Federal Hydra-Shok?


May 23, 2007, 03:43 AM
Is Federal Hydra-Shok a good for use in self-defense?

When I first picked up my handgun from the transfer dealer, he showed me Federal Hydra-Shok and Speer Gold Dot. He recommended the Hydra-Shok, which is the one I bought as my non-practice personal defense ammo. My handgun uses 9 mm. Is using Federal Hydra-Shok a good strategy to use for personal self-defense, if the caliber being used is 9 mm? What is the difference between Hydra-Shok and other hollow points? The only difference I can see is a shaft in the middle of the hollow part. What does this shaft do?

How does Hydra-Shok vs. Speer Gold Dot vs. regular hollow points compare in effectiveness and structure?

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May 23, 2007, 04:12 AM
I don't notice much difference between factory hollowpoint ammo. You may want to check out brassfetcher.com, a site that does ballistic gelatin testing on various rounds. Its run by our very own JE223. I think the variance in expansion on the 9mm (9x19) JHP were ~.1"

What you need to do it make sure that your gun will run the ammo you choose to load for self defense.

Go out an buy a few boxes. I'm a little paranoid, so I get roughly 500 rounds and run it through my gun. If there are no blurps, I feel confident enough to carry it. In my mind I'd run at least 250 rounds (equivilant to 5 boxes of plinking ammo) but there will be others that are statisfied with 100rds or even a mere 50.

As I said I am paranoid, so I do make sure to carry at least on mag of full power plinking FMJ ammo that I've been running through my gun.

May 23, 2007, 09:33 AM
In my 9mm I ran Remington Golden Sabres because of better reliability to feed (due to a more rounded nose or some such), but that was my experience with my gun. Yours is sure to be different. I have heard nothing but great reviews for Hydra-Shok, Speer Gold dots and Remington Golden Sabres. That said I run Dold dots or Corbon DPX in my P3AT, Winchester Ranger 155 grain in my .40 and Golden Sbares 230 grain in my .45.
As what said earlier, go out and buy some and make sure they work reliably in your pistol.

May 23, 2007, 09:41 AM

I asked a similar question a while back. FWIW, my nightstand gun has Golden Sabers and my carry gun has Hornady TAP FPD, both 9mm. I got them when they were on sale and could buy a few boxes to check for reliability. Reliability is key, then shot placement. The sky will not fall if you load up with Remington UMC JHPs from Walmart.

May 23, 2007, 09:51 AM
Strat you are right about the walmart jhp's. I pick up the 100 round boxes every once in a while and save them for just in case scenarios. I have about 600 rounds now in .40 and .45.

May 23, 2007, 02:30 PM
I have used Hydra-Shok and golden sabers for many years without any real issues. Then again, my SigSauer P220 45acp seems to shoot damn near anything I throw at it. I usually keep the golden sabers in one gone. Of course, for my P220, I still have some nice "Black Talons" that I am partial to. Later,... Mike...

Ala Dan
May 23, 2007, 04:09 PM
Before the 5.7 x 28 came along, the Secret Service used Federal Hydra-
Shoks on their "Protective Details"; so it must be mighty good. I can't
tell my look'in; but I believe their rounds were of the 124 grain +P variety?

May 23, 2007, 05:29 PM
Check out the HST's They're supposed to be the successor to hydra-shoks. I compared both at a gun show last weekend, the HST's appeared to be much more consistent in the bullet striations for expansion. They almost appeared to be machined vs cast.

May 23, 2007, 05:49 PM
My wife's defense load of choice is 124-gr Hydra-Shok JHP. She shoots it very well, and I believe it's very effective.

I am not enamored of the Federal 135-gr Hydra-Shok style ammunition, though (the ballistics were anemic).

May 23, 2007, 05:56 PM
I don't think there's a lot of difference between most of the premium bullets, with the possible exception of the XTP. I've never been able to get reliable performance from the XTP so I won't use it for self defense. Reliability and accuracy are the most important issues, so the best choice is the one that works best in your particular gun.

My favorite is the Gold Dot. My criteria are first and foremost, reliable feeding. Then I want reliable expansion and penetration in a bullet that doesn't fragment or shed the jacket. For me, the Gold Dot meets my perceived needs.

May 23, 2007, 06:19 PM
I favor the HydraShoks over the others as they seem to run in my guns better than any other with similar ballistic performance. I suggest only that you practice with the same. Expensive, yes, but worth it in the long run. If you absolutely must practice with cheaper stuff, find one that shoots to the same POI and has similar recoil.

124 gr HydraShoks in my G26, and 230 gr in both my .45s. I routinely rotate carry ammo, and sometimes buy 100 rounds or so of ball ammo for the G26 just for fun, but am always careful to fire the last 2 mags with HydraShoks to unlearn any possible bad habits from shooting fun.

May 23, 2007, 06:21 PM
124 gr HydraShoks in my G26, and 230 gr in both my .45s.

I use the same thing in the same guns Glock 19 & 26, Kimber 1911 .45's. Also have 110 Grain for the .38 S&W 442 & 642 and 130 grain for the .357 S&W 686.

May 23, 2007, 06:54 PM
My nightstand gun uses hydra-shok, and my carry guns use Gold dot. Honestly, I trust both of the rounds, and have confidence that they will work equally. as was mentioned above, there is really very little/NO difference when it comes to that!!!

May 23, 2007, 11:29 PM
As a practical matter, I don't think you'll find a heckuva lot of difference between the Hydra-Shok, Golden Saber, Gold Dot, HST, or Tactical Bonded. I carry the latter in 230-gr in my Taurus PT-145 Millennium Pro, as they're supposed to have better expansion characteristics through clothing, and are loaded to maximize performance out of short-barreled weapons.

Get whatever proves 100% reliable in your gun, and gives the best accuracy.

May 23, 2007, 11:47 PM
I've had Hydra Shoks in my guns for almost 2 decades now...IMO good stuff!

May 23, 2007, 11:50 PM
Great stuff!

I bet my life on 'em, and have for a long, long time.

May 24, 2007, 06:00 AM
I also use hydroshocks but ran into a problem with rim lock on one occassion. Make sure they are seated well in the mag.

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