Object Title

Modèle 1892 revolver

Modèle 1892 revolver


After undergoing minor refinements from its commercial design, the Modèle 1892 was adopted as Modèle d'Ordonnance 1892 army revolver, replacing the Modèle 1873 Chamelot-Delvigne revolver. Designed and manufactured from 1892-1927 by Manufacture d'armes de Saint-Étienne, this double-action revolver had a swing out cylinder with spring operated extractor. Fitted with the Abadie system, a lever on the right hand side of the frame released the cylinder for loading. This feature also locked the hammer in place when loading, preventing an accidental discharge.

Chambering the relatively weak 8mm Lebel revolver cartridge, this was one of the first revolvers to have cartridges with jacketed bullets. The low muzzle velocity generated by this weapon meant that in the trenches it had unimpressive man stopping capabilities when compared to the British Webley. In terms of terminal ballistics, it just barely reached the level of the .32 ACP.

Use and effect

Originally designed to serve as a French Army officer's personal sidearm, it was also issued to officers in the Navy and Gendarmerie. Non-commissioned officers continued to carry the older Modèle 1873 service revolver, but some were issued .32 ACP automatic pistols (the 'Spanish' Ruby pistol) during the War.

Its trigger pull when fired in double-action mode was stiff, affecting the accuracy of the shot. On the other hand, as it was made up of only four components it was ideal for field stripping, even without tools.

The Modèle 1892 was later officially replaced by semi-automatic pistols in 1935 but many saw service during the Second World War and were brought to the United States as souvenirs.


Action / Operating system Double action
Barrel length 11.7 cm (4.6 in)
Calibre / Bore 8 mm (.315 in)
Capacity (rounds) 6
Country of manufacture France
Date entered service 1892
Effective range 30 m (34 yd)
Feed Cylinder
Manufacturer Manufacture d'Armes de Saint-Etienne (MAS)
Muzzle velocity 220 m/s (720 fps)
Overall length 83 cm (33.5 in)
Primary operator France
Weight 850 g (1 lb 14 oz)


Lisa Traynor