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Flex Tip Technology Ammo: FTX Bullets Explained

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“FTX Flex Tip technology is the name Hornady has given to the bullet design in their FTX line of ammunition. This ammo line covers a wide range of calibers and name brands, and is a replacement for the old hollow points used for home defense and concealed carry weapons.

What is FTX Bullet Technology?

If you’re familiar with hollow points from pre-2000, you know they can be inconsistent, even when pulled from the same box. Some splinter, some fragment, some penetrate way too much. Hornady's Flex Tip ammo is extremely consistent and feathers out into identical metal petals when it hits a target.

The terminology from Hornady can be confusing, as the FTX style is often mixed with other Hornady patented ammo styles to create things like Monoflex, LEVERevolution, FLEXLOCK, and a few other complete lines for different applications. We’ll focus on the FTX bullet itself here.

Features of Flex Tip Ammunition

  • Penetration: This ammo was designed to penetrate clothing like leather, denim and thick layers before expanding – making it easier to rely upon in normal everyday situations. For hunting use, this ammo will go through thick hides and skin before expanding.
  • Deep Wounding: The primary function of any hollow point round is to stop something immediately and permanently. The Flex Tip ammo reliably opens on impact with flesh, causing large wound cavities with great penetration.
  • Smooth Feeding: FTX ammo casings are silver nickel plated, making them resistant to corrosion and easier to find when the lights are low. This type of plating also provides better reliability when firing from semi-automatic pistols.
  • High Velocity: Your old-style hollow point never reached the maximum velocity promised, because it simply wasn’t a smooth enough object. FTX bullets cut through the air like a hot knife through butter, guaranteeing you'll be impressed.

Uses For Flex Tip Ammunition


The Hornady Critical Defense line of ammunition (available in a variety of handgun calibers) is built around the FTX bullet. This ammunition is designed for concealed carry use, and is intended to make use of the FTX bullet's superior penetration and ability to go through heavy clothing – while still functioning as a hollow point should. The rapid expansion characteristics of the FTX bullet, coupled with the penetration the Flex Tip provides, gives critical defense ammunition an edge over more traditional types of concealed carry ammunition.


When you’re after large game animals like bucks, moose and bear – stopping power is a must. FTX bullets are effective at any range, due to the way they expand on impact after penetrating skin and hide. Animals with especially tough skins, like hogs, will go down easier and faster with this line of ammunition.

Ammo has come a long way from the days when your grandfather painstakingly cut huge Xs into his bullets. Overall, if you’re looking for a state-of-the-art hollow point, Flex Tip technology is worth checking out.

Molly Carter
Written by
Molly Carter