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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,

It just occurred to me that I have never seen a Durgarde-finish Manurhin chambered in anything other than .380, nor am I clear during what time period Manurhin used that finish (all the pistols that I have seen have been early-1980’s). Nor do I know if it was restricted to the PPK/S, although I am fairly certain that no PPs ever got this hard-chrome treatment (i.e., any PPK?). Please share your thoughts, I am a fan of Manurhin and the Durgarde pistols, and I would love to know if any unicorns are out there waiting to be found.

p.s., this is a good opportunity to show off one of mine
 

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Geo', you're saying that is factory? Really handsome gun; presume .380?
Who made the grips?
Moon
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes, it is factory hard chrome that Manurhin called Durgarde. Looks a lot like a satin stainless, which is how they are listed perhaps half the time on places like Gunbroker. Yes, both are .380, and I have bid on a couple of others over the years. I am hoping to learn of other calibers, although I have a suspicion that it is exclusively in .380s.

The grips are by KSD, who also made the pair on my S&W Model 66 with a similar pattern and my SIG P210 which is a “fish scale” pattern. Both guns are shown somewhere on the non-Walther photo sticky (the Mod. 66 most recently). Nice grips for the money, although some of their patterns are a bit tacky to me.
 
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Thnx, Geo'. Is your 66 a snub?

A local shop in PA does nice hardchrome (Metalife), and like has done a P5 of mine, not to mention some pocket guns. I do like how it looks, and, apparently, unlike chrome, it is so thin that it doesn't cause fit issues.


BTW, have you shopped Altamont grips?
Moon
 

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Here is one of the very last of the line...
Production stopped with serial number 267721S in 12/85.




I've never seen any PP or PPK models produced with this finish but I'm willing to be educated. BTW this looks pretty good for getting years of EDC doesn't it (grips are relatively new)?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thnx, Geo'. Is your 66 a snub?

BTW, have you shopped Altamont grips?
Moon
No, it is a 4” no-dash that I bought as NOS and promptly shot :eek:

I have not heard of Altamont, but I will give them a look. Most all of my guns now wear wood, either OEM or after market.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Here is one of the very last of the line...
Production stopped with serial number 267721S in 12/85.

I've never seen any PP or PPK models produced with this finish but I'm willing to be educated.
Yeah, the dates I have seen have all been in the 1982/3-1985 range right before the demise of Manurhin firearms, and wear either the Matra or Virginia import marks.

Here is the Matra import mark on one of the last 300. (For HMC, those are Marschal grips.)

 

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Jeeze, you two are making me green. Very green. Geo', like how those grips sweep back into the beavertail.
Harchrome is just that...hard. It's about impervious to ordinary abrasion. Frankly, much as I like stainless, in many ways hardchrome is a better option.
Moon
 
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My Manurhin, serial 268561S, .380 ACP. Originally blued, but the finish seemed badly worn on the front and back of the gripstrap, so I had it hard chromed by Accurate Plating & Weaponry.
 

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Notice the difference between the finishes on P5's weapon and the others shown on this thread...
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I wish that I could view your images, they do not upload for me.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Interesting, and curious. This “contest” is really an ad for services, but it contains some nuggets. One, it implies the Durgarde finish was applied in the USA. Two, it implies that Matra was in control of that finish as far back as mid-1984, yet the production dates for Matra versus Manurhin International (VA) imports don’t seem to match that. Finally, the end date of the contest (2/1986) seems to post-date pistol production. Curiouser and curiouser...
 

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Different finish

I picked mine at the Matra corporate office when they were located in Fort Lauderdale. They had some display guns, one that I thought was stainless but was probably like yours and some 'Z-coated' guns, one in street camo and one in dessert camo. I asked if they were for sale and was initially told no, but they called me back and told me I could have my pick. I should have bought them all but chose the street camo one.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Cool, and unique, gun! I heard of somebody else getting a display gun from their office. My guess is that Matra knew they were done with Manurhin sales. Do you recall the month and year?
 

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Cool, and unique, gun! I heard of somebody else getting a display gun from their office. My guess is that Matra knew they were done with Manurhin sales. Do you recall the month and year?
I believe it was in May of 1986. They told me that they were not making the guns any longer and were only going to be making munitions going forward.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
That sounds right based on other dates. Thanks for sharing, another piece of post-Walther Manurhin history.
 
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