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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-23-2007, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
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.38 Super/Witness Question

Picked up an EAA Witness in .38 Super the other day and the only cartridges I could find were +P. Looking through the manual (same for all calibers/variations of the witness) it says not to shoot +P loads on the front cover
Since a 10mm or .40 caliber slide and barrel can be used on this same action as a conversion I just don't see it not handling a .38 Super +P load
Anyone familiar with this gun/caliber?
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-23-2007, 01:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bronco71
Picked up an EAA Witness in .38 Super the other day and the only cartridges I could find were +P. Looking through the manual (same for all calibers/variations of the witness) it says not to shoot +P loads on the front cover
Since a 10mm or .40 caliber slide and barrel can be used on this same action as a conversion I just don't see it not handling a .38 Super +P load
Anyone familiar with this gun/caliber?
The +P loads are approaching .357 velocity and pressures. I wouldn't think that a .40 has the muzzle velocity of the .357, but it would be easy to check.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-23-2007, 03:56 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, it is very near the .357 Sig numbers (also available for this gun). More research shows that the 9 x 23 Winchester is interchangeable and matches the .357 mag numbers and is routinely shot in this gun; prolly why there isn't much 38 super ammo to be found. I kinda like the idea of 18 rounds of 9 x 23
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-23-2007, 10:50 PM
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It will handle them, but a steady diet will probably be bad for the slide. The barrel will split on the locking lugs, and it will still function and you won't know it until failure or until cleaning. Over time the slide could develop stress points too. Tony has some stories here. I think there is a newer design for the slide. Of course, you are shooting max 147 grain so that isn't a problem I suppose.

It is much, much more important to determine if the ammo headspaces on the case mouth like an auto or on the little itty bitty rim. The former, ironically, can be the biggest danger if they space too long. the latter will just blow the barrel at the locking lugs and you'll see it easily. Your witness was built for SAAMI case specs circa 1997. That means rim not mouth. You will be best off perusing boards like the CZ forum (the clone club) and glocktalk. Disregard anything about a 1911 platform aside from ammo characteristics.

Some givens:
If it isn't a barrel marked 9x23 don't try it. kaBoom.

If the barrel says only 38SA and not +P, get a new barrel. They used to be about $40. The polygonals are really cheap even.

Look into a 9mm barrel, just for cheap shooting.

learn to reload if you are going to shoot 38SA.

If you want the punch of a badass 38SA then load some with a 147gr bullet at reasonable velocities. A 357 sig can't touch that shit. Kind of like a 38 special with a 158gr wadcutter, a 9mm would be on the hind end.

There is a bunch more. You have the large frame, you can swap to anything nder the sun almost. Tony and I have witnesses, they aren't olympic material but they can kick the ball for a feild goal. post away.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 12:02 AM
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Yep, the slide on my 10mm Witness Compact started cracking towards the muzzle, almost where the guide rod/recoil spring contacted it. The frame and rest of the slide looked perfect; I don't know exactly what happened, but the only thing I can think of that would cause it there would be too much spring pressure. EAA handled it, though, which is a big (good) surprise given some of the things I've heard about them in the past.

I'm looking at another now, and if it turns out to be a large frame and I get the guy to come down to my lowball price, it'll be mine.


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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 06:23 AM
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ALL 38 super ammo you will find will be marked +P. have no fear, the gun will handle it. you will love this cal, its a sweet shooting round.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 09:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatassLX
ALL 38 super ammo you will find will be marked +P. have no fear, the gun will handle it. you will love this cal, its a sweet shooting round.
Really? Why is that? Because they've all gone to the newer headspacing?
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 10:50 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the reply's; I was wondering why I could only find +P ammo. I have all the reloading stuff, just need to set it up again since it is still packed from my last move several years ago Haas anyone done the 22LR conversion? Just wondered if it worked ok. Thanks again!
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 11:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Casper
Really? Why is that? Because they've all gone to the newer headspacing?
i've heard to distinguish it from the 38acp but dont quote me.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 11:23 AM
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I thought that's why they named it Super Auto in the first place. Interesting though.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 12:37 PM
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The gun I was looking at turns out to be a small frame, full-size blued steel Witness in .40 S&W. I would have gotten it, except I'd like to get a large frame so that I can later get 10mm, .45 ACP, and other conversions for it.

If anyone is interested, it's listed at $299 at McBride's Pawn Shop on the square (on Oak Street between Locust and Elm, north side of the courthouse). It's got some light surface rust on the slide and frame, and you might be able to get them to come down on the price. I didn't look at it too closely except to see see which frame it was.


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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 02:08 PM
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That mag check worked, huh? Did he give you any flack about it?

BTW if anyone is considering it you can swap it with 357sig with only a barrel, and 9mm with a barrel slide and mag. That lets you use some imported barrels like 380 ACP, 41AE and 9x21. Not that those are worth doing but it is kind of neat to be able to swap it all around like Legos.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 07:41 PM
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Sure did. I walked in with the mag in my pocket, asked to see the gun, then lined the mags up side-by-side. He said, "Already got a magazine for it?" I told him what I was doing and why, and he didn't say anything else. There wasn't much difference in size, but when I went to put mine in (carefully, of course), it wouldn't go at all.


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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-25-2007, 05:40 PM
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Oh well, at least you dodged a mistake.
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