The .38/.45 Clerke (pronounced "clark"), aka .38/.45 Auto Pistol or .45/.38 Auto Pistol is a wildcat semi-automatic pistol cartridge developed by Bo Clerke and introduced in Guns & Ammo in 1963.[1]

History and design

It is essentially a .45 ACP case, necked down to .357, resulting in a cartridge similar in form to the earlier 7.65×21mm Parabellum and 7.63×25mm Mauser cartridges. It was created to be a low recoil target cartridge that would function reliably with multiple bullet types, FMJ to cast lead wadcutters without the feeding problems that straight walled pistol rounds sometimes exhibit.[2] The cartridge can be used in standard .45 ACP magazines.[3]

The .38 Casull followed the same formula as the .38/.45 Clerke, but with thicker case walls as in the .45 Winchester Magnum.[4][5]

Ammunition and reloading

.45 ACP cases can be resized to handload .38/.45 Auto cartridges [6] using form and sizer dies still available from the RCBS Corporation, p/n 56468.

Nearly any M1911 pistol and pistols of the same pattern can be converted to the .38/.45 cartridge with a replacement barrel, from a 38 Super barrel reamed out to .38/.45 dimensions.[1][3] During the round's initial popularity, drop-in barrels were available from makers like Bar-Sto.

Related rounds

See also


  1. ^ a b "none". Guns and Ammo magazine. October 1963. 
  2. ^ Robert K. Campbell, The Shooter's Guide to the 1911: A Guide to the Greatest Pistol of All Time, p. 122, ISBN 1-4402-1434-4 
  3. ^ a b Patrick Sweeney. Gun Digest Big Fat Book of the .45 ACP. pp. 329, 332. ISBN 1-4402-0219-2. 
  4. ^ John Taffin, "Flat-shooting trail gun: Casull 3800", Guns Magazine (February 2003 ed.) 
  5. ^ "1911 Hot Rods", Guns & Ammo- Handguns Magazine, archived from the original on 2009-06-17 
  6. ^ Barnes, Frank C. (2006) [1965]. Skinner, Stan, ed. Cartridges of the World (11th ed.). Iola, WI, USA: Gun Digest Books. pp. 140, 143. ISBN 0-89689-297-2. 

External links