Original WWII German DAK Afrika Korps Panzer Overseas Cap Dated 1942 - Size 58
Original Item: Only One Available. The second most predominant item of Heer tropical soft headgear was based on the M-34 / 38 overseas cap, nicknamed in German army slang as Schiffchen, or literally little ship as it resembled an up-turned row-boat. It lacked a peak or visor, and was made in the same cotton as the M-40 'Afrikamutze' cap. The production of these also started in 1940. The schiffchen had one eyelet per side as opposed to two, but utilized the same brown enameled stock as the M-40.
As with the continental wool version, the tropical overseas cap had turn-down sides, but these could not be folded down to cover the ears for cold weather protection because they were stitched in the front and back. The cap was also lined with red cotton, the sides being the last to be sewn in place. The insignia was sewn to the shell before the lining was added, and used exactly the same eagle, roundel and soutache as the M-40 'Afrikamutze'. From 1943 onwards, as with the M-40 billed cap, the eagle can be seen to be sewn on some examples on a triangular backing. This was a simple measure to speed up production, although it tended to lend the cap with a less attractive appearance.
The overseas cap was popular with armored vehicle crews due to the lack of a visor, which would get in the way of using optical equipment and continual banging against the sides, equipment, hatches and other obstructions in closely confined work spaces like tanks and armored vehicles. Due to their very utilitarian and somewhat unflattering appearance, the overseas cap never gained the affection that the M-40 evoked from those who wore them. These M-34 / 38 Pattern Tropical caps also have an important place in any tropical uniform collection.
This is an unissued Heer tropical pattern overseas cap worn by NCO & enlisted ranks in the DAK and southern Europe. Styled after the 1934 pattern, it is produced in olive-brown cotton twill with a functional flap & tan enameled alloy vent grommets. The front has neatly machine sewn tropical pattern Heer eagle and Kokarde with a machine sewn bright Pink (Panzer / Anti-tank) soutace.
The interior has a liner of lightweight red cotton cloth that's well marked with manufacturer stamp, with 1942 date and size of 58. This example retains both flap tack stitches (normally missing on reapplications) and the soutache is applied in a sloppy manner that some collectors prefer. Shows minor shelf wear, and age toning, but overall offered in near excellent condition!
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