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Thread: 6.5 Grendel TC Contender

  1. #1
    Tan man
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    6.5 Grendel TC Contender

    I'm a handgun hunting fan and just recently had SSK industries make me a 14" 6.5 Grendel barrel for my Contender. Anyone out there have any experience with any of the hunting loads Alexander Arms offers in a Contender or a 14.5 AR carbine. I know the 120gr Nosler BT load will work well on deer size game. How about the 120gr Barnes, 130 gr Swift S, 129 gr Hornady loads on heavier game (hogs, exotic sheep & goats etc). I have a buddy who has had great results hunting with a contender in 6.5 TC (120gr NBT), I know the 6.5 Grendel in a contender is faster than the TC round so I expect the performance to be as good or better. I'd love to hear your feedback.

  2. #2
    kcgrendel
    Guest
    How do you like the contender? I just started thinking about a rifle G2 in the Grendel. Who made your barrel for it? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

  3. #3
    Tan man
    Guest
    I love the contender. In the handgun, I prefer it over the Encore. The contender is a heavy handgun, but it is still a pound lighter than the Encore, balances better and has a better trigger. JD Jones at SSK Industries made my barrel and they are the best custom shop for anything TC.

  4. #4
    fanofflyn
    Guest
    I also have one of those barrels, and, being a Barnes affectionado I looked for a load that would work in my 16, 18, 20, and 24 inch rifles as well. The 120 grainers didn't work well in the handgun, couldn't get much over 2100 or 2200 fps. I decided to work with the 100gr TTSX. There wasn't enough velocity with 2520 or with leverevolution (which worked well with the heavier bullets in the longer barrels), so I had to go with a faster powder. Currently I worked up a load that worked well with H335, using 31 grains. This looked a little flatter on the headstamp (I mean a trace) with the gas piston rifles, so I backed it up a couple of tenths of grains to 30.8 with new Lapua brass. It shot very accurately in all the guns. The T/C shot nice groups (the best I can do with a handgun anyway) and chronographed at 2600fps, with a very small sd out of the 14 inch handgun, and with the shorter barrel pressure wasn't an issue at all. I cannot tell you what this may do in your gun. I use the old style white box WSR primers ( the silver harder kind, at least until I run out of the next ten thousand), so a different primer could drive up your pressures. I'd start a couple of grains lower and slowly increase to a comfortable level. I load to 2.260 coal so that it will work in the magazines, but did not use the chamber seating coal gauge for the SSK barrel. Barnes says to back off .050 from the lands anyway, and the Weatherby people tell us this gives us more velocity with less pressure. In the Barnes bullets, it improves accuracy also, as I've shot tons of guilding metal from Barnes in calibers up to .500 Jeffery. I'm doing a charity handgun hunt with the Handgun Hunters chapter of SCI next week, and I'll shoot some big things to see how well it does. Last year I shot a scimitar horned oryx with a 110gr Barnes TTSX 6.8 spc II from a 14 inch barrel at 140 yards, and it went through the shoulder, both sides of the rib cage, and heart, and was imbedded in the off side. They didn't save the bullet for me like they promised, but that was a slightly slower load, so I bet the penetration will be good with the Grendel for most NA game at pistol ranges.

    BTW, this round does function in all my Grendel rifles too.
    Last edited by fanofflyn; 11-27-2011 at 10:27 PM.

  5. #5
    SChunter
    Guest
    Tan Man,

    I shoot the 129gr SST's out of my 6.5/270JDJ SSK barrel with excellent terminal results on deer and hogs - it's no doubt pushing a bit faster than you will achieve out of the 14" Grendel Contender, but it should expand just fine down to impact velocities around 1800 or so fps.

    If fanofflynn can take out a scimitar oryx with the Barnes in the 6.8SPC, that should be a go-to bullet for bigger game in the Grendel as well.

  6. #6
    fanofflyn
    Guest
    Just got back from a handgun hunt with the Grendel. Took out number 7 in the world handgun Addax, a Black Hawaiian Sheep, a Texas Dall Sheep, and my prize, an Aoudad all with the 14 inch SSK Grendel barrel and the 100 Gr TTSX. The shots were all correct, but the bullet did the job in the vitals well every time. I'll try to figure out how to post pictures when I get them all done.

  7. #7
    Moderator bwaites's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fanofflyn View Post
    Just got back from a handgun hunt with the Grendel. Took out number 7 in the world handgun Addax, a Black Hawaiian Sheep, a Texas Dall Sheep, and my prize, an Aoudad all with the 14 inch SSK Grendel barrel and the 100 Gr TTSX. The shots were all correct, but the bullet did the job in the vitals well every time. I'll try to figure out how to post pictures when I get them all done.
    Aiiiiiiii!!!! Awesome! However, with stories like this, pictures are required! If you can't figure it out, let me know and I'll post them for you!
    ”You seek escape from pain. We seek the achievement of happiness. You exist for the sake of avoiding punishment. We exist for the sake of earning rewards. Threats will not make us function; fear is not our incentive. It is not death that we wish to avoid, but life that we wish to live.” - John Galt

  8. #8
    Mutt
    Guest
    What ever happened to pictures???? LOL

  9. #9
    fanofflyn
    Guest

    Pictures

    OK, I struggled with this. See if they show up.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10
    hm2 clark
    Guest
    Wonderful pictures!!

  11. #11
    Whelenon
    Guest
    How sweet it is! Very cool, congratulations.

  12. #12
    Tan man
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    fanofflyn,
    Awesome! How did you feel the Grendel performed with the TTSX compared to the 6.8 SPC?
    What other calibers do you hunt & shoot with Contenders?

  13. #13
    Moderator bwaites's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fanofflyn View Post
    OK, I struggled with this. See if they show up.

    Awesome, we need more hunt information, how you managed the black and white in the same area, etc.!!

    Seriously a great looking quartet!
    ”You seek escape from pain. We seek the achievement of happiness. You exist for the sake of avoiding punishment. We exist for the sake of earning rewards. Threats will not make us function; fear is not our incentive. It is not death that we wish to avoid, but life that we wish to live.” - John Galt

  14. #14
    LRRPF52
    Guest
    Fricken awesome man! That is an amazing feat. Congrats big-time, really. I need to go draw blood with mine, but it will never compare to that...

    Hat's off to you, sir. Can you tell us more about your optics? The ranges these shots were at? POA/POI for each one? Anything that stuck out in particular that you would like to pass on?
    Last edited by LRRPF52; 12-06-2011 at 11:33 PM.

  15. #15
    Congrats on some nice animals.

    I started hunting with Contender Handguns in 1982, and have used a lot of different cartridges over the years with a few favorites being the 6x45, 6mm T/CU, .250 Savage, 7-30 Waters and .30-30 Ackley Improved.

    Larry

  16. #16
    fanofflyn
    Guest
    For optics, there are limited choices. I currently have a 2.5-8x leupold on the Contender, but I don't need that much magnification, and I'll consider going to just a straight 2x. The Leupolds fit my long arms better than the Burris, which requires me to draw the gun in closer for a higher magnification. The 6.5 100gr TTSX at 2600 performs very similar at handgun ranges to the 6.8 110 gr TTSX at 2500fps. I shot more with the 6.5 this year. Very mild recoil, don't notice it. Extremely accurate. Longest shot this year on game was the Texas Dall sheep at 127 yards, flipped right up onto his back with a heart shot. All the TTSX expanded from the appearance of the bullet tracks, but I unfortunately didn't recover any of my bullets ( which I always try to do. I've got a nice collection of game bullets up to 500 grain that show me what happens.) I did recover a blue plastic tip from the entrance hide last year, right on the surface. I currently only have the 6.8 spcII and the 6.5 Grendel in the G2 contender, but I'm having an Encore Handgun barrel made for next year in 6.5 Creedmoor. I love the Grendel, which may be my favorite overall, but next year I want Mouflon and that will require a little faster somewhat heavier bullet, maybe 120gr TTSX, for a quick 250 yard handgun shot (yes, a very good but fast rest, I'm not that steady at all otherwise).
    The hunt was much harder than it appears, with very fast acquisition and shots required or there were no chances at all.
    Last year was a Scimitar Horned Oryx, which will be illegal to hunt after December of this year, at 140 yards.
    I'm no expert, I just like to have fun.
    Thanks for the Kudos everyone

  17. #17
    kcgrendel
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    I would live to have a G2 in 6.5 Grendel with a carbine barrel.

  18. #18
    Moderator bwaites's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fanofflyn View Post
    For optics, there are limited choices. I currently have a 2.5-8x leupold on the Contender, but I don't need that much magnification, and I'll consider going to just a straight 2x. The Leupolds fit my long arms better than the Burris, which requires me to draw the gun in closer for a higher magnification. The 6.5 100gr TTSX at 2600 performs very similar at handgun ranges to the 6.8 110 gr TTSX at 2500fps. I shot more with the 6.5 this year. Very mild recoil, don't notice it. Extremely accurate. Longest shot this year on game was the Texas Dall sheep at 127 yards, flipped right up onto his back with a heart shot. All the TTSX expanded from the appearance of the bullet tracks, but I unfortunately didn't recover any of my bullets ( which I always try to do. I've got a nice collection of game bullets up to 500 grain that show me what happens.) I did recover a blue plastic tip from the entrance hide last year, right on the surface. I currently only have the 6.8 spcII and the 6.5 Grendel in the G2 contender, but I'm having an Encore Handgun barrel made for next year in 6.5 Creedmoor. I love the Grendel, which may be my favorite overall, but next year I want Mouflon and that will require a little faster somewhat heavier bullet, maybe 120gr TTSX, for a quick 250 yard handgun shot (yes, a very good but fast rest, I'm not that steady at all otherwise).
    The hunt was much harder than it appears, with very fast acquisition and shots required or there were no chances at all.
    Last year was a Scimitar Horned Oryx, which will be illegal to hunt after December of this year, at 140 yards.
    I'm no expert, I just like to have fun.
    Thanks for the Kudos everyone
    Great trophies, and I'd like to hear a start to finish hunt story, and how it came about. Guides, outfitter, etc. too.
    ”You seek escape from pain. We seek the achievement of happiness. You exist for the sake of avoiding punishment. We exist for the sake of earning rewards. Threats will not make us function; fear is not our incentive. It is not death that we wish to avoid, but life that we wish to live.” - John Galt

  19. #19
    PumpActionJackson
    Guest
    too cool! im jealous. nice bit of meat there.

  20. #20
    dpw4x4
    Guest
    Very nice pictures !!!!!

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