know about you, but that is pretty pricey ammo in my book.

All in all, everything I initially looked at with the Grendel was positive, but once I got to discussing it with Brett, my gunsmith, we looked at the performance and advantages of the Creedmoor and it seemed to make better sense for me at this time.

Way too much information on the Grendel here.

If you end up going Grendel, please be sure to post the results and your build specs. I would love to see the project!


JWIII 07-28-2008 05:59 PM

I planned on buying a whole upper from Alexander Arms at just under $800.00.

If I get one I will be sure to post my results.

Thanks for the info; you're the man.

Dillinger 08-20-2008 07:19 PM

Well, Upon further review - and all things considered. I am back to the Grendel. *shaking head sadly*

Forget what I posted above JW - The Grendel is going to be the way to go. After WAY TOO MUCH internet time, I decided to sit down with my 'smith at lunch today and go over some of the pros and cons, specifically what parts should I order. In no time, we arrived at the point that the Grendel is a more cost effective way to go and ammo will be readily available in the future as long as the rest of the world continues to use the 7.62 x 39 that I can scrounge for "emergency reloads" by pulling the bullet and necking down the cartridge. It won't be "custom" by any means, but it will be a never ending supply.

The 6.5 Grendel uses the standard .223 BCG, but with a 7.62 x 39 bolt head, which is pretty cheap compared to the Creedmoor. I knew I was doing too much reading and planning...:(

You will still need a barrel chambered for it, but you don't need anything else for your upper. So, effectively, you could get by with just a barrel and a new BCG buy - but having a spare upper is always nice.

I will be going with the Grendel and will avoiding a couple of "AR" build sites in the future... LOL


matt g 08-20-2008 07:29 PM

How do the terminal ballistics compare between the two?

JWIII, if you haven't yet, take a look at the .450 Bushmaster. It's a no BS, hard hitter, 250 gr. bullet screaming along at 2000+ fps.

Dillinger 08-20-2008 07:33 PM

I'm at work, so I have to wait and get home to see, but Brett thinks that they both have the power to get the job done, and the range to reach out there. We talked about application and his comment was "This will put them down if you do your part, don't worry about that".

I'll let you know if I can find something on line before I head out, otherwise I will be running the calcs tonight before I order a new BCG....

Live and learn...


EDIT: That .450 is no joke. Talk about a rhino stopper... LOL

JWIII 08-20-2008 08:00 PM

Well I'm still swaying towards the Grendel...

I will most likely get a complete upper; just more convenient.

The reason why I was thinking Grendel... The kinetic energy and range supersedes that of the 5.56. At this point in time; range is a little more important to me. That is one of the reasons why I have opted not to go with the Beowolf .50.

What is the effective range of the .450 Bushmaster?

Dillinger 08-20-2008 08:02 PM

About the same as the Beowulf - It's a close range truck stopper, not a reach out and knock em dead before they hear the sound type of round.

It's still pretty cool though. 250gr traveling at over 2000fps. Like getting hit in the chest with a sledgehammer... LOL


JWIII 08-20-2008 08:12 PM


Originally Posted by matt g (Post 37047)
How do the terminal ballistics compare between the two?

I don't know all the ballistic facts on the Grendel "hopefully JD can help fill it in."

What I do know it that the Grendel is more accurate beyond 200yds vs. a 100yds and closer; most all Grendel ammo is boattail.

Also the Grendel is designed to fragment... It will not penetrate steel plates, like some 5.56 rounds. However, the kinetic energy of the Grendel will still knock someone down if they are wearing body amour even though the round fragments.

I read this in a magazine article. Unfortunate I’m not prepared enough and could not tell you which magazine it was in. I will hunt around for it later.

slowryde45 08-20-2008 09:41 PM


I was hoping you'd finish that 6.5 Creedmore - to help me decide if I wanted one or not :D I have the Grendel, and highly recommend it. Then the Creedmore comes out...right after I got the Grendel.

I know DPMS is or is in the process of releasing a Creedmore, so I may not have to wait too long.

But then again....along comes the 6.5 x 47 Lapua! :eek:

Now which one? Do a search, there's a couple articles on the comaprisons between the 3.


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