Grendel/Sako STR Questions

Discussion in 'General Sako Discussions' started by Dave Buffington, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. Dave Buffington

    Dave Buffington Member

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    Hi Folks!

    From the fertile imagination of George Kellgren – the designer behind Kel-Tec firearms – here is one of the most interesting Sako rifles I’ve ever seen: the Grendel SRT.

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    I knew Sako had sold actions to companies like Anschütz and Browning, I had absolutely no knowledge of the Grendel/Sako until one popped up at a local auction. Information on these guns is scarce, and even with one in my hands, I have more questions than answers. So I hope the folks here can help …

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    The action is an AII (A2?) action and carries a Sako serial number. Can anyone identify when it was made? The Blue Book of Gun Values the guns were discontinued in 1989.


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    I’ve read that the guns used Douglas barrels. However, without removing the stock from the action, I can not find any identification on the barrel. No name. No proof marks. No cartridge specification. The Blue Book of Gun Values says these guns were chambered in .243 and .308. The auction house says this gun is chambered in .308. (Yes, I’ll check that.)

    Oh, and while we're talking about the barrel ... anyone have a clue about the device at the end of the muzzle? It's kind of a muzzle brake, but what does the collar behind the brake do? It turns about 1/4 turn, but doesn't appear to do anything.

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    The glass-reinforced-plastic stock is unlike any synthetic stock I’ve seen before. For starters, it features an integral 9 (10?) round box magazine. The trigger offers the expected Sako sweetness, breaking consistently at 2 pounds, 12 ounces. (Is it adjustable?)

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    Yes, the stock folds in, of course, a unique way. A bolt above the hinge secures the hinge while a flexible shaft under the butt makes tools unnecessary.

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    All answers, comments and suggestions are welcome. Once I confirm the chambering and get a scope installed, I’ll get it to the range, and of course, I’ll post a report.

    Enjoy!
    Dave

    P.S. Please forgive the error in the title. Dyslexic fingers at work =)
     

  2. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    These show up every now and then. All I have seen have been chambered for .308. They were supposedly available in 20, 22, and 24-inch barrels, but again, all I've seen have had 20-inch barrels. I have no idea how many may have been made. The muzzle attachment is a flash hider. Whether a suppressor can be mounted to the barrel is a question I can't answer, but probably so.

    Sako used the designation A-II from the late 1970's through the end of the A-series run in the late 1980's. So, 1989 sounds about right for the discontinuation of the Grendel. The only thing different about this action from any other Sako A-II is that Grendel discarded the bottom metal and magazine box to use the integral magazine of larger capacity. I can't say who made the barrel, but everything other than the action was made by someone other than Sako.

    A note of interest is that this is the only Sako I'm aware of having been used as a prop in a movie. I can't recall which movie it was, but it was mentioned here on the forum a while back.
     
  3. Dave Buffington

    Dave Buffington Member

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    It appears to chamber .308 properly, and 20 inches sounds about right, depending on how you account for the muzzle device.

    Thanks!
    Dave
     
  4. L61R

    L61R SCC President Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    I shot one of those a few years back and I must say it kicked like no other .308 I’ve shot.

    I’m not shy of recoil but this had a surprising recoil for such a gentle caliber.

    But a fun little rifle it is.

    If I remember correctly, I think I’ve seen a 6,5x55SE with a Grendel stock but I might very well be wrong.

    Good Luck!

    Jim
     
  5. FLT

    FLT Member

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    That’s interesting , it’s got to be pretty rare.
     
  6. Dave Buffington

    Dave Buffington Member

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    Yeah, I'm kinda dreading that ... The gun weighs a hair under 7.5 pounds. Glass-reinforced plastic is extremely stiff. And the recoil pad is small and crude, compared to modern pads like the amazing Browning Inflex.

    All of which leads me to wonder ... who is this gun for? It wouldn't be my first choice for high-volume/bench/long-distance shooting, but it would be a great woods-walking, mountain-hiking rifle. It's compact, moderate weight, accurate (hopefully) and pretty much indestructible.

    Enjoy!
    Dave
     
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  7. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Its appeal was to paramilitarists. It was just a couple of decades early to ride the wave of "black gun" enthusiasm (a wave I'll be happy to see subside.)
     
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  8. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    We had one in the shop once, GREAT Gun, way ahead of it's time.
    Originally designed as a sniper rifle for military.

    Very accurate, not bad to shoot,
    I don't recall any increase in recoil. One of the guns I wish I'd kept/bought. It's the only one I've actually, physically seen/held/shot.
     
  9. Dave Buffington

    Dave Buffington Member

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    Hi Folks!

    Here's a very preliminary range report based on just 20 rounds shot at 50 yards. (The longer ranges were packed with hunters. Rifle deer season starts in Pennsylvania tomorrow!)

    - For today, I shot a very middle-of-the-road, advertised-to-work-in-anything load: Hornady "Black" 165 grain with an advertised muzzle velocity of 2,700. The scope was an older 3-9x Leupold Vari-X II set at 9 power. I'd rate the shooting bench, front rest and rear rest combo as a 7 out of 10. Winds were light and gusting. The temp was 39 degrees F.

    - Although I was not shooting for groups, shots were hitting pretty much exactly where I expected them to. I have little doubt this gun will shoot under 1 Moa at 100 yards with the right optics and load.

    - Recoil was unremarkable. (Yay!)

    - However, there isn't a lot of space between the trigger guard and the wrist/grip. So, if you're not holding on tightly, which I don't do when shooting from rests, the trigger guard gives your right hand a nice little rap.

    - The internal magazine gave me a bit of trouble. Three times it failed to feed properly. I _think_ the front of the follower is dragging against the magazine box. I'll check that later. Maybe some lube will help.

    - The trigger is delightful, perfect for a working rifle.

    I don't want to go overboard with the optics, but I do think I'll equip the gun with a bit more glass. Then I'll try it at 100 yards.

    Enjoy!
    Dave
     
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  10. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    I had one of those for a couple of years back in the 90's. It was very accurate, with consistent sub-MOA groups. As far as I know, the information that has been offered above is correct. Grendel was a predecessor to Kel-tec. Unless everything I've seen over the past 25 years is wrong, the barrels did, indeed, come from Douglas. A variety of barrel lengths was cataloged but the 20" was by far the most common. It was cataloged in .243 but very few were made. I seem to recall seeing a .243 for sale on Gunbroker several years ago, but I can't be sure.

    I believe the knurled nut at the base of the muzzle brake is a lock for the brake. I don't recall whether it's a lock nut or some kind of latch with a locking notch.

    The rifle was intended as a medium-caliber hunting rifle that would fit inside a backpack, as well as the paramilitary appeal. It has considerable merit as a survival rifle in places like Alaska where large animals may be encountered. The spigot in front of the forend is for a clamp-on bipod. Mine had one, but I've seen very few lately that retain the bipod. I do not know if the bipod was standard or an option. Here's a photo of my Grendel, from the late 90's or early 2000's. Scope is a 6x Zeiss Diatal-C.
    Grendel4.jpg Grendel2.jpg
     
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  11. Dave Buffington

    Dave Buffington Member

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    That's a good looking rig! I have inquiries in to both Keltec and Douglas, and hopefully they'll help resolve the mystery of the muzzle device.

    Thanks to all!
    Dave
     
  12. kirkbridgershooters

    kirkbridgershooters Well-Known Member

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  13. L61R

    L61R SCC President Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Kirk, I just spilled my morning coffee!! Thanks! :D Always good to start the week with a laugh!!:)

    Jim
     

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