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  1. #1

    Default SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    this knife is post WWII but I hope you will find it interesting. I aquired this Iban tracker-scout from an SAS veteran from the early years of the Malayan conflict in the 1950s. The sword has one side convex and the other concave, most probibly made from a car spring. The blade is 20 and a 1/2 inches long and 1 and 3/4 inch wide at its tip. Apparently the trackers were quite happy to swop these knives for cigarettes but would never include the skinning knife attached to the rear of the scabbard. You can just see in the second picture the recesses in the scabbard where the binding for the skinning knife went, also on every scabbard was carved a small face, pic two, this was I am told all tied up with head hunting, which these scouts still indulged in. The hair decoration is human. John.

    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture -iban-sword-001.jpg   -iban-sword-002.jpg  


  2. #2
    Administrator Adrian Stevenson's avatar in War relics WW2 military forums
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    Default Re: SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    Very interesting and informative post. Something I knew nothing about, until now.

    Cheers, Ade.

  3. #3

    Default Re: SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    Quote by Adrian Stevenson View Post
    Very interesting and informative post. Something I knew nothing about, until now.

    Cheers, Ade.
    Thanks Aide, I was a bit dubious about posting it on here but it never been seen by anyone since I bought it and I thought that you might just let it stay on here. Mike the person who sold it to me told me a story about how his Iban shot and killed the Indian char walla with the bren gun. I f interested I will post, thanks, John.

  4. #4
    Administrator Adrian Stevenson's avatar in War relics WW2 military forums
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    Default Re: SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    Please do!

    Cheers, Ade.

  5. #5
    partisan42
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    Default Re: SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    Very nice Dyak Mandau. This is one of my favorite ethnographic weapons. It is great to have provenance from a Malayan Scout. Really cool piece.

  6. #6

    Default Re: SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    Apparently the Ibans had no conception of cheeting. On coming back from patrol of two weeks in the jungle they arrived at the sub-base camp. The Tracker for some reason loved the Bren-Gun and would clean it on their return to base. He was doing this and when he finished he told Mike he was going to get some cigarettes from the char walla, on his return Mike could see that he was agitated and asked him what was wrong. The Iban said that he didnt think he had the rite change, so Mike and friends put out some Malay dollars and said which one did you give to the char walla. It turned out that they thought that he had indeed been short changed and showed him what he should have received, off he went and as the soldiers were buisy they didnt notice what was happening until a burst of fire was heard. All hell broke loose and back strolled the Tracker with the Bren-Gun ,squatted on the ground and proceeded to strip and clean it. To be continued

  7. #7

    Default Re: SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    On being quissed as to why he shot the Char-walla he replied that he was a bad man. He didnt seem to be atall worried about it. The troops got on the radio to inform base about the killing and the reply was, keep him with you and we will deal with it on your return to Base camp. I asked Mike what happened to the Iban and he smiled and said, They took away his issue shotgun and cartridge belt and sent him home. Apparently he was really p****d off about this because normally the Ibans were given the pump action shotguns at the end of their tour of duty.

    As an aside Mike had a very impressive set of tatoos on his upper arms. All squiggly writing done by the Ibant to record the ambushes that they had been involved in. John.

  8. #8
    Administrator Adrian Stevenson's avatar in War relics WW2 military forums
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    Default Re: SAS Iban Trackers sword- knife

    Great story! Thanks John.

    Cheers, Ade.

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