Original German WWII DAK Afrikakorps Motorcycle Infantry EM-NCO M38 Overseas Cap by Hans Brandt in size 57cm - dated 1942

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. The second most predominant item of Heer tropical soft headgear was based on the M-34 / 38 overseas cap, nicknamed in German army slang as Schiffchen, or literally "little ship" as it resembled an up-turned row-boat. It lacked a peak or visor, and was made in the same cotton as the M-40 'Afrikamütze' cap. The production of these also started in 1940. The schiffchen utilized the same brown enameled stock for the vent holes as the M-40.

As with the continental wool version, the tropical overseas cap had turn-down sides, but these could not be folded down to cover the ears for cold weather protection because they were stitched in the front and back. Later war versions retained the seam, but were entirely sewn down, now just a separate part of the exterior.

The cap was also lined with red cotton, the sides being the last to be sewn in place. The insignia was sewn to the shell before the lining was added, and used exactly the same eagle, roundel and soutache as the M-40 'Afrikamütze'. From 1943 onwards, as with the M-40 billed cap, the eagle can be seen to be sewn on some examples on a triangular backing. This was a simple measure to speed up production, although it tended to lend the cap with a less attractive appearance.

The overseas cap was popular with armored vehicle crews due to the lack of a visor, which would get in the way of using optical equipment and continual banging against the sides, equipment, hatches and other obstructions in closely confined work spaces like tanks and armored vehicles. Due to their very utilitarian and somewhat unflattering appearance, the overseas cap never gained the affection that the M-40 evoked from those who wore them. These M-34 / 38 Pattern Tropical caps also have an important place in any tropical uniform collection.

This is a very nice Heer tropical pattern overseas cap worn by NCO and enlisted ranks in the DAK and southern Europe. Styled after the 1940 pattern, it is produced in olive-brown cotton twill with decorative "faux" flaps and tan enameled alloy vent grommets. The front has a very nice BeVO style machine embroidered light blue gray on Tan tropical pattern Heer eagle with the correct tri-color Kokarde underneath. There is a very nice kupferbraun (Copper Brown) V-shaped soutache, which is the Waffenfarbe (Corps Color) for the Kradschützentruppe Motorcycle infantry soldiers. The bottom stitches do not go over the soutache, so it was added to the cap after production at arsenal. It has the correct color thread securing it from the rear.

The interior has a liner of lightweight red cotton cloth that is well marked with full manufacturer and size information:

Hans Brandt

Ritterstraße 12-17

There is also a large number 842 on the inside of the cap, similar to other caps by this maker, indicating production in August 1942.

It shows only very minor wear, with some staining and fading, as shown, as well as a bit of water staining around the grommets from oxidation. Both grommets are secure, and there are no structural fabric issues. Ready to display!

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