25rds - 38 Special Hornady Critical Lite Defense 90gr. FTX Ammo

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Hornady Ammunition 90 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Ammo Details

This is 38 Special Hornady Critical Defense Lite 90gr. FTX Hollow Point Ammo. The Critical Defense Lite 38 Special load is an effective, reduced recoil option for ANY shooter looking to minimize the felt recoil of their lightweight, compact personal protection revolver. Designed with the same proven components as the Critical Defense line of ammunition, this offering features a 90 grain FTX bullet with a unique PINK Flex Tip! This ammo is nickel coated brass cased, boxer primed, non-magnetic and non-corrosive. This ammo comes packed in 25rd. boxes.

  • Ammo Caliber
    38 Special
  • Manufacturer SKU
    90300
  • Primer Type
  • Muzzle Velocity
    1200
  • Muzzle Energy
  • UPC Barcode
    090255903003
  • Cost Per Round
    $0.92/ppr

Gel test Results

 

We tested this Hornady Ammunition 38 Special ammo by firing five rounds with a S&W 640 with a 2.125-inch barrel into calibrated Clear Ballistics gelatin. Of those five rounds, we discovered the ammo penetrated an average of 13.9-inches into the gelatin. Our test rounds ended the test with an average expanded diameter of 0.452-inches, retaining 99% of the projectile's original weight.

On this page, you'll see video of our tests including photographs that detail the ammunition before/after firing it through a four-layer barrier into gelatin. Also, you'll see how this Hornady Ammunition 38 Special ammunition stacks up compared to other self-defense rounds in 38 Special.

To read more about our testing procedures and processes, please head here.

Unfired versus Fired Round Comparison

Image detailing before and after firing 25rds - 38 Special Hornady Critical Lite Defense 90gr. FTX Ammo Image detailing before and after firing 25rds - 38 Special Hornady Critical Lite Defense 90gr. FTX Ammo

How do the results for this Hornady Ammunition 38 Special compare to other 38 SPECIAL?

25rds - 38 Special Hornady Critical Lite Defense 90gr. FTX Ammo Gel Test Results

  Median
Bullet Depth (in.) 12.4 13 13.1 15 16
Expanded Diameter (in.) 0.35 0.46 0.47 0.49 0.49
Bullet Weight after shot (gr.) 89 89.1 89.3 89.5 90
Bullet Velocity (fps) 888 897 901 928 935

Hornady Ammunition 38 Special Ballistic Data

Hornady Ammunition 38 Special Ammo Details

Barrel Length inches
4
Ballistics Coefficient (G1)
0.095
Ballistics Coefficient (G7)
0
Sectional Density
0.101
Muzzle 25 yds. 50 yds. 75 yds. 100 yds.
Velocity fps 1200 1103 1032 976 931
Energy ft lbs 288 243 213 190 173
Bullet drop inch n/a 0 -1.8 -5.6 -11.7

Trajectory Line Graph Hornady Ammunition 38 Special

Velocity / Energy Comparisons

Ammo Muzzle Velocity Muzzle Energy
148 Grain Lead Wadcutter Fiocchi Ammunition
#25
648 fps
#24
138 ft lbs
130 Grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) Federal Ammunition
#12
852 fps
#14
209 ft lbs
130 Grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) Tula Ammo
#7
890 fps
#7
229 ft lbs
130 Grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) Remington Ammunition
#17
787 fps
#22
179 ft lbs
130 Grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) Fiocchi Ammunition
#6
899 fps
#6
233 ft lbs
158 Grain Lead Round Nose (LRN) Federal Ammunition
#20
745 fps
#17
195 ft lbs
148 Grain Lead Wadcutter Remington Ammunition
#23
710 fps
#25
110 ft lbs
130 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Federal Ammunition
#13
844 fps
#15
206 ft lbs
158 Grain Lead Semi-Wadcutter Hollow Point(LSWCHP) Federal Ammunition
#10
866 fps
#2
263 ft lbs
148 Grain Lead Wadcutter Winchester Ammunition
#24
690.5 fps
#23
157 ft lbs
130 Grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) Winchester Ammunition
#16
791 fps
#21
181 ft lbs
125 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Blazer
#8
888 fps
#11
219 ft lbs
158 Grain Lead Round Nose (LRN) Blazer
#21
729 fps
#19
186 ft lbs
158 Grain Lead Round Nose (LRN) Magtech
#22
723 fps
#20
183 ft lbs
158 Grain Lead Round Nose (LRN) Federal Ammunition
#19
745 fps
#18
195 ft lbs
158 Grain #1 Shot Black Hills Ammunition
#15
800 fps
#10
225 ft lbs
158 Grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) Sellier & Bellot Ammunition
#14
802 fps
#9
226 ft lbs
125 Grain Semi-Jacketed Hollow-Point (SJHP) Remington Ammunition
#4
921 fps
#5
235 ft lbs
125 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Black Hills Ammunition
#1
1050 fps
#1
306 ft lbs
158 Grain Total Metal Jacket (TMJ) Speer
#11
861 fps
#3
260 ft lbs
132 Grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) PMC Ammunition
#9
879 fps
#8
226 ft lbs
158 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Hornady Ammunition
#18
775 fps
#13
211 ft lbs
110 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Federal Ammunition
#5
911 fps
#16
203 ft lbs
90 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Hornady Ammunition
#2
1032 fps
#12
213 ft lbs
125 Grain Jacketed Hollow-Point (JHP) Federal Ammunition
#3
950 fps
#4
250 ft lbs
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Review

Reviews Leave a Review
  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by Chris Williams

    Great round very low recoil very accurate and four out of five of my rounds expanded

  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by Fwank

    I'm surprised by how well it did, honestly. The Hornady FTX bullets in most calibers have failed to impress me in the tests I've seen. I am astonished that four of the five bullets expanded at such low velocities. Penetration and weight retention are likewise really good for a .38 snubby load, especially one that's not even +P.

    Hornady's muzzle velocity claims are, as usual with their revolver ammo, totally out to lunch. 1200 feet per second? Really? Maybe from a lever-action rifle with a 24" barrel. From a 2" snub-nose revolver it looks more like right around 900. And this might be for the best, because if you pushed them any faster they might overexpand and fail to penetrate adequately, and, of course, there would be more recoil too. Expanding bullets that are ultra light for caliber tend to have that problem. I kind of wish Hornady would print the correct velocity on the box, though.

  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by Bobo

    My wife was gun shy because of the recoil. She loves this round from my colt detective special. My colt detective, it now seems its hers.

  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by Steven Askew

    My wife's a first shooter and this ammo gave her the confidence she needed to get use to her 38 special with reduced recoil.

  • ☆☆☆☆☆

    posted on by Anthony Stevens

    The best vary accurate and so smooth my 38 snub nose. Usually has a lot of recoil this round had none great ammo

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