Original German WWII M38 Luftschutz Beaded Gladiator Air Defense Helmet - marked & dated 1940

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very good condition original M1938 Beaded Luftschutz (Air Protection) Gladiator German helmet. The exterior of this German helmet retains over 95% of the original dark blue paint, with just a bit of scratching and dents. The helmet retains all four of the original split pin rivets, with almost complete paint on the tops. The Luftschutz decal is clean and 90%+ complete with only a couple small scuffs and chips.

The inner skirt is maker marked with stamping into the steel, and under that is more information applied with decals. The decals do show age and cracking, but are still fully legible:

RL 2 - 40/2
Vertrieb genehmigt
gemäß § 8 Luftschutzgesetz
Kopfweite: 56

These markings would seem to indicate that the helmet was made in 1940, though we do not know if any records were kept of the maker. The rest of the markings are distribution and price information:  Distribution approved according to Section 8 Air protection legislation. Head Width 56.

The liner on this example is early vinyl faux leather, with a nice tan color, surrounded by the correct cork pads. It has degraded a bit due to age, and is now brittle. The original top tie string is present, but broken. The leather chin strap is present and supple, but it tore through long ago.

Overall a very good complete German WWII M38 Luftschutz helmet, a very example of this model helmet from World War Two. Ready to add to your collection and display!

History of the RLB

The Reichsluftschutzbund (RLB) (National Air Raid Protection League)  was organized by Hermann Göring in 1933 as a voluntary association. Existing volunteer air raid precaution associations were forced to merge with RLB. In 1939 the RLB became a Körperschaft des öffentlichen Rechts (quasi-autonomous non-governmental organization), while in 1944 it became an affiliated organization of the NSDAP Party. It was in charge of educating and training ordinary German men and women in civil defense procedures necessary for the basic level of local self-help of the civil population against air raids. The local level was formed around air raid wardens and operated in small first intervention squads. The training include fire fighting, protection against chemical weapons, communication procedures and preparation of houses and apartments against air raids.

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