My first and long awaited M38 FJ
After many hours of research, looking at pictures and much deliberation I decided to buy this F.J helmet.
I've wanted one as long as I can remember so I hope it's a good one. Apart from a R.K it's been top of my bucket list of must own items.
I bought it from a friend who knows the history of it for the last 4-5 years. He had it originally and then sold it to somebody, but bought it back and I bought it.
Any opinions would be much appreciated.
My only hang up is the size, it doesn't go anywhere near my head. In an ideal world I would have liked a 71 but can't have everything.
Any pointers on price (I'd love to know if I could an ok deal) would be much appreciated. I know this may be a contentious issue but I'd sleep better if I knew at least a ball park figure :-)
The outside of the shell retains a lot of paint but only a trace of decal. There are areas of light pitting to the metal in areas but this is old and stable so I'm not hung up on this. I don't like mint anyway.
The helmet bolts sit flush with the shell and aren't proud at all.
There isn't a rim lip visible from the outside.
Inside on the RHS it is stamped ET66 and there is no gap.
The lot number on the back contains a 1 and it doesn't have a "foot".
The liner seems too new and lacks any ink stamps so I wrote this off as a reproduction, the same applies to the chin strap so I assumed replacements and factored this into my decision to buy and hopefully the price I paid.
The chicken wire does have me stumped a little, it does seem to show age albeit not as much as the helmet. It has left hand twists.
It's a heavy little blighter, much heavier than a lot of dubious ET 71 helmets that I've handled at arms fairs. It weighs 1325 grams and is a decent gauge of steel. You wouldn't be able to crush this without a lot of pressure. Some I've looked at in arms fairs have buckled just looking at them :-)
I'll attach the best pictures my phone can muster and wait with baited breath any replies. I've taken them in different light.
Many thanks in advance,
Please see the pictures beliw, the ones here were junk :-)
Last edited by Joe Mc; 09-28-2014 at 03:11 PM.
09-28-2014 12:22 PM
I would be worried about the lack of a rolling / swage line on the inside lip too.
Also, if the liner is acknowledged as being replaced then where do you stop? I would forever be wondering about all aspects and never be content.
" When you're chewing on life's gristle, don't grumble, give a whistle "
No good news to be found regarding anything about this one, in my opinion. I'd get my money back as quickly as I could if it were me. Sorry.
PS Not a bad looking copy so if that is what you are looking for and you got it for what a repro is worth - like $200 or so - then keep it.
Thanks for the reply.
I too am a little uneasy with the lack of rolling line but after reviewing pictures of the forum I did find some originals that did also seem to lack the line so did make me a little happier but I've got to admit still not 100% about it.
The fact that things have replacement parts for me is no concern but I do hear where your coming from.
I see it all the time in Germany where there are sellers who regularly break down items and sell the parts separately simply because they get more money. There is a dealer in Leipzig who just buys daggers and breaks them up for parts.
When the silver price went up I seen dealers breaking up WW1 trios by weighing in the British War Medal for scrap, particularly to RE and ASC groups.
I've seen brother medal groups split as they are to different regiments as they would be an easier sell.
Some people really don't care about the history at all just the $ figure they can get.
Many thanks again for the reply,
I doubt I will be the only one who is perplexed by this purchase. Don't take this the wrong way as I'm not beating up on you but why was this not shown prior to you purchasing it? FJ helmets are heavily faked, and add the wire into the equation and you have a helmet that needs careful examination, and by trained eyes. From what I see I would not have bought it. There are a few members with more experience with FJ helmets.
That would really be a shame if it's true, but as it is off a friend it would be no problem getting my money back but I really wanted it to be original :-(
Could I ask the points which detrmine it in this instance, would really help me in the future any maybe other people?
Looking at my terrible pictures I wouldn't have bought it on the strength of those! They don't represent the helmet to how it looks in the flesh.
Tempted to take some better pictures outside but if there's any immediate red flags that instantly rule it out then migjt not be worth it?
Many thanks for the input,
Only reason is its off a friend so it can go back to him with no problems whatsoever.
If it was from anywhere else then I would have never bought it without seeking opinions first.
Thabks for the input,
I appreciate the opinions so far. I hope the new pictures are better. As I said before, I would not have bought it in the strength of those!
Would it be possible to give some specifics as what's not good with the shell please?
It will certainly help me and I'm sure it will give others indication what to look for in the future.
I ruled out all the common fake tell take signs like proud bolts, gap between the ET and size, a 1 without a foot.
Being a size 66 gave me some confidence as most fakes I seen were 71 and some 68's.
The bolts are not proud and are flush.
Any rust seems like old rust and I thought the pitting would be quite difficult to fake in patches and just on the outside where it was exposed to the elements. There doesn't seem to be paint in the pits, just patinated metal.
It's a very decent gauge of steel, exactly what you would expect a combat helmet to be made of.
The lack of roll lines on the rim is a concern, but I have seen some on the forum as examples of originals that lack these, I've attached a picture of one.
I'm not going against anybody opinions by any means, it would just be great to learn what I've missed and here specifics of what's wrong with the shell.
I'm not bothered about the liner, straps and camo basket. All of these could have been added to a genuine shell IMHO.
Please feel free to correct me on anything I've said as I genuinely do like to learn, and I am totally open to criticism and correcting.
Joe,dealers do not make good friends.