Item:
ON6132

Original U.S. WWII 1943 M1 McCord Swivel Bale Helmet with 2nd Pattern USMC HBT Camo Cover and Westinghouse Liner

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is a very nice example of a genuine mid WWII Issue U.S. Marine Corps issued helmet, complete with a very rare 2nd Pattern HBT Reversible Camouflage cover. While it is not marked with an EGA, these were only issued to Marines during WWII, and were all made of Herringbone Twill fabric, unlike later versions.

The U.S. WWII M-1 helmet was only produced from 1941 to 1945. The first production batch resulted with over 323,510 M-1 helmets before the start of the American involvement in the war. This helmet is heat-lot stamped 691A, which indicates the approximate manufacture date of October - November 1943, right after the switch to swivel bales for securing the chin strap.

The Ordnance Department selected McCord Radiator and Manufacturing Company of Detroit Michigan to produce the steel M1 helmet bodies. These bodies were made from a single piece of Hadfield Manganese steel that was produced by the Carnegie-Illinois & Sharon Steel Corporations. Each completed raw M-1 helmet shell weighed 2.25 lbs each. The total production of M-1 helmet shells during the war reached 22,000,000. Of these about 20,000,000 were produced by the main contractor McCord Radiator and Manufacturing Company of Detroit. Although McCord was supposed to be the single source of M-1 helmet shells, by the summer of 1942 a second company was enlisted to help the production effort. This was Schlueter Manufacturing of St. Louis, Missouri. Schlueter began production of its M-1 helmet shells in January 1943. Schlueter produced only 2,000,000 M-1 helmet shells during the war (both fixed and swivel). 

The early M-1 helmet shells had a set of fixed (static) chinstrap loops called "bales" and a stainless steel rim. These rims were both rust resistant and had "non-magnetic qualities" that reduced the chance of error readings when placed around certain sensitive equipment (such as a compass). In October 1943, issues with the fixed bales breaking off resulted in a change to the "swivel bales" that this helmet has.

This helmet is a fine example and still retains all of its original WWII parts and the shell has all original "corked" grain paint with front seam and fixed bails. The chin strap is the correct mid war OD Green #7 with blacked brass stamped hardware. The shell is covered with a excellent condition reversible USMC camouflage helmet cover, in the standard HBT weave used during WWII.

The liner is correct "high pressure" WWII issue and stamped with a W for the Westinghouse Electric Co Manufactured in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania this "high pressure" manufactured M-1 helmet liner is identified by an embossed "W" in the crown (which is still Westinghouse's logo to this day). Westinghouse was the largest M-1 helmet liner producer and had two production divisions; Micarta and Bryant Electric. The Micarta Division produced about 13,000,000 M-1 helmet liners and the Bryant Electric Division about 10,000,000. Westinghouse Electric Company started M-1 helmet liner delivery in May 1942. Westinghouse did have a contract to produce airborne liners and converted an unknown amount to airborne configuration. Westinghouse discontinued production around August 17, 1945 when the war ended.

This true US WWII M-1 helmet liner be identified through the frontal eyelet hole. Other correct WWII features include cotton OD Green #3 herringbone twill (HBT) cloth suspension liner, with the webbing in very good shape. This HBT suspension is held tightly within the M-1 helmet liner by rivets and a series of triangular "A" washers. The three upper suspension bands are joined together with the correct OD green string. This way the wearer could adjust the fit. The back of the rigging is marked with size SMALL. The sweatband is completely and in really great condition, with minimal wear and age-related deterioration. The liner chin strap is in similar condition, and looks almost unissued.

An excellent genuine WWII issue helmet, with a very rare original USMC HBT camouflage cover, perfect for any collection! Ready to display!

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