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Vol 1 - 6.5 Grendel Reloaders Handbook

Introduction Volume 1 Volume 2

Cover for 6.5 Grendel Reloading Handbook Volume !
A lot of Grendel shooters have been asking about load data as well as the the history and utility of this very interesting cartridge. This handbook is the first of a short series dedicated to partially answering many of these and other questions. This first volume provides a brief synopsis of the origins and development history plus commercial sources of Grendel rifles and ammunition. We also included handloading data from four significant commercial sources.

Online sources of Volume 1:

Extract from Chapter IV Grendel Hunting Reach:

A lot of hunters have taken antelope, coyotes, goats, hogs, deer, and even elk using rifles chambered for the Grendel. Indeed, at least one person has used the Hornady 123 grain A-MAX® from the Grendel to take an antelope at 700+ yards. You can read more in the forum thread “752-yard-speedgoat” and other similar threads. Remember, however, that this hunter did more or less on the spot practice in the same wind conditions on the day of the shot. The accomplishment nonetheless tells us that this cartridge can reach way out there and touch things with lethal results.
While most of us are not likely to be able to reliably anchor game at those ranges, it does support the notion that the Grendel can readily take game at amazing distances when the right hunter uses a good bullet. One of the secrets to these successes continues to be the excellent range of bullet weights and types for the 6.5mm bore.

Let us take a quick look at how this cartridge contributes to the game harvesting performance of the AR-15 by comparing it to AR-10 cartridges like the .243 Winchester and .260 Remington. The short answer is that there is very little difference in the medium game potential of these cartridges at ranges under about 250 yards. Further the Grendel shows credible hunting potential to well beyond 500 yards for the right shooter and bullet.
The Grendel shooter, and indeed anyone who uses a rifle with a 6.5 mm bore, has an enormous selection of bullets to choose from. About half of the more than 100 6.5mm bullets that can be used in the Grendel are shown in Figure 12 below.

Figure 12. This photo shows only about half of the more than 100 bullets available for the Grendel.

Figure 12. This photo shows only about half of the more than 100 bullets available for the Grendel.

The cartridge does as well as or slightly better than the .243 Winchester at the longer ranges in spite of having a steeper trajectory. The price paid for using either the .243 or the .260 Remington to get flatter trajectories, of course, is that the rifles are necessarily heavier because they must be used on the AR-10 frame or similar length bolt action rifles…

Read more by getting your copy from the limited print run from one of the online sources:

Table of contents for 6.5 Grendel Reloading Handbook Volume 1

Posted by Bill Alexander on the 6.5 Grendel Forum:

“Met with Paul and he showed me the new Grendel reloading book. Absolutely superb work from all those involved and a must for any Grendel owner or even the avid reloader who dabbles in small case stuff. Production standard is beautiful and I almost wish I could get a hard cover version for my own bookshelf.”

ISBN: 978-0-9888050-0-2


Please send wholesale purchase inquiries to Wholesale Information Request. The information will be sent on receipt of a valid resale permit number.

The authors owe a debt of gratitude to the participants in the 6.5 Grendel Forum for the inspiration and insights needed to make this handbook become a reality. Particular thanks are due to John Hanka, administrator of the Grendel forum, for permission to use information from the forum.

The authors thank the following companies for permission to use their published 6.5 Grendel reloading data:

Alexander Arms

Lapua for Vihtavouri Reloading data

Hodgdon Reloading Data Center


Western Powders for Ramshot and Accurate Powders

The authors wish to thank the following companies for permission to reprint photographs of their products:

Alexander Arms
Christensen Arms
JP Enterprises
Les Baer Custom
Templar Custom

We also wish to thank the support provided by JD Machine Tech for supplying barrels for the photograph of gas systems.

We have also started research on Volume II with emphasis on the much broader set of reloading data developed by the Grendel community. Proceeds from Volume I book sales will help defray research expenses for the new volume. Look for a publishing announcement for this volume during the coming year.

This post appears in the 6.5 Grendel Forum:

Errata for 6.5 Grendel Reloading Handbook:

We found a typo!

The errors occur in the following locations:

  • Table 3 on page 25
  • Table 5 on page 31
  • Table 6 on page 31

The muzzle velocity for the 123 gr SST 6.5 Grendel projectile was originally calculated for a 18″ barrel. In an effort to showcase the advantages of the AR-15 platform for hunting, we changed this analysis to a 14.5″ barrel.

The row heading in the tables was not updated when the new data was updated. Thus, although the data in the table is accurate, the row heading still contains the MV for the 18″ barrel, NOT the 14.5″ barrel.

The rows should read “6.5 Grendel 123gr Hornady SST® (14.5” Barrel) MV = 2310 FPS.”

The rest of the data in those rows is consistent with the 2310 FPS muzzle velocity from a 14.5″ barrel.

We’re sure folks will find more, so don’t feel bashful about emailing your discoveries to
Online sources of Volume 1:

Introduction Volume 1 Volume 2

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