For nitride based devices such as LEDs, high power FETs and laser diodes, single crystal substrates of AlN are highly desirable. While the sublimation technique is suitable for growing bulk AlN crystals, appropriate seeds are also necessary for growing large diameter oriented boules. 4H- and 6H-SiC substrates which are readily available commercially can potentially be implemented as seeds for bulk AlN growth. However, issues regarding SiC decomposition at high temperatures, thermal expansion mismatch, single crystal growth, etc. need to be addressed. Towards this end, a series of growth experiments have been carried out in a resistively heated reactor using on and off-axis 4H- and 6H-SiC substrates as seeds for AlN growth from the vapor phase. Several hundred microns thick AlN layers have been grown under different growth conditions. Synchrotron white beam x-ray topography (SWBXT) has been used to map the defect distribution in the grown layers and high resolution triple axis x-ray diffraction (HRTXD) experiments were carried out to record reciprocal space maps from which tilt, mismatch and strain data can be obtained. These results are analyzed with respect to the growth conditions in order to gain a better understanding of this growth process.