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SNLF Helmet

Article about: Hello all,I thought I would post a few pics of the very first Japanese helmet I ever acquired.It was the piece that ignited my interest in Japanese militaria. A friend of mine who was an ext

  1. #11

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    Geoff-
    I understand too that the stripe, as shown in your next helmet example, indicates a touch up for the very reason you implied: paint scratched during "shipping and handling"! Interesting too- what do you think about the notion that changes in paint like your helmet, whether intentional or not act as camoflouge?
    While diving in Truk, I came across a ship's hold full of helmets, stacked together in the manner as you said. Later while diving another ship, I saw what appeared to be more stacks of helmets. When I swam over to get a better look inside, the dive master stopped me. Once back on board our dive boat he gave me the reason: they were not helmets, but rather mines! Yikes!!!
    MichaelB

  2. #12

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    You have made an interesting observation Mike! I never really thought about the touch-up having a "camouflage" value to it but anything that would break up the lines of the helmet would definitely be a plus whether accidental or deliberate.The helmet net that came with the army helmet was a secret bonus that was tucked behind a liner pad.Seeing the helmet stripe with the net as well really does add to the camouflage effect.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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  3. #13

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    Wow Geoff! The addition of the net makes for another confirmation. And you are correct, one of the key functions of camo is to break up the lines of objects in order to trick the human eye. This may be employed on items viewed either far away or close up. When I think about that, I am reminded of German helmets in particular, or the hulls of ships painted in various colors and patterns in order to confuse the eye.
    MichaelB

  4. #14

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    Interestingly enough,although the U.S. and German troops often used Camouflage paints on helmets and other gear, from what I understand this was against regulations for Japanese troops as their equipment was considered a GIFT from the Emperor and was as it should be.. not to be altered other than with approved gear such as covers and nets made for that purpose.With the exception of whitewash in snow conditions,I believe any painted on camouflage on Japanese helmets should be deemed EXTREMELY questionable.However,I am by no means an expert.Regards,Geoff

  5. #15

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    Geoff-
    That is an interesting observation, and I have noted similar restrictions against posting ranks, unit names/numbers, home addresses, etc. on hinomaru yosegaki and senninbari. I have difficulty imagining that the Japanese brass had complete success with these measures, however. The physical evidence seems to indicate otherwise. I have unit marked flags, battle record flags, etc. that give up quite a bit of confidential or protected information. I find it hard to imagine that all of these would have been postwar pieces, especially those that appear to be battle stained. On the other hand, there are images of helmets that appear to indicate various paint schemes that divert from those assumed to be the standard or "normal". Additionally, there are numbers of helmets in collections that are veteran obtained that have various numbers, and symbols painted on the outside, colored blotches, etc. painted on them. These too would probably not be regulation additions. When I see these things I tend to think that not all of these are CB embellishments, and that the men who stated that they brought these pieces home from different battlefields as relics, just as they are, might be telling the truth.
    MichaelB

  6. #16

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    Hi Mike ,I agree with you 100% There are always exceptions to regulations whether it be necessity of circumstance or just "Because" It just unfortunately becomes more of a minefield.As the price of artifacts rises so does the risk of purchasing items "Outside the box" It is just a matter of time before the "Top Secret SNLF Ninja Airborne Camouflage Night Attack force" helmets hit the market and boy will they be expensive!!!! Regards,Geoff

  7. #17

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    Geoff-
    As long as we don't run into "champagne" painted helmets like the recent SS revelations, we should be relatively safe. But then again...............!
    MichaelB

  8. #18

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    You read my mind! I almost referenced that exact thing!! Reminds me of a song.....
    For the love of money
    People will steal from their mother
    For the love of money
    People will rob their own brother
    For the love of money
    People can't even walk the street
    Because they never know
    Who in the world they're gonna beat
    For that lean, mean, mean green
    Almighty dollar, money

  9. #19
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    Great helmet Geoff BUT it's navy ! Unless a navy helmet has handwritten/ painted kanji that points to NLF use its navy.

  10. #20

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    Hey Jareth! I was wondering when you would pop in! How does one determine the difference between Navy, SNLF and Army Seaborne troops ? Don't they all have anchors on their helmets? Regards,Geoff

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