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Epic Hydra-Shok Failure

Discussion in 'Caliber Corner' started by mclaren, Mar 3, 2010.

  1. mclaren

    mclaren

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    Got a very expensive box of 110 grain personal defense low recoil in .38 special. These are standard pressure, non+P.
    I tested them through water jugs, just want to set that straight. Maybe these rounds are 100% through denim and gel (doubt it) but in plain water jugs they have failed miserably. Out of about 15 that I tested only 2 expanded, and not very well. They just barely opened up. I recovered all of the others, they just plain failed to expand.
    Maybe a snubbie doesnt give enough velocity to open them up. They seem to be of very light construction. Personal Protection and a 6" Barrel dont traditionally go together.
    I am disappointed, I will try some 135 Grain +P Gold dots next.

    I realize the water jug test is only really valid to a point, and that its not gel. Every other quality round I have tested with this method has performed very similarly to if it were gel. The only other I had problems with is the PMC Starfire, wont carry it.

    XTP, PDX1, Golden Saber, Pow'Rball, Gold Dot, in other calibers have all been 100% through jugs. insofar as the results are consistant the test to me, is valid and means something.
     
  2. Glock19Fan

    Glock19Fan Cool Guy

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    I cant remember testing anything from a 2 inch .38SPl that expanded. Including Winchesters 125 grain +P load.

    Look for Speers 125 +P or preferably 135 grain +P load. The 135 is IMO the best performing .38spl load out there.
     

  3. xrmattaz

    xrmattaz

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    I'd certainly steer clear of angry water jugs.
     
  4. mclaren

    mclaren

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    I'll be sure to get some volunteers for live flesh testing. That way ill be ready when real life people get angry. I'll steer clear of the angry gelatin blocks as well, the ammo industry seems very interested in deterring those.
     
  5. fredj338

    fredj338

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    It doesn't surprise me. Getting a 110gr bullet to expand @ non +P vel from a snub is unlikely, Hydrashok or whatever. I have had goo luck w/ the old school 158grLSWCHP+P load in my snubs. Even at 800fps, they will expand in wetpack, bal.gel. or angry water jugs.:supergrin:
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2010
  6. anyplainjoe

    anyplainjoe Nobody special.

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    There is a special short barrel Gold Dot load for 38 snubbies.
     
  7. mclaren

    mclaren

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    These loads hit really high on paper. so I need to go heavier anyway right? I saw some standard pressure aguila's I think they were 158 grain SJHP. I guess with a short barrel velocity will never be my friend so I have to depend on weight. I want to try the 135+P Gold Dots anyway just to see how they do but heavier is where Im going.
    Getting into .38 Special really opens up the ammo selections. I have many more bullet designs at my disposal than swith my autos. Very cool
     
  8. xrmattaz

    xrmattaz

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    Light .38 Special bullets will often hit higher than aimed. Smith and Wesson designs their snubby revolvers around the 158gr. bullet, as far as point of aim/impact is concerned.

    Try the old 158gr. lead HP, it's been stopping bad guys for 50 years or so.
     
  9. Berto

    Berto woo woo

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    THe fed hydra shok 110gr is really not a very good load. Low velocity, low bullet weight and no expansion. If it won't open in water, it won't open.
    The FBI load, esp from Remington, the 135gr Gold Dot, DT and Buffalo Bore all have decent .38sp loads that will really perform.
     
  10. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

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    This was our issued duty round for years... works very, very well for it's intended purpose, still carry it in my .38's snubbies.

    Jack
     
  11. dougader

    dougader

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    Water is a hard target than gel. As noted above, if it isn't going to expand in water then it probably won't expand in gel either.

    I'd rather use something that penetrated better and work on the expansion 2nd.
     
  12. cowboywannabe

    cowboywannabe you savvy?

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    not all bullets are designed to expand at lower than standard velocities.

    never count on expansion anyway.
     
  13. stengun

    stengun

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    Howdy,

    :rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:

    Paul
     
  14. fredj338

    fredj338

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    Odd, usually the lighter bullets will impact lower. Most 38sp are regulated w/ 158gr std vel ammo, so lighter bullets impact lower. My own snub,, SP101, hits low w/ anything lighter than 158gr bullets.
     
  15. mclaren

    mclaren

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    It seems that if they are light weight and purport to be for personal protection and low recoil, that they would be designed for snubbies. I would say that 2" and shorter .38 specials are carried for protection 10-1 over 4+ inch guns. And if I am carrying a 4" or longer barrel gun the hottest of the hot .38+P loads will have minimal recoil. It is in the light snubbies that low recoil become a good selling point/design feature. Not to mention that most recoil sensitive people are size and weight sensitive and will be carrying a smaller short barrel gun.
    It just seems obvious to me that these are marketed to snub nose gun owners and should perform as such.
    If I want to play the penetration game, I will go with a flat nose very heavy for caliber hard cast bullet. I may end up going this way, its not a bad idea
    But if I am paying out the a** for super duper fancy schmancy expanders, I expect expansion. If I know I can't count on expansion, I sure will not depend on a lowly 110 grains to penetrate.
    So I guess that really makes these rounds worthless no matter how you cut it.

    Anyone know of a good broad meplat heavy bone breaker in .38 special, At least 158 grains? I think the hollow point in a heavy cast bullet borders on pointless.

    This is a whole new learning curve, I am not used to compensating for shear lack of power. I guess thats the price you pay for carrying such a small light gun. I still like it, It beats a slingshot.
     
  16. anyplainjoe

    anyplainjoe Nobody special.

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  17. Berto

    Berto woo woo

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    There are some good choices for the lightweight snubby, even in std pressure/mild recoil:

    Federal Nyclad 125gr (nylon coated lead hollowpoint) it gets solid velocity and expands. Penetration is fair, but not great.

    Any 158gr LSWC, it won't have much velocity (about 700-750fps) but will penetrate deep.

    Any of the std pressure Buffalo Bore loads (I'd choose the hardcast wadcutter or FBI load)

    The new Hornady 110gr load looks interesting and promises expansion, but it's still a light bullet and doesn't go very deep.

    +P really expands your choices.