A 6.5 Grendel AR is relatively similar to a 5.56mm AR-15… Relatively. You just need a 6.5 Grendel barrel, bolt, and magazines. Everything else is pretty much the same.
But, since the bolt is one of those key components that needs to be changed, it’s smart to size up the best 6.5 Grendel bolts and get the best one you can afford.
Fortunately, you have plenty of good options.
There’s just one little catch to be aware of: you only need a 6.5 Grendel bolt. The bolt carrier can be the same carrier that you use in your .223/5.56mm rifle.
That COULD save you a bit of money. However, most bolts come with a bolt carrier. But, you can simply use the included bolt carrier as a backup, if you already have one.
SPOILER—now, if you just want to know which bolt to get so you can get out of here and go shoot, get the PSA 6.5 Grendel Nitride Bolt Carrier Group. It’s affordable. And it works well.
If you’re looking for something different, or maybe you insist on getting a standalone bolt, that’s cool. Just keep reading. We’ve got all the best 6.5 Grendel bolts lined up for you to sort through.
Top 6.5 Grendel Bolts on the Market Today
The Best 6.5 Grendel Bolts Reviews: Better Ballistics
The overall best 6.5 Grendel bolt is up for review first. The other best 6.5 Grendel bolts will be racked in order of price.
If your goal is getting the most bolt for your buck, read the first reviews.
If you prioritize getting the best bolt, period, read the reviews near the end.
Let’s send some bolts home.
1. PSA 6.5 Grendel Nitride Bolt Carrier Group - Overall Best 6.5 Grendel Bolt
If you’re wary of buying Palmetto State Armory stuff, I understand. However, I’ve handled and used a lot of PSA components. And their components are built very well. The main issues with PSA hardware usually stem from assembly issues.
But the PSA 6.5 Grendel Nitride Bolt Carrier Group is built by the same manufacturers that make their other components. And it never touches the PSA assembly line. So it’s a reliable component.
The main thing I really like about this bolt and bolt carrier is that it’s a really affordable black nitride bolt. Black nitride is my favorite finish for a bolt.
The finish is smoother and looks cooler than a phosphate finish. The finish gives you a nice, smooth action with minimal lubrication. And it cleans easily.
Also, black nitride is more economical than something fancier like a diamond like coating. Black nitride is just the best blend of affordability and performance.
Other than the black nitride finish, this is pretty much a standard 6.5 Grendel bolt carrier group. There’s not a whole lot of bells and whistles. Just basic, reliable operation.
So, if you just want an affordable bolt that works, this is the best 6.5 Grendel bolt to get.
2. TRYBE Defense Mil Spec Complete 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group - Budget 6.5 Grendel Bolt
I’ve been interested in TRYBE Defense components for a while now. I’ve tried out their barrels and some of their other equipment. So far, so good.
So I feel good about recommending the TRYBE Defense Mil Spec Complete 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group. It’s quite affordable. And it’s a solid bolt carrier group.
The bolt itself is 9310 steel. And TRYBE stresses that the steel has been properly heat treated to ensure that your bolt holds up as long as it’s supposed to.
Then, the bolt and everything else in this bolt carrier is black nitride coated. And the nitride coating is smooth and evenly applied. It looks really great and holds up well.
Now, the bolt itself is a standard type 2 bolt.
However, the bolt carrier is shaped to reduce friction inside of your upper receiver a bit. It gives you industry standard durability, with the benefit of a smoother action.
One more thing: it might be a small detail. But the staking on the gas key is pretty strong. I’ve seen more aggressively staked gas key bolts. The problem with those is that the gas key is basically impossible to remove, if you need to replace it.
The gas key on this TRYBE Defense bolt carrier is well staked, but not so deeply that you couldn’t replace it if need be.
Overall, this is an outstanding bolt (and bolt carrier) for the money. You’ll get a level of fit and function that’s uncommon at this price point.
3. Aero Precision AR15 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group - Value 6.5 Grendel Bolt
The Aero Precision AR15 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group is easily one of the best bolts for the money. I’ve experimented with other bolts. But Aero Precision bolt carriers have been one of my go-to components for quite a while now.
There are a couple of reasons I really like these bolt carriers: the steel and quality control.
First, the bolt is made of 158 Carpenter steel. That’s the steel that’s specified in the military contracts. It’s the original tool steel for AR bolts.
I like 158 Carpenter steel bolts simply because I’ve experienced fewer issues with them than I’ve seen with 9310 bolts.
Now, don’t get me wrong, 9310 steel bolts are usually very durable and high performance. And modern 9310 bolts are really good. I just like Carpenter 158 bolts because the manufacturing process for C158 steel is very refined at this point.
However, the big deal with this bolt is that it’s both magnetic particle inspected (MPI) and high pressure tested (HPT). That means that they test fire the bolt, then check the bolt for cracks and deformation to ensure that it’s manufactured properly.
This is one of the most affordable bolts that you can get with quality control that includes both MPI and HPT. It’s almost guaranteed that you’ll get a quality, fully functioning bolt.
Lastly, the bolt and bolt carrier are black nitride coated, which reduces friction and makes your BCG easier to clean. Also, it looks cool.
Overall, this Aero Precision bolt carrier is a tad more expensive than the most inexpensive bolts. But the few extra bucks are more than worth it to get the sort of extensive quality control and steel that you get with this bolt carrier group.
4. ODIN Works Nitride Bolt Carrier Group - 9310 Steel 6.5 Grendel Bolt
The ODIN Works Nitride Bolt Carrier Group might not be the least expensive 9310 bolt carrier. However, it’s one of the most quality controlled 9310 steel bolts you can get.
That means that this bolt gets both MPI and HPT during the quality control process. The quality control ensures that you get a completely functional bolt without any issues.
But wait, there’s more.
The bolt carrier has chrome lining. This might be the only bolt carrier at this price point with chrome lining.
The chrome lining makes the inside of your bolt carrier more corrosion resistant. Additionally, the chrome lining reduces the friction between your bolt and bolt carrier for a smoother, more reliable action.
Lastly, nearly all the components in this bolt carrier group are black nitride coated. And the nitride coating is super thick and smooth. It’s a very durable and friction reducing finish that requires relatively little cleaning.
Overall, this ODIN Works bolt carrier group gets you a very tightly quality controlled component, with a few extra perks that make for a more reliable 6.5 Grendel rifle.
5. Faxon Firearms Faxon 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group - Tactical 6.5 Grendel Bolts
The Faxon Firearms Faxon 6.5 Grendel Bolt Carrier Group is another one of my favorite bolt carriers. And you can get the standalone bolt if you’d like: Faxon Firearms 6.5 Grendel 9310 Bolt.
The star of the show is the bolt. That’s why you can get the bolt as a standalone component.
It’s a 9310 steel bolt. However, the claim is that the 9310 steel is actually stronger than C158 steel. This is possible. With proper heat treating, 9310 steel can be about 5% to 7% stronger than C158 steel.
In short, this bolt is more durable than a C158 steel bolt.
Also, the extractor is machined from S7 tool steel. It’s a super durable steel which ensures that your extractor will hold up for as long as possible.
Additionally, the bolt, carrier, and other components are salt bath nitride coated. It’s a solid black nitride finish that’s great for reducing friction and reducing cleaning requirements.
Lastly, and it’s a small detail, but it shows the quality of this bolt carrier group: all the surfaces on this bolt carrier group are incredibly smooth and well finished. The quality of the machining is evident just by looking at this Faxon Firearms bolt carrier group.
Yes, this component is a tad bit more expensive. But the materials, construction, and finish are outstanding. You’re definitely getting your money’s worth from this bolt or BCG.
6. JP Enterprises AR-15 6.5 Grendel/6MM ARC Full Mass Bolt Carrier Group - Competition 6.5 Grendel Bolt
The JP Enterprises AR-15 6.5 Grendel/6MM ARC Full Mass Bolt Carrier Group is built by one of the best and most popular competition component manufacturers in the world. And this is a great bolt carrier for a competition gun.
You can get this as a standalone bolt: JP Enterprises Enhanced Bolt Assembly Group. However, I recommend getting the complete bolt carrier group.
First, the bolt.
This is a 9310 steel bolt. And JP Enterprises does an incredible job of heat treating their components. So you’re getting as much durability as you can get from 9310 steel.
However, the thing that makes this an enhanced bolt is that there are tiny relief cuts on the locking lugs that smooth out the locking and unlocking action for more reliable operation.
But the bolt carrier itself has some features that improve operation, as well.
The bolt carrier is shaped to retain the proper bolt carrier mass. But the shape increases the bearing surface to reduce bolt carrier tilt, smooth out your bolt carrier movement, and reduce wear on your upper receiver and BCG.
Last detail: all the components are QPQ coated. This finish is similar to a black nitride finish. But it’s more durable and smoother. The coating on all the components in this bolt carrier group holds up longer and reduces friction more than most other finishes.
Admittedly, this JP Enterprises bolt carrier group is quite expensive. But the attention to detail is impressive. And this bolt carrier group will give you the most reliable and longest lifespan possible for a competition rifle, or any other type of 6.5 Grendel gun.
Your bolt is one of the most important aspects of your 6.5 Grendel rifle. It’s the central piece that makes your rifle function. So it’s wise to dig up the best 6.5 Grendel bolts that you can find and select the best option, based on your needs. A matching accessory would be great to improve accuracy.
If you just want an affordable 6.5 Grendel bolt that’s good enough for most rifles, get the PSA 6.5 Grendel Nitride Bolt Carrier Group. It’s affordable. And it’s got many features that you find on higher priced bolts.
Is your 6.5 Grendel rifle still sitting in the garage with an empty upper receiver? Time to finish that bad boy. Get a 6.5 Grendel bolt and get to shooting.