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Luke Adams




Location: NYC
Joined: 10 May 2014

Posts: 57

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 11:00 am    Post subject: Sword to Identify         Reply with quote

Hello all,

Would any of you happen to know what this sword is and where in the world it might've came from? My knowledge is pretty limited to East Asian weaponry, so I really have no idea what it could be. It has an nice engraved sheathe and an "S"- shaped guard. My guess is that it's from somewhere in Central, South, or Southeast Asia, but I could be completely wrong.

Much thanks to those who help me solve this mystery! Happy



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"God gives the nuts, but he does not crack them."
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Pieter B.





Joined: 16 Feb 2014
Reading list: 10 books

Posts: 577

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 11:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The wooden scabbard with floral pattern suggests Indonesia/Philippines but that it just a wild guess on my part. I'll monitor this thread because I want to know it now.
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Peter Rieder




Location: Munich
Joined: 02 May 2007

Posts: 18

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 11:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It´s a Thai dhab or daab. i have seen countless of those on auction sites, they´re a common tourist item, probably not of high quality.
A loaf that tries to twist its own fate is not a loaf at all but is, in fact, a pretzel.

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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
Likes: 1 page
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Posts: 1,492

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 2:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As above, very tourist. AFAIK, this particular style only exists as tourist swords. There are traditionally-styled tourist dha/daarb, and modern-made tourist ones both of good quality and junky quality. I've not played with a blade from a fancy carved tourist one like this, but I wouldn't be surprised if the blade is unhardened.

For a range of old specimens, http://www.arscives.com/historysteel/continentalsea.swordlist.htm

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Luke Adams




Location: NYC
Joined: 10 May 2014

Posts: 57

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 2:32 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ah, thanks guys. I suppose they're just Indo-Chinese swords styled after the Chinese dao then.

Would you happen to know if it's likely for the scabbards on the tourist versions of these knives to be made from wood indigenous to the area they were made? Also, from what you all said, I'm going to further assume that the blade is made from some sort of cheap pot-metal, but I guess I'm going to have to look at the blade to figure that out for sure.

"God gives the nuts, but he does not crack them."
- German proverb
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Nat Lamb




Location: Melbourne, Australia
Joined: 15 Jan 2009
Likes: 1 page

Posts: 385

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 5:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I used to own a pair of these, so close in appearance I would think it was this same set, if I hadn't taken them apart for projects 8 years ago. If the construction is similar to the ones I owned, then they are purely decoration, the tang was so thin and short that just swinging it around slowly would cause the blade to detach from the hilt.
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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
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Posts: 1,492

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 5:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The wood is probably local. I don't know what species they usually use.

The guard looks like aluminium (which is usual for the carved ones); the blades are usually steel, but might be mild steel, and whatever steel is used, is likely to be not heat-treated.

The name "dha" is related to the Chinese "dao", but the sword itself may owe more to Indian/Himalayan swords. It's an old design.

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Christopher Gregg




Location: Louisville, KY
Joined: 14 Nov 2007
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 660

PostPosted: Sun 01 Feb, 2015 5:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I've had one of these for almost 40 years. It was my first sword, given to me by a police officer neighbor who had recently returned from a tour of duty in Vietnam. Aluminum guard, carved wood handle and scabbard, tempered steel blade with a bit of brass inlay, decently sharp and capable of cutting light targets. It's what got me into sword collecting, albeit this didn't really get started seriously until I discovered MRL around 1992.
Christopher Gregg

'S Rioghal Mo Dhream!
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