L40xW20xH50mm (L), Thailand

I used to play with these when I was a child, a flock of these metal birds.  I am certainly surprised to find out they are weights for measuring opium when i am older.  On further research, I am please again to know that because of the small weights they are used to measure anything light and precious (metal, spices etc).  The bird figure is of the Hamsa which represent a perfect balance, union and life.  As the Hamsa can walk, fly and swim; it is believed they have the power to transcend the limitation of the creation around it.

These brass weights are made with the method lost wax casting; a clay core model of the weight is made, a lay of molten wax is poured over the model.  The wax is refined and covered again covered by layers of clay which takes the negative form.  Drain duct as placed for the wax and gas to escape, the clay core secured, then molten metal is then pour in through an opening at the base, as this is going to be a precise weight the amount of metal used is carefully measured.  The wax is melted and replaced by the metal which takes the detail and shape of the wax, the outer layer is removed and the weight is casted.

The large hamsa weights 10 tical (164g), medium 3 tical (49g), small 1 tical (16g)