Original German WWII Double Decal NSDAP Civic Police M40 Steel Combat Helmet with 59cm Liner & Chinstrap - ET66
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very nice all original example of a German WWII M40 Police Helmet, complete with original paint and decals. This is an eye catching helmet, and one of the finest examples of a frontline police helmet that we have ever seen. Field Police units served in frontline capacity, serving on the front, and also operating behind the lines fighting partisans. The Feldpolizei units operated under the guise of the SS.
This stamped sheet steel construction helmet retains much of its original paint but does show wear and use. It is painted in a very nice lightly textured Feldgrau (field gray) paint, which is retained at around 90%. Textured paint is much harder to find on these helmets, and we usually see it only on very early issue helmets. The helmet features genuine double decals of the NSDAP civic eagle on the left side and the swas on a red shield on the right. Both decals are retained at about 85%, and are intact with the expected wear from use.
The reverse, interior, neck guard apron is serial number stamped 1370 and the interior, left side, apron has the stamped manufacturer's code and size, ET66 indicating that it was manufactured by Eisenhuttenwerk AG of Thale, located in the Harz district in Saxony, Germany. Size 66 is a nice larger size that can accommodate liners from 58cm to 59cm or US 7 1/4 to 7 5/8. Size 66 shells are harder to find and are therefore more valuable to a collector.
All three original liner retaining pins are present with almost all of the original paint still intact. The interior of the helmet still has an original M31 leather liner with all eight fingers still present, showing wear and staining from service. The original top tie is present, still threaded through the ends of the fingers. There is some light surface cracking and dry rot on the leather surface. The mid war issue galvanized steel liner band is marked on the left outer side with 66 n.A. / 59, indicating that the liner band is a size 59, intended for a 66 shell. The right side displays the full manufacture information, as well as a date:
D. R. P.
There is a very nice chin strap still attached to the liner, which is in very good condition, though there is some damage to the finish from being stretched over the front brim.
Overall a very nice 100% genuine rare M40 Double Decal NSDAP Civic Police Combat helmet! M40 helmets of this quality are always the hardest to find on the market. This is an item that will only continue to appreciate in value over time.
The German Helmet:
The first "modern" steel helmets were introduced by the French army in early 1915 and were shortly followed by the British army later that year. With plans on the drawing board, experimental helmets in the field, ("Gaede" helmet), and some captured French and British helmets the German army began tests for their own steel helmet at the Kummersdorf Proving Grounds in November, and in the field in December 1915. An acceptable pattern was developed and approved and production began at Eisen-und Hüttenwerke, AG Thale/Harz, (Iron and Foundry Works), in the spring of 1916.
These first modern M16 helmets evolved into the M18 helmets by the end of WWI. The M16 and M18 helmets remained in usage through-out the Weimar Reichswehr, (National Defence Force, Circa 1919-1933), era and on into the early years of the Third Reich until the development of the smaller, lighter M35 style helmet in June 1935.
In 1934 tests began on an improved Stahlhelm, whose design was a development of World War I models. The Eisenhüttenwerke company of Thale carried out prototype design and testing, with Dr. Friedrich Schwerd once again taking a hand.
The new helmet was pressed from sheets of molybdenum steel in several stages. The size of the flared visor and skirt was reduced, and the large projecting lugs for the obsolete armor shield were eliminated. The ventilator holes were retained, but were set in smaller hollow rivets mounted to the helmet's shell. The edges of the shell were rolled over, creating a smooth edge along the helmet. Finally, a completely new leather suspension, or liner, was incorporated that greatly improved the helmet's safety, adjustability, and comfort for each wearer. These improvements made the new M1935 helmet lighter, more compact, and more comfortable to wear than the previous designs.
The Army's Supreme Command officially accepted the new helmet on June 25, 1935 and it was intended to replace all other helmets in service.
More than 1 million M1935 helmets were manufactured in the first two years after its introduction, and millions more were produced until 1940 when the basic design and production methods were changed, replacing the multi-piece riveted vent with one stamped directly into the steel. Later, in 1942 the rolled steel rim was removed from the pattern to further expedite production.
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