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Old 21st October 2019, 12:08 PM   #1
kronckew
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Default Odd pole arm

Found this odd pole arm, broad single edge blade.

Anyone have any Idea where it may have come from? Doesn't look European to me.
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Old 22nd October 2019, 04:53 AM   #2
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Is there more of a socket / ferrule / sleeve below the blade than is in the photo you provided? What is the diameter of the shaft? There appear to be two non--ferrous sleeves or bands added on, what materials are they made of?
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Old 25th October 2019, 07:06 AM   #3
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The fittings on it are made of pewter, rattan, dyed rattan and cord, Here's a better picture that shows it is NOT a pole arm after all. The blade appears to be an asian laminate with a differential heat treatment and even has a hamon. Size in total is 17-1/2 ins, blade is 10 ins long and 2-1/2 ins width, thickness of the spine is just over 1/8th inch. The pewter sleeve from the haft looks like it had been chewed by a puppy and has come loose and needs some TLC (see bottom photo), probably why the original photo had part not shown. Looks vaguely asian, but from where? the trapezoidal twisted rattan wrap looks kinda like a moro kris baca-baca in that it appears to hold the blade to the handle behind the initial bolster bit:
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Old 25th October 2019, 09:51 AM   #4
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The blade looks like the blade of a Chinese "river pirates" knife.
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Old 25th October 2019, 12:56 PM   #5
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Thought of that, have a hudeidao or two, this one is WAY too thin for that.
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Old 25th October 2019, 01:52 PM   #6
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Agreed, too thin (and small) to be from a hudiedao or any polearm, The non ferrous additions donít look very Chinese to me, the workmanship reminds me of some SE Asian areas. The lamellar structure with differential heat treat is a pan-Far East phenomenon, seen on blades from Siam up to Korea and Japan to Inner Asia. Even on domestic tools. It is characteristic of Moro blades from Mindanao, and so forth. If you polished your hudiedao blades youíll see the same thing.

That being said, there could be a possibility that your piece, wherever it was originally made, may have started out as a domestic knife rather than intended as a weapon, per se. Itís been around the block quite a bit and I find the additions and modifications interesting.
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Old 25th October 2019, 02:09 PM   #7
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was coming to the conclusion it might be north Vietnamese/Montagnard or other mountain tribes of the SEA area. Hard to pin down. May indeed be a repurposed item.

p.s.- my 'hudei dao are singletons with full checkered oval section wood grips and bronze guards, NOT half round 'butterfly' versions, they have already been tidied up and cleaned, and the laminations/hamons are visible on in-hand inspection; photos are so limiting....

a before view on the chubbier Qing dynasty one, was covered in rust and muck. It cleaned up nicely, still a razor too. both blades somewhere around a half inch thick or so at the guard, both guards are also monsterously thick.
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Old 25th October 2019, 02:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ren Ren
The blade looks like the blade of a Chinese "river pirates" knife.


Did you mean such a knife?
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Old 25th October 2019, 02:52 PM   #9
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I think he was thinking of one of these more recent wing chun dancing knives.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B9-cJdG_fr4
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Old 25th October 2019, 03:20 PM   #10
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I do not think it is a reworked utility knife. To me it looks like some kind of South Asian shafted weapon, in the family of Indian Bhuj, SEA Mak, Japanese Naginata or even European Couteaux de Breche or Siberian Palma and Batiyya. Longer handle allowed for the use of both hands to add power, and the length of blade might have been intentionally kept short to increase rigidity. In any case, one needed only so much sharp edge for full functionality: the dreaded Spanish Colonial sabers with finger-stalled handles (we used to think they were N. African) had no more than distant third to a half of the blade sharpened. The use of rattan might hint ( weakly but really) of Indonesian of Philippine origin

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Old 25th October 2019, 08:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
Did you mean such a knife?

That's right. I meant this type of knife, which is smaller, lighter and thinner than "hudiedao" knives. And which often differs from the butcher's knives of South China only in massive bronze "additions".
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Old 25th October 2019, 08:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ren Ren
That's right. I meant this type of knife, which is smaller, lighter and thinner than "hudiedao" knives. And which often differs from the butcher's knives of South China only in massive bronze "additions".


I agree. The blades are very similar.
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Old 25th October 2019, 09:33 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
I do not think it is a reworked utility knife. To me it looks like some kind of South Asian shafted weapon, in the family of Indian Bhuj, SEA Mak, Japanese Naginata or even European Couteaux de Breche or Siberian Palma and Batiyya. Longer handle allowed for the use of both hands to add power, and the length of blade might have been intentionally kept short to increase rigidity. In any case, one needed only so much sharp edge for full functionality: the dreaded Spanish Colonial sabers with finger-stalled handles (we used to think they were N. African) had no more than distant third to a half of the blade sharpened. The use of rattan might hint ( weakly but really) of Indonesian of Philippine origin


I agree with your suggestion that it may well be from SE Asia, Philippines or, as has been previously posted, the hill tribes of the Vietnam/Laos/Cambodia region. As re its being from a pole-mounted weapon, I'm not so sure. The shape of the blade is indeed that of a cutting implement, but its relative thinness and its diminutive tang don't seem appropriate on a weapon subject to leverage and other forces acting on a weapon mounted on an extended shaft.

A polearm with blade of similar shape to this object, and to the Chinese fighting knives highlighted in a prior post, was used in China's southern provinces. However, I can state from handling, and restoring, a few of these that those blades are far more substantial (over twice the thickness at the base) and are integral with a tapering solid shank of octagonal section, then transitioning to a fairly wide flat tang with one or two holes for rivets. This is at variance with what we see here on this piece, so despite the superficial similarity of blade outline, we are comparing apples and oranges.
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Old 25th October 2019, 10:08 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip
However, I can state from handling, and restoring, a few of these that those blades are far more substantial (over twice the thickness at the base) and are integral with a tapering solid shank of octagonal section, then transitioning to a fairly wide flat tang with one or two holes for rivets. This is at variance with what we see here on this piece, so despite the superficial similarity of blade outline, we are comparing apples and oranges.

Thank you very much, Philip! This is an important and valuable clarification.
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Old 26th October 2019, 01:21 PM   #15
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The proportions of the handle in relation to the blade remind me of the knives From Taiwan.
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Old 26th October 2019, 04:18 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Athanase
The proportions of the handle in relation to the blade remind me of the knives From Taiwan.


Someone else has suggested this as a good possibility as well.

reminds me of a Taiwanese Pingpu knife. The Pingpu tribe no longer exists, having been absorbed into the population. Example not mine, found online)
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Old 29th October 2019, 06:08 PM   #17
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Not the above! Problem solved: It's a Burmese Naga tribal 'basket dha' ('knife'). Found an almost identical one that still had the rest of it's metal sheathing on, and it's hair tail. It fits a woven basket scabbard and sash for carry. This one has some blade decorations.
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Old 3rd November 2019, 08:59 PM   #18
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found on the web, looks a bit similar...
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Old 3rd November 2019, 09:01 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
Did you mean such a knife?


Hi
Where did you find this picture?
Are they really Chinese knives?
thanks
Kubur
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Old 4th November 2019, 05:23 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
Where did you find this picture?
Are they really Chinese knives?


I don't know where Mahratt find the pictures (net?) but I know that this knives are indeed Chinese, it's said that they get used by river pirates.

Regards,
Detlef
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Old 4th November 2019, 06:09 PM   #21
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No, not chinese, see my post 17 above. They are Naga made by local tribal blacksmiths, no relation to 'butterfly' or river pirate swords at all.
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Old 4th November 2019, 07:08 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kronckew
No, not chinese, see my post 17 above. They are Naga made by local tribal blacksmiths, no relation to 'butterfly' or river pirate swords at all.


We are talking about post# 8 Sir!

And yes i posted a naga knife

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Old 4th November 2019, 07:13 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sajen
I don't know where Mahratt find the pictures (net?) but I know that this knives are indeed Chinese, it's said that they get used by river pirates.

Regards,
Detlef


Thank you Detlef

I found it

Chinese Highbinder weapons collected by H. H. North, U. S. Commission of Immigration, forwarded to Bureau of Immigration, Washington D. C., about 1900. Note the coexistence of hudiedao (butterfly swords), guns and knives all in the same raid. This collection of weapons is identical to what might have been found in either China or America from the 1860s onward.
Courtesy the digital collection of the Bancroft Library, UC Berkley.

So if i'm not mistaken this pirate story is a myth... Chinese mafia most probably... a good serie to watch: warrior...
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Old 4th November 2019, 07:42 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
We are talking about post# 8 Sir!

And yes i posted a naga knife


OK, was not clear at that point which post you were referring to.
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