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Old 16th November 2017, 09:22 AM   #31
A. G. Maisey
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No Rasdan.

I'm going to post a pic of a blade I did about 55 years ago as soon as I can find it, you can judge for yourself.
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Old 16th November 2017, 01:52 PM   #32
Green
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Not to belabour the point, but I need a little clarification about the 'warangan culture' for the malay area.

I believe the warangan process is done on javanese blades periodically whenever the blade is cleaned. But this is not so in the case of Malay blades... i.e it may be stained using sulphur etc during the initial making process, but subsequently cleaning is only done using lime juice etc without further staining using warangan.

Is my understanding correct? If this is so, this essentially mean that 'warangan' is not a part of malay keris culture as I understand it. Hence any blades that show obvious warangan is most likely not a malay blade. Hence my original point.
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Old 16th November 2017, 03:58 PM   #33
David
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green
Not to belabour the point, but I need a little clarification about the 'warangan culture' for the malay area.

I believe the warangan process is done on javanese blades periodically whenever the blade is cleaned. But this is not so in the case of Malay blades... i.e it may be stained using sulphur etc during the initial making process, but subsequently cleaning is only done using lime juice etc without further staining using warangan.

Is my understanding correct? If this is so, this essentially mean that 'warangan' is not a part of malay keris culture as I understand it. Hence any blades that show obvious warangan is most likely not a malay blade. Hence my original point.

Well if you will forgive me for belabouring the point, in post #20 Gustav has give a quote from an academic journal for 1839 that clearly establishes that warangan was considered a part of the process by at least some Malay keris owners at that time.
Then Rasdan, in post # 28 gives a quote for a conversation with a Malay keris dealer in a book from 1916 where he clearly describes the use of arsenic to raise pamor pattern.
Did you not read these posts or do you simply choose not to believe them? They seem to more than imply that at least in some areas of the Malayan world at those times warangan was known, accessible and used. I do tend to agree that at this current time this is not seen as a common process in that Malay keris culture. But obviously it once was.
I will also say again that it is also not possible to identify the origin of a blade based solely upon whether or not that blade has been stained. It is quite possible that even in our current era where it is not in fashion to stain Malay keris, a new owner of said keris, possibly one who lives outside that culture, might choose to stain that blade out of their own personal preference. That doesn't then change the origin of the blade. It would still be a Malay blade that has been stained, no?
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Old 19th November 2017, 10:44 PM   #34
Rafngard
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Hello All,

I'm late to the party, but here' my one Keris Selit. Like many, the hilt is Jawa Demam. The blade is sepokal. The Sampir is sadly missing, but the gandar is remarkably chatoyant. I'm pretty sure the buntut is silver.

The blade is sadly held in the hilt with an adhesive, and I've been hesitant to try the candle method to remove it, given the stress crack on the hilt. Someday soon I'll bite the bullet and take care of that inactive rust.

Anyway, Enjoy!

Thanks,
Leif
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Old 14th April 2018, 03:36 PM   #35
Gustav
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While cleaning blades and making pictures I took some care of this Malay Keris Selit I have for a longer time already. It's from Northern Peninsula, 23,2 cm blade. A little bit unusual for KS because it's Pandai Saras type blade in a Saribulan sheath.

For years I thought it would be mono-steel, around or even post WWII. The blade retains file marks, running horizontal at the edges and vertical in Kruwingan (which isn't unusual, they are carefully done). After some hours in pineapple juice it became clear, that:

1) the blade is hardened (it's actually very sharp);

2) it was treated with Warangan;

3) it most probably is very finely laminated, but - it looks almost like sham. My photograph and etching skills are not good enough to show it properly, yet there are some hints even in my lousy pictures. It's also a bit difficult to see under the file work.

Gonjo perhaps could be from a different material.
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Old 15th April 2018, 10:23 AM   #36
kai
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Hello Gustav,

Quote:
While cleaning blades and making pictures I took some care of this Malay Keris Selit I have for a longer time already. It's from Northern Peninsula, 23,2 cm blade. A little bit unusual for KS because it's Pandai Saras type blade in a Saribulan sheath.

That's a nice Keris Selit! I'm not sure whether this concept applied to pre-20th century Kelantan/Pattani culture - their usually long blades and scabbards would certainly make these smaller ones more convenient to wear on special occasions (especially ceremonial events with lots of sitting...).

There do appear to be some PS variants; while short blades tend to be more stout, I'm not convinced that this really represents a PS style though. However, it clearly exhibits northern Malay features and it may be a moot point what name to tag on it...


Quote:
For years I thought it would be mono-steel, around or even post WWII.

There are many northern Malay keris blades that are laminated, usually with somewhat subdued contrast like in, e. g., Aceh blades.

Do you associate monosteel in Malayan keris with the WW2 period and later? I'd expect them to have access to monosteel quite a lot earlier and utilize it for keris, too.


Quote:
After some hours in pineapple juice it became clear, that:
1) the blade is hardened (it's actually very sharp);

Yup, really extensive treatment down into the sogokan area!


Quote:
2) it was treated with Warangan;

Like I emailed you a while back, I wouldn't be surprised to find warangan on (untouched) antique blades from pretty much all over the archipelago (including the northern Malay region).

Fruit juices also darken steel/etc. though - what criteria speak for warangan, specifically?


Quote:
3) it most probably is very finely laminated, but - it looks almost like sham. My photograph and etching skills are not good enough to show it properly, yet there are some hints even in my lousy pictures. It's also a bit difficult to see under the file work.

I guess I see what you mean - could this possibly be shear steel? This also can exhibit sham-like internal structure resembling crucible steel.


Quote:
Gonjo perhaps could be from a different material.

It definitely is laminated with contrasting material - this pamor hasn't been utilized for the blade for sure!

Interesting keris, congrats and thanks for posting! Let me know if ...

Regards,
Kai
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Old 15th April 2018, 06:07 PM   #37
Gustav
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Hello Kai;

Quote:

There do appear to be some PS variants; while short blades tend to be more stout, I'm not convinced that this really represents a PS style though. However, it clearly exhibits northern Malay features and it may be a moot point what name to tag on it...


One of the most characteristic, distinctive features for a PS is the central ridge (Odo-Odo), continued on Gonjo. It is present. Also Greneng on my blade is absolutely typical for PS.


Quote:
Do you associate monosteel in Malayan keris with the WW2 period and later? I'd expect them to have access to monosteel quite a lot earlier and utilize it for keris, too.


I own about 10 Peninsular blades and have seen some more. They are older ones; for two, including this KS, I am not so sure and would accept period around WWII as a possible time frame of making. These are the latest ones. None of my blades or old (pre-WWII) blades I have seen, are made from mono-steel. My impression until now is, that, even if mono-steel was used for tools already in 19th cent., Keris blades still would be made from laminated material.

Quote:
Like I emailed you a while back, I wouldn't be surprised to find warangan on (untouched) antique blades from pretty much all over the archipelago (including the northern Malay region).


I have never had or expressed a contrary oppinion, au contraire.

Quote:
Fruit juices also darken steel/etc. though - what criteria speak for warangan, specifically?


I am sure you have experienced many times - after some time in juice the blade turns deep black in some places and these places start "to bleed" while scrubbing the blade.

Quote:
I guess I see what you mean - could this possibly be shear steel? This also can exhibit sham-like internal structure resembling crucible steel.


Perhaps. It's something I haven't seen before (except for the Gonjo).

Last edited by Gustav : 15th April 2018 at 06:28 PM.
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