38 super or stick with 45acp?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by futureranger, Apr 10, 2010.

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  1. futureranger

    futureranger Member

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    so i went to the range today with my first batch of 45acp reloads and man can they shoot.... on a rest that is... as soon as i started firing off hand the groups at 25yards went from 1.25" to about 6-7. now i am fairly new to pistol shooting but with the m9 i can qualify expert.

    what i think is happening is i flinch real bad on the trigger pull (had a bud throw in a snap cap in one mag). should i just practice more or would a "softer" caliber like 38 super be beneficial?

    also since i reload i was thinking of using a 185gr bullet and less powder but my 200gr reloads are pretty much fallin out the barrel as it is (about 700fps)

    im guessing most people will say shut up and practice more but what are the real benefits to 38 super and why do almost all the competition 1911 chamber it?
    thanks for the help
    -Pat
     
  2. jr_roosa

    jr_roosa Member

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    What you really need is a .22 conversion or a .22 target gun with 1911 style grips. Even softball .45 loads will give you a decent flinch if that's all you shoot.

    The benefit for .38 super is strictly mathematical in that you can use it in matches that require a certain combination of velocity and mass (power factor), and some of the top competitors use .38 super to get there. You can certainly download your .45 ACP with 185s and use a softer recoil spring and tame the recoil a lot more, but work with a .22 will pay off more in my opinion. I had some 185s that my dad loaded where the empty cases would pop up about 6" on ejection and fall back down on my wrist. Really pleasant to shoot. I have no idea how slow they were. Eventually you get slow enough that you sacrifice bullet stability and accuracy at 25 and 50 yards.

    Dry fire practice will help a lot with the flinching too.

    Now, there's no reason not to get a .38 super just because it's a cool addition to the collection. I certainly want one.

    -J.
     
  3. futureranger

    futureranger Member

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    thanks J but i already have a 22 conversion kit and it helps me for the first 2 or 3 shots after i switch to 45 but after that i start to jump the trigger again, but thanks for the advice
     
  4. Sapper771

    Sapper771 Member

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    I recommend dry fire practice.
    Once I started dry fire practice, I started seeing noticeable results on paper. It is good cheap practice, but make sure it is done safely.

    www.pistol-training.com has a program (under "drills") that will randomly display shapes on your computer screen for different lengths of time. The object is to engage the shapes on the screen before they disapear. I enjoy using it because it helps me practice speed, sight acquisition, and trigger control at speed.

    I have never used a 38 super, so I can't really help you out there. I never saw the point in it because I have several 9mms and I don't compete. More trigger time would prob help you get use to the recoil of the 45.
     
  5. SharpsDressedMan

    SharpsDressedMan member

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    The .38 Super is a nice companion to the .45 1911. I used to be soley .45 for about 30 years, but I carry a Super a lot now, just for fun. It shoot hard, flat, and accurate. I have a BarSto barrel in a Colt Super, and it will do 2" groups at 25 yards. As another plus, you can get a 9mm barrel and mag, and maybe a slightly reduced spring, and shoot 9mm's in your 1911 Super.
     
  6. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Member

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    It seems to me switching calibers is treating the symptom and not the disease. With enough practice, be it dry fire or live (if you notice yourself flinching at the range, stop and dry fire until you don't otherwise you're just reinforcing bad habits) you shouldn't flinch with anything, especially downloaded .45 ACP.

    ETA: Your flinching means you're anticipating the recoil of the gun, which means you're thinking about your trigger pull. You shouldn't do that. The trigger pull, once you've made the decision to pull it, should be totally reflexive. All your attention should be focused on the front sight, everything else should be, as I said, reflexive. That reflex comes from muscle memory built up through many, many repetitions. So dry fire whenever you're not doing something that requires both hands and shoot as much as your budget will allow. For live fire, make sure it's GOOD practice. Like my example above, if you keep shooting after you've found a flinch, all you're doing is building that flinch into your muscle memory. Many Olympic-level shooting coaches say that an action (such as pulling a trigger) has to be performed correctly 10,000 times in a row before it truly becomes ingrained. So practice is the key here, not a caliber change. You'll flinch with the smaller caliber too, it just won't be as noticeable.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2010
  7. Peter M. Eick

    Peter M. Eick Member

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    The Super is a good round. I really have enjoyed getting back into it after a several year hiatus.

    Go the Super and load it light. Next work on watching the front sight physically rise during recoil. Concentrate on the sight.
     
  8. Runningman

    Runningman Member

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    My vote would be for a "softer" caliber.
     
  9. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Member

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    In the OP, he says he's running a 200gr at about 700fps, that's a REALLY soft load already. A lot of people use that for a Bullseye target load. If there's a flinch with something that soft, it speaks to a larger problem.
     
  10. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    You can always load .45's softer of course (although your pretty light now), but the .38 Super is a great round. Very versatile if you reload. Great stuff in 1911's. I have two. Love em. Wish I had discovered .38 Super many years earlier than I did.
     

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  11. Shipwreck

    Shipwreck Member

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    I have never shot 38 Super - Is the recoil that much different over a 45 ACP 1911?
     
  12. Radagast

    Radagast Member

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    Yes. The best description I can give is it is similar to PlusP 9mm, loud, a light fast projectile with a recoil that is more of a fast snap than a slow push.
     
  13. futureranger

    futureranger Member

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    so i got a few snap caps and i put a posted note on the wall with a 1 inch dot on it... im gonna start dry firing every chance i get and see if that can get some good shooting form muscle memory going
    i also think im gonna mix up my stance a little arch my back and lean forward a little more to put my weight into controlling the kick a little
    thanks for all the advice guys i really appreciate it
     
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