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The Late-Late War Erel Visor (aka the "M-45")

Article about: These visors were the subject of controversy some 10 years ago, due primarily to the fact that they differed so much from the pre-/mid-/late-war Erels. With the advent of documentary evidenc

  1. #1

    Default The Late-Late War Erel Visor (aka the "M-45")

    These visors were the subject of controversy some 10 years ago, due primarily to the fact that they differed so much from the pre-/mid-/late-war Erels.
    With the advent of documentary evidence, they are now considered to be original.

    I call these the "M-45" Erels, as most were found unissued at the end of the war.
    They share common characteristics, and differ from their earlier brethren in the following ways:

    1. Instead of having Vulkanfiber visors, they are made of compressed, laquered paper ("lackierte pappschirm");
    2 They lack the Erel "air cushion" sweatband;
    3. The sweatbands are often (but not always) marked "Clemens Wagner 1938" (my theory is that Erel bought new old stock intended for CW);
    4. They use a heavy ribbed Trikot for the body of the hats;
    5. The crowns of the hats are smaller;
    6. The peaks are lower;
    7 The sweatbands lack the standard Erel patent markings;
    8. The Erel/OKK logo is not foiled in (and is very hard to see);
    9. The rayon is very thin, almost translucent
    10. Most are mint and unissued (it is my opinion that they were found by Allied soldiers when they came upon an OKK outlet);
    11. Many have the sweatband attachments on the side (vs the rear with a bow);
    12. Some have factory-installed bullion wreaths;
    13. They have no grade classification (ie, Standard/Extra/Privat);
    14. The cords are often celleon (vs bullion);
    15. The top panel lining is usually a pale yellow, while the side lining panels are more of a light peach color.
    Last edited by stonemint; 03-14-2017 at 07:51 PM.
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  3. #2

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    Here is your typical M-45 interior--the logo is very faint, but it reads as most OKK Erels (but without the grade/class marking.)
    Note the plain fold-over sweatband, w/o the Erel Stirnschutz system.
    The sweatband is attached at the side.
    The visor is unfinished, and as they are compressed paper, have no cross-hatching:
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  4. #3

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    2 more interiors--note that one does have the connection at the back:
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #4

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    Here is one of those CW stampings that caused so much confusion back in the early days of the 'net.
    As stated above, either Erel bought unused stock from CW in 1944-45, or they bought new old stock from a sweatband supplier who had originally made them for Clemens Wagner.
    Whatever the case, it is rare to not see a CW stamp on these:
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #5

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    This hat provided the first evidence that these hats were wartime.
    This unissued Erel was sent by the OKK to an officer in 1945 who did not survive the war, and as such, it remained in the box for years:
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  7. #6

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    More proof that came to light--a Cav M-45 Erel that was issued and worn.
    While this one has a vented cockade, the hat is not vented with a grommet.
    The man's Wehrpass contains a document reflecting that his uniform (to include the visor hat) was issued on 2-12-45.
    (cwi)
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #7

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    Here is a photo of a late-late war Erel in wear, along with the soldiers hat and tunic.
    (This one has the mint-green lining, and no CW stamp.)
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #8

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    You can find almost all 'farbes on these M-45s.
    Here is Generalstab (with a reverse-twist cord).
    Note how thin the Rayon is:
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  10. #9

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    Panzer:
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  11. #10

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    Truppensonderdienst:
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