View Full Version : Charles Harvan Shotgun?

Jerry Leblanc
December 16, 1999, 08:55 AM
I have a Charles Harvan Side by side shotgun. It is Castillan Grade in 12 gauge and in 90% condition. It is marked as being made in Spain. Can you tell me anything about this gun? What is its value? Does anyone make parts if I ever need them?

James K
December 17, 1999, 02:34 PM
Maybe Harley can provide more info, but I have nothing on that name. It is probably the name chosen by an importer, not the name of the actual maker.

The name Castillian Grade has no meaning to me - it could be the best or the worst. There are exceptions (AYA), but generally Spanish shotguns are not of high quality.

On parts, even if you could find the importer, parts would be a problem. They used a lot of cottage labor to make parts and a lot of hand fitting in assembly so it is impossible to buy replacement parts that will fit right in.

In addition, parts are usually soft so the guns tend to wear fairly rapidly. It should be safe to shoot with the proper ammo, but I would avoid any magnum loads.

Good luck.


October 10, 2007, 07:18 PM
I have the same gun but in a 20 ga. I have brought it to a few gun smiths and no-one has any answers for me. The gun i have is a very nice piece of artwork. It has a nickel reciever that is fully hand engraved with care, as is the stock and forearm. The reciever has a hand engraved pointer on point on both sides along with numerous scrollings and different engravings. i am told by all the gunsmiths i brought it to that its a very high end spanish made gun and is proably worth something more than the run of the mill spanish's. They tell me from looking at it thats its an older gun from around the 60's that they guess. they also informed me that it is a very well made gun and the hand fit and finish and engraving is great and it is no problem to shoot it. I have ran anything from light #8's to magnum 2 3/4 #4's. I dont know if its a 3" chamber or not but im going to have it gauged so i know. I will let you know if i find anything further. Just an fyi.< i went hunting with it today and had a blast harvesting a few squirrels with it.

October 10, 2007, 08:05 PM
Take the barrels off and see if you can match any of these proofs. That will give you the manufacturer. http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=es&u=http://web.jet.es/rafa/b_punzones_larga_lisa.html&sa=X&oi=translate&resnum=2&ct=result&prev=/search%3Fq%3DJos%25C3%25A9%2BCruz%2BMUGICA%26hl%3Den%26sa%3DG

James K
October 10, 2007, 09:23 PM
The problem with a lot of "high-quality engraved" Spanish guns is that they made them high quality with engraving, not by improving the quality of the internals. The result is that many are very pretty and attractive (and costly), but won't last any longer or work better than the cheap guns.


October 11, 2007, 08:09 AM
From a very short thread www.shotgunworld.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?p=560858&sid=3462a1844a5b4f1e3174938186bf92e2

A thought that Harvin was an English importer.

"Your shotgun was probably manufactured by José Cruz MUGICA, previously located in Eibar SPAIN (RIP since many, many years).
Is the manufacturer mark stamped on the water table and under the chambers: AB ?"

From the Harvin-marked guns that google turned up, it looks like they're going for $300-$400.


November 24, 2007, 10:39 AM
John, Yes it is stamped "AB" Under the chambers with the serial # following. The serial # is AB11**. It is only 4 numbers long. Does this mean anything?Also their is a bunch of other markings.it has a 20-70 with a circle around it,a knight with a shield with an x in it,a shield with a bp and a circle under it inside the shield,and also it looks like two brooms making the letter X with a 2 in the middle.The barrels have the choke as 15.4 and 15.7 with MG over them. also the markings under the chambers have 850 kgs ?, mc5 and a K1 with a small x over it. And the barrels do have a Charles harvan logo with spain stamped on top of them. Also when I look at the reciever it has the same markings on the inside. Can you tell me if this info helps at all. Also around the firing pin holes their is a circle with a little exit slice going to the sides of where the barrels close into it. it almost looks like a vent or something like that.
Could you let me know what these things mean? Also the stock has a sort of gold inlay about 3/4 of the way down about the size of a nickel. it is worn a bit and i cant see if it said anything or not. any ideas?? And the stock is i think a prince of whales style (rounded bottom or grip), and is made of beautiful bearld walnut.

Jim Watson
November 24, 2007, 10:56 AM
The "20-70" means it is a 20 gauge with 70mm (2 3/4") chambers.

The other cryptic markings are Spanish proof marks, applied when the gun was tested in the government proof house at different stages of completion. Most European countries have government proof testing of guns, we just depend on factory testing and lots of lawyers.

The little ring and groove around the firing pin hole is indeed a vent in case of a pierced primer or leaking battery cup. You would not want gas back down around the firing pin and inside the stock inletting of a double barrel. They must be accustomed to some low quality shells, because this is a common feature on European shotguns.

November 24, 2007, 11:24 AM
Jim, Thanks for the info. Do you know or think of a value of this gun? It seems like someone put alot of time into it with the engraving and the wood selection.(the wood is also hand checkered ) Does the gold inlay in the stock mean anything? Also do you have a time frame when this was made? And do you know the choke in regards to the metric #s ? 15.4 & 15.7
Thanks again, Mike

Jim Watson
November 24, 2007, 01:15 PM
Sorry, Mike, I have never seen a Harvan. There are a lot of European makers past and present and a lot more importer's trademarks. I think you have good information from Jim K and Johnbt. I would not guess the dollar value. Anybody who says it is worth a lot should have money in hand, otherwise it does not mean a thing.

The gold inlay in the stock is for the owner's initials. Most of the ones I see are blank; I guess people think about resale value rather than personalization.

Markings, from 'Gun Proof in Spain' by Lee Kennett, Gun Digest 1971:

serial # is AB11**. It is only 4 numbers AB is the maker's mark, per that other board. A four digit number following may be the weight of the barrels in grams, not the serial number. Check other locations around the gun for a serial number.

20-70 with a circle around it As I said, 20 ga. 70mm = 2 3/4" chambers.

a knight with a shield with an x in it Inspected and tested at Eibar, Spain.

a shield with a bp and a circle under it inside the shield Proof tested with smokeless powder.

it looks like two brooms making the letter X with a 2 in the middle Proof tested with black powder.

The barrels have the choke as 15.4 and 15.7 with MG over them. Does it SAY "choke" over those numbers? Choke measurements ought to be so marked. If not, those are the bore diameters after the first proof test. Standard bore diameter for 20 ga is 15.6mm. If it says "choke" then you are about Improved Cylinder and Cylinder. My chart does not have "MG" and I do not know what it stands for.

also the markings under the chambers have 850 kgs Test pressure of the smokeless proof test, about 12,000 psi.

mc5 Not in my chart of Spanish proof marks. Maybe a company inspectors' mark.

K1 with a small x over it Ah-HA! That is the date code for 1965. From the Star website, not Kennett.

November 24, 2007, 06:41 PM
Thank you so much, You guys have been a world of help on this gun for me. I also posted another request and I was wondering if their is still any rifle barrels out there for a Savage model 220A 20 ga. single barrel shotgun? I talked to Savage and they sold the rights to a company in Florida and they were no help in finding one. I am looking for any caliber suitable for white tail sized animals. I have a great gunsmith so fitting isnt a problem. I know it would cost more than its worth but the gun has 4 generations of sentimental value to it. So to me its priceless. Thanks again. You guys are the BEST! Also, their is a pretty good picture of a Charles Harvan .410 double on Cowan's auction site. Its not the same as mine but its close.

March 18, 2008, 10:31 PM
I have a 10 Gauge Charles HArvan Spanish SxS, I see that this thread is old, did you find any more about the CH?-Frank C

April 1, 2008, 08:13 PM
Im still researching. Im getting anything from junk to a great gun. I still havnt heard from a person that actually knows this gun or familiar with its value. All I know is the basics but I know mine is put together well and the wood is some of the best burled walnut I have laid my eyes on.

April 10, 2008, 12:14 AM
I've had several of these "Harvin guns" come thru my shop over the last several years. They were all imported in the during the '60s & '70s. They came out of the same cottage shops as Zabala? Most of them came in for rebluing or sear work. The 10 gauges had a nasty habit of both barrels going off when you pulled one trigger. That will get your attention in a hurry!!
Bob's Gun Shop in Royal Ark. had a pretty good stock of parts for them at one time? But, thats been wittled down over the last few years.