Original WWII Soviet Union M36 Soviet SSh-36 "Gladiator" Steel Combat Helmet with Liner & Chinstrap - Complete
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a fine example of a Russian WWII Issue SSh-36 Combat helmet, with correct shell stamping on the rear of the skirt: 1 - 1351. It looks to have been in service post war, but still retains its original configuration liner and leather chinstrap. Size looks to be about medium - approximately a US 7 1/4 (58cm) and offered in overall very good condition. There are no stress cracks, as often seen, there are no real dents or damage to speak of, just the usual wear from use and age.
The condition reflects that of a helmet that saw long service life. The liner is quite worn, dry and does have thread loss, but to find an SSh-36 with the original liner is a rarity in itself. All fingers are present, however, one of the fingers is completely detached and has remained with the helmet. The chinstrap is present and complete, but there is cracking present in the finish with slight tearing.
A very nice example, ready to display
The SSh (Стальной шлем "stalnoy shlem", or steel helmet) 36 or the M (модель or model) 36 was designed by Aleksandr A. Shvartz, and began production in 1936. Its large front rim and wide flares over the ears provided good protection for the wearer. The German M35, introduced a year before the Russian M-36, served as a model for the development of the M-36. The M-36 was also fitted with a comb on top, which allowed for ventilation. There were also apocryphal claims that the comb was designed to deflect saber blows.
Early M-36s were made with fragile leather linings. Due to the unreliability of these early models containing leather linings, later variations were introduced with cloth linings. Similar problems were also encountered with early leather chinstraps, so the leather chinstraps were phased out in favor of cloth models as well.
The M-36 was worn by Soviet soldiers in several campaigns of the late 1930s and 1940s, including the Khalkin Gol campaign against the Japanese in 1938 (giving it the nickname "Khalkingolka"), the Finnish Winter War of 1939-1940, the 1939 invasion of Poland, the 1940 invasions of the Baltic states and Bessarabia, and in World War II, or as it is known in Russia, the Great Patriotic War. It was also distributed to the Republican soldiers of the Spanish Civil War in conjunction with Soviet support of the Spanish government. During the Finnish Winter War, the cold temperatures forced many soldiers to tear out the helmet's liner so the ushanka, or fur hat, would fit under the metal shell. Production of the M-36 ended in 1941.
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