SOLD FOR: $2525
Make: Manufactured by Chapuis Armes for Manurhin
Model: MR73, 3rd Gen
Serial Number: HA01228
Year of Manufacture: 1995-1996
Caliber: .38 Special
Action Type: DA/SA Double and Single Action Revolver with a Swing-Out 6-Shot Cylinder
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “–Cal. .38 Sp.–”. The left side of the top strap is marked with the serial number, “HA01228”. The right side of the frame is marked with the Manurhin logo and “made / in / France”. The rear face of the cylinder is marked “38”.
Barrel Length: 4”, with serrated barrel rib.
Sights/Optics: The front sight is a serrated blade integral to a serrated ramp that is pinned into a notch in the barrel rib.
Stock Configuration and Condition: The grips are two-piece replacement Trausch textured black rubber. There are just minor handling marks, but otherwise the grips are free of any notable wear or damage. Overall, the grips are in Excellent condition, as not original to the gun.
Type of Finish: Blued with a Straw Hammer and Trigger
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is bright with sharp rifling. There is no erosion in the bore.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 97% of its metal finish. The rich blue finish is marred by just a few nicks through the finish which can be seen on the left side of the barrel lug and the left side of the barrel. Other minor wear includes faint tool marks on the right side of the frame over the trigger, a bit of minor scuff wear on the left side of the barrel near the tip, and a distinct turn line. The yolk and cylinder have taken on a faint plum hue. Screws are lightly tool marked with strong slots. Markings are clear. Overall, this revolver is in Fine-to-Excellent condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The slide is tight to the frame. The single action is feather light and the double action is smooth. We did not fire this revolver. As with all used firearms, thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork, and Accessories: This MR73 includes a black Manurhin snap-case.
Our Assessment: The MR73 is, if not legendary, an exceedingly well-regarded and respected revolver released in 1973. The development of the revolver took place contemporarily with the founding of the French Groupe d’intervention de la Gendarmerie nationale (National Gendarmerie Intervention Group) and was made with intention of solving for the limitations of the Smith & Wesson 19. GIGN is notable for their use of revolvers in their operations. GIGN Founder Christian Prouteau has said, “We’re not here to carry out the higher orders, we’re here to bring the people we have to arrest in front of a court, and not deliver immediate justice.” The philosophy was that use of a revolver demonstrated true technical proficiency and capability. In the early days of the organization, GIGN performed a drill called “First Round on Target”, where the shooter would draw their MR73, fire, then put the revolver down. It taught them on a psychological level that their first shot was really the only one that mattered—and a revolver is an ideal tool to demonstrate and master that concept. While systematic use of the MR73 has stopped, GIGN still trains with it. The example on offer here is from latter-era production, sometime in the mid-90s, and was manufactured for Manurhin by Chapuis, another French gun maker. The MR73 is an incredibly robust firearm, able to fire up to 100,000 .357 Magnum rounds before the barrel begins to degrade. This example is chambered for .38 Special, which for many shooters is preferable for its ability to be shot more rapidly and transmitting less stress to the shooter’s body. Just a few minor nicks marr what is otherwise a truly beautiful, inky blued finish. A new version of the MR73 is currently being imported by Beretta, so original production versions such as this are certainly becoming more rare. Do not hesitate to add this storied, gorgeous revolver to your collection. Good luck and happy bidding!