Need to know about a Thompson Auto-Ordnance Corp .38 super
Your Thompson Auto Ordinance pistol is of the Model 1911 design. The .38 Super predates the .357 Magnum cartridge as the .38 ACP. As the .38 ACP in the M1911, it had a reputation for being able to penetrate cars effortlessly. Sometime between the 1920s and the 1970s this cartridge was improved upon and was given the name .38 Super.
Pistols in .38 Super today are relatively few and expensive to aquire. The offering by Springfield Armory sells for more than $1100. Think of this cartridge and pistol combination as being comparable to a .357 Magnum auto pistol (sort of like the predecessor to a .357 Desert Eagle, .357 auto mag or .357 Koonan.
Bottom line, the .38 Super is not a cartridge to sneeze at and the cartridge/pistol combination is a good one.
All current Auto Ordnance 1911 Models include a spent case, plastic case, and cable lock.
There are several models listed:
- .38 Super (1996 only) or .45 ACP cal., competition features include compensated barrel, commander hammer, flat mainspring housing, white 3-dot sighting system, beavertail grip safety, black textured wraparound grips. Mfg. 1993-96
1911 A1 STANDARD/COMPACT STANDARD
- .38 Super (disc. 1996), 9mm Para. (disc. 1996), .40 S&W (mfg. 1991-93), 10mm (mfg. 1991-96), or .45 ACP cal., 4 1/4 (.45 ACP only, Compact Standard Model
), 4 1/2 (.40 S&W cal. only) or 5 (Standard Model) in. barrel, 7-shot mag., single action, parts interchange with the original Colt Govt. Model, blue or nickel finish, checkered plastic grips, 39 oz. Disc. 2005.
1911 A1 Deluxe 80
- .38 Super (disc. 1996), 9mm Para. (disc. 1996), or .45 ACP cal., 5 in. barrel, 3-dot sights, wraparound grips, 39 oz. New 1991.
1911 A1 General
- .38 Super (mfg. 1996 only) or .45 ACP cal., 4 1/2 in. barrel with full length recoil guide system, 7-shot mag., blue finish, 3-dot fixed Millett sights, black rubber wraparound grips, Commander styling, 37 oz. Mfg. 1992-98.
What you have is a clone of the 1911 but in .38 Super. The old 1911 was sometimes chambered in .38 Super and preferred by aficionados because it holds one more round than the .45 acp and is still quite a stopper.
The .38 Super was like a .357 Magnum but shot out of an auto loader. Remember, this is why the .357 Sig was invented. People want the stopping power of the .357 Mag. but in an auto loader. Both the .357 Sig and the .38 Super function better in this configuration than the .357 Mag Desert Eagle or the old Coonan auto pistol. The rim of the .357 Magnum can be problematic in a box magazine.
Today you can find factory ammo for the .38 Super in other than the original 130 grain ball ammo. If your particular pistol will chamber it, and it should chamber the Remington hollow point ammo, you've got a great defensive handgun. But remember, it will shoot through a lot of dry wall!
Unless you are into hand loading I would suggest a different caliber. The 9MM is adaquate, the .357SIG is a lot more powerful but that round is based on the .40S&W round so the capacity is not as high as you can normally get in a 9MM or a .38 super.
I really like the .40 S&W for a lot of applications and the good old .45 will be a favorite forever. There are other good but uncommon rounds such at the 9MMX21MM, the 9MMX23MM, the 400 Cor-Bon, the .40 Super and the .45 Super. Exotic cartridges can be fun but get you need deeper pockets to get started.
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