Original German WWII Luftwaffe M35 Crisp Single Decal Helmet - Q68
Original Item: Only One Available. This is an incredible crisp near unissued all original example. This stamped sheet steel construction helmet retains 99% of the original paint and is in truly excellent condition overall. The left side of the helmet features a crisp Luftwaffe eagle decal. The decal is retained at 99%.
All three liner retaining pins are intact. The interior of the helmet still has the original nearly unissued M31 leather liner with all eight of its fingers intact and is stamped as a huge size 61. The liner retains the original size adjustment string. The liner is soft and supple.
On the reverse of the shell's interior, the neck guard apron is lot number stamped, 21705 and the interior, left side, apron has a stamped manufacturer's code and size, Q68 indicating that indicating manufacture by Quist in Esslingen, Germany in a massive size 68. Size 68 is among the largest sizes made during WW2 and can accommodate liners from 61cm to 63cm or US 7 5/8 to 8. Size 68 shells are incredibly difficul to find and are therefore more valuable to a collector. The original ink dome stamp can also be seen inside the interior crown of the helmet. Original chinstrap is present and in excellent condition it is maker marked and dated 1941.
Overall an incredibly clean and crisp 100% genuine M35 Single Decal Luftwaffe helmet! M35 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 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.
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