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Discussion Starter #1
I have a .38 Super that my father carried during the battle of Iwo Jima. To the best of my knowledge the gun was last shot in 1963, cleaned, oiled and packed away. I've had it checked out by 2 different sources –– a shop owner of 50 years and a dealer/trainer. The bore is bright and all mechanics check out. Bluing is at 60-65%, with no significant pitting or Iwo Jima sand caked in the works. My question is should I replace the springs (primarily the recoil spring) on this pistol before I fire it? Is there anything else I should be concerned with? Or should I find a reputable Colt gunsmith in the area for a pro assessment?

Thanks in advance.
 

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Likely fine - I would replace the recoil spring, sear spring, firing pin spring, and mainspring. All are available for about $15-bucks total via Colt's website.

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First off if you have a 1929 vintage 38 Super I would not fire it as it is worth far too much. Second off who was your father serving with to carry a 38 Super at Iwo Jima? All services issued the 45 ACP during that period only the OSI had a few 38 Supers.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Mike,
My father was a member of the 5th Division Marines. He pulled the .38 from his fallen squad leader. It was a non-issued personal firearm (he could have won it in a card game for all I know.)
 

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Would love some pics
 

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Thanks for posting! Great gun! Notice the characteristic wear spot caused by a GI holster that is right above the trigger guard. It was in a GI holster for sure!
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
The circumstances were as follows:
Sergeant was taken out by land mine that a runner had triggered. I'm assuming that the original holster was toast after the detonation. My father grabbed the pistol from his sergeant and carried it through Iwo Jima and the duration of his service. Subsequently, this incident led to my father taking command of his squad - at the ripe age of 20. Standing 5' 7' and weighing 125 lbs, he led tanks into the lines and directed their fire on the positions which were holding up the advance. Awarded the Silver Star for "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action." Sorry, folks - but I cant tell that story enough. Unfortunately the pistol was stored in a shoulder holster for decades, which I've learned can do some damage to the finish. I will post a photo of the holster - maybe someone can shed some light on its origin.
 

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We are losing our WW II vets . I wish i would have talked to my father about his Navy days in the war. Kind of incents me to talk to my older brother about Viet Nam. Great .38 Super. Cherish it.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Chicago,
It took decades before my father would speak openly about his experiences in Iwo Jima. At family functions where there were other veterans - that's when the the stories were shared. However, they would often go somewhere semi-private to do so. That's when us kids would pull up a chair just close enough to listen in on the conversation without intruding. Our veterans are the treasure of our nation.
 

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How early is the serial number? 1929 would be the first year for a 38 Super.
 
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