Federal Hydrashock for a Snubnose 38?

Federal Hydrashock for a Snubnose 38?

This is a discussion on Federal Hydrashock for a Snubnose 38? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Are the HP Federal Hydrashock 38's good for a S&W snub nose revolver?...

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Thread: Federal Hydrashock for a Snubnose 38?

  1. #1
    Member Array Ridge Runner's Avatar
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    Mar 2005

    Federal Hydrashock for a Snubnose 38?

    Are the HP Federal Hydrashock 38's good for a S&W snub nose revolver?

  2. #2
    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
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    Dec 2007
    I just got done testing 60 rounds of the new .38 Special Federal Premium Low Recoil 110gr Hydra-Shok JHP's. All were shot out of a S&W 642 Centennial, can't get much snubbier than that. My chrono wouldn't work, so no velocities. The small bullet felt very fast. The box gives the following stats: 980fps/235# at the muzzle, 940/215 @ 25 yards, 910/205 at 50 yards. Bullet trajectory was quoted point on at 25 yards and -1.5 inch at 50 yards. They did not specify barrel length, but I'm guessing since these are marketed as low recoil, they used a short barrel. Perceived recoil was indeed less than her 130gr MC practice ammo and considerably less than her carry 125gr +P semi-jacketed HP's. Penetration was 1" less in compressed paper mulch, but expansion matched the heavier +P round! I'm impressed with the performance, but personally would stick with the +P for myself. Recoil in a defensive scenario isn't much of an issue for me. BUT...quick back-on-target times for my girlfriend were much better with the new lower-recoil loads. I believe we will keep them for her. The time proven Hydra-Shok bullets are another plus, as long as the velocity is fast enough, which it certainly seems to be in this load.
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  3. #3
    VIP Member Array Superhouse 15's Avatar
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    Aug 2006

    Hydra Shok

    Lately it's the only non +p available in a defense load. Winchester and Remingtom list Silvertips and a JHP load, but all seem to be back ordered all the time. I have a stockpile of old Nyclads but they don't last too long carried in speedloaders or speed strips, so all of my spares are 110gr Hydra Shok for those couple of guns I don't carry +P in.

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  5. #4
    Senior Member Array ICTsnub's Avatar
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    May 2007
    I live in a decent sized town (500,000), and have a hard time finding good ammo. I carry .45 and .357, you would think pretty common. I was able to get some Remington .45 when I was in Springfield MO. I went to Kansas City KS for work last week, and found Speer Gold Dot .45, and Buffalo Bore .357 at Cabella's. Wish I could get a soure for Winchester Ranger. I will be spending some time playing with the BuffBore, they claim big velocity, low flash out of 2" guns, and at standard pressure for .38 and .357.

  6. #5
    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    Feb 2007
    I would suggest that before you invest in very much of the Hydroshock ammo, you take a look at the balistics for the various rounds. Having heard a lot of good things about the Federal Hydroshock ammo, I purchased some to try in my Sig 239 40 S&W. I usually have Remington Golden Sabers in my carry guns, but felt the need to try something different. The Hydroshocks shot great but the recoil was noticeably less than the Sabers. When I got home from the range, I looked up the ballistics for the Hydroshocks on Federal's Web Site. I really couldn't believe what I found. For some reason, Federal has the 165 grain, 40 S&W Premium Personal Defense ammo slowed down enough that it only makes 352 ft/lbs of energy at the muzzle. Compare that to the same Federal ammo in a 115 grain 9mm which they list as producing 345 ft/lbs of muzzle energy and you end up with a 40 S&W round making only 7 more ft/lbs of energy than a 9mm. It seems even more uneven when I look at the factory ballistics for the Sabers that I've always carried, 165 grain 40 S&W at 485 ft/lbs of muzzle energy. I really like the looks of the Hydroshock bullet, but I'm not will to give up 133 ft/lbs of energy on a same caliber / same bullet weight comparison. I can't see how any bullet design could make up that much of a difference.

    Just for grins, I looked up the difference between the Hydroshock and the Golden Saber for your 38 Special. The Hydroshock gives 235 ft/lbs of energy with a 110 grain bullet while the Saber makes 264 ft/lbs with a 125 grain bullet.

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  7. #6
    Member Array Plan B's Avatar
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    Aug 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ridge Runner View Post
    Are the HP Federal Hydrashock 38's good for a S&W snub nose revolver?
    In my 442 I carry the Speer Gold Dot short barrel ammo (.38 special, +p, 135 grain, specially designed for barrels under 4").

    They can be purchased fairly reasonably online here --> Ammunition To Go : 20rds - 38 Special Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel 135gr. +P Ammo - $20.95

    Plan B

  8. #7
    Senior Member Array wht06rado's Avatar
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    Mar 2007
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    I carry them in my 642 sometimes. They feel pretty hot, but so does anything else +P out of a snub to me and they shoot to point of aim at 7 yards. But now I carry the old FBI load, Remington 158grn LSWCHP +P.
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  9. #8
    Member Array NEtracker's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
    I use the same stuff as Plan B, in my 642.
    Gold Dot +P 135gr.
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  10. #9
    Member Array alfack's Avatar
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    Feb 2008
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    Try Cheaper Than Dirt. They usually have a good selection on the personal defense type rounds. I just ordered ordered 100 of the 45 ACP 230gr. Hydrashocks from them. The $10 bucks shipping is cheaper than driving all over hell and back, trying to find them.

  11. #10
    Member Array pleasantguywhopacks's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
    Streichers has Gold Dots in several calibers in Speer LE 50 count boxes both +P and standard pressure loads(including the elusive 230gr .45acp). They will ship to non LE but do require adult signature on delivery by UPS.
    I buy from them all the time.
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