Why Use .38 Super for Competition Shooting


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jburks
October 12, 2006, 11:47 AM
Here's something I'm confused about. I know that a lot of people shoot .38 super in competitions. It seems like IPSC Open Class is dominated by this round. What is the advantage of .38 super over standard 9mm?

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SDC
October 12, 2006, 12:10 PM
Mainly that you can load it to levels to make Major, and that it will produce enough gas to make a compensator work well. You CAN do the same thing with 9mm, but with less of a safety margin, or you can just shoot all As and not worry about making Major in the first place.
("Major" is defined by multiplying the bullet weight in grains by the bullet's speed in feet per second, then dividing by 1000; in Open, that number has to be at least 160. Most factory 38 Super loadings will factor out around 140-150, but you can reload 38 Super with enough of a safety margin to get to 160).

Spartacus451
October 12, 2006, 12:10 PM
Stronger brass I believe so it lasts longer and is safer. Higher pressure rounds like .38 super and 9MM perform better with comps than lower pressure rounds.

jmorris
October 12, 2006, 12:12 PM
In short the 38 super, and its variations, are the safest way to make major and have maximum magazine capacity. With the ported “shorty” pistols your really pushing the limits of the case. The old power factor (once too high for 9mm) has been lowered to 165, once you get a 9mm running that fast your passing what is written in books. That being said, my open gun is a 9mm, it’s much cheaper than a 38 super to feed. I won’t post any load info (look on brianenos.com) but will say rifle primers help curb primer flow.

jburks
October 12, 2006, 01:13 PM
Thanks for the info all. Now this brings up another question, if .38 super is the easiest way to make major PF with maximum ammo capacity then why is the IPSC Limited class dominated by .40 cal?

Thanks again.

jburks
October 12, 2006, 01:21 PM
Please disregard my last post. I just read the rule book and answered my own qestion. Limited requires a min of 10mm (.40 cal) to qualify for major PF. Thanks for all the input.

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