The “Manurhin Candidate”

Working the Manurhin MR73 revolvers.

By Mark R. Hollensen

I must admit, there were times when I would only occasionally see a Manurhin revolver come in for service or repairs, and even then, primarily for cleaning and inspection. Over the past few years I have seen them come in more regularly and they all came in for a different functioning issue. Having worked on these over the years, I am familiar with their design and capabilities and have always found them to work rather well. They are smooth operating revolvers and feel much like a heavy Smith & Wesson revolver in your hand when operating them even though they are different.

History shows that the earliest Manurhin revolvers were made in Mulhouse, France beginning in 1972 and were produced at that location until 1998. Then, that same year, a company by the name of Chapuis Armes purchased the old machinery and equipment and began producing new Manurhin revolver model configurations. These revolvers are regarded as being of very high quality and durability, citing that they can outlast a comparable Smith & Wesson revolver firing the same 357 Magnum loads. This was partially based on a displayed MR73 revolver that reportedly survived over 96,000 full power 357 Magnum loads. They boast a frame that is larger than a K-Frame S&W but are dimensionally smaller than the L-Frame. The barrels are hammer forged with button rifling with the same (or similar) twist rate found in the S&W revolver barrels.

The high-polish bluing and smooth functioning actions are what draws people to them. Their style is high quality and they just feel “right” in the hand. The MR73 is available in many different calibers and accessory configurations, including 38 Special, 357 Magnum, 32 Smith & Wesson Long, 22 WMR and 22 LR. They can be purchased with a variety of available barrel lengths, sights, grips, finishes in bright blue or matte, and in Match configurations.

The earliest MR73 revolvers can be distinguished by a…

Read more in the February 2021 issue.

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