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Rare , named ,Type 3 Japanese flying helmet

Article about: Hello All, I took a small drive to local auto swap meet and came away with this, along with a few other goodies. I noticed the Japanese kanji on the ear cover and the back portion of the cap

  1. #1
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    Default Rare , named ,Type 3 Japanese flying helmet

    Hello All,

    I took a small drive to local auto swap meet and came away with this, along with a few other goodies. I noticed the Japanese kanji on the ear cover and the back portion of the cap. Anyone have any idea what this cap was for? I know that most pilot caps have the leather Japanese star on the front forehead of the cap. This one does not.

    The inside has black fur, which is beginning to fall out. There is also a makers tag on the inside which I have included photographs of. Any help would be appreciated.
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  2. #2

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    永谷
    Nagatani
    [Family name]


    Hyou
    Leopard/Panther
    [on left ear]

    Nothing to date it, though.

    Nice helmet.

    Oops ... made by
    東洋通信機株式会社
    Toyo Communication Equipment Co., Ltd

    --Guy

  3. #3
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    Thank you Guy! You are the man. Hopefully with the company name I can try to find some kind of info on it. Your expertise is much appreciated!

  4. #4
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    Apparently the company was started in 1939 and manufactured radios ad television broadcasting and communications equipment.

  5. #5

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    Awesome find, your luck is holding out ;-)

  6. #6

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    That is a IJN flight helmet、the so-called the Type 3 for introduction in 1943 for use in conjunction with the new Type 3 radio system installed on the Zeros. Up until that time the radio used was a type 96.

    Despite this radio upgrade, the radios in Japanese fighters remained notoriously useless (In the novel Eternal Zero it is explained how pilots had to rely on hand signals to communicate with each other in the air, due to this problem with the radio).

    Radios that worked perfectly on the ground became useless in the air. This problem was mainly caused by electronic noise given off by the spark plugs, but the Japanese at the time did not know how to deal with this problem (it was later found to be a grounding problem of the circuit after they inspected a downed US fighter in 1945).

    The type 3 was the only navy flight helmet with an integral headset. Only a few pilots within a unit wore this new type and they remained a minority, as most continued to wear the old type 96 flight helmet.

    The navy's panther unit was officially known as the 263 unit and equipped with Zeros. Their duty was defense of the "Absolute defense sphere" as defined in September 1943.

    Here's a model of a Zero from that unit.
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    Last edited by nick komiya; 02-07-2016 at 03:38 PM.

  7. #7

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    I think you have done very well in picking this up.

    Japanese item are rare here in the UK and I don't think I have seen one before.

    Cheers, Ade.
    Had good advice? Saved money? Why not become a Gold Club Member, just hit the green "Join WRF Club" tab at the top of the page and help support the forum!

  8. #8
    MAP
    MAP is online now
    ?

    Default

    That would look really really nice with my Japanese summer flight suit :-) LoL

    But seriously, great find. And thanks to Guy and Nick for the great information. You now even have the exact unit and name.
    "Please", Thank You" and proper manners appreciated

    My greatest fear is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them

    "Don't tell me these are investments if you never intend to sell anything" (Quote: Wife)

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the identification Nick , this now becomes a very interesting item ! A really nice find Doug , congrats
    REGARDS AL

    We are the Pilgrims , master, we shall go
    Always a little further : it may be
    Beyond that last blue mountain barred with snow
    Across that angry or that glimmering sea...

  10. #10

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    At first glance I thought it was Luftwaffe, construction seems very similar, sewing up the back, etc.

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