Original German WWII M38 Gas Mask in Size 3 with Filter, Canister & Extras - Dated 1943
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a nice condition model M38 G-Maske or Gasschutzmaske (Gas protection mask), complete with an original Filter and Carrying can, all with WWII Dates and markings. It is in service used condition, and definitely saw long service, much of it after the war. The hard plastic lenses are discolored, and one of them is now dislodged from the eye surround. It also has a lot of wear to the straps that hold it to the face, with part broken off, now kept inside the canister.
The model M38 was first issued to troops in 1938, replacing the earlier M30, made of rubberized canvas and rubber. The 38 body is made completely of rubber, ensuring a great seal, and less issues with degradation in service. The spring-loaded straps fit over the head and were tightened by means of sliding the web straps through metal buckles until the mask was as tight as the user could stand it - ensuring a good air tight seal. Another strap would be placed around the user's neck and if the mask was not in use it would rest on the chest should they need it in a hurry.
Markings on these masks were put into the mold for the rubber body, with this example marked bwz between the eyepieces, the three letter code for Auer-Gesellschaft AG, Werk Oranienburg outside of Berlin. This was one of the factories that Auer operated. German WWII Gas masks came in 3 sizes, this example is a size 3 (Small), which was usually indicated by a number printed on the front of the mask between the eye pieces. The large size masks were designated with "1" and the small size is "3", which is a bit counter intuitive.
The metal alloy eye socket frames on this early issue M38 are painted blue, and are the later magnetic type. In 1943, due to material shortages, later war gas masks were made with steel fittings, and had blue painted fittings to indicate that they were "magnetical". The non-magnetic fittings were painted the original gray color.
The snout, also made from metal had a screw thread, into which the filter was inserted, and beneath that the discharge valve could also be found. This example is marked with bmw for manufacture by the famed Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (Bavarian Motor Works), and has 43 in a circle, indicating 1943 manufacture. The inside of the snout is marked bwz, made by the same company as the rubber shell, and also has a 43 date. The included model FE41 filter can has all original ink stamps present, with a Waffen Eagle stamp, and a 41 date. It is also maker marked bwz, and has definitely seen service and is worn, with paint missing.
The included carry case is a Long Model 1938 Wehrmacht type, which was introduced to house the stiffer M38 gas masks. It still has the original original metal inner sleeve. The can is in good original condition, and the spare lens compartment still bears a visible 1938 date and maker mark. Inside, the original retaining spring is still present, and holds two packages of spare lens inserts, each with a pair inside. One pair is dated 1940, and the second 1943.
This example comes with some post war extras, as many of these gas masks continued to be used in service long after the war. There is a green canvas bag, with markings on the inside, strapped to the outside of the canister. Inside this is a brown NECKERCHIEF MAN'S COTTON KNITTED made by Delaware Industries for the Blind.
Overall, a really nice military issue German WWII Gas mask, complete with a filter and canister, as well as some post war extras. Ready to add to your collection and display!
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