.224 Valkyrie or 6.5 Grendel

Discussion in 'Shooting & Fireams Training / Skills' started by Paycheck, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    I have a 6.8 SPC upper that I built, and I recently purchased another 6.8 upper (I wanted a piston upper), so I will likely be converting the one I've built into a long-ish range (300-600) gun.

    I will need to sell my Wilson Combat barrel either way, but with .224 Valkyrie, I can reuse the BCG and mags. However, the round has not proved itself yet.
    I don't have much experience with Grendel, so I don't know much about it. Have the issues with bolts been fixed? Are magazines available? How affordable is decent ammo? I'm still doing my homework.
    I could also go with .223 Wylde and 18" barrel for an SPR-esque build (ammo/mag availability). Do Valkyrie and Grendel offer much advantage to a long-range noob?

    I am still digging around them internets for data, but I was wondering what experiences fellow forumites might share.
     
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  2. Strigidae

    Strigidae Moderator Staff Member

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    I have no personal experience but am watching this thread as you are.
     
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  3. Mountain Tiger

    Mountain Tiger Member

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    I have a 6.5 Grendel AR I built. I got an Odin Works upper and have shot it many times.
    The bolts and magazines function fine. I've only shot Hornady higher end ammo in it, like $1.20ish a round. I bet you could find cheaper steel cased but I bought the Hornady to reload the brass.

    I've built several AR's and can answer any other questions you have about it.
     
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  4. Mountain Tiger

    Mountain Tiger Member

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    Also the Grendel can take medium game at a long range. I know of confirmed deer at 300yds. I've heard hearsay of elk at similar range. The Grendel has less drift at longer range than the 308 but had more drop. So if you can shoot holdover and practice with it I'm sure you can do it too.

    Not sure about the power compared to Valkyr, cos I know the Valkyr is very fast but I don't know well it would take deer. I know ppl say you can hunt deer with a 556 but i think a more powerful cartridge is more humane. If you're shooting coyotes or other animals the Valkyr could be better I guess.
     
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  5. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    Thanks, man. Would you recommend the Odin Works 6.5 barrel? What's the best gas length and barrel length for 6.5 in your opinion?
     
  6. Mountain Tiger

    Mountain Tiger Member

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    So the further out you're reaching with the cartridge, the more accuracy matters. On paper the 6.5 Grendel has a 1000 yard range (I haven't gotten the optics setup to truly reach that yet) so compare that to the ~300 yard range of the 556 and you can start to see how a little accuracy can add up. Like I'm perfectly ok with $400 uppers for a 556 build because that will be fine for what I want a 556 to do at it's ranges. For a longer range cartridge like Grendel or Valkyr i'd go for a higher end upper (or barrel if you're building from pure parts) because it matters a lot more. Both of these cartridges are usually rifle length gas systems.

    On either of these two long range cartridges I'd go for a 20 inch barrel with stainless instead of chrome. You're not really gonna be rapid firing either of these (hopefully) so you'd probably want more of a marksman build with a heavier barrel contour and a longer barrel for more velocity. My long range bolt rifle friend is working on a Valkyr build now and he is seriously considering 22 to 24 inch barrels. I'd look at the velocity breakdowns and decide what you want. 20in barrel on the Grendel is perfectly fine for it in my opinion. The Odin Works ones come threaded too so you could put a suppressor on it if you have a trust and a way to get one legally. The OW upper has an adjustable gas block you'd need to use it suppressed.

    There are other higher end brands like Seekins that probably make very good Grendel uppers. I chose a 2o in heavier contour stainless barrel for a 800+ yard AR that can also hunt medium game with a 5 round magazine. I used the Luth AR adjustable rifle stock because it's very adjustable and light. I also mounted the Hera Arms CQR foregrip because I like the ergonomics of that a lot more than vertical foregrips. It's the only vertical foregrip I like.

    Anything else you want to know?
     
  7. HoneyBadger47

    HoneyBadger47 Member

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    My $.02, find someone that has uppers in those calibers and try them out. Shoot different loads and rounds, possibly different barrel lengths. Also, if you hand load, look at options and published loads. I build my AR around an stainless 18" .223 wylde barrel and it performs how I want it (coyote rifle). I primarily shoot 50gr and 55gr rounds, but I have some 62gr and 77gr I play with in the desert. Now, I too have played around with the 6.5 Grendel and .224 valkyrie debate. I don't shoot beyond 600 yards all that much so I haven't really put much thought into either yet. I also have played around with the idea of building a 16" 7.62x39 upper. I love the round for anything under 300 and I think the 16" barrel is great for the recce/patrol style rifle. So far its just thoughts, im more of an AK guy than an AR guy so the wants for another AK style rifle usually out weigh the wants of the AR.
    The .223 Wylde is a great option if you want flexibility, especially if you are concerned over ammo availability. I haven't heard anything that terrible about either 6.5 or .224. I would imagine thought that any chambering that is pushing flatter and faster will have shorter barrel life.
     
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  8. KMCMICHAEL

    KMCMICHAEL Member

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    I have a custom bolt gun in the Grendel. I like it but have not shot it extensively. The ammo can be had at a very good price.
     
  9. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    One of my favorite guns is my AR with PWS 7.62x39 upper. The upper is long stroke piston, similar to AK. Magazines are the only downside, but with a little Dremel time, you can make them run just fine. That being said, if you want to build one, I'd consider that DI blows the gasses into the receiver, so if you plan on using cheap ammo (otherwise, what's the point :) ), you might gunk up your rifle more so that usual.

    I was actually thinking about shooting a heavier, more stable bullet rather than a zippy round, so I'm not that concerned about barrel life. I have a .308 I'm practicing with right now, but still want something with lighter recoil and semiauto.
     
  10. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    My lower is a carbine, and my uppers are mid-length. If I use a rifle upper, would I have to rebuild my lower to a rifle buffer system? If so, do you think Grendel can perform fine out to 500-600 yds with a shorter barrel (say 18")?

    Thanks for all your help, man. You guys are helping me out here a lot.
     
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  11. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    What rifle do you have? Maybe I could sell my 6.8 AR and get one like yours haha.
     
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  12. Mountain Tiger

    Mountain Tiger Member

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    >My lower is a carbine, and my uppers are mid-length. If I use a rifle upper, would I have to rebuild my lower to a rifle buffer system?

    The diff will be the buffer tube and stock, that's all it will take to accept a rifle length upper

    >If so, do you think Grendel can perform fine out to 500-600 yds with a shorter barrel (say 18")?

    Easily. You will have good performance.
     
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  13. Mountain Tiger

    Mountain Tiger Member

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    What magazine do you use? I'd like build one of these but I want good mags and not ones that kinda sorta work.
     
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  14. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    I use ASC and CPD mags. I prefer CPD mags, the ASC followers were getting stuck in mine.
     
  15. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    I have a Magpul UBR on mine, and I'm loving it, so I'd like to keep my lower the same. Or maybe I'll decide to build one of those straight pull uppers with no gas system at all. Except then, I'd have to build an entirely new upper from scratch haha.
     
  16. Mountain Tiger

    Mountain Tiger Member

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    I built a dedicated rifle lower for my rifle length one cos I wanted the Luth AR rifle stock on that one. my carbine lowers have Falcon37 Habu CH's and battlelink minimalist stocks.
     
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  17. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    I might just get an adjustable gas block, just so I can keep my lower.
    I'll probably go with 6.5 Grendel, now I just need to sell my 6.8 SPC barrel and bolt.
     
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  18. The Marsh Gorilla

    The Marsh Gorilla Member

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    Does the rifle length gas system in the Grendel run different than a rifle length gas system for a 5.56?

    I’ve run a rifle length gas system 5.56 on a carbine lower with regular carbine buffer and it’s been completely reliable and ejects brass in the same direction as that upper does when on my A2 lower. Even still it seems all that would be needed is a heavier buffer to tune the system.

    I’ve been considering going with a Grendel for a build that’d eventually be my daughter’s deer rifle and I’m intent on it having a carbine or at the most Vltor A5 buffer system so that it can adjust along with her as she grows.
     
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  19. Paycheck

    Paycheck Member

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    Good question, I'd like to know that, as well.
    If you decide to build a 6.8 instead, I have parts for sale (Wilson Combat match barrel and FailZero BCG). It's my favorite AR cartridge, but I have 2 of them, hence the venture for a different caliber.
    It's very comparable to 6.5 Grendel up to about 500-600 yds. I prefer 6.8 in general because it's optimized for a 14.5" barrel, while Grendel is for 20"or so. But if the long range hunting is your game, I don't know if Grendel can be beat in an AR platform.
     
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  20. The Marsh Gorilla

    The Marsh Gorilla Member

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    Thanks for the offer! I’m pretty set on the Grendel if I go with another alternate AR15 round, mostly for logistical reasons. Best friend is looking at also doing a Grendel and we’ve both been looking at 6.5 Creedmoor so when the hand loading starts we’ll save on buying bulk projectiles hopefully.
     
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