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Posted: 4/1/2017 4:48:16 PM EDT
Seeking advice from the hive for a general hunting 6.5 upper.  Stumble across an upper that has medium contour 5R SS 16" 1:8 twist Satern barrel and while I seem to recall many having good experience with Satern barrels in general I thought I'd pitch this out to hear what you may share.
Link Posted: 4/1/2017 11:11:32 PM EDT
With the SAAMI chambers, they are one of the ones to beat for accuracy.

A friend of mine and fellow forum member, Bwaites has at least 2 Satern barreled Grendels, one a 20", the other a 28"-cut rifled jobs assembled by AA on complete AA guns.

It is literally boring to swing the IPSC flagger target with them at 700yds.

There have been some different chambers in them since about 7 or 8 years ago, some of which were cut really short and wouldn't chamber factory ammo.

I have had to ream out 2 of them already that were like that in order to get factory Hornady 123gr not to jam the lands, but after having the throat reamed with a SAAMI reamer from Manson, all is well.

Bwaites juts posted a recent group from the 20", with 5rds inside a ragged hole.

The only other Grendel barrels I have seen shoot like that are Bartlein, Lilja, Criterions, and Shilens, with SAAMI chambers.

Bwaites has some 7 and 8rd groups with 107gr SMK on 8208XBR that literally shot into the .2s.

This is the 20" AA rifle with Satern 1/8.75" twist, fluted that I Cerakoted for him:

Link Posted: 4/1/2017 11:17:29 PM EDT
That was on a legit Satern cut-rifle barrel, not the Liberty button-rifled barrels.

We had a group buy with a bunch of them that ended up having way short chambers in many of them.

The guy that organized that group buy told people to just keep shooting them as they were blowing out primers and getting velocities like a .260 Remington.

We told everyone that was seeing these dangerous pressure signs to stop and contact Satern/Liberty, so that they could handle it.

Satern offered to "scrape" the chambers with a long freebore, which turned a lot of people off.

The Grumble II chamber appeared soon after that, with a ridiculous amount of freebore proposed and delivered on many of the ones I've seen.

Another thing I have seen in the days since they were a supplier for AA is the decision to include a .094" (.0935") gas port.....on MLGS 18.5" barrels, which is way too large.   Should be .076".

Not sure if they have changed that, but it would be a good move for the customer so they don't end up with violent and early extraction on a case still obdurated to the chamber walls.
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 7:59:47 AM EDT
Thanks for confirming some of what I recalled.  Good point to ask the question about port size as I prefer not to have to add an adjustable gb but that isn't an end all.  A short chamber would be an issue though and I road I'd prefer to avoid.

To muddle the mess a bit the barrel is stated to have a Grendel II chamber which they described below and I thought should be the SAAMI type chamber as described below;
The 6.5 Grendel II chamber has a parallel rather than compound throat. It has a .120” throat and a .300” neck.

Then goes on to explain the difference of the SAAMI chamber and that's where the fog sets in as I thought a G II chamber was supposed to be a SSAMI chamber, as described;
The SAAMI Grendel chamber has a compound throat, .300” neck and conforms to the standards published by the Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute

And I know I would not really want a .264 LBC is a Grendel clone with a .120in throat and .295neck.
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 9:40:08 AM EDT
This is what Dave Kiff from Pacific Tool and Gauge had to say about the subject. He was involved in fixing the 6.8SPC to the 6.8SPCII as well. He makes reamers for barrel manufactures.

"I have 27 small to large AR manufactures that have been using the 6.5 Grendel II and or the 264 LBC-AR for 2-3 years. I personally guarantee that the parallel throat will out shoot the double angle crap you all have been force fed. If you have any questions feel free to call me and I will personally make you see the light. Do not speculate on the throat, it is different than the 6.5x47 Lapua. It is a precise throat that will out shoot and outperform the standard Grendel SAAMI throat that has been unable to perform with newer loaded factory ammo. I am the same person that developed the 6.8 SPC II and have corrected many other poorly designed cartridges. It is one thing to design, it’s another to make it shoot.

Dave Kiff
Pacific Tool & Gauge
541-826-5808"

lastRites
The best thing for you to do is find a good barrel manufacturer in the length and weight you want and don't get caught up in the "If it's not SAMMI it's no good." The information given by Dave Kiff pretty much sums it up. I will say that I myself have a Satern 24" barrel that is super accurate and I also bought, on a super sale, an Alexander SS fluted 16" barrel that I use for the inexpensive Russian 6.5 Grendel ammo. The 16" barreled carbine is really light and should make a good hunter or walk about rifle.  http://www.shopalexanderarms.com/Barrels-6_5_Grendel_16_Lite_Barrel.html   --- not on sale but still inexpensive.
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 3:42:00 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
This is what Dave Kiff from Pacific Tool and Gauge had to say about the subject. He was involved in fixing the 6.8SPC to the 6.8SPCII as well. He makes reamers for barrel manufactures.

"I have 27 small to large AR manufactures that have been using the 6.5 Grendel II and or the 264 LBC-AR for 2-3 years. I personally guarantee that the parallel throat will out shoot the double angle crap you all have been force fed. If you have any questions feel free to call me and I will personally make you see the light. Do not speculate on the throat, it is different than the 6.5x47 Lapua. It is a precise throat that will out shoot and outperform the standard Grendel SAAMI throat that has been unable to perform with newer loaded factory ammo. I am the same person that developed the 6.8 SPC II and have corrected many other poorly designed cartridges. It is one thing to design, it’s another to make it shoot.

Dave Kiff
Pacific Tool & Gauge
541-826-5808"

lastRites
The best thing for you to do is find a good barrel manufacturer in the length and weight you want and don't get caught up in the "If it's not SAMMI it's no good." The information given by Dave Kiff pretty much sums it up. I will say that I myself have a Satern 24" barrel that is super accurate and I also bought, on a super sale, an Alexander SS fluted 16" barrel that I use for the inexpensive Russian 6.5 Grendel ammo. The 16" barreled carbine is really light and should make a good hunter or walk about rifle.  http://www.shopalexanderarms.com/Barrels-6_5_Grendel_16_Lite_Barrel.html   --- not on sale but still inexpensive.
View Quote
I've never seen any of the alternative throats that can outshoot a 6.5 Grendel SAAMI throat, and I've shot a lot of different 6.5 Grendel and variant chamber barrels.

He also has another claim where he takes credit for the compound throat in a 6mm benchers cartridge, describing how accurate it is and is insensitive to projectile shape-the whole purpose of the SAAMi chamber with magazine COL limited restrictions of the AR15.

He also bragged about sending barrel makers some other chamber with no standardization, when they specifically asked for SAAMI reamers.

I have had this problem in the past with .308 Winchester and .223 Wylde reamers provided by PTG to the shops I got barrels or custom rifles from.

Results?  Too tight chambers, short throats, blown primers, even with short COLs for the .308 and .223 in the magazine, with plenty of room left.

Same thing happened when we did the first 86 unit Lilja group buy.  We told Lilja that a SAAMI reamer was a deal-breaker for us, since it's the proven chamber in the cartridge, with tons of different reamers tested before settling on one that actually worked with both secant and tangent ogive pills restricted to AR15 magazine length restrictions.

Guess what happened?  PTG sent Lilja some abortion reamer that I don't even recognize, like a .264 LBC but with a freebore closer to a 6.5x47 Lapua, which is one of the worst things you can do for accuracy.

I suspect PTG sent that reamer under good faith, without Lilja knowing they were being bent over.

I had 23" bull barrels bedded into tight-fitting billet uppers with known accurate loads that wouldn't shoot under 1" at 100yds, shot off a BR rest with solid rear bag, with Geissele trigger and me and another BR shooter behind the guns.  I just checked the groups again-they look like patterns more than groups.

Lilja ate the barrels that people weren't happy with, didn't blame anyone, and replaced any that people asked to be replaced with ones cut with a Manson SAAMI reamer.

I got a replacement for that 23" bull rifle, pulled the original, placed that one in, and proceeded to fire rapid 5rd groups into the .3s.  The other shooter printed several sub 1/2 MOA groups out of the gate.





Link Posted: 4/2/2017 3:48:36 PM EDT
If someone tells you that their chamber shoots better than the SAAMI chamber, what they are saying is that they have done more testing than Alexander Arms from the early days, where Bill literally went through pallets of barrels and $11,000+ in reamers of all different types, trying to find the best combination of reliability and accuracy across a wide range of bullets.

Any claims to that end are way out in left field.  PTG doesn't have the time to cover down on one specific chamber with all the different chambers they have to make reamers for.

It's just not a believable claim.

Then to come out and brag about purposely providing the wrong reamer to barrel-makers and rifle builders who are taking the reamers in good faith that they are SAAMI spec, shows a reamer source that is a show-stopper for me personally as a customer.

They make great bottom metal, 6mm PPC bolt conversions, and most of the tooling for the barrel-cutting industry in the US, but I have learned not the trust their reamers even before I got into 6.5 Grendel.

For manufacturers, I would strongly recommend investing in optical comparator instrumentation to verify reamers are within your specs that were ordered before letting those reamers get near a barrel, no matter the chambering.

It will solve a lot of problems in the QC process from the front end, rather than having to have customers call up and complain about poor accuracy or unsafe conditions, which is what we see all the time with the abortion chambers.
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 6:36:17 PM EDT
Received reply back concerning the port size and he was almost certain that it was .90 which I assumed a typo.  Scrapped that idea and plunked down for a 16"AA as it will be cheaper for me to just strip an erroneous upper that needs a new barrel anyways.  Now it's just a wait see when it shows up.
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 10:15:47 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
If someone tells you that their chamber shoots better than the SAAMI chamber, what they are saying is that they have done more testing than Alexander Arms from the early days, where Bill literally went through pallets of barrels and $11,000+ in reamers of all different types, trying to find the best combination of reliability and accuracy across a wide range of bullets.

Any claims to that end are way out in left field.  PTG doesn't have the time to cover down on one specific chamber with all the different chambers they have to make reamers for.

It's just not a believable claim.

Then to come out and brag about purposely providing the wrong reamer to barrel-makers and rifle builders who are taking the reamers in good faith that they are SAAMI spec, shows a reamer source that is a show-stopper for me personally as a customer.

They make great bottom metal, 6mm PPC bolt conversions, and most of the tooling for the barrel-cutting industry in the US, but I have learned not the trust their reamers even before I got into 6.5 Grendel.

For manufacturers, I would strongly recommend investing in optical comparator instrumentation to verify reamers are within your specs that were ordered before letting those reamers get near a barrel, no matter the chambering.

It will solve a lot of problems in the QC process from the front end, rather than having to have customers call up and complain about poor accuracy or unsafe conditions, which is what we see all the time with the abortion chambers.
View Quote
I'm trying to figure out why or how you (or anyone) can claim that the little compound throat that's in the 6.5 Grendel SAMMI barrel suddenly makes it such a great breakthrough in accuracy. I can understand getting a top quality barrel and expecting it to shoot well but to say that little step in the throat makes it so much better is questionable and I would like to see you or Mr. Alexander explain it so we can actually see there is a reason for us to Think of the SAMMI barrel as something actually better. It seems funny to me that there are no other rifles of any type with a compound throat. I own an Alexander barrel and don't see anything special except the price was darn good and that's the reason I posted the URL for the 16" barrel so "lastRites" might think about it. I really don't want to get into any discussion about problems with stuck bullets, problems with carbon fouling at that step, etc. What I would like to see is a little less fan boy and a little more "across the board" discussion of all the different types of available 6.5 Grendel barrels. Alexander Arms is not the only deal in town for those looking for 6.5 Grendel or Grendel II uppers or barrels.


I also have a Satern 6.5 grendel II barrel that shoots lights out with fatory loads or my longer handloads and I just starting out with it. The target below is a first time out with handloads.

That's 5 shots but only 100 yards. Nothing to write home about.
Link Posted: 4/2/2017 11:42:23 PM EDT
The compound throat was adopted to provide a chamber limited by the AR15 magazine well restrictions that would shoot both tangent ogive and secant ogive bullets well.

One of the original problems was that different experimental chambers would shoot bullets like the 90gr TNT really well, but not the 123gr Scenar.

He almost walked away from the whole thing after trying every conventional and oddball chamber approach he could think of, because he didn't want something that only appealed to target shooters and not hunters, or vice versa.

It has nothing to do with being a fan boy, and everything to do with actual challenges of getting this thing to work in the AR15 with a wide range of projectiles.

You can hand-load to your specific chamber with a bullet, post the single group, and say it compares well, don't see why compound throat is needed.

To actually build the rifles as a manufacturer, with the wide range of 6.5mm bullets on the market required a different approach in order for it to be successful.

The Les Baer rifles shoot extremely well with a given range of projectile shapes, and I'm sure you could find hand loads of some other bullets that would shoot well too.

With the .295" neck, they won't feed as reliably with ammo like the steel case, which has varying thickness due to the lacquer.

This is another reason that gets overlooked as to why there is a compound throat.

The 6.5 Grendel was meant from the start to be eventually fed with steel cased ammo so that it would gain widespread reception from the market.

In order to have an accurate and reliable gun that will handle steel cased ammo, you need a generous neck, but some way to align the projectile concentric with the bore.

The compound throat does this, while conventional throats do not.

Full auto was also another consideration engineered into the solution.

Considering the sample sizes I have personally shot, I have seen that the SAAMI chamber shoots a wide variety of projectile shapes and weights consistently well, whereas the other chambers are hit and miss.  Some of them with the right ammo shoot amazingly well like your group, whereas others just won't group under an inch with the exact same ammo.

I have built and tested a lot of different barrels, including multiple samples from:

Satern with SAAMI chamber
Satern with unknown chamber/short throat
Bartlein SAAMI
Lilja with unknown chamber
Lilja with SAAMI
AA Shaw (older button rifle option)
AA new button rifled pipes
Specialized Dynamics SAAMI
Criterion SAAMI
BHW .264 LBC-AR
BHW SAAMI
Underground Tactical with unknown chamber

So after all of these samples over the years, what I have seen is that the SAAMI chambers just shoot extremely well most of the time, or at least MOA in the lower priced options.  A few of the other chambers have shot very well, while many of them have not.  

I have shot composite groups at 200yds with 2 different factory loads in a 10rd group that still were under 1.5 MOA (2.95"), all of which would be minute of heart shot on a deer.  That was with 120gr and 123gr bullets from totally different factory loads, different brass even.

On one rifle that I mentioned, where we replaced the bull fluted barrel 1-for-1 and the only change was the chamber, it went from not shooting under an inch to sub-1/2 MOA gun.  Same Lilja barrel, same profile, flutes, everything.

Anyone can go take a single sample and probably find a load that works really well, post the best group, and think there is nothing to the SAAMI chamber.

I was a skeptic, but I'm not anymore.  The only thing I fan boy over is results, then pass on what I have seen for everyone else to benefit if they want.

Also, nowhere will you find me saying that AA is the only company making Grendel barrels, and I have spent years on this site listing as many suppliers as possible when people ask.

They are the originator who have laid down a boat load of research, development, testing, and evaluation to make the thing work in the AR15 though, most of which goes over people'e heads unnoticed.

I have barrels from all over the place.  I have found myself realizing that AA was right over the years when I doubted them about different aspects of the design.
Link Posted: 4/3/2017 2:38:55 PM EDT
For what it's worth...

I just built my first 6.5 Grendel.  It's my 7th AR-pattern rifle in the collection, only one of which was 'store bought' and the rest were all assembled on my bench.  Based on reputation in the local shooting community I bought a Satern 24" cut rifled barrel.  It's a bull barrel and has a very nice finish.  I did my best to collect premium parts for this rifle as I wanted a half-mile or better precision platform.  On my first trip to the range with it, I was rolling Hornady Black ammo (123 grain ELD-Match).  After getting some velocity readings and a 100 yard zero (10 shots total), I got situated and pushed the platform out to 400, 600 and ultimately 880 yards.  I was fighting a gusty breeze that was beyond my abilities as a shooter so had a few misses at 880.  But with strong repeatability the barrel performed flawlessly.  After enjoying 600 and 880 for a while I returned to 'zero' and shot a cluster at 100.  I can't seem to upload but had a three shot group with centers inside of 0.5", less than 1/2 MOA.  I've got some handloads in the works and will plan to push this rifle out to 1000 if I get calmer winds.  

Satern really does make a great barrel.
Link Posted: 4/3/2017 5:26:11 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
For what it's worth...

I just built my first 6.5 Grendel.  It's my 7th AR-pattern rifle in the collection, only one of which was 'store bought' and the rest were all assembled on my bench.  Based on reputation in the local shooting community I bought a Satern 24" cut rifled barrel.  It's a bull barrel and has a very nice finish.  I did my best to collect premium parts for this rifle as I wanted a half-mile or better precision platform.  On my first trip to the range with it, I was rolling Hornady Black ammo (123 grain ELD-Match).  After getting some velocity readings and a 100 yard zero (10 shots total), I got situated and pushed the platform out to 400, 600 and ultimately 880 yards.  I was fighting a gusty breeze that was beyond my abilities as a shooter so had a few misses at 880.  But with strong repeatability the barrel performed flawlessly.  After enjoying 600 and 880 for a while I returned to 'zero' and shot a cluster at 100.  I can't seem to upload but had a three shot group with centers inside of 0.5", less than 1/2 MOA.  I've got some handloads in the works and will plan to push this rifle out to 1000 if I get calmer winds.  

Satern really does make a great barrel.
View Quote
Lucky guy! I'm an old fart with some disabilities and they caught up with me just when I was planning a trip to the range this last weekend. I bought some of that Hornady black ammo and really wanted to try it out -- darn. Don't ever miss a chance to have fun -- life has a tendency to change real fast.
Link Posted: 4/11/2017 11:25:05 PM EDT
Mine's an 18" .264 LBC Liberty barrel and it's been great so far.  I've not had the chance to stretch it out past 200 yards but now that we've finally acquired a spotting scope, stretching it's legs are next.  I have nothing bad to say about it.
Link Posted: 5/15/2017 11:00:06 PM EDT
There are many fanatics out there that you just have to ignore as they are so invested in one they ignore all evidence to the contrary of there position. I find all the champers shot well with the wide variety of bullets given the right powder for the bullet.

Heres a spreadsheet with over 120 results from real shooters. It contains make of barrel and length. Tons of good results with Satern Liberty barrels.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1IJ99k4Kei86K7BmQGqezj67EA4UJ-cYlN8V6_NH0jqE/edit#gid=471314637
Link Posted: 5/18/2017 12:47:29 PM EDT
"I was a skeptic, but I'm not anymore. The only thing I fan boy over is results, then pass on what I have seen for everyone else to benefit if they want"

And results is the only thing that truly matters. Whether a $190 barrel, or a $690, or this chamber or that chamber. If it shoots, its what we want. Too many folks get caught up in brands for the purpose of saying they have this or that, keeping up with the joneses, or playing Barbie with their AR. Meanwhile I'm over here trying to shoot bugholes and could care less on the equipment so as long as it is doing what I need it to do. And its taken me too long to come to that reality. Well here I am, with my no name barrel, where I've shot .75Moa group at 600 yards consistently several times out now. Need to get to a class, I bet it will shrink with some coaching.
Link Posted: 5/18/2017 3:49:54 PM EDT
I want a SAAMI chamber and .136 bolt.  Partially because that is how they were designed and partially because it will (in a small way) help kill off all the goofy homebrew crap that confuses people and scares them away from the caliber.

How many different chambers are there for other cartridges?  .223 has what three?  .223rem, 5.56 NATO and .223 Wilde.  All clear names with no monkeying around.  Grendel has Grendel 1, Grendel 2, .264LBC and then a myriad of different other reamers floating around and then you get into the different bolts.  It is WAY more complicated than it should be... everyone wants a piece of the pie.
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