Best 6.5 Grendel Bolts

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So you’ve decided to shoot a 6.5 Grendel caliber. But did you know that you’ll need to change your upper receiver for that? If you already own a 5.56 AR-15, you need to change the bolt so that your rifle can shoot this round efficiently. More importantly, getting a quality bolt ensures that your rifle will function well with the 6.5 Grendel. Luckily, I’ve provided a shortlist of the best 6.5 Grendel bolts and Bolt Carrier Groups available today. You can buy the whole BCG or just the bolt.

A summary of the best 6.5 Grendel bolts and BCG we’ll discuss

Best Overall Pick
JP Enterprises AR-15 6.5 Grendel Full Mass Bolt Carrier Group
  • Reduced mass reduces weight and improves rapid-fire handling
  • Comes with an OPQ finish for maximum wear resistance
  • Very smooth operation with minimal friction
  • Very expensive
4.5 out of 5 stars 501 ratings
$359 Shop NowClick to read my review
Best Budget Pick
Brownells M16 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group Nitride MP
  • Black nitride finish for superior rust and corrosion resistant
  • Heat-treated for superior strength
  • Comes with a rubber insert and spring to ensure reliability
  • Tool markings
4 out of 5 stars 466 ratings
$159 Shop NowClick to read my review
Faxon Firearms M16 Bolt Carrier Group 6.5 Grendel Mil-Spec
  • Built out of 9130 steel
  • Comes with an adjustable gas block to help reduce recoil
  • Mil-spec design
  • Heavy
4 out of 5 stars 532 ratings
$160 Shop NowClick to read my review

In this guide, we’ll discuss the importance of changing your bolt for your 6.5 Grendel rifle. Plus, the top features that your bolt will need to have. Then, we’ll dive into the top three best 6.5 Grendel bolts on the market today. Finally, as a bonus, we’ll also discuss the merits of the 6.5 Grendel round itself.

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Why Upgrade Your Bolt?

Best 6.5 Grendel Bolts
Image source: Military Times

As mentioned earlier, if you currently own an AR-15 in 5.56 or .223 and want to upgrade to the 6.5 Grendel, you need to completely swap out the upper receiver. You can keep the existing lower receiver and the magazines that you used for your 5.56. But there are also 6.5 Grendel magazines if that’s what you prefer.

When it comes to the upper receiver, the most important component is the bolt carrier group or the BCG. The BCG pushes the new round from the magazine into the chamber of the AR-15. Then it fires the primer to propel the bullet out of the casing towards the barrel. Afterward, it ejects the spent casing, repeating the process.

Aftermarket bolts and bolt carrier groups for the 6.5 Grendel are usually beefed up with forged steel or aircraft-grade aluminum. These kinds of materials are highly durable. Additionally, some BCG comes with a nitride finish, giving them rust and corrosion resistance.

In addition, bolt carrier groups of the 6.5 Grendel can also help reduce the larger recoil of the 6.5 over the 5.56. So, if you want to bring down recoil, investing in a good muzzle brake for your 6.5 Grendel might be a good idea as well.

The 6.5 Grendel is a larger round than the 5.56 and utilizes a different gas pressure. As a result, sustained firing from the 6.5 Grendel with a 5.56 bolt carrier group can cause it to crack (potentially). Therefore, an upgraded and durable bolt carrier group for the 6.5 Grendel is ideal. A better bolt or bolt carrier group can also improve reliability and reduce recoil.

However, the biggest downside to upgrading your BCG or bolt is the price. Since the 6.5 Grendel is not a very common caliber, accessories and other components for the 6.5 Grendel are not very common either. Also, buying Grendel parts can cost you a lot of bucks. Nevertheless, you still need a bolt carrier group for your 6.5 Grendel in order for your rifle to shoot this round efficiently.

Why Use The 6.5 Grendel Round?

Best 6.5 Grendel Bolts
Image source: Wikipedia

First, let’s talk about the 6.5 Grendel. It’s a cartridge that has low recoil and high precision. Its diameter is larger than the 5.56 NATO, consequently needing to change your bolt to shoot this round. In addition, most people say the 6.5 Grendel is a “middle ground” between the 5.56 NATO and the 7.62x51mm cartridge. Depending on the materials, each 6.5 Grendel cartridge weighs between 15 to 18 grams.

The 6.5 Grendel has excellent ballistics. It retains greater terminal energy compared to the 5.56 and 7.62x51mm rounds. Additionally, it has better kinetic energy and armor penetration. No doubt, the 6.5 Grendel round is popular in the firearms community. It’s exciting to shoot this round just by knowing its excellent characteristics. Furthermore, if you want to improve the shooting performance of your AR-15, updating to a cartridge with superior ballistics such as the 6.5 Grendel will be an excellent way to achieve that.

The Ultimate Buying Guide for the Best 6.5 Grendel Bolts

Below is a list of the most important factors to consider when looking for a bolt for your 6.5 Grendel rifle.

Bolt Carrier Group or Just The Bolt?

When upgrading to a 6.5 Grendel AR-15, you can opt to change the entire bolt carrier group. Regardless, you will need a new bolt.

You can get a new bolt while keeping the old 5.56 bolt carrier group if you want to. However, most shooters prefer to get a new bolt carrier group for their 6.5 Grendel.

Durable Materials

Regardless of whether you get an entirely new bolt carrier group or bolt, you must ensure its durability. A durable bolt is reliable in handling the added pressures of the 6.5 Grendel caliber. An example of excellent material options is heat-treated 8620 or 9130 hardened steel.

Durable bolts can also prevent cracking and ensure proper function.

Adjustable Gas Key

An adjustable gas key enables you to modify the gas pressure inside the chamber of your AR-15. Sometimes, this is necessary to modulate the recoil and performance of your rifle. For a round with additional pressure, such as the 6.5 Grendel, you’ll need an adjustable gas key to go with it.

Rust and Corrosion Resistant Finish

Nickel boron, nitride, cerakote, OPQ, and stainless steel are all examples of finishes that can resist rust and corrosion. Additionally, these finishes also do an outstanding job of creating a smoother finish.

The 3 Best 6.5 Grendel Bolts For 2021

Now, let’s discuss the best 6.5 Grendel bolts on our list so you can try to shoot this revolutionary round already. Each of the bolts I’ll discuss below is part of a larger bolt carrier group system.

JP Enterprises AR-15 6.5 Grendel Full Mass Bolt Carrier Group

The JP Enterprises AR-15 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group assembly sports a tough 9103 stainless steel. Despite its sturdy material, it is also lightweight. JP Enterprises built this BCG with reduced mass, which helps improve handling during rapid firing.

The OPQ finish on the JR Enterprises BCG provides rust and corrosion resistance. Moreover, each component of this bolt carrier group has been precision-machined. Also, take note that JP Enterprises is very expensive.

Overall

The JP Enterprises Bolt Carrier Group may be expensive. However, you’re getting a bolt carrier group that is long-lasting, durable, and lightweight. It also has a very smooth surface to give you a pleasant shooting experience.

Pros
  • Reduced mass reduces weight and improves rapid-fire handling
  • Very tough and long-lasting
  • Comes with an OPQ finish for maximum wear resistance
  • Very smooth operation with minimal friction
  • Precision machined
Cons
  • Very expensive

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Brownells M16 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group Nitride Mp

Brownells constructed their 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group using both 9130 steel and 8230 steel. These steel materials have proven to be very long-lasting and durable.

It is a complete bolt carrier group assembly. In addition, it also has an adjustable gas key, an essential feature to help tame the large recoil when shooting the 6.5 Grendel.

The bolt itself is a Type 2 bolt with a black nitride finish for superior rust and corrosion resistance. Additionally, it has a heat-treated assembly that provides outstanding durability. It also equips itself with a rubber insert and spring so the rounds won’t jam.

One downside of this bolt carrier group is that it has noticeable imperfections in the group, such as tool markings. It only affects the appearance of the bolt, and it won’t affect the function of the bolt carrier group in any way. You’re also paying less money for this bolt carrier group, so you get what you pay for.

Overall

The Brownells M16 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group is made out of two kinds of heat-hardened steel. It also has a rust and corrosion-resistant nitride finish. For the money, it’s a solid offering.

Pros
  • Built out of two types of grades of steel
  • Black nitride finish for superior rust and corrosion resistant
  • Affordable
  • Heat-treated for superior strength
  • Comes with a rubber insert and spring to ensure reliability
Cons
  • Tool markings

Faxon Firearms M16 Bolt Carrier Group 6.5 Grendel Mil-Spec

The Faxon Firearms is a mil-spec bolt carrier group assemble option made of durable steel. It has a nitride finish that reduces traction during shooting, and general wear and tear over time. Additionally, Faxon built this BCG with durable 9130 steel.

It also has a smooth finish also ensures that the entire bolt carrier group is easy to clean. The adjustable gas block enables you to control recoil while shooting. It also has a shrouded firing pin that helps protect it.

One downside of the Faxon Firearms BCG is that it is heavier than other bolt carrier groups. So, expect it to add some weight to your AR-15.

Overall

The Faxon Firearms M16 Bolt Carrier Group sports a durable mil-spec assembly. It also has a nitride finish for wear and rust resistance.

Pros
  • Nitride finished for wear and rust resistance
  • Built out of 9130 steel
  • Mil-spec design
  • Comes with an adjustable gas block to help reduce recoil
Cons
  • Heavy

Wrap Up

And that concludes our list of the top three best 6.5 Grendel bolts. The 6.5 Grendel is an excellent round, but it requires the use of a unique and specially designed bolt carrier group. Any of the three-bolt carrier groups we covered in this article is a great option to consider.

Always ensure that the bolt carrier group that you get is durable. It should also have the proper finishing to resist usual wear and tear. Additionally, it helps to have an adjustable gas key to further improve your shooting experience as well.

Upgrading your bolt carrier group helps enhance the accuracy, function, and reliability of your rifle overall.

Feature image by Lolo Tactical

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