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British MkIII Turtle pattern helmet

Article about: Hello Ade, Here's a post war Turtle given to me by a friend who found it in a garage. Mk IV 1954, manufactured by CCL. Do you know who CCL were? Cheers, Guy.

  1. #111

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    have you seen that Polish para lid on there Anon, what do you make of it if you have?


  2. #112

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    Quote by TommiTank View Post
    have you seen that Polish para lid on there Anon, what do you make of it if you have?
    If you mean this one 261625331247 I doubt it is the real deal, faked insignia to my eyes.

    If it was real it would have sold instantly for that price.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  3. #113

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    sounds like the one!!

  4. #114

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    ruined a perfectly good lid! be worth that without the bs emblem in a few years anyway in my opinion!

  5. #115

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    Quote by TommiTank View Post
    ruined a perfectly good lid! be worth that without the bs emblem in a few years anyway in my opinion!
    If the rest of it was all pukka and wartime it was worth almost worth that much already, as you say, ruined a good lid to make a few extra quid.
    Regards,

    Jerry

    Whatever its just an opinion.

  6. #116
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    Default Helmet, Steel, Mk.III

    Quote by tinlid View Post
    The Mk3 was only made for a short period, under 2 years, 1943 - early 45. So dating is quite straight forward
    While that is true for the vast bulk of Mk.III production, there was an initial run of 400 Mk.IIIs by Briggs Motor Bodies in 1941. These were issued for user trials and evaluation in the latter half of 1941. I found a record in the files of Canadian Military HQ London, which was was invited to participate by the War Office on 7 September, 1941. Three helmets were received, one of which was sent to Canada, the other two were sent to I Canadian Corps along with the War Office’s questionnaire. The Canadian response was returned to the War Office on 10 October. Users found the helmet comfortable, generally did not interfere with vision, and could be used with a field telephone. It was recognizable, but some thought it might be mistaken for an Italian helmet. Canadian users had one criticism of the helmet’s long rear brim they could not fire a rifle in a prone position while wearing a rolled-up gas cape. They also found it took 2 to 3 seconds longer to don a respirator when wearing a Mk.III. The overall impression was the Mk.III was lighter and gave more protection, but that this additional protection did not warrant a complete change-over to this type of helmet. Users deemed it most suitable for Recce units.

    I have never seen or heard of any surviving examples of these trial Mk.IIIs

    As we know further production and issue was delayed until late 1943 early 1944 because the WO decided to adopt the US M1 instead, until it was determined that the M1 was incompatible with Commonwealth head-sets, and US refused to make any changes to their design to accommodate them.

    Here is a Canadian Mk.III with the Arm of Service sign of the 13th Field Rgt RCA , part of 3rd Canadian Division. it was equipped with M7 Priest 105mm SPs.Click image for larger version. 

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    A British-issue on with the decal of the King's Regiment.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Just to dispel any idea that the Mk.III was produced in Canada, it was not.
    Mk.III specifications and samples, were forwarded to Canada on 16 April, 1943. On June 11, 1943, the Canadian Department of National Defence forwarded the specifications and drawings to the Department of Munitions & Supply with a request that a set of tools and dies be prepared, in case there was an urgent request for their production. However, it was decided on the recommendation of Canadian Military HQ London that, to conserve scarce shipping space, Mk.III helmets would not be manufactured in Canada, but sourced in the UK.

  7. #117
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    Hi Roger, I did know about 500 helmets that were trialed in 1941, but didn't want to confuse the matter. Plus I didn't know if there was any slight variation to these, than the final production line.
    & of course I got this information from the great articles that Marcus did on British helmets in the mid 90's. Which is a bad reflection today that no other detailed information is out there now on WW2 British helmets.
    Apart obviously from your great read Tin Lids, Marcus did say he was going to bring his book out this year 2015,the 100th anniversary of the Brodie helmet, but I won't hold my breath, unless you beat him to it?
    I don't suppose you know the time line between the Mk3 being painted khaki green to the more common dark brown, early 44?
    Lovely Mk3's you have shown.

  8. #118
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    Quote by tinlid View Post
    Marcus did say he was going to bring his book out this year 2015,the 100th anniversary of the Brodie helmet, but I won't hold my breath, unless you beat him to it?
    Yes we all await Marcus book. He is the fons et origo of all knowledge about British helmets. Myself I have only researched in the Canadian archives, although they occassionally throw up a document that never reached Kew - the Canadian response to the 1941 user-trial survey of the Mk.III prototype, is apparently the only example to survive. Marcus' Militaria articles are, I understand, much outdated, as is his manuscript that was found among Anthony Carter's papers and resurrected as Tin Hat For Tommy. Like many I had hoped to see his book come out this year, but recent queries as to whether this was still the case have gone unanswered. So it would seem that "... of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven.."

    It would really be interesting if someone did unearth an example of a 1941 Mk.III, the only illustration I am aware of is the photos from the MRC report that appears in the Militaria article. I can't perceive any noticeable difference between it and the production version.

    You can probably work from a much larger sample of wartime British helmets than are available to me, but my impression is that khaki green is the norm until sometime in 1942, but that dark brown starts to appear in 1943. But clearly a lot of helmets got repainted during the war, as you can see from the inside of my RCA Mk.III.

    Now here is another archival teaser, back in the 1950s some bright soul at the Canadian National Archives decided to excise and file seperately, all the photographs that came with the volumes of reports, sent back from CMHQ in London, and microfil and then bin the actual reports. The microfilming was done very sloppily, and often tghe originals had been carbon copies or mimeographs. So here is an photo from a 1944 report on equipment being trialed for SE Asia Command - a Mk.III body, as you can tell from the position of the lugs, but clearly serving as a mock-up for the Mk.IV. Alas the actual report survives only only on microfilm, taken of an already blurry mimeographed document and is unreadable. I asked Marcus if he could find an original, but apprently no copies of the original reports survive at Kew.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #119
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    Default Post War Mk.IIIs

    Here are a couple of my post-war Mk.IIIs. This one belonged to the Greek Cyriot National Guard, hence the Greek flag shield with a Byzantine eagle, however it was captured during the 1974 Turkishg intervention and was presented to the OiC of the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, which did several tours of Cyprus including one in 1975-76 The plaque at the front reads
    PRESENTED TO
    3PPCLI
    BY
    KUR ALBAY H ZATI ERGUL
    COMD KTKA
    Kur Albay= Senior Colonel Turkish Cyprus Peace Keeping Force
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Israeli, much used
    Click image for larger version. 

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    A Norwegian Army re-issue Mk.III

    Click image for larger version. 

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    And a Belgian one, except this one is not a surplus British helmet, but a Belgian-made clone. The rim and lugs arer made of magnetic steel, the body is 5mm longer, and rivets are mounted 5mm lower

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Apparently there were not that many made in the first place and their number was further eroded by people trying to pass them off as "real" Mk.IIIs, which is indeed was what the vendor of this helmet was doing. This was one instance when I was quite pleased to be sold something that was not as advertised!
    Roger

  10. #120
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    Many thanks Roger for posting up your examples and adding your input to the thread the Belgium clone is an intresting revelation and not a variation that I knew even existed .
    Perhaps you may even have a few collectors re-assessing the Mk III's in there own collections to see if they are indeed Belgium clones I shall try and add a couple of my examples to the thread as time permits.

    Regards Mark
    Always on the look out for WW II Canadian Helmets and Cam nets to add to my collection.

    Found a Canadian Mk II Medics Helmet and yes I know they are about as rare as hens teeth !!!!!

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