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A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

Article about: Hi guys, (For those only interested in the photos of this HG-cap, just scroll down to bypass all the text) This cap was posted in the Cap Authentication forum almost a year ago, but the horr

  1. #1
    KSH
    KSH is offline
    ?

    Default A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    Hi guys,

    (For those only interested in the photos of this HG-cap, just scroll down to bypass all the text)

    This cap was posted in the Cap Authentication forum almost a year ago, but the horrible photos shown by me in that thread among other things made me decide to present this stunning cap as it deserves to be presented, in the main area of the Cloth Headgear forum. Since no other HG visor caps have been posted in this section of the forum as I am aware of, it is about time.

    Now to start the short presentation:

    This cap is a privately purchased Luftwaffe visor cap of high quality with the white piping, which of course designates it as a cap only worn by the famous Hermann Göring unit within the Luftwaffe. The condition of the cap is superb, it is without a doubt the best preserved cloth item I have in my collection. It has been worn very, very little, perhaps just one or two times in my honest opinion - the lining clearly show small traces of sweat and wear. But interestingly enough the cap seems to have more wear from having been moved around, than from being worn on somebody's head. The upper side of the peak has many small scratches and likewise the leather trim that goes along the edge of the peak has received wear from the cap being put down on surfaces. One stitch of thread in the leather trim has also been severed through some kind of wear on the top side. But the underside of the peak (apart from the leather trim) is nearly in stonemint condition, which is perfectly logical as this surface has had no contact with surfaces while the cap has been moved around. Also at the rear bottom of the cap wear is seen, especially on the leather sweatband from such moving around. I have taken a photo of this damage to the sweatband in the rear. The interior fabric is fine, ribbed black rayon, a kind of rayon identical (except for the colour of course) to the rayon in one of my tunics:


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    This cap is as evident unmarked, both when it comes to a maker-mark and the inspection stamp from the unit - neither is uncommon at all. Many fine caps of the era were never marked, and the unit inspection stamps become scarcer and scarcer as the war progresses - only in issued pre-war contract-pieces were these inspection stamps highly consistent. The men of the Hermann Göring unit acquired their uniforms exactly like any other soldiers of the Luftwaffe and had thus the option to privately purchase a nicer cap - which is what the original owner of my cap did.

    The pleats of the interior is quite finely arranged and when manipulated they bounce back immediately to their position. Time and elements have made the lining pleats absolutely fixed into position and they follow exactly how the sweatband has pressed them down. This is something one always wants to see in an original cap of this sort. It is also interesting to note that the "prongs" holding the buttons of the chinstrap in place have over time reacted with the sweatband and have left dark marks on the sweatband.

    Furthermore the cap has two typical traits common to private purchase Luftwaffe caps of this sort: the peak is relatively large/deep and the mohair-band is made not of wool, but of black rayon, just like on a Luftwaffe officer's cap.

    The white piping has been very finely installed and I have provided some close-up photos of two of the piping-joins which are almost invisible to the naked eye. The piping can on some photos appear more white than it actually is in real life because of the flash - it is a yellowed white colour in reality, just the colour one would expect.

    The cap also has another trait that I have become quite fond of, and that is the finish of the upper side of the peak. To the best of my judgment a layer of real leather has been placed on the top side of the peak to give it a more luxurious appearance. I don't believe this is something you see on your standard Luftwaffe cap very often. It looks astonishingly beautiful in real life I can promise.

    The doeskin-wool is of a nice quality and actually very similar to the wool on my Heer medical officer's cap, only better quality in my opinion. The wool also actually smells almost identical to the wool on my Heer-cap as well.

    Lastly, I want to talk about the insignia as they are interesting in their own right. Both insignia are completely matching each other visually, even down to the small amounts of dirt on them. What is more interesting is that they both display minor die-flaws from the production. The eagle is made by FLL and is a perfectly typical later aluminium FLL with the reinforced talon holding the swastika (to avoid bending of this talon as often happened on the earlier eagle designs). They are both without question original aluminium insignia, but both have small die-flaws which might indicate that they were perhaps among the last badges produced out of their respective dies before these were changed. Note also on the talon holding the swastika that a small piece of aluminium, a left-over from the production process, has not been filed away as would have been the norm.

    Here is an Erel-cap with an identical eagle I was able to track down (quite possibly from the same production run):

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    So in short, this is a rather rare cap, in amazing condition and of very high quality which makes it a dream-visor for me. At the moment not the best financial investment I could have done, because of misinformation and myths/obsessions with markings that are all over especially the "other forum", the maroon site. Well, they can enjoy their pre-war mediocre to low-quality Lubstein contract caps with the "correct" markings in them that apparently constitute the gospel of the "problem-free example". As I am not in this hobby for money (or the worship of ink) , but for history and knowledge, I wouldn't trade this fantastic cap against four "problem-free" HG-examples. With all due respect they couldn't stand a comparison to this work of art! This cap is in a different league.


    Now finally the photos at last. I apologize for the "over-flashed" interior shots made with the sweatband folded up. Those were taken with a lousy camera and I have decided never to fold the sweatband up again, as it is somewhat fragile in the rear where the damage from wear is located.




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    Thank you for your interest!





    Regards,

    Kenneth S-H.
    Last edited by KSH; 05-11-2012 at 05:33 PM.

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  3. #2

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    Thank you Kenneth for sharing your cap. Very nice presentation and it is a very nice example!

    Cheers, Pat

  4. #3

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    Hi Kenneth,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the detailed analysis of why the cap is a quality example.

    Fabulous cap with a well thought out presentation of why its the bees knees !

    Great post.

    cheers

    tony

  5. #4
    ?

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    The better pictures help a lot. Especially in my belief that this cap is not an original Herman Goering Division cap.
    It is my considered opinion that this is what is commonly referred to as a frankenstein cap. The meaning of which is parts taken from original caps and combined to appear as an original one.
    Why do I say this ?
    The most obvious aspects being:
    The cap liner has more stitches sewn to closely together than is necessary to hold it down. Reapplied liners will stand out, ergo the multitude of stitches necessary to hold this one flat.
    The most glaring to me is that the sweat band has been resewn to the cap body as evidenced by the straight line stitching as opposed to the original zig zag stitching along the edge of the leather that held it originally. This and other comments and points made by esteemed collectors with unrefutable experience in the field.
    I realize that you desperatly want this cap to be original pre 1945 but the evidence says otherwise.
    It is a clever fake built to decieve.
    Steve Ray

  6. #5
    KSH
    KSH is offline
    ?

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    (I have deleted my comparison post that was here to avoid that any member will get the wrong idea of this cap - it is not an original war-time cap, but most likely a put together "frankenstein").
    Last edited by KSH; 05-14-2012 at 11:13 PM.

  7. #6
    KSH
    KSH is offline
    ?

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    Quote by SteveR View Post
    The better pictures help a lot. Especially in my belief that this cap is not an original Herman Goering Division cap.
    It is my considered opinion that this is what is commonly referred to as a frankenstein cap. The meaning of which is parts taken from original caps and combined to appear as an original one.
    Why do I say this ?
    The most obvious aspects being:
    The cap liner has more stitches sewn to closely together than is necessary to hold it down. Reapplied liners will stand out, ergo the multitude of stitches necessary to hold this one flat.
    The most glaring to me is that the sweat band has been resewn to the cap body as evidenced by the straight line stitching as opposed to the original zig zag stitching along the edge of the leather that held it originally. This and other comments and points made by esteemed collectors with unrefutable experience in the field.
    I realize that you desperatly want this cap to be original pre 1945 but the evidence says otherwise.
    It is a clever fake built to decieve.
    Steve Ray
    I respect your opinion here Steve. But I hardly find your reasoning regarding the many hand-sewn stitches to the pleats to be very convincing - I think that is interpreting very, very much out of little evidence. I also see no other aspects to the lining that would support such a claim.

    I am certain I have seen many period caps with two kinds of stitching visible directly on the sweatband. The straight-line stitching is pretty much always present on these kind of sweatbands if I am not mistaken. And also in addition often the zig-zag stitching that must serve another purpose than keeping the peak and sweatband into place?

    What do the cap experts have to say on this, as this issue with the stitching lies above my knowledge here?



    If the moderators on this forum Ben and Chris/"stonemint" - also feel that this cap is a blatant "frankenstein", I shall immediately return the cap - and learn the lesson of having bought a fake. Of that I can assure you.


    Regards,

    Kenneth S-H
    Last edited by KSH; 05-14-2012 at 09:13 PM.

  8. #7

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    Not being a visor collector, having only ever owned a few TR period German examples, I found this interesting, though from my limited knowledge I could see some differences between the items you have chosen for comparison and also some of the traits you mention, such as the crown sitting on the interior, as being something worthy of specifically mentioning, when most visors would do that and it's not anything to use as evidence for authenticity.

    The comparison of Rayon you posted seems to my eye to be quite different between the two shown, and maybe your objectivity has been clouded by the understandable desire on your part to convince others that it is a period original. The example for your tunic you showed has the warp and weft threads at right angles, whilst the visor lining appears to be at an angle other than 90 degrees.

    The chinstrap and peak comparison you posted only served in my eyes to highlight how different yours is from the others you posted. The poor fit of the none adjustable buckle is certainly something that I noticed, as are the different shape of the adjustable buckles, also the rivet for the former and the attachment to the visor, yet you stated that the pictures speak for themselves. To me, they only showed how different they were, with the leather of the strap itself being noticeably different between the two, along with those feature I already mentioned.

    Just a few thoughts following only a few minutes examining your wonderful pictures from someone who does not collect such items and maybe my points are merely manufacturers variations.

    A last point, old wool does smell but acceleration of this can be induced and though not something to be totally dismissed, it is not the best of criteria to apply in determining authenticity IMO. I have many period items in my collection and many of them smell no different to an old jumper that has been left in the laundry for too long and some do not noticeably smell at all.

    Just a few rambling and disjointed comments which are probably of no consequence.

    Good luck in your quest for attaining enlightenment on this item and I shall follow developments as they unfold.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  9. #8
    KSH
    KSH is offline
    ?

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    Quote by Bond View Post
    Not being a visor collector, having only ever owned a few TR period German examples, I found this interesting, though from my limited knowledge I could see some differences between the items you have chosen for comparison and also some of the traits you mention, such as the crown sitting on the interior, as being something worthy of specifically mentioning, when most visors would do that and it's not anything to use as evidence for authenticity.

    The comparison of Rayon you posted seems to my eye to be quite different between the two shown, and maybe your objectivity has been clouded by the understandable desire on your part to convince others that it is a period original. The example for your tunic you showed has the warp and weft threads at right angles, whilst the visor lining appears to be at an angle other than 90 degrees.

    The chinstrap and peak comparison you posted only served in my eyes to highlight how different yours is from the others you posted. The poor fit of the none adjustable buckle is certainly something that I noticed, as are the different shape of the adjustable buckles, also the rivet for the former and the attachment to the visor, yet you stated that the pictures speak for themselves. To me, they only showed how different they were, with the leather of the strap itself being noticeably different between the two, along with those feature I already mentioned.

    Just a few thoughts following only a few minutes examining your wonderful pictures from someone who does not collect such items and maybe my points are merely manufacturers variations.

    A last point, old wool does smell but acceleration of this can be induced and though not something to be totally dismissed, it is not the best of criteria to apply in determining authenticity IMO. I have many period items in my collection and many of them smell no different to an old jumper that has been left in the laundry for too long and some do not noticeably smell at all.

    Just a few rambling and disjointed comments which are probably of no consequence.

    Good luck in your quest for attaining enlightenment on this item and I shall follow developments as they unfold.
    Yes, it is a flawed piece of garbage I have made above - of that I agree. Thank you Jerry, that is why it is so important to have other people see, because as you say our own judgment can so easily be misled by ourselves. To be honest Jerry, ironically writing this piece has only made me more skeptical. I am sure I will get a refund if I return it, so it's not the money it has been about for me. You point out many good points there and I appreciate it.


    Regards,

    Kenneth S-H.

  10. #9

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    I am sure we have all been guilty of subjectivity and it is often easier for others to see that which we cannot, particularly with regard to our own purchases.

    As an aside and in response to your comments about older V's newer collectors (in the other thread on this visor) and I found myself in agreement with you on many of the points you raised. Certainly, I can think of a well known example on the maroon site whereby a long established collector had owned an item for more than 25 years and later after it had changed hands it was called into question and the long established collector and many of his long time friends all supported his assertions that the item in question was undoubtedly original and those who questioned it were wrong. However, it eventually transpired that evidence was shown that the insignia -which was original- had been seen in an unattached condition, with photographs showing them as such. And eventually further evidence was presented that showed the item in question had been a Frankenstein made of original items. The long established collector made his apologies and his opinion is still considered by many to be the "gospel" in regards to such items. Go figure.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  11. #10
    KSH
    KSH is offline
    ?

    Default Re: A presentation of a Luftwaffe Hermann Göring EM/NCO-cap that finally gives it some justice.

    Quote by Bond View Post
    I am sure we have all been guilty of subjectivity and it is often easier for others to see that which we cannot, particularly with regard to our own purchases.

    As an aside and in response to your comments about older V's newer collectors (in the other thread on this visor) and I found myself in agreement with you on many of the points you raised. Certainly, I can think of a well known example on the maroon site whereby a long established collector had owned an item for more than 25 years and later after it had changed hands it was called into question and the long established collector and many of his long time friends all supported his assertions that the item in question was undoubtedly original and those who questioned it were wrong. However, it eventually transpired that evidence was shown that the insignia -which was original- had been seen in an unattached condition, with photographs showing them as such. And eventually further evidence was presented that showed the item in question had been a Frankenstein made of original items. The long established collector made his apologies and his opinion is still considered by many to be the "gospel" in regards to such items. Go figure.
    Indeed, and regarding this cap I probably will return it in the end judging by the way I feel about it right now - there is just so much uncertainty surrounding it. I have been wrong before - so why not now. If it is a fake, it's a very, very dangerous one-off thing. The funny thing is that I was quite sure of it, when I wrote my rambling above, but this process has actually made me feel the exact opposite. Caps are not my specialty and I should probably stick to something I know. The possible irony of the thread-title is also quite amusing as a matter of fact


    Regards,

    Kenneth S-H.
    Last edited by KSH; 05-14-2012 at 10:14 PM.

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