Original German WWII Luftwaffe M40 Single Decal Helmet with Camouflage Remnants & 54cm Liner - stamped ET62

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is a great original example Model 1940 German WWII helmet with a single Luftwaffe Eagle decal. The exterior paint of this helmet shows wear, and there are remnants of a camouflage paint job, which looks to have been removed during the war, or possibly post war so that the decal was easier to see. It now retains helmet retains over 80% of the original smooth Luftwaffe Fliegerblau (Flyer's Blue) Blue-Gray paint, and really has a great look! The decal is unfortunately a bit worse off, looking like it did not adhere well to to paint, and is retained at probably about 60%, though it is still undeniably a Luftwaffe decal.

The reverse, interior, neck guard apron is batch number stamped 1040, and the interior, left side, apron has a stamped manufacturer’s code and size, ET62. This indicates it was manufactured by Eisenhüttenwerk AG of Thale, located in the Harz district in Saxony, Germany in size 62. Size 62 is a nice smaller size that can accommodate liners from 54cm to 55cm or US 6 3/4 to 6 7/8.

Two of the three original liner retaining pins are present (rear pin is missing), with both still retaining some of the original paint. The interior of the helmet still has an original M31 leather liner, which is in very good lightly worn condition. All eight "Fingers" are present, with much of the original finish, and there is even a clear 54 in a circle stamp on one. The top tie strap is still present and threaded through the liner. The mid war issue galvanized steel liner band is marked on the left outer side with 62 n.A. / 54, indicating that the liner band is a size 54, intended for a 62 shell. The right side displays the full manufacture information, as well as a date:

D. R. P.

There is unfortunately no chin strap present. The 1943 date fits nicely into the mid-late war period, with plenty of time for a camouflage paint job to both be applied and removed.

Overall a very nice condition genuine M40 Single Decal Luftwaffe helmet with traces of period camouflage! 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.

The M1935 design was slightly modified in 1940 to simplify its construction, the manufacturing process now incorporating more automated stamping methods. The principal change was to stamp the ventilator hole mounts directly onto the shell, rather than utilizing separate fittings. In other respects, the M1940 helmet was identical to the M1935. The Germans still referred to the M1940 as the M1935, while the M1940 designation were given by collectors.

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