ORIGINAL HELMETS

 

The update is here. 3:00 PM EST

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First you have to read this advertisement for my books...

 

 

And now you have to read this advertisement for my hats...

Follow the above link to see a page offering extreme quality Third Reich visor hats.

 

 

Now you can see my helmets for sale.

 

 

 Item 916 M18 "cut-out" Transition helmet

       

       

       

 This is a pre-1919 produced M18 "special model" ear-cut-out helmet. It bears faint maker/size markings "ET64" and has a lot number stamped into the dome of the helmet which corresponds to the correct range for those found in original cut-out helmets. The helmet was refurbished to M1940 specifications by repainting in wartime textured paint and a single decal applied to the left. The paint remains 90% intact. It appears that at some point, something was written on the top and then subsequently removed. The decal rates at 95%. The liner is intact and sound. It has a leather cord used as a tie string which could be period added or post war. The chinstrap is an early type with aluminum hardware. Original but bears to maker mark. Overall a very displayable example of a rare helmet. $2950.00

 

 

 Item 952 M42 Luftwaffe single decal camouflage helmet

       

       

 I love this one. It appears that two of the three standard vehicle camouflage paint colors was used in the camo pattern. With the green color lacking, this helmet has a more "tropical" appearance although I do assume it to have been painted for use on the Normandy front. 90% of the camouflage paint remains intact. One can just see the outline of the underlying Luftwaffe eagle. I have high-lighted the outline of the decal in one of the photos so that you will not have to squint to see it and thus; your wife will not walk into your office and see you squinting at the computer screen and demand to know just what it is you are looking at. The leather of the liner shows significant wear but it remains intact and sound. The chinstrap is long gone. This helmet costs $2750.00

 

 

 Item 953 M35 double decal Kriegsmarine helmet

       

       

     

 

 I do not often get the chance to type "Double decal Kriegsmarine helmet" in helmet descriptions because we are talking about the rarest of all production third Reich helmets. There was only one order of these helmets contracted to be produced. Te contract year was 1938 and ET was the factory that made them. Apparently ET began work in late 1938 because they are found with both 1938 and 1939 dated components.  According to Lugwig Baer, the 1938 ET contract consisted of 20,000 units. Apparently, the Kriegsmarine; more than any other service branch, adhered to the 1940 order for removal of the tri-color shield because examples with removed or covered national color decals are encountered with KM helmets in a far higher-per-capita rate than any other service branch. Likely 80-90% of all M35 KM helmets had their colors shields removed. This example is a beautiful condition size 68 shell with 99% paint remaining intact. Both decals rate likewise at 98%. The eagle decal is a fantastic example which clearly shows the multi-layer effect when held at an angle.  The helmet bears a 1939 dated acceptance stamp inside the dome. The aluminum re-enforced liner frame is dated 1939.The chinstrap has a clear 1939 maker mark. More than simply "top shelf" this helmet may well be considered a centerpiece. $8800.00

 

 

 

 Item 956 M35 single decal army helmet

     

     

   

 This is a helmet in exquisite condition; the shell being an M35 in size 68 which was finished by the SE factory according to M1940 specifications with regards to textured paint and single decal. (it appears that SE did not switch it's tooling to the M40 helmet shell as soon as other helmet makers did.) There is a nice 1940 acceptance stamp in the dome. The liner shows no wear and remains in un-issued condition. Original chinstrap is dated 1942.  SOLD

 

 

 Item 957 M40 single decal army helmet

       

       

 This is an M40 single decal army helmet made by EF in shell size 62, liner 55. The Heer eagle decal is a textbook eample of the EF "house decal" which appears to be a variant Huber Jordan type. They only used these on EF helmets and only during 1940-1941. The decal remains 98% intact as does the wartime textured paint. The liner shows only light wear and the chinstrap appears to be original to the helmet. A very nice example with very good matte quality to the paint; not being darkened or made shiny by collector handling.  SOLD

 

 

 Item 958 M40 single decal Luftwaffe helmet, EF64

       

     

 This helmet and the one below are "brothers"; have literally been produced within days; if not hours of one-another. Both have been formed from sheet steel coming from the same lot and they bear the same accountability number stamped at the rear. The paint is very typical EF mid-war dark feldblau with medium heavy texture. The eagle decal is an unmistakable EF variant with the down-turned eye-brow. The decal itself is canted slightly with the left wing dipping a bit lower than the right. This form of mis-application is quite common among EF helmets as is the gold/yellow toning of the decals used by EF during this period. Paint and decal both rate in the high 905 range. The leather of the liner is sound. This example has an illegible name written inside the liner. The chinstrap is missing. SOLD

 

 

NEW! Item 959 M40 single decal Luftwaffe helmet, EF64

       

       

 This helmet and the one above are "brothers"; have literally been produced within days; if not hours of one-another. Both have been formed from sheet steel coming from the same lot and they bear the same accountability number stamped at the rear. Both are in general; very much the same condition. The paint is very typical EF mid-war dark feldblau with medium heavy texture. The eagle decal is an unmistakable EF variant with the down-turned eye-brow. The decal itself is canted slightly with the left wing dipping a bit lower than the right. This form of mis-application is quite common among EF helmets as is the gold/yellow toning of the decals used by EF during this period. Paint and decal both rate in the high 905 range. The leather of the liner is sound. This example has an illegible name written inside the liner. The chinstrap appears to be original to the helmet. SOLD

 

 

NEW! Item 960 M42 single decal army helmet

     

     

 This is a decent example of an Hkp single decal army helmet with 85-90% of it's factory applied C.A.Pocher decal. The liner shows a good amount of wear and age but remains intact.  The paint rates at a strong 90%; showing signs of general wear and use. SOLD

 

 

NEW! Item 961 M42 single decal army helmet

     

   

 This is a late war NS66 M42 helmet which was produced as a no-decal. The decal which appears here is an original Huber-Jordan & Koerner Heer eagle which has been applied to the helmet in recent ears. You can tell by the horizontal striations appearing as crack-lines across the face of the decal; obvious signs of a decades-old decal being stretched and broken during application. The painted name on the inside skirt appears genuine. SOLD

 

 

 

NEW! Item 963 M35 Double decal Luftwaffe helmet

       

     

     

 You don't often see paint this clean on a helmet. This is a late produced M35 double decal Luftwaffe helmet with a 1939 dated liner and a non-dated M40 style acceptance stamp. The eagle has recieved a scuff but the national colors are as good as they come. The liner is super clean. The chinstrap is a non-dated 1940 type with painted steel buckle. One of the changes instituted in 1940 was the elimination of the brown leather strap for Luftwaffe helmets; from then on, they used black like everybody else. This helmet is a Q68. Everybody loves a Q68. $2400.00

 

 

 

NEW! Item 967 M40 tropical camouflage helmet

       

     

     

 This is a Q66 single decal army helmet which was painted over in tropical tan color at some point after issue. The army decal was completely covered over but traces of it can be seen in scratches on the decal side of the helmet. There is a palm-sized spot of rust on the rear right side of the helmet. Other than that, it makes a quite nice display of a DAK used combat helmet. The liner shows moderate wear. The chinstrap is frail with the buckle end being broken. SOLD

 

 

NEW! Item 968 M16 Imperial German helmet w/souvenir artwork

       

       

     

     

 This is an NJ62 helmet produced by the United German Nickel works (Vereinigte Deutsche
Nikelwerke) of Schwerte. You may recognize this company as the make who produced helmets for the third Reich; maker code NS. During WW1 this maker produced M16 only in size 62. This helmet has almost all of it's original wartime painted finish. The liner is intact and complete. The chinstrap is original and appears original to the helmet. One of the M91 chinstrap lugs was broken off and it appears it was done way back in the day. The strap is Jerry-rigged to one side using a heavy wire. The helmet has been adorned with souvenir artwork commemorating the date/time of the armistice: 11-11-11 (the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month) is painted on the back in between two American flags. The "5" in a red diamond is an obvious reference to the US 5th infantry division; their insignia being a red diamond. Helmets of this type and in this condition come around quite rarely. $1950.00

 

 

 

 Item 946 M35 Luftwaffe helmet; ex AfrikaKorps

       

       

     

 This is an M35 ET 64 helmet which originally left the factory as a double decal Luftwaffe. It seems to have had an interesting career. It was at some point painted over in a shade of tropical tan paint. The "pinkish hue of the paint strongly suggests the location as being Africa. The pink-ish color indicating paint application in Afrika is a "collector theory" which has become popular in recent years. While I do not agree with many "collector theories"; I tend to agree with this one for a single reason which I rarely see talked about. The pink color is identical to British vehicle paint. The Brits had a standard tropical vehicle paint (unlike the Germans) very early in the Africa campaign. Captured stocks were available in abundance on Rommel's march across Libya and Egypt.  But I digress... The helmet was later painted over in Luftwaffe feldblau. Why? one might ask. Very few of the helmets used by PanzerarmeeAfrika ever saw the continent again. With the exception of those carried back by a very few select technicians and officers who were evacuated before the fall of Tunisia. Perhaps Oberleutenant Hermann; whose name appears in this helmet, was one of those men. Enough theory...the helmet retains 92% of it's feldblau paint with portions of the pinkish paint showing in the damaged areas. The eagle decal shows considerable wear The leather of the aluminum framed liner shows moderate wear and the chinstrap is a wartime type which shows every indication of being with this helmet since pre-1945. Not how the original tropical paint was splashed onto the inside rim of the helmet. I always like to see this effect. This helmet is priced at $1650.00

 

 

 Item 947 An excellent fire-police helmet

     

     

   

   

 This is a better-than-average example having been produced for sale by the prestigious hat maker Robert Lubstein of Berlin. The black lightweight steel shell retains 98% of it's black paint. The decals are sound and still quite attractive. The helmet is complete with it's leather neck shield designed to keep sparks out of the back of the firemen's neck. The liner is double marked with the "EREL" trademark of Robert Lubstein. (Why "EREL"? ... say Lubstein's initials in German R.L. = er-el". The helmet is priced at $450.00

 

 

 

 Item 927 M42 Waffen SS single decal helmet

     

     

 Who doesn't love a good SS M42. EFs are my favorite flavor of these. This one is a charming example with a lot of the decal left. It is a textbook EF shield with the straight-across runes and whitish background. The paint rates likewise at 95%. The shell is an EF66 marked at wearers left. The strap appears by all indications to be original to the helmet. It is worn and stretched but intact. The liner shows moderate wear. Typical non-acceptance stamp in the dome. EFs rarely stamped them. This helmet goes for $5450.00

 

 

 Item 928 M35 Double decal Kriegsmarine helmet

     

     

   

 The M35 Kriegsmarine helmet is the rarest of all production helmets of the Third Reich era. According to the late Ludwig Baer, the 1938 contract with ET (which was the ONLY contract given for M35 DD KM helmets) consisted f some 20,000 units. That's all. Most of these examples were modified to single decal configuration after the 1940 specification came out. This one is an ET 62 with 95% original smooth texture feldgrau paint. The eagle decal is a classic example of the dual layer KM ET style as would be found on any and ALL M35 DD examples. The eagle decal rates at 95% and shows nice layering. The liner assembly is intact and sound though the drawstring is missing. The chinstrap is a post 1940 addition. Overall a striking example of a rare helmet. ON HOLD

 

 

 

 

 Item 930 M35 Double decal army helmet

1935 produced and issued to a Gebirgsjaeger

       

       

     

     

 This helmet gives me goose-bumps. First it is an extremely early example with a lot number in the low 2700 range. The acceptance stamp inside the dome has a very faint date but we can see that it is the first pattern oval which is noticeably smaller than post 1935 types. It is assuredly dated 1935. The liner (which is no doubt original to the helmet) is a 1931 dated first-run pattern from Schuberthwerk. The leather bears a stamped size marking rather than an inked one. The Heer eagle decal is the thing that makes my hair stand up for joy. It is an example of the earliest type of Heer decal printed by Wilhelm Abels printing firm of Nuremburg. The Abels decal was supplied to the ET factory at Thale before they adopted thier own "house" decal later; that being printed by August Juttner. ( see pages 50-52 of my book "Helmet decals of the Third Reich: by B&D publishing) The Heer decal remains 95% intact. The paint of the helmet shell is unaltered by patina and is a wonderful accurate example of the color first used by ET in the opening months of production. The maker/size marking ET64 is in early gothic font style. The helmet is well marked in stencil as belonging to a soldier in 7th Kompanie Gebirgsjaeger regiment99. The accompanying photos are said to be of the original wearer but this is unsubstantiated by any form of documentation. The photo does show a solder of the 99th GJ regiment wearing a mountain trooper style M43 hat with "T" shaped insignia at the front. I cannot prove it but I would say this helmet could have been produced in the first week of the first Wehrmacht helmet contract. ON HOLD

 

 

 

 Item 934 M40 single decal Luftwaffe helmet

     

         

 Everybody loves a good solid M40 Luftwaffe helmet (actually it is a helmet like this one which is the first German helmet that I ever saw at a flea market in 1979. It was priced at $30-35 and I just couldn't come up with the money.) The paint coverage is something like 97%. The decal is quite nice and the liner shows only moderate wear. The chinstrap seems to show a lot more wear but looks like it has been there for decades. Overall, this one has a great honest look to it and is an M40 Luft that I would recommend.  $850.00

 

 

 Item 935 M35 double decal schutzpolizei  helmet

       

     

 This is another example of a schutzpolizei helmet from the 1938 NS contract. It has a clear 1938 dated acceptance stamp in the dome and the liner frame bears a good clear 1938 date. The paint has surface corrosion on it but the decals have survived nicely. I have not seen too many of these in such a large size; this helmet being an NS68. $1050.00

 

 

 Item 936 M40 single decal army helmet

     

   

 This is a 1940 produced Q64 helmet which appears to have been completed on a Friday afternoon when the workers were itching to go home. The eagle decal has been placed a bit high on the left side; with the top border actually applied over the vent-hole rib. The decal is an ET atyle which was used briefly by Quist during supply interruption in 1940. The paint has surface scuffs but is 97% intact. Overall the helmet has a great honest l;ook to it and the liner shows only moderate wear. I believe that the chinstrap is original to this helmet.  $695.00

 

 

 Item 937 M40 beaded police helmet

   

   

 This helmet is a size 62 combat weight helmet which was produced by EF. After the helmet was stamped, it failed metallurgical testing  and was found unfit for delivery to the military. Since the factory had already spent the time and effort to stamp the planchet into a helmet, rather than scrap the whole thing, they put the shell into a jig and drew a bead around the base of the dome. This was done to designate it as unfit for military contract and was set aside to be completed for supplying to commercial contractors who supplied helmets for private purchase by members of paramilitary organizations. The helmet was then painted and finished with a civilian style liner and sold as a civil police helmet. It remains in pretty good shape and is all period original. $395.00

 

 

 

 Item 941 M15 style Italian General's helmet

     

     

 This is a light-weight stamped metal helmet (M1915 Adrian style) with a simple liner and chinstrap installed. It's a small size and has an Italian name written into the lining. It could be a parade helmet or it could be an Italian "Kinderhelm" like the Germans had in the 1930s. But actually it seems a bit ornate for that. The Hand-painted General insignia at front and side is of astounding detail and quality. I am leaning towards it being an Italian General Parade helmet for a guy who had a small head. In any case, it's a real Beauty. $475.00

 

 

 

 Item 943 M1940 Luftwaffe Pith helmet

   

   

 This is a brown leather trimmed Luftwaffe pith helmet which never had the metal insignias applied at the sides. It was instead; hand-painted in white with the insignia hand painted at the sides. I would imagine that it was for use as a parade helmet. It remains in overall sturdy condition but has been stored in a basement so is dirty and has red paint spilled on it. Still this helmet deserves love like the rest of us. $345.00

 

 

 Item 926 1930s black SS parade helmet

       

     

 These are referred to as "Parade" helmets because during the early mid 30s the basic function of the SS was as a Guard unit. Helmets such as these were worn during such duties but are more remembered for the parades and functions such as featured in Leni Reifenstahls "Triumph of the will". This is a commercially produced helmet which is of a type documented as being worn by the SS. Hand painted insignias were the norm until the standardization of SS helmet insignia by order of Himmler's office in August of 1935 (See "Helmet decals of the third Reich"; page 149) The insignia on this helmet is a hand-rendered set of Runes within a shield shape. Close-up examination of the insignia leaves little doubt as to it's authenticity as a pre-1935 applied example. The helmet itself is of unknown manufacture. Actually no records exist to determine which contractors produced these helmets at this time. The liner and chinstrap assembly are commensurate with other examples of the period. This example remains in intact and sound condition. Price $5800.00

 

 

 Item 890 MkI British Paratrooper helmet

     

     

     

     

     

 Here is a helmet that you just don't see to many of anymore. Actually they have always been pretty tough to find. It is a 1943 dated British Mk1 paratrooper helmet. (Often known in the collector world as the Mk2 due to updated features differeing from the earlier model Mk1 "fiber rim" helmets) In late 1942, the British did away with the fiber rim but retained the same liner suspension and leather chinstrap. The straps on this one are actually early types which are sewn rather than riveted. The liner is maker marked BMB 1943 as are the vast majority of this helmet type. It seems that 95% of them were produced in this year; the model giving way to the canvas strap type helmet in late 1943. The helmet shell has the earlier lighter green paint color; which was changed to a significantly darker shade in mid 1943. The foam padding is correct for this model. On the rear of the helmet the two chinstrap retaining bolts differ in appearance but likely this is due to different lots used at the factory atn the time the helmet was assembled. The exterior paint rates at 98%. The leather straps are a bit hard but are pliable and strong with sound stitching and no signs of decay. The netting and added burlap "scrim" are definitely period type and correct for this helmet but cannot be verified as being original to the helmet since 1943. Overall a fantastic example of a fairly rare combat helmet typical of those used during the D-Day and "Market-Garden" operations. SOLD

 

 

 Item 915 M42 No-decal Heer helmet

     

     

 This one is a real gem. As we all know, nice M42 no-decals are going the way of the Dodo bird as more and more are falling prey to fakers who use them as canvas for fake decal artwork. This one has excellent paint which rates at 98%. The helmet shell is a Ckl 64. The liner and strap are pliable and sound with the exception of a repair made in the short end of the chinstrap near the buckle as seen in the photos. The helmet is nicely named in the leather. Makes a perfect example of a late war issue helmet. $695.00

 

 

 

 Item 894 M35 single decal army with original helmet net

       

     

 This helmet began life as an NS M35 double decal helmet which was later refurbished by having the exterior re-painted. The inside skirt was also painted over in M40 spec paint. The liner is the original 1937 dated assembly that was installed at the factory. The chinstrap is original to the helmet and is also marked and dated 1937. Oerall the helmet has very even wear patterns and no doubt saw considerable wartime use. The Net is a 100% original example of the only issue net produced for field use by all branches of the Wehrmacht. It has been added to this helmet for display and is complete with it's circumferential tie string with metal ring woven into the mesh at the rear of the helmet. There are also the two small veil hooks present but they are attached in between the liner frame and the shell. This helmet has an overall fantastic "combat used" appearance. $1850.00

 

 

 Item 895 M35 single decal army helmet

     

     

 This is an M35 re-issue helmet which is a size 66 however the maker/size markings have been completely obscured by the wartime applied textured finish. (It appears to be an ET or SE shell) When undergoing refurbishment, the shell had been completely stripped of it's original M35 spec paint and decals before being painted in M40 spec paint. A Heer service branch decal was applied over the paint. It is a re-issue type produced by Methner & Berger and remains 90% intact. The liner assembly is a post 1940 steel framed type which was installed at the time of the refurbishment. The chinstrap has every indication of being original to the helmet. The exterior of the helmet bears slight traces of a former whitewash. Overall; this is a helmet with a great "honest" look to it and no doubt; saw action on at least a couple of fronts during the war. $925.00

 

 

Do NOT forget these men and what they did for you

 

 

 Item 835 M42 Tan camouflage helmet

       

       

 This is an Hkp62 M42 helmet which was produced as a no-decal. It has been painted over in a tannish color paint applied by brush to the exterior as well as the inside skirt covering up to the liner frame. Some paint has gotten onto the frame in a couple of spots. I have always been a big fn of helmets which have been field repainted in such a manner. The helmet was issued too late in the war to be considered a DAK helmet. Indeed it is likely that it was used in Northwest Europe rather than Italy/Sicily. The paint has survived quite well and this one displays excellently. $1950.00

 

 

 

 Item 847 M1915 Italian Adrian helmet

fitted as a parade helmet for a General

 

     

     

 This an original M1915 helmet produced for Italy by France. (France was an industrial giant during WW1. Once they got production of the M15 rolling, they were turning them out by the bushel; supplying them to any country who had enough money to order them. Few other countries took the pains to design and produce their own helmet...there was a war on, you know.) The shell is a medium size one with factory applied green paint and standard M15 liner (as would be found in any Adrian produced at that time) It was made without frontal badge retention holes. The standard Italian helmet of the period did not use frontal badges. This helmet is fitted with a cloth backed silver eagle and silver side mount for a parade plume. Comes from the Rudy D'angelo collection. $3000.00

 

 

 Item 795 M35 Heer helmet w/rough texture over-paint

       

     

     

This is an #EF66 M35 Heer helmet which originally left the factory as a double decal army. After issue, it was over-painted in a very rough texture dark grey colored paint. Almost black.  The decal is a Huber-Jordan type which was used by EF in 1938-39 as their "house" decal. (later being replaced by the Juttner pattern in 1939) The decal has been carefully masked off during the exterior overpaint. The inside of the shell shows the overpaint on the skirt of the helmet and portions of the liner frame being splattered. The liner shows good wear but remains intact and sound. A very attractive example for fans of rough texture helmets. ON HOLD

 

 

 

 Item 796 M35 Luftwaffe helmet w/ heavy texture paint

       

       

     

 This one is a real corker... The helmet shell i9s an NS68 of 1939 production. The helmet originally left the factory as a double decal Luftwaffe but has been over-painted in a very thick paint giving the surface the texture looking like ocean waves. The National color decal is buried but the Eagle decal was masked off. It is a standard NS pattern eagle decal remaining 95% intact. The liner is a 1939 dated re-enforced aluminum frame with worn but intact leather. The helmet shell has a dome acceptance stamp which is dated 1939. The chinstrap is a brown leather Luftwaffe type which is by ball indications; original to the helmet. It bears a faint Luftwaffe unit marking; most likely from a flak regiment. $3500.00

 

 

 Item 799 M42 Netted Luftwaffe helmet

       

     

 This is a a standard NS62 M42 Luftwaffe helmet with 95% original wartime textured paint and a textbook NS factory applied eagle decal. The netting is a 100% original example of the German issue type and by all indications is originally applied to this helmet. There are many surviving original nets in the collector world but very few which are supposed to be original to the helmet. I believe that this is an example of just such a thing.  $2000.00

 

 

 

 Item 790 M16 Austrian Schutzpolizei helmet

       

       

 This Helmet is a decent example of an Austrian Rural Gendarme M16 styule; produced in the 1930s. A good number of these were taken by the Germans after the 1938 anschluss and were re-issued to the schutzpolizei. This example still retains it's original Austrian three-pad leather liner. The chinstrap has been changed to a German M31 and two of the split-pins were replaced with German M31 pins. Likely this was done after a good deal of use which is evident by the overall condition of the helmet. It appears to be actual usage wear rather than storage wear. The decals rate at 85-90%. The police decal is a typical re-issue type used through-out the 30s and early 40s. A very good representative piece. $1300.00

 

 

 Item 755 US M1 helmet, early

     

 

     

 This is a nice example of an Early WW2 US M1 helmet. The McCord produced shell has bronze hardware on the chinstrap, fixed bales and still retains 95%+ of it's original textured paint. There are the initials "MD" scratched into the front. The liner is an early fiber type produced by Hawley. It shows honest wear and use. The webbing is intact and sound. The leather chinstrap appears original to the liner. $465.00

 

 

 Item 655 Ssh36 Soviet army helmet, dated 1936!

     

   

   

 Here is an example of one of the first Ssh 36 helmets to be produced. The shell retains 90% of its original green paint and the early pre-war style red star is mostly present on the front. The shell is a size marked as a size 4. (earlier Ssh helmets were made in 4 different sizes; later ones only in 3 sizes) The liner is the cloth bag style used until the early war years; at5 which time it was replaced by the three pads system. This helmet has an early cloth strap with grommeted buckle prong holes. The crowning feature is the maker mark and 1936 production date. A very rare helmet in very nice, original condition. $1950.00

 

 

 Item 494 US M2 D-bale paratrooper helmet,

326th Airborne engineer battalion, 101st Airborne division

        

       

       

This is an original M2 US D-bale paratrooper helmet. The D-bales have broken off and were replaced by wire bales in a crude fashion. In the last two photos you will see the dimples in the stainless steel rim that are always present between the legs of the factory installed D chinstrap bales. The steel lot number of this helmet is 549B placing it within the range of helmets that were produced as D-bale jump helmets. The McCord factory in Detroit was ordered to stop production of the D-bale in mid 1943 because of the inherent weakness of the chinstrap attachments. (If this helmet had standard fixed bales, they would still be there) helmets which have undergone field expedient repairs such as this are quite common. Many examples can be seen in the excellent book on US paratrooper helmets by Michel de Trez. The chinstraps themselves are standard infantry types which were apparently taken from two separate other helmets as one of them has steel hardware while the other has bronze.

This helmet bears the hand rendered insignias of the 326th Airborne engineer battalion (which was composed of 3 companies) the tick mark appears at left indicating this helmet belonged to C company. There is evidence of former frontal and rear insignias which had been removed but I have no idea what they would have denoted. The liner is a Westinghouse paratrooper liner which would have been issued at some point after August of 1944. This liner; although completely original WW2 production, cannot be verified as being original to the helmet so let us assume that it is not. The leather chin-cup is a 4-hole example which is not the standard issue Paratrooper chin-cup. It is of WW2 vintage but is the type normally found on flight headgear. The liner bears no name or laundry mark. The left chinstrap of the helmet shell has a laundry mark with the soldiers initial of his last name followed by the last four digits of his serial number. I have done research which gives 57 possibilities as to identification. I will supply this information to the buyer and let him sort it out.

Overall, this is a striking example of a unit ID'd D-bale paratrooper helmet which definitely saw extensive action. Price $3850.00

Just as an FYI: The US army never used the nomenclature "M2" for these D-bale helmets. That is a collector term. The army referred to them as "Parachutist helmet, M1" The later wartime designed swivel-bale was termed "Parachutist helmet, M1C"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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