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Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

Article about: It could be that the rear of the tankers helmet had the white painted on it for a guide when the wearer was walking in front of the armoured vehicle in poor light, dusk or night, so that the

  1. #1

    Default Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    Can anyone tell me the significance of the white rectangles that are on the front of this British Paratrooper helmet (it was recently on eBay), and on the back of this early tanker helmet? Also, as you can see, the tanker helmet has been re-painted a brownish color over the original black. Can anyone provide any information on the overpaint? It would seem to me that there was not much need to camouflage those helmets, so was there some other significance to it? Thanks for any info you can provide.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    Hi,
    Yeah I saw that one as well,the only thing I can think of is, during training during the 50' & 60's they would have had there name or number, or the training squad name that they were in put on there so the instructors new who they were.
    I like the Canadian helmet crash RTR, I had the British helmet crash RAC with the same white square on the back. whether it was for the same purpose I don't know.
    Aaron

  3. #3

    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    Thanks for the info; I think that field on the tankers helmet is WW2 vintage, because it bears a Polish Exile Forces eagle on the front. On this helmet I don't think the square was used for training purposes post-war, because the eagle would have been obliterated prior to the post war issue or re-issue of the helmet. So perhaps it is an insignia that was used in training or exercises during WW2??? Also i have not seen these helmets in other than black; were other colors used as here, and for what reasons? I collect WW2 Polish helmets exclusively and I have never come across another example like this.

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    Hi,
    Mostly the RAC helmets were black, but I've had a few where they were painted.
    Here's one of the 5th royal Inneskillen Dragoon Gaurds.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    Nice. Thanks. Someone also just suggested to me that the rectangle could be for identification of the wearer as an officer or NCO, or that maybe it represented a platoon color? I think this last suggestion is unlikely because so far I am aware of only white fields and not fields of any other colors. Has anyone seen rectangles in colors other than white?
    Last edited by IvanPutski; 02-05-2011 at 07:25 PM.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    A friend recently found this photo for me; here's another example with a white rectangular field on the back, also the helmet has been repainted from its original black.



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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    I had one virtually the same as this one, painted with the white marking on the back. The colours on these painted Helmet, crash, RTR seem very similar, both the Canadian & British type were used by both Countries.
    Aaron

  8. #8

    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    Can't help solve the mystery, but I can tell you that in serious combat officers try to be inconspicuous....simple matter of self-preservation. Rank distinctions are often worn on removable slip-ons. No big white patches.

    Cheers,

    PG

  9. #9
    ?

    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    Pretty sure these helmets were never used in combat, have seen plenty of pics of them used in the UK.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Question about British helmet markings > White rectangular fields

    I am leaning toward the conclusion that they were used in training exercises. But the Polish helmet that I posted would also lead to the conclusion that they were used during WW2 (or at least up to the point where Polish troops were no longer training for tank operations.

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