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Pickelhaube liner preservation

Article about: Any suggestions on how to keep my EM pickelhaube liner from disintegrating? Will hairspray keep it together? Any ideas?

  1. #1
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    Default Pickelhaube liner preservation

    Any suggestions on how to keep my EM pickelhaube liner from disintegrating? Will hairspray keep it together? Any ideas?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    Do nothing. Sadly once leather starts to age badly, nothing can be one.

    Cheers, Ade.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    Actually I beg to politely disagree... I am relatively new to collecting militaria, but have been collecting rare books and manuscripts for over 15 years. I have many books dating from early 16th century to the modern era, and surprisingly enough, the ones that hold out the worst are the late 18th and early 19th century leather bound volumes. I have books dated to the 1500's on calfskin vellum that have solid bindings you can open up 500 times a day and not a crack, but the tanned leather that started being used during the industrial revolutions holds up poorly.. if not taken care.. Every year I spend a day after the winter carefully oiling all my leather books with "neetsfoot" oil.. most commonly used as kids for softening up baseball gloves.. a few really rare books I oil twice a year. anyway, for the books I maintain, and even some drier ones I restored, as well as my now growing helmet collection liners.. I use this oil and it can stop aging if done once a year, and reverse some of the past damage done, but not all.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    MP.....the use of "neetsfoot" oil can be disasterous, if not used VERY SPARINGLY, I knackered a belt leather up many years ago, it never dried out and was for ever in a damp limp mode until the day I got rid of it ! Pickelhaube liner leather especially on the M1915 haubes can be very thin, and does not have the benefit of a hard backing, unlike antique books ! I personally will not use neetsfoot oil on them, Ade's advice is best.
    Prost ! Steve.
    "The German Army is the perfectly adapted, perfectly running Machine. The difference is that the Germans are organised with a view to War...with the cold, hard, practical and business-like purpose of winning victories."
    G.W. Steevens - The Daily Mail (1897)

  5. #5

    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    Two things to note, I oil up the books once a year, so I think that is pretty sparingly, but that's all you need.. oil is powerful stuff.. I guess the problem with your belt was it didn't need much oil perhaps.. I think for books anyway, it's better if they are oiled and supple, rather then dry and brittle, which causes them to fall apart. That being said, my father in law (who is also a collector) was a bio-chemist from Poland, and restores much of his fine art, and he said I should oil brittle leather once a year after the dry winter with this oil..he also tells me to feverishly rub my forehead on my bronze statues and swords so again maybe he's nuts..but what i can tell from the pudding is that the books I oil regularly look as good today as when the day i acquired them, where some of the lesser maintained ones have very dry and brittle spines, faces and glue folds...

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    There are certain substances that can help to re-hydrate leather, mainly those that contain a petroleum jelly base, lanoline,etc but this will not work on old dried out leather that has started to rot and flake as the actual fibre of the leather has broken down and will not re-bond, using something like a stiffener ie hairspray will seal the whole thing but make the leather very brittle and even touching it will no doubt crack and break away, Ade is perfectly right in this case as is Steve, the leathers used for helmets of most periods is thin and does not have a firm backing but they have normally absorbed the natural oils from a persons hair and sweat but as the years go by this dries out and if the helmet is badly kept environmentally the progress is quickened

  7. #7

    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    but they have normally absorbed the natural oils from a persons hair and sweat but as the years go by this dries out

    ...so that's why i keep oiling them, so they don't dry out.. I say try it on a test piece of old leather and see what happens..

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    Okay, Neatsfoot oil,- Modern neatsfoot is sometimes made from lard, it can leave an oily residue that attracts dust on newer types of leather say within the last 100yrs, it will cause darkening of the leather even after one application,and will oxidise over time and cause embrittling, its not advised or recommended to be used on lighter shades of leather, however it is recommended for use on items that are considered as working leather, ie horse leathers, baseball gloves etc, some brands of neatsfoot have been mixed with other oils , most commonly rapeseed oil and soya oil, the addition of these oils will lead to a rapid decay of non synthetic stitching and the breakdown of the leather itself, it is therefore not recommended to be used on items considered to be of a historic nature or importance

  9. #9

    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    Please take a look here-----------

    Preservation & Cleaning of Antique Headgear

    This gentleman knows his way around a pickelhaub. He is the Man to talk to about the care
    and preservation of helmet liners.
    gregM
    Live to ride -- Ride to live

    I was addicted to the "Hokey-Pokey" but I've turned
    myself around.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Pickelhaube liner preservation

    He's recommending putting shoe polish on the hauben, and all I said was some light oil...que sera

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