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Thread: Kukri or Kukri Wannabe

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Kukri or Kukri Wannabe

    Recent purchase by a kukri novice, but what is it?
    It certainly is British Indian Military as it and the scabbard have service markings -

    Co I G 1920 on the blade and

    C^I0 on the scabbard, the ^ represents a broad arrow!

    Pics show it in comparison to an Indian Mark 3
    The sword in question weighs 1lb 11.5 oz compared to the Mark 3's weight of 1lb 5oz.
    It has soft wood, possibly pitch pine grips and a "Reeves type" patent tang.
    Attached Images Attached Images   
    Last edited by Martin R John; 11-19-2008 at 09:07 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    What's it like to use - does it handle and cut well?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Austin, Texas USA
    A virtually identical "kukri" is shown as Plate 465 in Ron Flook's British and Commonwealth Military Knives. Flook says:
    These kukris are a complete mystery with regard to the unit/troops they were made for, although I have seen a photograph showing these being worn by British troops in India between the wars. They are also unlike other kukris in that they can be used in a stabbing mode and are accompanied by a sheath of a different design to the norm. As can be seen from (465) the blade is very plain with no notch or fuller and has been hand-forged, the hammer marks clearly visible on close examination. The blade is marked

    and the grips are secured by three rivets; it is stamped 5 over 148. Blade length 12.75 inches; overall length 17.5 inches.
    An uncommon specimen - congratulations.

  4. #4
    Congratulations Martin,

    Personaly although I keep a specimien of this "kukri" [see below.] & although they vary individualy a great deal, {from clumsy to well balenced] one of my favorite {for a full tang.} user kukris was a 1927 versian of this piece, also made at Cossipore Arsenal. Its scabbard is dated 1921 & from Cawnpore Arsenal. It cut very well.

    These blades apear to be made by heavy hot rolling machinary & left in a rough as made state.

    The grip on mine & others Ive had is usualy is of a red/brown ring porus tropical hardwood, when examined under a lens.

    Having been told by a soldier who served with a Burmese mostly Chin regiment in ww2 that he had seen them & native ones & they were called "Chin" knives in the unit he served, I spoken to collectors from Burma & Thailand who see these blades as thier traditional utility knife in parts of both Burma & China. In Thailand it is called a "Meed Hneb" & has apparently exsisted for at least around 200 years or so.

    Heres an article {in Thai.} about them. {many photos though!}

    They occur with both long & short handles.

    A search on international for Thai knife usualy finds many modern examples similar to this.

    The Burmese native examples can be seen on this old Chin rifles badge.

    Heres a Burmese long handled civilian one in hand.


    So in short I regard these a British Indian Arsenal evolutian of a traditional Burmese kukri like tool & weapon, most likley to equip British & Burmese units mostly serving in jungle areas in Burma etc.

    I have seen examples dated from 1919,120,1921 &1927. I have seen scabbards dated, 1917,1918,1919,1920,1921 & 1927. They are usualy missmatched with the kukri & often bear several soldiers numbers showing extensive re.issue.

    Definatly worth having & quite rare. Most serious kukri collecters try to get an example.

    Last edited by Jonathan R. S.; 11-19-2008 at 02:29 PM. Reason: more photos....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Now selling my example on the Antiques Classified section of the forum


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