Developed for review by the Austrian Army, this Steyr 1893 was arguably the most beautiful military revolver ever made, with a rust blued barrel and frame, a strawed cylinder/multiple small parts, and a fire blued front sight. Although there were several variations within this limited production, all incorporated a gas seal mechanism in which the cylinder face was pressed against the forcing cone upon hammer fall. This eliminated the pressure drop from escaping gas and was an important development that laid the groundwork for the smaller and more commonly encountered Nagant M1895. According to Moetz and Schuy, Von Ursprung der Selbstladepistole, a biblical reference of early Austrian pistols, pg 440, all 100 revolvers were sent to the Austrian military to be tested against tested the Salvator Dormus, Mannlicher M1894, and Roth Theodorovic. At least one of the Steyr M1893s, #71, was marked with the Austrian Wn/97 acceptance. This matching example has a 5 5/8” half round/half octagon barrel with a pinned, half-moon, fire blued front sight and fixed rear sight. SN 60 is on the left side of the barrel, frame, and all of the internal components including each of the grips. Austrian proofmarks “270.41.02” under the barrel, reflecting a commercial testing in 1902. Sideplate is marked “WAFFENFABRIK /STEYR”. Major components were finished with a soft, rust blue; the hammer, cylinder, cylinder stop, the externally mounted crane spring, and trigger are strawed. Finely checkered wooden grips. Swiveling lanyard ring.
Exceedingly rare Steyr M1893 gas seal revolver, 100 made in the early 1890s for the Austrian military trial of 1897.
Excellent overall, with 97% bright original rust blue with slightly faded strawing, with some spotting especially on the face of the trigger and external crane spring. Comparable condition grips. Perfect bore and manual function. One of the rarest and most impressive of Steyr’s handguns, with military pedigree, in outstanding condition.