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brit lids

Article about: afternoon all ,well as the sun was shining up here in north wales i thought it would be a good opportunity to dig out a couple of my british helmets ,in case your not familiar left to right

  1. #11


    I always love an opportunity to do a photo shoot and show of the collection lol :P

  2. #12


    From what I have heard - and it may not be much - the Mk7 seems to be well-recieved on all counts including comfort (anyone know any better?) but it is right that some troops *did* use the Para helmet (and disguised with loads of camo, Mk6-type covers and also Mk6-type chinstraps) in preference to the Mk6 when on ops simply because the para helmet is lighter.

    I believe that this was a habit started on exercises rather than in shooting war, but was continued on by some soldiers who - perhaps rather daringly - preferred the comfort of the lighter helmet to the better protection of the Mk6. It was, as you can imagine, frowned on for a variety of reasons.

    So far I have been buying the helmet on an 'is it cheap enough?' basis, but my longer-term plan is indeed to be looking for helmets with manufacturers labels, with maker and date information. There seem to have been more makers of the Para than the Mk6 by a good margin, though the para helmets seem to lose their labels even more easily than the earlier Mk6s do. Still, something to occupy the mind, keeps me off the streets etc etc.

    NB - as to whether the real reason for using the para over any other is lightness as opposed to comfort - a quick weighing-session shows

    early (vinyl flaps) para - 1124g
    later para - 1150g
    mk6 - 1452
    mk7 - 1472

    I think all these are medium - no labels in some of them, as usual. Anyway, an apparent increase of over 300g (best part of 11 ounces) from the earliest para to the Mk7. Personally, although I have *far* more hair than the average squaddie, I find the Mk6 to be the most comfortable of the lot, as long as the size is right. But then I've never had to wear one all day in what might be described as difficult circumstances.

  3. #13


    I also meant to say James in reply to your earlier post the Para helmet is still regarded as being more comfortable than the MK7, The Mk7 uses the exact same liner set up as the MK6A minus the chinstrap setup and that was only slightly changed from the original MK6 with the addition of the mesh in the crown which dont get me wrong is much more comfy than the original but still leaves a bit to be desired overall. The MK7 is issued with the comfort pads as you might see on mine that can be velcro fitted and removed by the user but as far as I can gather the vast majority of our troops dont use them because the helmet becomes to hot to wear and or they get in the way of comms equipment. I still saw troops wearing the Para lid after the MK7 was in widespread use right up until the powers that be said the Para helmet couldnt be worn in theatre anymore.

  4. #14


    Hi Greg, I have heard the same indeed overall the MK7 has been praised by our troops and well accepted on the whole, But like you say I have also read and heard accounts of troops disguising the Para helmet by various methods to continue using it. I think the reasoning behind not allowing the Para helmet to be worn anymore is unfounded anyway and I know many troops especially the Paras themselves see that helmet as part of there identity and their right to wear it. I frequently buy the soldier magazine and every now and again still see the Para helmet being worn by various troops.

  5. #15


    superb information as always greg ,i think perhaps i have my crossed wires ,i recall as you said the para helmet was preferred as an alternative when used i imagine covertly to the mk6 ,is it true the vinyl flapped chinstrap version was the first type issued and used during the troubles ,the liner i can only compare to the earlier dispatch rider helmet from the 1940's,i can honestly say ive never had the opportunity to find one and can only assume they must be very thin on the ground

  6. #16


    Some good pictures here Guys..If I may add my pennies worth the Para lid is far more comfortable & lighter as we know!! But one thing that used to break me was the chinstrap..I remember a few times on the ranges wearing these lids & getting rather hot under the collar through running around like a looney!! & these chinstraps I just couldn't get it undone quick enough..not good if you are trying to cool down!!!lol..Cheers Terry.

  7. #17


    thank you so much for this first hand information terry ,you cant beat it, its so easy to pass judgement on these helmets as they sit on there display shelves, i quess its a far cry from the realities of actually wearing them over a prelonged time in extreme conditions ,great to hear from you ,thanks james

  8. #18


    Hi Terry, I know what you mean a lot of troops that used/use the Para lids switched the chinstrap out for one of a MK6 or I think certain vendors offer them modified with a quick release buckle. Not the best design really. I could be wrong but isnt the chinstrap config on the Para lid almost exactly the same as its WW2 counterpart?

  9. #19


    Yes not far of it!!! & wearing a Mk6 chinstrap isn't a good idea if you are jumping!!! lol.. & thanks James always good to see the lids!! Cheers Terry.

  10. #20


    Fantastic way to display the collection James, as previously mentioned the scrim is very effective,and it's difficult to work out each model, it's always good to see these often overlooked helmets and I never tire of seeing them,I look forward to seeing more of your imaginative displays.

    Regards Gary.

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