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Old 01-24-2019, 02:44 PM
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Default Ok, so I did it....again....

I went and bought a gun in a 'new' (to me) caliber. I'm sorry, I just couln't resist...

The local pusher had a very nice Enhanced Colt Combat Commander in 38 Super. This is the model with the flat top slide, undercut trigger guard, beavertail safety, and a couple other mods that I can not remember right now.

Every time that I am stuck on eternal hold I get to surfing and popped in on a local shop's web page, and there it was....bigger than life, an enhanced Colt Commander....and I have been hearing all the fun things about 38 super from the likes of Superman, Kieth44spl, and some other enablers here

I will be going up there to pick it up tomorrow during my off time. No pictures of mine until then. Here is a quick shot from their website.

Ok, so I did it....again....-img_9934-jpg

I have lots of leather for this model, and stocks, I have lots of stocks....but what about ammo? I have heard that some of these models are finicky about weight & velocity?

What carry & practice ammo are you guys using?

Any good home brew recipes?

How about some good 38 Super Stories? Anyone here carry one on duty?
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Old 01-24-2019, 03:41 PM
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I have a similar story of acquiring a Colt Combat Commander, Brushed Nickel in .38 Super. I'm normally resistant to getting into another caliber, but this one came my way while "horse trading" with a local dealer who always seems to have some unusual items.

The Super is a pleasure to shoot and, as you undoubtedly know, is very popular across South Texas. My range ammo for it has been Fiocchi FMJ and I found a stray box of the new SIG V-crown Defense ammo in .38 Super languishing at my favorite LGS for occasional carry.

Since the 1911 platform has been a long-time favorite of mine and I have frequently carried a S&W PC Commander in .45, it fits all the holsters and has the same feel when carried.

My prediction is that you will love it and it is worthy of the mild complication of stocking another caliber. Nice catch!
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Old 01-24-2019, 03:44 PM
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Beautiful! Got 500 new pieces of 38 super brass in the
basement from 1980's IPSC campaign.
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Old 01-24-2019, 06:14 PM
Ivan the Butcher Ivan the Butcher is online now
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My 38 Super is an old boring Series 70! For ammo, I bought several boxes of USA Winchester White Box for plinking and Silver Tip Hollow Points for SD. In the 80's Every gun store had a rack of parts and magazines. in the 90's the 38 Super mags were still there, so they were inexpensive! I have 10 total and 7 of those are still on the blister pack. Reloading is easy!

Ivan
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Old 01-24-2019, 06:52 PM
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Default Ok, so I did it....again....

I carried a 70Series Combat Commander
.38 super for years.
Still kicking myself for letting it get away


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Old 01-24-2019, 07:55 PM
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Mexico loves this caliber. Most calibers are illegal there, but this one is allowed.
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Old 01-24-2019, 09:48 PM
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Default Ok, so I did it....again....

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrchuck View Post
Mexico loves this caliber. Most calibers are illegal there, but this one is allowed.


That was the case for a long time, but I do believe even the great .38 super is now banned. I don’t know if they “Grandfather” older ones but I believe in simi’s the
.380acp is as big as you can get, and no cartridge that is a “military” cartridge,
So .223 is illegal but a .222 is fine, that’s why .38 super was so popular because 9mm has always been illegal


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Old 01-24-2019, 11:05 PM
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I like shiny handguns and handguns customized by the old time master pistolsmiths. I got both in one piece when I found a stainless Government Model with a bumper grip safety, adjustable rear sight, 3-hole trigger and a Clark .38 Super barrel. It seemed like a pretty good deal because I figured the work couldn't be done for what I paid for the gun.
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Old 01-25-2019, 12:42 AM
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My only .38 Super is a 1937-vintage Colt Super .38 Automatic, well used before it came to me but a nice example of the days when pride in workmanship was a little more apparent than we see today.

My pistol is not very finicky about ammunition. Anything that passes the "plunk test" and fits in the magazine tends to function just fine. I have resisted any urge to explore the performance envelope of the .38 Super cartridge in deference to the age of my pistol. I shoot reloads exclusively, and tend toward modest performance levels. No need to batter the old piece, or worry about heavier recoil springs.

Nominal bullet diameter for most pistols is .355" (jacketed) or .356" (cast), like the 9X19. In my pistol I have had very good results with cast SWC bullets of 140 grains, sized .357", modest load of 5.0 grains Unique for about 1000FPS. Functions well, accurate, not excessive in any way.

One nice feature of the .38 Super is that the case is truly straight-walled (cylindrical) rather than tapered like most semi-auto cartridges. A carbide sizer die will produce very good and consistent results and allow bullet seating with good neck tensioning and consistency. I use an old Bair steel sizing die for 9X19 to apply a moderate taper crimp on my cast bullet loads with good results.

My pistol will accept just about any jacketed or cast bullet combination that passes the "plunk test" and fits in the magazine. Yours may or may not do so, and some experimenting may be necessary to find out what parameters your pistol requires.

You can hot-rod the .38 Super to performance that rivals .357 Magnum with the lighter bullet weights, but I see nothing to be gained by that. Enough is enough!

Your pistol is shown with fixed sights, appears to be a staked front sight and drift-adjustable rear. Many Colt pistols I have used from the 1970's and 1980's have been "challenged" by shooting to point of aim. Short of altering your sights you may be limited to changing the rear sight to achieve POI to POA, if your pistol is like some I have experienced. Not difficult to do, and compatible sights of various heights are widely available. Of course, unless the factory sights are way out of spec the easiest correction is experimenting with different ammo or handloads to achieve acceptable results.

Have fun with it! Very nice pistol!

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Old 01-25-2019, 11:41 AM
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Thanks Guys!

I had been telling myself - No new calibers, but at Tulsa last year a buddy was showing off a very early 38 Super Commander (3 or 4 digit serial number) and we all talked about 38 Supers....it wasn't long and I have had an eye out for something....

I have several of the Enhanced Commanders, and carry a bobtailed one frequently, so I knew going in what the feel and mechanics would be like. Now I just need to track down some good practice ammo and work the steel plates over.

Jim, if that brass is just sitting there all lonely, I would love to take it off of your hands
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Old 01-26-2019, 09:06 AM
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Ohhhhh, that's a very nice Colt Commander! I find that the Commander balances better and handles better than the Government model. Once you get that new to you Commander and some ammo, please post a range report.
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Old 02-23-2019, 02:43 PM
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Default Range report

Well I finally got around to the range. The weather here has been cold & rainy for the last couple of weeks (any time that I had free anyhow).

Dad and I made it to a local indoor range, and we both had a turn or two with the Super 38 Commander.

My impressions - the recoil impulse is quicker than the 45 ACP in the same gun, but not as heavy. I did really enjoy the red ramp front sight and will be looking into changing a few other Commanders to that style. I only lost about 5 pieces of brass (went in front of the line). The new Commander was just as accurate as I had hoped.

My dad shot it and was quite pleased - he said that I would not be getting rid of it any time soon.

It is really a neat gun, and I am looking forward to putting more rounds down range with it sometime soon.

Thanks for all of the positive comments guys. I guess that a set of dies is in order.
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Old 02-27-2019, 02:31 AM
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Old 02-27-2019, 07:56 AM
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Very nice find you have there. My wife says I buy different caliber dies so I can get a gun to go with it, she may be right. I have the Commander in 45 acp and love it, wouldn't mind a 38 super at all. Enjoy.
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Old 02-27-2019, 08:39 AM
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Yup - That is the one that lit the fire.....very nice Charlie


I thought that you sold that one....
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Old 02-27-2019, 09:43 AM
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My Fav' 1911's are COLT'S!
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Old 02-27-2019, 10:42 AM
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I maintained the rights to the pics.
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Old 02-27-2019, 12:44 PM
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I do love a good undercut trigger guard on a 1911, it feels like an improvement on an already comfy grip. I wish my Baer had it. it's the only thing I don't like about an otherwise perect piece.

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Old 03-12-2019, 12:15 PM
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I do love a good undercut trigger guard on a 1911, it feels like an improvement on an already comfy grip. I wish my Baer had it. it's the only thing I don't like about an otherwise perect piece.
Ron,

I believe that Les (or his minions) will make the undercut for you at a minimal charge. I personally like the undercut and will specify them on any new builds
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Old 03-12-2019, 03:16 PM
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The only M1911-style .38 Super I have is a M1911 (a real 1918 M1911). I also have an EAA Witness. It is possible to handload .38 Super to near .357 levels, but it is best to use either Winchester 9x23 or Starline 9mm SuperComp brass (both of which are rimless). I have exceeded 1450 ft/sec with 124 grain FMJ bullets in mine. But one needs a strong recoil spring for such loads.

You are aware that with a 9mm barrel and magazine, you will have a dual caliber Combat Commander?
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Old 03-19-2019, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
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The only M1911-style .38 Super I have is a M1911 (a real 1918 M1911). I also have an EAA Witness. It is possible to handload .38 Super to near .357 levels, but it is best to use either Winchester 9x23 or Starline 9mm SuperComp brass (both of which are rimless). I have exceeded 1450 ft/sec with 124 grain FMJ bullets in mine. But one needs a strong recoil spring for such loads.

You are aware that with a 9mm barrel and magazine, you will have a dual caliber Combat Commander?
Hi Dewalt,

I have thought about the 9mm barrel and mags. I just received my 4 extra 38 Super mags from Colt. I guess that standard Colt 9mm mags will work just fine? Did you ever try and run the 9mm in 38 Super mags? how well did it work? I have run 40 S&W through my 10mm Delta Elite mags with no trouble.

Will the 9mm standard pressure FMJ cycle without recoil spring changes?

Also, the 9x23 - does it batter the frame lugs like the hot 10mm rounds? requires a buffer?

I am about halfway to sending this one off to have an Ed Brown bobtailed main spring housing installed.....and, the front red ramp is really growing on me. I may have to hunt some down for my other Commanders.

Thanks
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Old 03-19-2019, 10:00 AM
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Here's my favorite Super .38...
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Old 02-11-2020, 05:33 PM
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Here's my favorite Super .38...
LEO,

Is that a National Match, or was it worked over by Wilson?

Looks like a neat one either way.
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