Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: The Aussie Bush
On the subject of kris dimensions, it is clear that archaic kris (pre-19th C) were slimmer and shorter than subsequent kris. In the 19th C, kris appear to have become longer and wider than their ancestors, and this trend was exaggerated in the late 19th C among the Maranao and Maguindanao. Tausug kris also increased in size during the 19th C, but not to the extent of the Mindanao kris in the lat 19th C, although some Tausug kris of the 20th C may have got closer. It's not easy to give precise dimensions because of the changes that developed over time. Some of the Mindanao kris can be about 1.75 inches in width at the first luk, and the gangya are also wider and thicker than earlier examples or Tausug kris in general.
The best way to appreciate the differences between kris from the various tribal groups is to lay examples side-by-side from each group that were made in the same era. From memory, I think Cato's book shows some pictures where he has done that. Certainly he talks about the greater size of Mindanao kris in the late 19th C.