Tag Archives: ray mears parang

MY Parang – Duku Chandong 8″

The MY Parang – Duku Chandong 8″

MY Parang Duku Chandong 8"
MY Parang Duku Chandong 8″

Released today, 17th October 2019. This mini but mighty parang has stirred quite some interest when we posted it on our social media way back in April this year. Back then, we just had some samples made out for testing and we were skeptical on how it would perform . An 8″ blade? Like seriously ??? What is it going to do? Would it be use-able?

Then we took it for a field test……..

And it was a GO ! It surprised us, and it will surprise you !

The MY Parang Duku Chandong 8″ was just phenomenal. We tried it on many different things , wood, bamboo, sticks, grass, branches and even in the kitchen. Cutting , chopping, prying , slicing.  What we found out was that The MY Parang Duku Chandong 8″ is definitely not a full sized parang capable of taking down barrel sized trees. Unless you intend to do so, this 8″ Duku Chandong actually excels at smaller tasks and is capable of more that you think.

On our field test, we tried it on beer-can sized trees and it was a pleasure to use. We used it to debark , and it was a pleasure to use. We used it to pry open Durians , and it worked flawlessly! It is also small enough to use in the kitchen , dressing chickens or cleaning game. Cuts through meat and chops through the toughest bone. By all means, this 8″ Chandong is now our favourite.

It’s short length and light weight makes it such a pleasure to carry everywhere. When you sit , it is short enough to not yank on your belt. It is light and compact enough for weight weenies and barely feels like its there.

We foresee that this model will be one of the best selling models. If you want something light and compact, this is the one.

So now we have 4 different types of Duku Chandongs – The 8″ , 10″ , 12″ and the 12″ Heavy

Specifications for the MY Duku Chandong 8″ are as follows:

  • Blade length : 20 cm / 8 in.
  • Handle length: 17 cm / 6.7 in
  • Overall length: 37 cm / 14.7 in
  • Widest blade: 5 cm / 1.9 in
  • Weight ( blade and handle ) : 335 g / 11.8 oz.
  • Sheath length: 23 cm / 9 in
  • Width: 8 cm / 3 in
  • Weight: 145 g / 5.1 oz
  • Gross weight : 480 g / 16.9 oz

Release for sale in Malaysia on the 17th October 2019 . It might take a few months to reach international dealers. Click here to see where they are sold 

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MY Parang – On Ray Mears website

MY Parang is now sold on the Ray Mears website !

my parang sold by ray mears
my parang sold by ray mears

Anyway, we believe this may be old news to some people, but we are proud to mention that our Parangs are now sold on the Ray Mears website (  www.raymears.com ) . We feel thoroughly honored by this as the Ray Mears website is known to be very picky. They only sell proper and usable equipment , not whatever that sells. They have a senior team of instructors who will test and evaluate the equipment . Once this is done, then only will they decide to sell it or not on the Ray Mears website .

At the moment they are only selling the 10″ MY Parang Duku Chandong but we are happy enough. We would like to thank those who have helped us so much in the process of getting the Parangs evaluated by the Ray Mears team and also for being persistent enough. It wasn’t  easy, not did it happen overnight .

Ray Mears is an icon known throughout the world for his love and expertise in field of bushcraft . If you have not heard of Ray Mears, then you better hop on youtube and see who he is.

Below are some videos of Ray using a similar Duku Chandong.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9wLy4u526g

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Ray Mears Parang

Ray Mears Parang

ray mears parang

So we’ve read and heard so much of the Ray Mears parang , which is actually a parang he used in one of his shows . A clear picture of ” The Ray Mears Parang  ” in Mr Mears hand is in the video grab below. Actualy,  Mr Mears did not create any parang or sells any parang with his name on it. So why did the name ” the Ray Mears Parang ” come about? RayMearsparang 2When Mr Mears was making the episode in Borneo, he , as expected of anyone who knows what he is doing, would choose the tools of the local people. Say, if you go to the South America, you would use a machete , if you were to go to Nepal, you would use a Khukri , if you came to Malaysia, you would use a Parang. It is as simple as that.

So how did the name “Ray Mears Parang ” came about? Sometimes we see things we don’t know what they are, or what it is called and we give it  a name which is easy to connect and understand. Say maybe some people have no idea what a Khukri is, but when you mention – the knife the Gurkhas use , then Aha! It means something now.

Besides that, some people also also have generic names for certain items , like in Malaysia, Milo is the common name for chocolate drinks. Any chocolate drink will be called Milo. Just like baby diapers, it’s called Pampers, which is actually a brand. Some people call all big knives and choppers a Machete. This is actually wrong as a Bolo , enep , khukri or parang is not  a machete by far. I hope you get what I mean.

Anyway, back to the Ray Mears Parang, well, if that is what some people like to call it, then so be it. For those who prefer to use the correct terminology, the Ray Mears parang is actually a Duku Chandong . Duku actually means parang in the Iban language, so it basically means Chandong parang. There is no specific shape for the Duku Chandong, as it is a very common knife in Borneo ( also known as Sabah and Sarawak ) , but there are a few distinct points as I will try and explain.

One is the blade angle. As you can see , the Duku Chandong has an up swept blade. If you are holding the handle of the parang horizontally, you will see that the tip of the parang points upwards. Again in some duku chandongs, the sweep may vary . Some have a slight and unnoticeable sweep, while for some, it is more prominent.

Another distinct difference with other parangs is that the Duku Chandong has a sheep’s foot blade tip. It is not pointed as some other traditional parangs and goloks, but has a very strong and robust sheep’s foot. The tip needs to be strong and hardy as it is used quite often to split and flatten bamboo, for prying and digging into wood ( looking for nibong grubs ) .

As you can see from the photos below, all these parangs are variations of the duku chandong or also known as the Ray Mears Parang. Enjoy they photos and we’re glad that you now know the actual name of the Ray Mears Parang. Actually, because of Mr Mears, the Duku Chandong now has gotten worldwide recognition . The blade shape now gets copied by many big knife manufacturers like Condor , and even the local parang sellers have hopped on the bandwagon , using the “ray mears” parang name as a leverage to market their parangs. Whatever it is called, or made, a duku chandong will always be a duku chandong!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA parang knife chandong borneoOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Duku chandong

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My personal parang collection # 1 – Some Duku Chandongs


Here are two duku chandong  from my personal collection. These pieces were sent to me by a supplier and I decided to keep them to myself as I kind of like them. They come from Sarawak , or sometimes known as Borneo . Both are made by different makers as you can see there is some difference in their styles.

In East Malaysia ( Sabah and Sarawak ) Parang are called Duku and they basically mean the same thing. Just like how East Malaysia has the Parang Panjang, Parang Lading, Parang Pendek, Parang Bentong, Parang Jawa etc, there also different names for East Malaysian parangs or dukus – ie Duku Tangkin, Duku Panjang , Duku Chandong, Ilang and many more. All these names describe a particular shape, however, some parangs are very difficult to categorize as they may have different elements from a few or many different types of parangs.

duku chandong ray mearsThe two Duku Chandongs in my collection

As you can see in the picture above, they are really well made. I love the simple and clean look of them. They both have some slight differences, which I’ll describe later on. The upper one is made of a dark – yellowish wood, which I am not sure is from which tree. The bottom one is made form a type of wood called Serian ( sometimes written Surian ) and the special thing about this wood is that it has sort of like a 3-D effect. It looks something like a cats-eye stone; if you have seen one before, you will probably understand.

duku chandong borneoThe Duku Chandongs unsheathed

They both come with wooden handles and sheaths , and that is  how traditional parangs are made. The more modern ones or those which are mass produced, are made with plastic handles and PVC sheaths. Wooden handles just make the parangs look much much better in my opinion.

As you can see form the above photo, the shape of the blade is almost identical and is a common duku chandong shaped blade. The famed bushcraft expert , Ray Mears once used a simillar parang in one of his episodes and since then, people have been referring it as the “Ray Mears Parang” , although all he did was use it. It is quite unfortunate that the Duku Chandong got a foreigner’s name, but at the same time, the duku chandong also got world famous.

ray mears duku chandongauthentic ray mears parang A

The above two pictures show the parangs in my hand, I would have to say that their handles are very very comfortable and you can chop with them all day plus the next without having any blisters or hot spots. These handles are traditionally shaped and what that means is that the shapes have been used for centuries and are proven to have an excellent grip and extremely comfortable. If I had to look for fault, I would remove the slippery shiny varnish the maker put on the handles. The varnish does make the colour and wood grain pop, but it also makes the handle slippery , especially when you hold the parang with damp or wet hands. Like all my other parang i use often, the first thing I would do is to roughen up the handle with a wood file.

parang knife chandong borneo

Above is a picture of both parang blades together. Notice the similarities in their shapes? you will also note the different finishing on each blade. The top one has a dark colour, and that’s how it looks after the heat treat . After the heat treat, only the edge is sharpened, compared to the bottom one , where the blade is semi polished with a grinder to clean it up a bit. Both methods do not change the way the parang handles, it just makes them look prettier. The definition of ” prettier” lies  in the eye of the beholder.

ray mears parang spine

If you noticed , the Duku chandongs are of different lengths, and different weight. The longer one is actually  lighter and quicker in the hand, compared to the one with the polished blade or shorter one. Being shorter, the spine is much thicker as you can see in the picture above. A shorter and heavier parang is more suitable for chopping and heavy work, while a longer and lighter one would be more suitable for brush clearing.

ray mears parang bolster

Here you can see the two different ways of how the bolster is made. One is woven using mono filament line while the other has a steel ring. I’m not sure how much they contribute to the strength of the parang, but without the bolster, it would really look odd, and I don’t think I have ever seen a parang without a bolster.

parang wooden scabbard and sheath

Here is a picture of the sheath . Both these duku chandong sheaths are made by gluing two halves together. I have seen similar sheaths , but made out of one piece of wood, where the slot for the parang is dug out using special tools. One piece sheaths are hard to find and are not common as they are much harder to make.

So there you have it, these are two from my collection. More to come in the future.

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