In recent decades, the popularity of 6.5mm cartridges in the United States has increased dramatically. Here's what you need to know about two of the most popular: 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor.
While hunters and shooters in Europe first adopted the 6.5 caliber over a century ago, it took much longer for this caliber to really catch on in North America. However, that is rapidly changing as more Americans discover the benefits of the 6.5mm bore.
At this point, the 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor are by far the most widely used 6.5mm cartridges in the United States. Although they have similar names and use bullets of the same diameter, their similarity basically ends there. In fact, the designers of each cartridge had very different priorities in mind and built the 6.5 Creedmoor and 6.5 Grendel to perform very different tasks.
Today I am going to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of 6.5 Grendel vs 6.5 Creedmoor to give you an idea of which cartridge is best for you.
Before I begin, I have an administrative note:
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6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor: Story
As mentioned above, 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor were designed to achieve different goals. Therefore, each cartridge's story begins in a different place: with the .223 Remington and AR-15 for the 6.5 Grendel and with the .308 Winchester for the 6.5 Creedmoor.
We are starting with 6.5 Grendel since it was first released.
The M-16 rifle and 5.56 x 45mm NATO cartridge got off to a rocky start in Vietnam, but modifications to the rifle and ammunition resolved most of the problems that plagued the system during the war. However, many still doubted the stopping power of the small cartridge.
These concerns were shared by civilian hunters who adopted the AR-15 and .223 Remington cartridges during the last two decades of the 20th century. Although the rifle and cartridge worked very well for target practice and predator/predator hunting, the .223 Remington earned a reputation for underperforming in deer-sized game.
However, the AR-15 platform offered a number of advantages for shooters, and unsurprisingly, it was also very popular in the United States. However, Remington would continue to work on AR-15 rifles. This list includes cartridges like the.300 power outagewho have favorited the 6.8 Remington SPC (also known as6.8 PEC), a.450 Bushmaster, .458 SOCOM y .50 Beowulf.
Bill Alexander (the same guy who developed the .50 Beowulf) also designed the 6.5 Grendel in 2002 to fill the same need. Alexander modified a 6.5mm PPC case (which itself was descended from the Russian .220 and 7.62x39mm). very successful in building an efficient and cute primer cartridge that worked great on the AR platform.
The 6.5 Grendel cartridge is also significantly more powerful than the .223 Remington. While the cartridge struggled to gain wide acceptance in the shooting and hunting communities for a variety of reasons, the 6.5 Grendel was very successful in achieving its original goal of improving on the .223 Remington while also being in an AR-15. to work well. .
For more information on how the 6.5 Grendel compares to the .223 Remington and 5.56x45mm NATO, please read the following article:
The 6.5 Creedmoor, for its part, began in the field of competitive shooting.
Dave Emary and Dennis De Millede Hornady Manufacturing began developing a new cartridge in the early 2000s that they hoped would give them an edge when shooting high-powered rifles long dominated by the .308 Winchester. In short, they wanted a new cartridge that was as accurate as the .308 but had less recoil, less wind drift, and a flatter trajectory.
With these goals in mind, they modified a .30 Thompson Center (.30 TC) case to fire .264″ bullets. Ultimately, the cartridge had a relatively large case capacity optimized for use with Class 4350 engines. It could also accommodate long, heavy, high ballistic coefficient (BC) bullets without penetrating the powder column, and still be in good condition. the top of the cartridge. Fits in a short action magazine.
As Emary and DeMille expected, the new cartridge had less recoil, a flatter trajectory, and more resistance to wind drift than the .308 Winchester. The new 6.5 Creedmoor (named after the Creedmoor matches) was released in 2008 and was a huge hit with competitive shooters from the start.
As more and more people began to appreciate the benefits of the cartridge, the 6.5 Creedmoor also found wide acceptance in big game hunting.
If you want to learn more about 6.5 Creedmoor and how it compares to .308 Win, please read this article:
6.5 Debate between Creedmoor and 308 Winchester resolved
6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor: Patronengrößen
As you can see in the photo below, aside from the fact that they both use .264″ bullets, there are some important differences between the 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor cartridges.
First, the 6.5 Grendel is significantly shorter than the 6.5 Creedmoor.
Because the Grendel was originally developed for use in an AR-15, which can only take cartridges up to 2.26″ long. With an overall length of 2.26″, the 6.5 Grendel is the full size cartridge that will fit in an AR-15. At 2.825″ long, the 6.5 Creedmoor is much longer and requires a larger rifle that can accommodate a .308 Winchester size cartridge (such as the AR-10).
Second, the Grendel 6.5 has a 0.35 rim diameter. 441″, while the 6.5 Creedmoor has a larger rim diameter of 0.473″.
For these reasons, the 6.5 Creedmoor has a much larger case capacity than the 6.5 Grendel. It is also loaded with a higher average maximum pressure than Grendel's 6.5 (62,000 psi vs. 52,000 psi).
6.5 Creedmoor vs. 6.5 Grendel-Ballistik
As you can imagine from the shells, there is a huge difference in their ballistics.
When comparing the two cartridges, it's important to remember that the 6.5 Grendel was designed to outperform an AR-15 than the .223 Remington, while the 6.5 Creedmoor was designed to outperform the .308 Winchester to improve on it in some ways. The designers of both cartridges successfully achieved these goals, but it also means that there is a huge performance gap between the 6.5 Grendel and the 6.5 Creedmoor, just like the.223 Remington y .308 Winchester.
The following table compares a 123g (.506 BC) Hornady ELD Match load in 6.5 Grendel to 120g GMX (.450 BC) and 143g (.625 BC) ELD-X loads in 6.5 Creedmoor. These data relate to Hornady factory loads fired from a 24" barrel and using a 200 yard zero.
As you can see, the 6.5 Creedmoor can fire a heavier bullet with a higher muzzle velocity than the 6.5 Grendel due to the significantly higher capacity. This obviously gives the cartridge a clear advantage in terms of kinetic energy and trajectory.
The 6.5 Creedmoor loads have 8-11″ less bullet drop at 500 yards and retain around 20-50% more energy than the 6.5 Grendel load. In fact, the 143g Creedmoor 6.5 has more energy at 200 yards than the Grendel 6.5 in the dash. just as good at ranges within 300 yards.
The table below compares how much a 10 mph crosswind affects the same 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor charges at 500 yards.
Once again we see that the 6.5 Creedmoor, especially with the 143 gram ELD-X load, outperforms the 6.5 Grendel in terms of wind resistance. But again, within 300 meters, the distance between them is significantly reduced.
The following table compares the recoil produced by the same loads when fired from identical rifles (in this case, a Ruger American Predator).
Perceived recoil varies from shooter to shooter and rifle to rifle, but recoil free energy is still a useful way to compare cartridges.
As you can see, the 6.5 Grendel has about 30-40% less recoil free energy than the two 6.5 Creedmoor loadouts. That's really saying something because 6.5 Creedmoor is also known for having very light recoil!
So where are we with each cartridge?
6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor
They use the same shell diameter, but the 6.5 Creedmoor fires the same shell weight 300-400 fps faster than the 6.5 Grendel because it is loaded to higher pressure and uses a longer case. Because of this, the 6.5 Creedmoor pulls back more, but has a flatter track, less wind drift, and carries more energy downhill.
The 6.5 Creedmoor is a fairly powerful and relatively shallow shooting cartridge that is also quite resistant to wind drift. Despite having more recoil than the Grendel 6.5, the Creedmoor 6.5's recoil is still noticeably lighter than the Winchester .308 and most shooters and hunters can handle it without too much trouble.
Additionally, 6.5 Creedmoor also has an advantage when it comes to shell selection. While both cartridges use .264" bullets, the 6.5 Creedmoor was specifically designed to use the longest and heaviest bullets available. The cartridge typically uses 95 to 160 grain bullets, with 120, 129, 140 and 143 gr bullets being the most common.On the other hand, the 6.5 Grendel uses lighter bullets and hits around 130 grain.The most popular are the 120 and 123 grain.
While the 6.5 Grendel yields significantly ballistically to the 6.5 Creedmoor, this is particularly pronounced at longer ranges. The 6.5 Creedmoor still has better ballistics within 300 meters, but the difference between them is much less at closer range. Ultimately, the 6.5 Grendel is still powerful enough to hunt medium-sized game at close to medium range, and if we're being honest with ourselves, the 6.5 Creedmoor is far from a heavy cartridge in the same league as the7mm Rem Mag or 300 Win Mag.
It's really hard to pick an accuracy winner between 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor. For one, the 6.5 Creedmoor is designed for competition shooting and can fire very long streamlined projectiles. On the other hand, the 6.5 Grendel has also seen extensive use in the hands of competitive shooters and has an edge in the recoil department as well.
Do not underestimate the impact of recoil on a person's ability to shoot accurately. Regardless of how good a particular person is at handling recoil, all things being equal, they will shoot better with softer recoil.
Inside 300 yards it would give Grendel a 6.5 lead. At longer range, I would lean more towards Creedmoor 6.5, where the use of high BC bullets becomes more important.
Either way, in the right hands, both cartridges are absolutely capable of precision.
6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor: ammo selection
While the 6.5 Creedmoor is not yet in the top 10 selling rifle cartridges in the United States, it is rapidly growing in popularity and it seems like more and more ammunition options are available every year.
Not surprisingly, most ammunition manufacturers such as Barnes, Berger, Browning, Federal, Hornady, HSM, Norma, Nosler, Remington, Sellier & Bellot, Sierra, Sig Sauer, Swift, and Winchester (to name a few) make a wide range variety of ammunition. ship for the 6.5 Creedmoor.
On the other hand, Grendel 6.5 is not as popular as Creedmoor. Like the .50 Beowulf, the 6.5 Grendel was a proprietary cartridge for several years and no major ammunition company produced 6.5 Grendel ammunition. Although now SAAMI certified, it takes a while for the cartridge to make up for lost time.
Fortunately, Federal, Hornady, Nosler, and Wolf make 6.5 Grendel factory ammunition along with Alexander Arms, the original manufacturer.
Nearly all popular bullet styles are available in .264 caliber, as well as Barnes LRX, TSX, TTSX and TAC-X, Hornady ELD-X, GMX, InterBond, InterLock, SST and V-Max, Nosler AccuBond, AccuBond Long Range , Ballistic Tip, E Tip and Partition, Remington Core Lokt and Swift Scirocco and A-Frame (to name a few).
Although price and availability vary from region to region, the 6.5 Creedmoor is by far the more common and affordable of the two.
BUY SOME GRENDEL 6.5 AMMO HERE
SHOP OTHER LARGE 6.5 GRENDEL AMMUNITION HERE
BUY AN AMAZING CREEDMOOR 6.5 AMMUNITION HERE
If you want to learn more about some of the different combat ammo options for 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor, please read these articles:
The best Grendel 6.5 ammo for hunting deer and other big game
Manual loading is relatively popular for both cartridge and cartridge, and reloading components are common. Since both cartridges use the same .264″ bullets used by cartridges like the Swedish 6.5x55mm Mauser, the 6.5 Lapua, the .260 Remington, the6.5 RPC, and the .264 Winchester Magnum, there is an excellent selection of good quality bullets to choose from.
6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor: Rifle Selection
Again, the 6.5 Creedmoor is the most common, and several companies make good bolt-action and semi-automatic rifles with this cartridge. On the other hand, few companies make firearms chambered in Grendel 6.5, though the selection is slowly improving.
The proprietary nature of the 6.5 Grendel has also long held back the development of the rifle, as has the fact that the cartridge's unique rim diameter required shooters to obtain a new bolt, magazine, and barrel. On the other hand, converting a .308 Winchester rifle to a 6.5 Creedmoor rifle is much easier, and many companies were quick to introduce new lines of 6.5 Creedmoor rifles simply by using modified existing .308 Winchester models.
Alexander Arms developed the first Grendel 6.5 rifles and continues to do so. Since then, Wilson Combat and a few other companies have begun making modern sporting rifles chambered for. It is also possible to purchase a higher 6.5 Grendel receiver and convert an existing AR-15 to fire Grendel.
While there are several semi-automatic rifles in 6.5 Creedmoor like the Savage MSR 10 and Seekins Precision SP10, there are even more bolt pistols in cartridges like the Ruger American, FTW Hunter, Hawkeye Long Range Target, Ruger Precision Rifle, and Number 1 Rifles, the Remington Model 700 , the Browning X-Bolt, the Nosler M48, the Weatherby Vanguard and the Winchester Model 70.
The Ruger American Predator bolt action rifle is currently made in 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor.
BUY A RELIABLE GRENDEL 6.5 RIFLE HERE
BUY AN EXCELLENT 6.5 CREEDMOOR RIFLE HERE
Read the article below if you want more details on some of the different hunting rifle options for the 6.5 Creedmoor.
Best Creedmoor 6.5 Rifles For Hunting - Definitive Guide
6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor: Which of these is right for you?
The Grendel 6.5 and Creedmoor 6.5 are suitable for hunting small to medium-sized fine-skinned game such as pronghorn, wild boar, roe deer, white-tailed deer and fallow deer at close to medium ranges. Conditions I would not recommend using Grendel 6.5 to hunt anything larger than deer.
If you want to use a 6.5mm cartridge to hunt larger game, go for the 6.5 Creedmoor. more suitable for games like elk and elk. This is mainly because it can use heavier bullets with a higher section density than the Grendel 6.5.
That being said, I still think it's a bit easy for a really big game. If you choose to go this route, it is extremely important to use well-constructed bullets, be very careful with shot placement, and only shoot at close range.
Do you mainly hunt medium-sized animals such as deer, wild boar or black bear at ranges of up to 200 meters? Either cartridge will certainly get the job done if it does its part, and there isn't much of a ballistic difference between them within 300 yards. Choose the 6.5 Creedmoor if you want the cheapest or easiest ammo to find, and the 6.5 Grendel if you want to hunt with an AR-15.
Looking for the best cartridge for long-range hunting like mule deer or pronghorn in open terrain where you may need to shoot several hundred yards? Both will work in this role as well, but the 6.5 Creedmoor has a flatter trajectory, floats less in the wind, and has much more power for 400-500 yards.
Do you prefer to use a semi-automatic rifle for hunting or self defense? Opt for the 6.5 Grendel, as there are many more semi-automatic rifles available in this cartridge than in the 6.5 Creedmoor.
Are you recoil sensitive and need a low recoil cartridge? Go with the 6.5 Grendel.
Do you want the most suitable ammunition for target shooting at 1,200 meters or more in a sniper rifle? Opt again for the 6.5 Creedmoor, which has a longer practical range and really stands out above the Grendel 6.5 for accurate long-range shooting.
Do you want a hunting cartridge that is suitable for hunting Caribou, Elk, Moose, Antelope, Kudu or Red Deer? I think they are both lightweight, but the 6.5 Creedmoor is clearly the better option, as it has much more kinetic energy at all ranges and can use heavier shells.
As I have mentioned several times in this article, the 6.5 Grendel and 6.5 Creedmoor are solid rifle cartridges. However, since they were developed for very different goals, the differences between them (6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor) are too great in many ways. Carefully assess your needs as a hunter based on the circumstances in which you expect to use the cartridge, get a good hunting rifle in your chosen cartridge, learn to shoot well, use quality bullets and it should serve you well in the field.
If you want to learn more about how the 6.5 Creedmoor compares to other popular hunting cartridges, please read the articles below.
260 Remington vs 6.5 Creedmoor vs 6.5×55 Sueco
6.5 Grendel vs. 6.5 Creedmoor: Which 6.5 is right for you?
25-06 vs 6.5 Creedmoor vs 270 Winchester: The results may surprise you
NEXT:6.5 CREEDMOOR vs 300 WIN MAG REVIEW AND COMPARISON
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oLyman 50th edition(S. 181-184), zHornady 10th edition(pp. 301-304, 317-322) Reloading manuals were also used as references for cartridge history. Hornady's manual provided data comparing their size and recoil. Data used to compare wind track and drift of fabric loads were obtained from Hornady (here,here, zhere).Chuck Hawks provided case capacity for each cartridge (heremihere🇧🇷 Get the maximum pressureSHARE(p. 23). i used thoseAwesome ballistic calculatormiShootersCalculator.comto compare wind drift and projectile recoil.
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NEXT:223/5.56 vs. 7.62×39: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
What is the advantage of 6.5 Grendel? ›
The 6.5 Grendel also works as a medium range round for bolt-action rifles. However, it's best suited to semi-automatic rifles. Basically, the 6.5 Grendel is built for those who want a round that has a longer useful range than the 5.56mm, but isn't as heavy as a . 308 or as specialized as a 6.5 Creedmoor.Is 6.5 Grendel enough for deer? ›
The 6.5 Grendel is also extremely versatile and works extremely well for long range shooting, tactical, law enforcement, varmint hunting, and big game hunting applications. The 6.5 Grendel is an outstanding choice for deer hunting, even at surprisingly long distances (400 yards or so).Will 6.5 Grendel penetrate body armor? ›
It retains greater terminal energy at extended ranges than either of these cartridges due to its higher ballistic coefficient (BC). For example, the 123 gr 6.5 mm Grendel bullet has more kinetic energy and better body armor penetration at 1,000m than the larger and heavier 147 gr bullet of the M80 7.62mm NATO round.What caliber is a 6.5 Grendel comparable to? ›
The 6.5 Grendel offers shooters comparable trajectory to the 308 with half the recoil and the ability to use the AR-15 platform as opposed to the more expensive AR-10 platform.Which is better 6.5 Creedmoor or Grendel? ›
The 6.5 Creedmoor loads have 8-11″ less bullet drop at 500 yards and retain approximately 20-50% more energy down range than the 6.5 Grendel load. Indeed, the 143gr 6.5 Creedmoor load has more energy at 200 yards than the 6.5 Grendel has at the muzzle.What is the maximum range for 6.5 Grendel for deer? ›
What is the effective range of the 6.5 Grendel? We answered that question right at the start: up to 800 yards. Whether you can extend its effective range to 1,000+ yards depends entirely on your skill, rifle and ammunition. But for deer hunting, we advise you to keep your range within 300 to 400 yards.Is a 6.5 Grendel worth buying? ›
This 6.5 Grendel is a very good all around cartridge for those who want to use an AR-15 for big game hunting. In addition to hunting, the 6.5 Grendel is also a really nice choice for self defense/personal protection for people who like the AR-15 platform. The cartridge also has very good barrel life.Can you shoot a 6.5 Grendel bullet in a 6.5 Creedmoor? ›
Experienced enthusiasts understand this, but for new owners it is important to understand that 6.5 Creedmoor cartridges and 6.5 Grendel ammo are not interchangeable. They will not run in the same gun without modification and that task is not something readily tackled by the average enthusiast.Does any military use 6.5 Grendel? ›
Army and police uses
An American-manufactured rifle in 6.5mm Grendel caliber may also be adopted in armament for special forces units after it passes testing in Technical Testing Center. Three types of 6.5mm Grendel ammunition produced by Prvi Partizan Užice Serbia will be tested for use with these rifles.
The 6mm ARC is your best option if you're long-range target shooting and only occasionally go deer hunting because it shoots much flatter than the 6.5 Grendel. However, if you're a big-game hunter, the 6.5 Grendel will perform better because it has a little more knockdown power due to the larger bullets.
Is 6.5 Grendel good for coyotes? ›
It has light recoil and is a good dual-purpose caliber. If you want to put a coyote down for the count at 400 yards but also use the same rifle for a 300-pound hog, the 6.5 Grendel is a good choice. The 95-grain V-Max is a great round to have if either the coyote or hog steps out.What is the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 6.5 Grendel? ›
A Type I bolt, also known as the 7.62×39 bolt, has a bolt face depth of . 125” and is used with some Grendel variants. The Type II bolt is the bolt originally designed for the 6.5 Grendel and has a bolt face depth of . 136”.Is 6.5 Grendel good for elk? ›
The 6.5 Grendel is absolutely capable of getting the job done on elk, but in my opinion, larger and more powerful cartridges are much better choices. You don't need to go crazy and use something like a . 338 Lapua on elk (though it will absolutely work).What cartridge is better than the 6.5 Creedmoor? ›
243 Winchester fires smaller diameter bullets at a significantly higher velocity than the 6.5 Creedmoor. The . 243 has a flatter trajectory and much less recoil, but the 6.5 Creedmoor retains more kinetic energy and drifts less in the wind than the . 243 Winchester at typical hunting ranges.What animals is a 6.5 Grendel good for? ›
The 6.5 Grendel is a compact, efficient little cartridge ideal for recoil-sensitive shooters needing a hunting rifle for deer-sized game.What is the maximum effective range of 6.5 Creedmoor? ›
A semiautomatic sniper rifle with a 20-inch barrel, in 6.5mm Creedmoor, is capable of engaging military targets from point blank range to 1,100 meters.How far is 6.5 Creedmoor accurate? ›
The 6.5mm Creedmoor is incredibly accurate at very long distances (about 1200 yards). It has a lot smaller bullet drop and less recoil than many of its competitors. This makes it easy to reacquire the target. You can easily find reloading components and factory ammo as well.What is the best 6.5 Grendel barrel length? ›
We've highlighted the 20-inch barrel because it gives better performance over the 18-inch option, but you can go with either one as you see fit. This barrel uses a 1:8 twist rifling that is great for stabilizing those heavier Grendel bullets.What is the effective range of a 6.5 Grendel? ›
What is the effective range of the 6.5 Grendel? We answered that question right at the start: up to 800 yards. Whether you can extend its effective range to 1,000+ yards depends entirely on your skill, rifle and ammunition. But for deer hunting, we advise you to keep your range within 300 to 400 yards.Is 6.5 Grendel better than 7.62 x39? ›
The 6.5 Grendel certainly offers superior long-distance accuracy over the 7.62×39. Its maximum range is generally considered to be 800 yards; the 7.62×39, on the other hand, is about half that.
What ammo is better 6.5 Creedmoor or Grendel? ›
The 6.5 Creedmoor loads have 8-11″ less bullet drop at 500 yards and retain approximately 20-50% more energy down range than the 6.5 Grendel load. Indeed, the 143gr 6.5 Creedmoor load has more energy at 200 yards than the 6.5 Grendel has at the muzzle.How hard does a 6.5 Grendel kick? ›
The free recoil generated by a Grendel throwing a 123-grain bullet 2,350 fps from a 7-pound rifle is just 7.5 foot-pounds.What is the best 6.5 Grendel bullet for deer? ›
- Hornady Custom 123-grain SST.
- Underwood 110-grain Controlled Chaos.
- Nosler Trophy Grade 129-grain AccuBond.
- Hornady Black 123-grain ELD.
- Federal Premium 130-grain Gold Medal.
- Alexander Arms 123-grain Lapua Scenar.
Experienced enthusiasts understand this, but for new owners it is important to understand that 6.5 Creedmoor cartridges and 6.5 Grendel ammo are not interchangeable. They will not run in the same gun without modification and that task is not something readily tackled by the average enthusiast.Which is better 6.5 Grendel or 300 blackout? ›
.300 Blackout vs 6.5 Grendel
The short answer here is that . 300 Blackout is designed to perform best at close ranges, especially out of short, suppressed barrels, and 6.5 Grendel was designed to carry more energy at longer ranges and has a better effect on flesh and blood targets overall.