View Full Version : Who makes 1911's in 38 and 40 caliber?
10th January 2006, 14:59
I'm physically disabled and love my 45 caliber Springfields but I'm thinking I might like a 1911 in a caliber that's easier for me so my question is who makes 1911's in 38 and 40 caliber and what do you think of them? Also, I've never shot 38 Super and would like to know what caliber it's comparable to and if you can fire 38's out of one made for 38 Super? Thank you.
10th January 2006, 16:22
Several manufacturers make 1911s in 38 Super and 40S&W. Para Ordnance, Springfield, and STI come to mind right away. There are probably others.
38Super is comparable to 9mm +p+ in my opinion. Although in a full size 1911 the weight negates a lot of the recoil. You can also get a 1911 in 9MM.
As far as I know 38 special and 38 super are not interchangeable. There are a number of differences and I wouldn't recommend trying it.
10th January 2006, 19:03
No as to 38 Special in a 1911 set up for 38 Super. The only 1911s set up for the former cartridge were the old 38 MidRange Cup guns, etc, strictly a competition item firing wadcutters.
On the other hand, the 38 Super will offer less recoil than a 45 ACP and shot a bit flatter. 38 Super ammo will cost you more than the more available 45 ACP by a considerable factor. Many companies (Colt, Springfield, Kimber, Les Baer, etc) make a 1911 in 38 Super. A 40 will be a bit harder to find, will kick a bit less than a 45, but will be cheaper to 'feed' than a 38 Super but more than a 45. STI makes several very reliable and well-finished guns and more are coming out every day from other mfgs
You may want to consider an alternative as the other poster suggested: The 1911 in 9mm is very cheap to shoot, there is a wide variety of ammo available, and there is zero felt recoil (okay, not zero, but the lightest of the three cartridges under discussion.) Several makers now offer this combination in reasonably priced and well built guns.
But what do you want the gun for? Home defense? Go with the 40 or 38 Super, the former offering more home defense loads than the latter. Just to shoot at the range or for casual sport with light recoil? Go with the 9. And yes, even though it is the weakest of the bunch, there are a lot of very potent 9mm defensive loads.
10th January 2006, 19:52
Thank you for your replies so far. The STI and Les Baer cost too much for me and on the other end I've seen the Rock Island 1911 but I haven't liked what I've read, you may or may not get a good one and I really don't like their huge logo. I've seen a Kimber Stainless in 40 and might be able to go that high and you've got me thinking about a 9mm Springfield, I've always liked Springfields and have had a few and have a couple that I'll be selling soon. My guns are for target shooting, nothing serious but I would like to get a couple 1911's in different calibers after I sell my 45's and the Kimber and Springfield look good but I'm still in the beginning stage of selling and buying so I still want to hear everyone's opinions please.
10th January 2006, 23:19
I read an article a few months ago in one of the gunzines (I think American Handgunner or Guns) on the Springfield 9mm, and they said nice things.
10th January 2006, 23:45
I have a Colt Series 80 in .38 Super and I love it. The recoil is less then the .45 ACP and if you handload the ammo cost is not a factor. The .38 Super bullet and the 38 Special (and .357 magnum) have different diameters. The .38 Super bullet ranges from .355 to .357 and the .38 is from .357 to .358 which the bullet itself could interchange but not the round. I have been told not to use .38 for handloading the .38 Super though. I would give the .38 Super consideration over the 9mm because it would be a better defensive round.
11th January 2006, 06:35
I agree with Dnovo about the 9mm
I had a Springfield that was amazingly ridiculous to shoot. When I say ridiculous I mean, very light recoil and accuracy in spades. Plus, most stated velocities for 9mm are out of a 4" barrel. The extra inch on a 1911 should give you an extra 50 fps give or take.
11th January 2006, 08:48
IMHO, given your planned use, and cost considerations, buy the Springfield in 9. I shot one extensively (my son owned it for a while) and it was well built, reasonably priced, and worked without a hitch. 9mm ammo is cheap too. Dave
11th January 2006, 09:25
If all your gonna do with it is shoot, then go with a 9mm. Para even makes a high cap version if you want something different that wont break the bank.
15th January 2006, 10:17
I'd go along with what most of the members are advising in the 9mm. I've owned both the Para's and Springfields and both are very good. I haven't owned or shot the "RIA's" but have heard some good things about their newer productions. (and very affordable)
Even if you are considering it for "self-defense" application, as stated earlier, the 9mm "JHP" ballistic's have improved tremendously over the last few years. Between the ballistic improvements and the much less recoil (=quicker follow-up shots), I believe it to be a very viable option. IMHO
The cost and availability of ammo is also a good selling point.
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