The microstructural changes, mechanical properties and residual stress distribution of 7075-T651 Al alloy joined using friction stir welding were investigated in this study. Welding was performed at 900, 1 250, and 1 600 rev/min and 20, 40, and 60 mm/min welding speeds. Mechanical tests were carried out on the welded joints in addition to microstructural examinations performed using a scanning electron microscope. Furthermore, residual stress distribution of the joints was determined by the hole drilling method. Generally, higher tensile strength was obtained at medium rotational and welding speeds. Tunnel defects were formed in the root of the weld seam. At high welding speeds, insufficient filling in the joints led to microvoids and large grain bands on the retreating side of the weld seam. The tensile strength of the welded specimens decreased at the rate of 26-45 % compared to the reference material. Lower residual stresses were determined in the specimens joined at a high rotational speed.