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Old 3rd September 2006, 03:50 PM   #1
fernando
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Default what kind of lance is this?

Please help.
For some time i see this lance ( spear ), but i wonder.
The seller, a country shop, whose opinion is that haft and head are not from the original combination, still wants a heavy price for the set.
But it could be that the collar is now mounted upsidown, giving the set an auckward look, like the haft being a poor arrangement to put up a more saleable object.
However the collar and the two rings, mounted in a different position, could maybe show that the rattan haft and head actually belong one to each other.
The blade, some 8 to 9 inch long, though with very smooth and accurate lines, both flat and edge lines, shows a few signs of activity, looking with attention.
There is a piece of wood in the mid section, filling the collar part.
Sorry the pictures are more in quantity than in quality ... rather a challenge
to take keen pictures, without a tripod or the like, being one handed .
Could anyone give a help at identifying this piece? Provenance, culture, genuinity, possible age?
Thanks a lot in advance
fernando
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Old 3rd September 2006, 03:53 PM   #2
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another one
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Old 3rd September 2006, 04:03 PM   #3
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Nice spear!
I'd say it is definately old/genuine,probably an Indonesian tombak ,others can probably tell you more specifics.

There is an off chance it might be SE Asian,I used to have a brass covered dha that had a similar pattern on it's grip to the design on the ferrule of your spear.
Unfortunately some patterns and designs get used over such vast areas,that the similar design may not mean much, it may still be an Indonesian piece and the pattern just a coincidence.
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Old 3rd September 2006, 04:32 PM   #4
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I have one of these very similar and also post pictures here. The response was that it is Malayan or from Borneo. When I compere these pictures to mine, I think it is all original.
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Old 3rd September 2006, 06:37 PM   #5
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Certainly Indo-Malay, but fact of the matter is that once you have narrowed it down to that, a more specific id becomes a little tricky, as similar spears/tombaks can be found all over the archipelago.

Based on the beefy-ness of this one, and on other similar ones I have and have seen, I'd say this one is from Borneo or Sumatra.

Should clean up to be a superb piece. Nice find!
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Old 3rd September 2006, 07:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesS

Based on the beefy-ness of this one, and on other similar ones I have and have seen, I'd say this one is from Borneo or Sumatra.

I too was thinking Borneo.
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Old 3rd September 2006, 07:47 PM   #7
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My guess is more the direction of Sumatra. I took a look in Van Zonneveld. Copper and silver fittings are shown in Sumatran spears. The chisseled motivs on the fittings give me more the idea of Sumatra. In Borneo it is mostly rattan that is used.
Could be a pamor blade, like you described the blade. Tim's blade is definitely a pamor blade.
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Old 4th September 2006, 07:16 PM   #8
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Thank you all, for your postings. This will surely influence my decision on buying it, but again the price wanted is quite a disadvantage.
I would still say, Henk, that the blade aspect is rather regular, the steel looks to tight, although looking real. Apart from the few signs of lamination (?) i could figure, it seemed quite distant from having/achieving Tim's piece pamor ( if i catch the term ). Maybe it hasn't been etched in the origin ( if this makes sense ). Maybe not such an old piece, due to that, in my ignorant view.
But i will refrain from bothering you with further questions, consequent to the coments you kindly gave here, as this may not become an actual acquisition.
Nice piece Tim, is your haft in wood? and tapering towards the butt? is that a butt ferule?
Thanks all again, for being so much cooperative.
Tim, i will send you a PM, if you don't mind.
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Old 4th September 2006, 07:49 PM   #9
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Hi Fernando,

The haft is tapering heavy wood, it looks very much in the same form as the one you show. Mine has a small horn pommel on the end. I have seen some where the end is just rounded off. I do not see any problem with the one you show. My views come with a caution in that I do not really know much about these things.
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Old 4th September 2006, 08:12 PM   #10
fernando
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Hi Tim
Because the pictures i have shown are not clear, you can't see the haft in this one is rattan cane.
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Old 4th September 2006, 08:16 PM   #11
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Well meybe it is not as posh but still a very nice spear/lance.

Last edited by Tim Simmons : 4th September 2006 at 08:31 PM. Reason: spelling!!
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Old 6th January 2007, 08:11 PM   #12
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Default Clear pictures

I ended up buying this piece.
Did a bit clean up on the blade. Actual length 10" ( 25 cms. ).Width 3/4" ( 2cms. )
Quite sharp edges ( even cut myself ). Very well designed, quite strong, with a perfect tip.
The collar mountig is actually very crude, doesn't fit into the haft with the propper harmony. I wonder if it is the genuine set.
The rattan haft is a bit bent, with three rather deep pronounced sections, with an abruptly cut off end.
Now that pictures are more clear and the blade is clean, i wonder if the opinnion given on its origin ( Borneo or Sumatra ) would
remain the same, or if something different is revealed.
Please gentlemen, your coments will be wellcome.
Thanks in advance
fernando
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Last edited by fernando : 6th January 2007 at 08:39 PM.
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Old 6th January 2007, 08:27 PM   #13
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Arrow

From the looks of the butt , this piece IMO has been cut; I was expecting to see a cap or finial for the end.
Is there any wear on the end?

As far as the rest of it goes; it looks to be what it is .
I wouldn't want to try to pin down exactly where in the Archipelago this originated.
Good job on the blade.
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Old 6th January 2007, 08:53 PM   #14
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Thank you Rick.
Yes, you are quite right ... and i was blind. It has all signs of having been sawed off, and not so long ago.
By the way, could this be an old piece ?
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Old 6th January 2007, 09:20 PM   #15
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IMHO I think the length of the haft is good, so I doubt it is shortened. I have two similar lances of the same length if I can judge it correctly.
I think you bought a nice lance from Sumatra.
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Old 6th January 2007, 09:21 PM   #16
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looks like it is at least from the turn of the 19th/20th century. I like the way the halft has thicker piece glued on. I wonder why the end was cut. So you got at a good price in the end?
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Old 6th January 2007, 09:23 PM   #17
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Judging from the 'before' pictures I think it is not new.
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Old 6th January 2007, 09:24 PM   #18
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I will go with Henk and it is possible the end was always like that. Unless a picture show clearly over wise.
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Old 6th January 2007, 10:29 PM   #19
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Hi Henk
I do think it is visible that the haft was cut shorter, although not necessarily a great length of it. Let's consider for example that its present length is the maximum allowed for postal transportation. I have heard cases where spear hafts are abandoned or cut shorter for such reason.
Tim, you make me fear i was blind for the second time with this piece. I was thinking that the haft was a whole cane piece, only with an unusual "jump" between the sections . Now you tell me that actually the sections were loose parts with diferent thicnesses, later put together to form the haft. Quite a bizarre solution, right ?
Yes, the price became more favourable, both in amount and currency. I swapped this lance and a vintage book cabinet ( for my daughter ) with two little pistols i wasn't interested on.
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Old 6th January 2007, 11:05 PM   #20
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Default How to name it

Can i call this piece a tombak ?
And the steel forging method, any characteristic name for it, rather than just plain steel ?
Thanks for help.
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Old 7th January 2007, 09:25 AM   #21
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Fernando,

I have such a similar spear haft on a spear. Still I think it isn't shortened with a saw, maybe with a file or something like that to flatten the bottom of the haft. And maybe some less smarter person rubbed with it on a stone. On the picture I wouldn't say it is a fresh saw cut. A saw cut is more smoother and cleaner.

http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=1672

Take a look at the third spear. Not a very sharp picture, but you can se that the haft is similar to yours.

To call this a tombak? I'm not very sure, but I think a tombak is something different. I would prefer to call it a lance or a spear with a good forged steel blade.
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Old 7th January 2007, 12:54 PM   #22
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Default Dank je wel, Henk

I will stick to your definition, and register this piece in my little old arms record as a Sumatran lance ( no Portuguese for spear ).
Those are very nice pieces, in the pictures you show.
I am back thinking that the rattan cane haft is made of one only piece, of a species with deep differences between the nodes, and not separate sections stuck together. If i well understand what i have read about rattan, the canes are usually peeled off to provide weaving material, and the remaning cores are what actually is used for shafting. This would well cause a more pronounced cavity between the nodes. I have a shooting cane with a similar situation.
Thanks again and tot seens
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Old 9th January 2007, 09:41 PM   #23
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Hi Fernando,

Wished i could say something in portugese to you. Your dutch is better than my portugese

Those lances are very nice indeed. Certainly the first two ones, about the third one i'm a bit unsure. The haft is similar to your piece but mine has an uncommon spearhead. Don't know what to think about it.

I think you're right about the rattan material. The peeled bark is weaving material and what remains can be used for a shaft.

You got yourself a very nice and aged sumatran lance. Congrats with this one, it certainly deserves a place in your collection.
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