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If you do a search for Sarna on this site, you should be able to find an article from a few years ago on the family. The Gist of which, is that Sarna was a student who supplemented his finances by selling some of his keepsakes of India, while attending college in the USA. It went over so well, that he went into business with his family importing more items and reselling them.
Kovel’s gives the following information:
“Bells of Sarna is a brand name used by a company founded by Sajan Singh Sarna in Manhasset, New York. He imported goods from India and sold them to dealers in the United States. Sarna began importing bells in 1938. The bells were often sold on thin ropes or chains and came with a tag that gave the story behind the bell. ”
I believe these are of the Holi (water festival) bell design, but don’t quote me on that one!
Because these were imported common bells from India, unless you find purchase documentation, it will be unlikely to be able to tell if they are Sarna bells or not. If purchased in the States, in or near New York, then ‘likely’ yes, they are. But there likely won’t be any markings to indicate that.
Hope it helps.
Good day Janine!
Could we also get the dimensions of the bell, and a shot of the inside to see; clapper (and how it is attached) and where it strikes against the side of the bell skirt please?
Do you have any history of where/how you acquired the bell? Area of origin can be helpful in narrowing down the choices.
Finally can you put a strong magnet to various parts to see if it sticks? Gives an idea of the metal composition.
At first blush, you appear to have a ‘local’ made (as opposed to manufactured), possibly ‘one off’ bell. The pour, having blemishes, and the simple but ‘fuzzy’ designs tend to support someone making a local sand cast bell for a school or mission of some sort. It’s a bit large, if I am seeing the size correctly from the photos, for a home use bell. It takes quite a bit of effort to make something that big. It appears to have been made either by a talented artist trying this medium or someone who doesn’t make a lot of these bells professionally, like a local blacksmith. The flaws and designs would be buffed out and sharper from a professional manufacturer, generally speaking.
If you are near Mexico, then there were a lot of individuals making fake ‘mission’ bells to sell (still are) to the unsuspecting. They fake the patina etc. and then charge a good price for the result. Very few are authentic and many are only a few years old.
Hope this helps!
GarryJuly 8, 2019 at 3:51 pm in reply to: What type of bell is this and does it have any value? #29384
I was hoping one of the others might answer, as this is a bell type that I don’t collect or deal with typically. You have what is basically a farm bell, for use on a large spread to call attention of the workers around the yard/fields. These are mass produced, so they do have some value but you would have to go online to auction sites etc. to get prices. We can’t give that data here; a) we would have to actually see and hear it, looking for flaws etc. b) prices vary greatly depending on where it is sold and what history it has and c) in this age of litigation we don’t want to open ourselves up if we suggest a price that turns out to be wrong for your area.
(Just too many people who want a free lunch!)
But it does appear to be in good shape!
A very nice bell!
Thanks for Sharing!
Could we get a shot of the attachment side too?
Also, is the pea inside still there? (Is it a rock or rough metal or a bead?)
Nice bell and good info!
We didn’t have this chain up in Canada so I knew little about it. I will keep an eye out for them now that I know!
Thanks for sharing.
Wow! Great Project! Sorry about my late reply, I have been pretty busy so don’t get onto the site as much as I used to.
I will try to answer your questions as well as I can, but I don’t make bells myself so take it as a starting point only!
You will need to experiment;
1) The ringing sound comes from the crystalline structure of the material. So the ‘coarser’ the clay, the less ‘ringing’ the sound. Having done some pottery in high school (way back when) I know that the clays are all different and can be different between batches, so uniformity is going to be an issue. You want it as homogeneous (even particles) as possible.
2) The second factor is going to be the thickness, as you know. This is a tradeoff between how HIGH a ring tone you want (thinner) vs the strength of the material (shatter when rung!). The thicker the bell, the stronger but the lower and less vibrant the tone.
3) Firing is going to also be important. I assume you know this though. The dryer the final product the better the ring.
Personally, I would try synthetic washers (like for a garden hose) rather than the wooden block. It’s a wind chime, made to hang outside in the (hopefully) moist air. Wood swells in moisture (ie fog) and cracks in heat (sun).
A ceramic clapper is likely best for the striker, and if you have a long enough bolt hanging down through the top should be easy to attach it with a simple tie knot pinched between a couple of nuts or something like that.
Hey, let us know how you did! If you do photos and a bit of a story I bet the site here might be interested in publishing it for you!
Is it possible to get a photo of the bell? Inside and outside, showing any markings and features. Also, does any part of it hold a strong magnet? Can you tell what it’s made of?
Unfortunately, We can’t do valuations, as it’s almost impossible without researching it in detail and looking at the area you wish to sell it in. All that plays a part and any evaluation would be no more than a very very rough guess. Best to look at similar items on e-bay etc. and watch what they sell for (not what the asking price is).
As an example, I just picked up a very nice brass singing bell, approx 7 inches in diameter and 4 inches deep. Heavily carved inside and out, even has the rubbing stick! Ideally it would be worth over a hundred dollars where I live. I got it for ten, it has a hairline crack in it that was almost impossible to find – I only knew about it when it didn’t ring properly! It wouldn’t show on a photo. Imagine if we had ‘valued’ it here! There is no way this would have been caught and I would have been out many dollars!!!
You are very welcome!
Glad to help.
I tried to short cut this search by contacting a member who has some better experience with musical handbells, but they didn’t recognize it either.
Here are your images!
I am going to look around, but this looks like part of a Paolo Soleri wind chime bell to me. (a Google search on the name will show a lot of samples of this Arizona Architect’s bell designs.) He had quite a number of styles, but with the clapper, wind flap, and top hangers missing, it’s difficult to tell if this is his or a similar design by another.
Perhaps one of the other members will recognize it.
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Unless you have a specific photo program for your phone, you will need to use a cloud service to either; post the photos (share the link), or reduce the photo size (ie http://picresize.com/). Alternatively send the photos to your computer and do the resize there.
or you can send them to email@example.com and I’ll try and post them for you.
(I don’t want to get your hopes up, but the only ship I can find in reference to the bell inscription is the Santana, Humphrey Bogart’s sloop. It’s about the right age and, of course, he could very well have “Hollywood” on it! (grin, as I recall he had some kind of work there!). You might search on line for a Bogart site and ask them about the boat and it’s bell if you want to short circuit this lead!)
I am sure we will try Curt!
Is it possible to get a photo of the inside as well?
We are looking for the clapper, the clapper attachment, and wear marks on the inside.
Does it hold a strong magnet anywhere?
Could you post some photos please?
It would help.