The 6.5 Grendel is a bit of a niche cartridge whose capabilities are known to only a few. The magazine demand still sides with other cartridges, the most common of which are the 5.56 and the 7.62 NATO. If you’re shopping around for the best 6.5 Grendel magazine or looking to upgrade from your current arsenal, we’ve got everything you need to help you narrow down your choices.
|E-lander AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine|| ||$27 Shop NowClick to read my review|
|Duramag AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine|| ||$20 Shop NowClick to read my review|
|ASC AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine|| ||$16 Shop NowClick to read my review|
|D&H AH-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine|| ||$25 Shop NowClick to read my review|
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The 6.5 Grendel
The 6.5 Grendel is an excellent long-range cartridge for AR-15 gun owners. It outpaces both the 7.62 NATO and .223 Remington, both of which were the gold standard of their time while producing a lot less recoil. This reduction in recoil along with a competitive muzzle velocity makes the 6.5 Grendel the cartridge of choice for many hunters that use the AR-15.
Many of our readers use the 6.5 Grendel for hunting up to around 300/400 yards with their AR-15. The reasoning behind this is the reduction in recoil, competitive muzzle velocity (up to 2,500 feet per second when using 130 grain bullets), and efficient sectional density (making humane kill shots more achievable).
There are plenty of other good things to say about the 6.5 Grendel. If you want us to write a deep dive, let us know in the comments. For more information in the meantime, check out the video below.
And since it has a very efficient sectional density, it makes humane kill shots a lot more conceivable.
Can I Use My 5.56 NATO Magazine?
The Grendel 6.5 cartridge was designed to be fully compatible with an existing 5.56 lower receiver. It means that you can convert an existing 5.56 AR-15 into a 6.5 Grendel compatible AR-15 by simply swapping out your upper receiver for a 6.5 Grendel Upper.
Since the two cartridges are similar in dimensions, technically the 6.5 Grendel should fit just fine with the 5.56 Magazines. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you should start packing your current 5.56 Mags with 6.5 Grendels just yet.
Since the bullets are a different geometry, they won’t stack inside a 5.56 magazine as well as they would in a 6.5 Grendel Mag. This small difference can cause a variety of problems from feeding issues to consistent jams and rifle stoppages.
The best piece of advice I can give you from the get-go is this: use actual 6.5 Grendel magazines.
How Many Magazines Is Too Many?
While it is impossible to have too few magazines, it is possible to have too many. You should stock up on as many magazines for whatever caliber you plan to use, considering the current state of gun and parts shortages.
Even if you only use two or three magazines at a time, there is no harm in storing up more magazines. It is easier to fire more rounds at the range if you have a number of magazines on hand.
Importance of Magazines
If you’re like me, you spend a lot of time tinkering with your AR-15.
I spend hours researching various components with an absolute focus on build quality. Yet often I would neglect to do the same research when it came to the magazine. After a couple of incidents dealing with frustrating magazine malfunctions (worn springs and warped aluminum), I spoke to my local FFL and received an education in the importance of high-quality magazines. Needless to say, I’m a convert.
I carry multiple magazines (from a variety of good manufacturers) for each of my guns and I recommend you do too. They’re relatively inexpensive but you’ll be thankful for stocking up later, particularly if we ever experience another major shortage like we did in 2013. Even these days, I’m a little wary.
The 6.5 Grendel is a bit of a niche cartridge. Those who know its capabilities are fans (like yours truly). However, the demand still sides with other cartridges, most obviously the 5.56 and the 7.62 NATO. Therefore, while they’re in stock, I’d say, do yourself a favor and make sure you have a few high quality mags for your 6.5 Grendel to hand. My rule of thumb is, maintain a minimum of 6 high quality magazines for every magazine-fed firearm you own.
Choosing the Best 6.5 Grendel Magazine
Magazines aren’t rocket science but there are a few factors you must consider when buying a reliable, high-quality magazine.
These are the follower, spring, floor plate, and body, which I’ll get to in a moment.
Parts of the Magazine
The part of the magazine where the ammunition rests. The follower is pushed upwards by the spring, which enables the rounds to be loaded into the magazine. Spring tension will always push the follower upwards to feed the rounds consistently.
The Spring pushes the follower up to feed rounds into your AR. A properly working spring is critical to get consistent feeding of your AR Cartridges. You should choose a magazine with a heavy-duty, heat-tempered spring.
The floor plate is the bottom piece of the magazine that’s connected to the spring. It forces the follower upwards at all times.
The body of the magazine is the metal or polymer construction that holds all the other components and houses the actual cartridges. It’s also the part of the magazine that you handle directly and is responsible for the general performance of your mag. You need to choose a durable material that can survive the external elements. A poorly made magazine will dent and deform when dropped and can cause feeding issues later on.
Buyer’s Guide for the Best 6.5 Grendel Magazines
Almost all AR-15 magazines are built out of either steel or aluminum alloy bodies. Manufacturers often use 6061-T6 aluminum, a durable polymer, or a hybrid of both. However, most of the time, polymer seems to outdo steel and aluminum bodies outright as it’s lightweight and versatile that can withstand a lot of wear and tear for a fraction of the cost.
An ideal magazine comes with a high-quality metal spring and metal followers. This ensures that the rounds will feed reliably from the magazine into the firing chamber. Some of the more premium options will have a stainless steel spring with a polymer or aluminum anti-tilt follower. These are on the pricier end of the spectrum but you’re sure to come out with a magazine that’s durable and will work great for a long time.
Ease of Ejection
Although often overlooked, your magazine should eject smoothly out of your AR. The last thing you want in a shootout is having trouble replacing your magazine. A magazine that ejects properly should release itself immediately after triggering the mag-release button. It should also drop out of your AR without snagging or needing assistance.
Although modern magazines are designed to withstand tough falls, dropping a magazine might misalign one of your cartridges. Or you might get large debris inside the magazine that can lead to feeding problems while shooting.
A good magazine will have a flared base, non-slip texture, or non-slip grooves on the body. These features make it easy to grab in any weather condition. If you tend to wear gloves when shooting, try finding a magazine with deeper grooves to give you more surface area to grab on when replacing your magazine.
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Review Your State Laws
Remember to abide by all applicable federal, state, and local laws. When in doubt, err on the side of caution. As you’re probably well aware, there are certain states, including Illinois, New York, and California, that have very tight gun laws and heavily regulate AR-style weapons.
Additionally, these gun restrictions can regulate magazine capacity for your AR-15. For example, in California since the year 2000, it’s been illegal to purchase or import large-capacity magazines. Unfortunately, California decided that anything over 10 rounds is a large capacity for an AR. So if you live in there or other states with similar gun restrictions, make sure to get a state-compliant .224 Valkyrie magazine.
Other Important Factors
High-quality magazines these days will often include some form of anti-tilt technology, which is just a fancy way of saying that the magazine design will ensure the rounds are fed into the firearm in order and will not jam.
Corrosion Resistant Coating
Your magazine is going to be subjected to a lot of abuse, especially if you’re consistently out on the field. So like any decent AR-15 component, you need to ensure your magazine has some kind of surface wear and corrosion protection. Nothing hurts a magazine (or gun) like internal rusting from rain or humidity.
Okay, so let’s get into the magazines themselves, as you’ll see I’ve done my best to express my opinion on each based on the factors above. If I’ve missed anything out or you disagree (or agree) please let me know in the comments below.
Top 6.5 Grendel Magazines
The E-lander AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine is designed and engineered to produce high-performance weapon solutions. This mag is produced in Israel to equip the most elite soldiers of the IDF. It’s undoubtedly one of the best magazines on the market today.
E-landers focuses almost exclusively on manufacturing state-of-the-art magazines. As for the magazine itself, it has a self-lubricating anti-tilt follower for reliable feeding even at full-auto. The magazine body is made from high-quality heat-treated stainless steel with their own proprietary coating that the manufacturer claims to provide the best surface wear and corrosion resistance.
Available in 4, 10, 17, and 24 round magazines, it suits each kind of shooter.
- Durable stainless steel body.
- Proprietary Anti-tilt follower
- Glare resistant matte black finishing.
- Superior Surface wear and Corrosion Resistant
- More expensive than other 6.5 Grendel magazines.
If you’re looking for a dependable magazine, then check out the Duramag AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine. Duramag is a great company and I have never had a problem with their products. Like the E-lander, it is constructed from heat-treated 410 stainless steel and features a T-360 coating tothat provides excellent corrosion resistance for the price.
The Duramag AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine is a precisely constructed magazine, robotically welded with advanced proprietary anti-tilt protection. It also comes with an anti-fatigue spring, which ensures longevity and reliable, consistent feeding.
A little feature I personally like is that the follower is dyed blue. This may seem primitive to some but it’s handy to be able to see quickly if the magazine is all out of ammo.
Available in 5, 10. 15 and 20 rounds.
- T-360 coated for excellent rust and corrosion resistance
- Durable 410 stainless steel body
- Impressive proprietary anti-tilt system enables smooth feeding
- There have been a couple of reports of swelling that causes difficulty with the last round
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly, bang for buck magazine, then the ASC AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine is an ideal option. Built out of heat-treated 410 stainless steel, this budget-friendly magazine will give you the performance of a premium quality mag for 3/4 of the price.
The ASC AR-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine features chrome, self-lubricating springs with an enhanced anti-tilt polymer follower giving you reliable magazine feeds after every shot. It also comes with a stainless steel floor plate and a powder-coated matte black finish.
Although it won’t be as corrosion-resistant as other magazines on our list, the stainless steel build is more than good enough to give you that type of protection. Honestly, if you’re price sensitive, you can’t get much better value than this.
The ASC AR-15 6.5 Grendel is available in four magazine capacities: 5, 10, 15, and 25 rounds.
- Excellent value
- Durable, heat trade stainless steel construction
- One of the larger capacity 6.5 Grendel magazines on the market at 25 rounds
- Users report quality control issues on some mags.
The D&H AH-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine is one of the most durable magazines on this list. Its body is built out of carbon steel with a heat-treated stainless steel magazine spring. To simply put, this magazine is extremely durable and I doubt you’d be able to easily dent it, making this ideal if you’re getting down in the dirt.
It’s an excellent choice if you plan to shoot in extreme conditions. It also features excellent anti-tilt protection to add to its overall reliability. The D&H AH-15 6.5 Grendel Magazine is only available in a 10-round capacity. Again remember to verify your state laws before ordering large-capacity magazines.
- One of the most durable magazines on the market
- Extremely reliable with proprietary anti-tilt technology
- Great magazine for outdoor and field use
- Might break your budget
- Only comes in 10 rounds
- Some people complain the fit is too tight
You cannot go wrong with the E-lander in my opinion. Endorsed by the original manufacturers of the Grendel 6.5, this durable, matte black, anti-corrosion 6.5 Grendel magazine ticks all the boxes you want for your AR magazine. It also comes in a variety of magazine capacities to suit every shooter’s needs.
Any one of the 6.5 Grendel Magazines that we’ve covered here today will make a solid choice for your collection. If you do end up going a different route, you can always follow our buyer’s guide section that we went over earlier to help you find a 6.5 Grendel Magazines that works better for you.
Keep in mind when choosing a 6.5 Grendel Magazines that you need to be aware of the exact type you’re buying. Although some 5.56 magazines might work with the 6.5 Grendel, it’s always better to find a magazine that’s configured specifically to the 6.5 Grendel round to prevent feeding issues later on.
The 6.5 Grendel is a solid round for the AR-15 if you want to get excellent long range performance for your rifle but remember that you need quality magazines in order to ensure proper function as well. The magazines in this article are each among the very best that the market has to offer you.
If I’ve missed any you think our readers should know about, let me know.