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Old 30th September 2007, 07:04 PM   #1
Tim Simmons
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Question Steel grip Kukri, info?

With silver foil. Is this Indian or Nepalese? Nice heavy double fullered blade and chased steel grip. I could think about restoration? Cookson's Precious Metals London and Birmingham do foil sheet and leaf for only a few pounds. Bade 35cm long, 45 cm long in total. The supplementary knives are unusually small? I think a chape is lost, perhaps silver?







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Old 30th September 2007, 07:47 PM   #2
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Hello Tim,

Nice one! Seems pure Nepali to me - just trying to bait Spiral & Co.

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Old 30th September 2007, 10:03 PM   #3
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Your doing well Tim! you should start collecting them!

OK Kai Bait taken!

I would say its Indian probably erly 20th century & pre.1930 at latest , A nice ek chirra blade, shame about the silver lifted of by the rust but one sees them that way more often than not. Thier not commen but they do turn up a couple of times a year.

Cant realy see the karda & chakmak Tim? or is it twin kardas, how long are they? what do they look like? I see theirs a tinder pouch as well.

Scabbard appears in very good condition, & it is certanly a kukri many collectors would be happy to own. I can think of one at least who hasnt one in his collection, most of the newer more recent budding collectors as well I am sure..

I always usualy the ek chirra as quite serious fighting blades, this would most likley have been brough by a Brit. officer or some such. The grips provide a solid & textured hold as well.

As for re finnishing the silver, thats your choice, they do look nice done in the original blue/black steel & silver. But each to thier own regarding what restoration/refinnishing is appropriate.

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Old 1st October 2007, 01:57 AM   #4
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Nice cho, but I don't think the scabbard is the original. I think it is a little older than Spiral does. Email me if you want to sell.

Cheers
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Old 1st October 2007, 04:51 AM   #5
Jim McDougall
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Excellent assessment Spiral! It seems you and BBJW are well versed in kukri!
I am never really sure which fields everyone is specializing in (except the obvious dha, Moro, and keris guys ) I always enjoy learning more about all of them, so if you would, could you please clarify the terms;
ek chirra, karda, chakmak

BTW, very attractive example Tim, you've really been busy!!!
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Old 1st October 2007, 07:33 AM   #6
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Yeah, I also noticed the nice cho and fullers...

Thanks, Jonathan for setting me straight!

BTW, are there any hints to look for wether a blade from Nepal may have got rehilted in India?

Is (or rather was) the production of good quality khukuris in northern India restricted to ethnic groups also present in Nepal?

Quote:
could you please clarify the terms; ek chirra, karda, chakmak
1. double fullers
2. utility knife
3. knife-like tool for setting the edge

Regards,
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Old 1st October 2007, 09:58 AM   #7
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I am certain its the right scabbard. Sadly it has the almost standard spilt in the side. I would like to compere this Kukri with another later. Pictures without so much refection from the blade. The small knives are in total length 11cm and 9.5cm. The tinder thing is just a piece of leather.


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Old 1st October 2007, 11:32 AM   #8
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Yep scabbard, karda look 1920s to me & probably original. The chakmak & pouches may be a replacments. contempary though.

Years ago the "word" on these is that they were 1850s or Victorean & were usualy sold as such. but all the provinanced examples {4} Ive seen were 20th century. Some may be indeed be older though.

Some of these come with fancy scabbards & kardas , but most started out like this.

Many of the these were made in the 1920s.

BBJW have you seen older positivly dated pieces in this style? Details would be good. Thanks.

Sorry I should definatly have said dia chirra blade

Chirra is the deep fullers, valleys or litraly divisions. ek is one , dia is two etc. but in Nepali language you cant actualy have one divisions, so they say angh khoala which means back valley for a single fuller.

India has ethnic groups like Garhwallis & Kuamon & many others who have used & made kukris for centurys. They are still Himalayen hill tribes as races though. And as you say Gurkhas also populate parts of India due to service in Brit.Indian army etc.

Kai Its generaly easier to talk about kukri when shown examples to discus, this is a typicle Indian blade & handle made like that from step one I think.

Have you a kukri you think that has happend to?


Here a couple in this style I belive to be early 20th century.

Father & son style kukri......







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Old 1st October 2007, 05:52 PM   #9
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Thanks very much Spiral, good information and most interesting!
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Old 1st October 2007, 06:53 PM   #10
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Default Nepalese and Indian

While we are on Kukri I thought it a good idea to compere this Indian one to another Nepalese? example. Although smaller and lighter to me it is far more a sophisticated artifact. It is beautifully hollow ground on both sides of the blade. It is in almost pristine condition never used and by patina looks as if it is older than the fancy Indian one.




Like carpets from Indo/Persia at this time the Chrome mordant {produced from 1887 onwards} in the dye has a tendency to rot the pile and fade especially where exposed to the light.

Last edited by Tim Simmons; 1st October 2007 at 07:47 PM.
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Old 1st October 2007, 08:15 PM   #11
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Hello Jonathan,

Thanks for your info! Is there any working list of ethnic groups traditionally utilizing khukuris? I haven't found any on the IKRHS site...

Quote:
Its generaly easier to talk about kukri when shown examples to discus, this is a typicle Indian blade & handle made like that from step one I think.
I'm not doubting that. I was speaking in general, not directed at this piece. I'm just curious about the extent of any long-established trade going on between local ethnic groups (traditionally utilizing khukuris) and/or people(s) moving around.

Owning only 2 Nepali blades, I don't have any example of a khukuri that moved around and possibly got rehilted. Anybody else?

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Old 1st October 2007, 08:19 PM   #12
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Yes thats a Nepali made hollow ground one, they often come with multiple small tools.

The design of the scabbard floral piece goes back a long way but your example with its original scabbard is post ww2.

probably late 1940s early 1950s. They always seem to be unused.

I am often disparging about most post ww2 kukris, but yours is indeed an example of good quality post ww2 work. I am a great fan of the practicleness of the hollow gounds sides combined with a convex edge. Some identical kukris came in quite elaborate silver presentation scabbards as well. The spine patterns on the blade usualy have brass inlayed in them?

Intrestingly it basicaly a precurser design of the Brit. army mk.5 kukri adopted around 1960.



Which sadley is usualy made without the finese of your piece. {lowest bidder wins on army contracts.}

I can see why you like that piece...

That said I would still rather trust my life to the steel handled Indian piece if I had to. But each to thier own.

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Old 1st October 2007, 08:19 PM   #13
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This "new" one is not older than the previous one. Post 1930 IMHO.

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Old 1st October 2007, 08:38 PM   #14
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I am interested in your opinions and you could well be right. In my own humble opinion, I am at times unsure as to how broad an investigation has been undertaken outside of looking at the business end that tends to form many a collectors view.
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Old 1st October 2007, 08:55 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kai

Is there any working list of ethnic groups traditionally utilizing khukuris? I haven't found any on the IKRHS site...

I'm just curious about the extent of any long-established trade going on between local ethnic groups (traditionally utilizing khukuris) and/or people(s) moving around.
Hi Kai,

Well I can do a rough one now if you like?

The Nepalese.. {which is numerous ethnic tribes.}Garhwallis,Kuamon all regard them as "thier" indeginous weapon.

They are also commonly used by Jammu & some Kasmhiri people & soldiers.

Some Sikhs have used them, some are made & used tribaly in Burma, Some Afghanis have adopted them in the past.

Then less traditionalty used perhaps but Some Arabs in North Africa & middle east have kept , carried & used captured examples.

In ww2 even Many British special forces troops used them. {Chindits.} & indeed US special forces, unit 101, Airboure, Merrils maurders also used them . Many English, Australian & US aircrew also carried them.

So basicaly anyone who came across them in war & liked an efficent tool & weapon seems to use them.

But origins & popular traditional use seems to be the himalayas & nearby associated highland areas.

I dont know about Tibet & Bhutan use, only ever seen one picture from Tibet showing one. So probably not common thiere.

I dont know of deliberate blade trade in the manner you ask, I think most re handling was done for pragmatic reasons when neccasary or desired at a local level.

The Brit army used to buy kukris both from Nepal & India.

To the fellows who make kukri blades, making a handle & bolster & fitting it is the easy part & its the blades that cost the money, when labour is just a bowl of rice.

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Old 1st October 2007, 09:16 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Simmons
I am interested in your opinions and you could well be right. In my own humble opinion, I am at times unsure as to how broad an investigation has been undertaken outside of looking at the business end that tends to form many a collectors view.
fairly extensive realy.... For provinaced dated examples both old & new, Gurkha museam in Winchester is good & not to far from you, get permision to see ones not displayed as well. It will help your perspective about dating them a bit, it did for me 6 years ago. The the natioal Army museam, private collections, old photo & presntation piecs all help the dating with 20th century pieces.

The double straps on scabbards are a feature that started to occur as a feild development in ww1 to catch on belt frogs better than the traditional buttons & loop for originaly sash wear which were often torn off.

The rear scabbard stiching is just not the quality of older hand stiched cotten work its only one step above todays level.

The whole shape design materials all shout post ww2,

I expect the small knives just have the Blades stuck in a hole in the horn handles? no metal support?

I can understand your doubt, some kukris pose many questians, that one doesnt realy.


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Old 1st October 2007, 09:39 PM   #17
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The stitching is all in sinew. I am also intersted in the fabric and dye stuff. Thanks for your help.
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Old 1st October 2007, 09:43 PM   #18
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sure that gets used as well, even on tourist pieces sometimes, they use evrything in Nepal, nothing wasted, sure its not gut though? thats commener.

As you say there dyes do fade, I have 1986 Nepali dyed purple velvet that has faded to light gray where it isnt under the silver.

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