The Woodleigh Hydro
Rather than hijack someone else’s thread I thought I’d start a new one.
My interest with this fascinating design is based upon two different needs
A personal one where I was interested in the hydro for it’s ‘force multiplier’ properties in 2 different scenarios:
1. When bumbling around the bush with (in my case ) a 9.3 x 62, perhaps in search of something for the pot. The hydro might provide an extra dimension to my arsenal in addition to solids in the event of bumping into something large and with attitude.
2. The other is in consideration of the endless discussions around the camp fire of solid / soft make up within a magazine. It struck me that the hydo might be a suitable ‘do it all’ round (and therefore be part of the mag load in my 404 Jeff) when walking through the bush with non-hunting clients.
A technical interest, as a result of developing a course for Zoo staff and Police Departments, both of whom have a responsibility and a role to play in the event of an escaped dangerous animal.
Part of the course deals with the selection of calibre and bullet. Zoos often hold a .variety of rifles in their safe and some Police Forces attend with a pump action Rem loaded with LG and/or solid shot in addition to service weapons.
In this part of the course we look at terminal effects and straight line penetration; comparing and contrasting soft nosed rounds with solids (round meplat; flat meplat). Into this evaluation I want to add the hydro – particularly as it might facilitate a discussion on ‘over-penetration’.- an important factor in built up areas.
All of this brought me to the issue of reloading for the calibres we explore on the course.
I currently reload for .223, 6.5 x 55, 6.5 creed and 9.3 (using noser partitions). Measuring distance to the lands and establishing a suitable jump is a natural part of that procedure
Up until now I had thought the manufacturer's recommended COL to be an absolute not to be exceeded.
Clearly this is not necessarily the case – reloading for the hydro has shown a lack of understanding (about COL) on my part.
Further confusion arose when I discovered that both my 404 and 9.3 have huge free-bore so for my rifles, neither COL nor distance to the lands, appear to be useful reference points.
So I’d be happy to hear the thoughts of anyone who is currently reloading hydros as well as any thoughts on the wider issues touched upon here.