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Polish Exile helmet Eagles

Article about: Tony, Thanks for posting that photo, ... I have seen it before when I believe Rafal N. owned one similar. This again is yet another confirmed variant connected to the Parachute Brigade. This

  1. #81

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Sorry for the quick successive post, but at the request of a forum member here’s pics of a recent helmet acquisition. The original plan (still in the works) was to include it in a thread dedicated to covering a recently discovered kit bag. In the interim I’ll post these pics to add to the other ‘eagles’ here on this thread.



    This Mk.II is in a super state of preservation consistent with the condition of the other items found in the bag which evidently had sat undisturbed for many years, and quite possibly since the early postwar years. (The story of the discovery of this “time capsule” will be covered in the aforementioned upcoming thread).

    The only real condition issue is with the liner. It is pushed up into the helmet as a result of sitting for a long time pressed tightly up against other items in the bag. This has permanently bent the cross straps forming the frame so that the liner will no longer spring back down. Fortunately, the liner is otherwise not overly deformed.

    The stencil applied eagle is 95% intact, and it’s reasonable to suggest the abrasions and chips are due to period wear and tear. The original netting with the expected breaks and fraying has left a visible cross hatch pattern in the paint on the upper dome area after several decades of constant contact (clearly visible in picture below). The Mk.III chin strap bears the original owner’s initials, consistent with the name on the kit bag. The liner is a size 7, dated 1942 and made by G&S. The maker marks on the shell are obscured by the paint, and I can only make out the numeral “2”. There are other visible marks, but indecipherable.

    Needless to say, I was quite stoked to add this survivor to the collection.

    Cheers,
    Tony
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    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  2. #82

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Quote by A.J. Zawadzki View Post
    First off, very nice helmet Ivan. Another beauty from that bottomless collection your yours.

    In an earlier post you mention the use of gas detection paint for some of the eagles. Question: Are there physical characteristics one can look for to differentiate gas detection paint from standard yellow paint, or perhaps another non-invasive method that a layman can use to tell the difference? Or would this require more involved chemical analysis?

    Regards,
    Tony
    Thank you for your kind words Mr. Moderator. But the collection is far from bottomless; and while I am happy with the contents, there are quite a few types of helmets that I am still seeking. As all helmets are somewhat individualized in their nature, I have a number of helmets that a non-helmet collector might see as very similar or even almost identical, that to me are completely different in one way or another. While my collection has multiple examples of different types of MkIIs, I am always on the look out for the rarer helmets, such as ones with interesting overpaints, painted insignia, paratrooper, armored, various types of helmets used in training, as well as original examples of Soviet, French, and US helmets used by Polish Exile forces. I am also always looking for period photographs of helmets in use by the Polish Exile forces.

    As respects your question concerning gas-detection paint: I have not had chemical analysis done, but I am certain that this would confirm whether paint is gas-detecting or not. I rely on careful examination of each specimen under magnification, and have to rely on experience acquired from examining the many examples that I have seen in my collecting career.

    A few comments on what I look for: 1. Color: There are different colors of gas-detecting paint. Generally the color of spicy brown mustard (for a classic example of this color, see the pic of the para helmet I posted on the preceding page), it does present in varying shades, from more yellow to even a sort of toxic green. This variation can be the result of several factors, including fading from age, weathering from the elements, and -- depending on the thickness of the application -- the darkness / lightness/color of the underlying surface to which the paint is applied. Additionally, I have also noticed color variations in the paint that is applied to a single eagle, possibly resulting from the degeneration or exposure of the chemical detecting paint. On some examples you can see what appears to be a sort of chemical reaction to one part of the eagle, while other parts are not affected. I don’t think this is necessarily from exposure to toxic gasses, but it could be the result of interaction with other chemicals or substances and I believe that this is what could account for color variations from eagle to eagle and even on the same eagle. It should also be pointed out that gas-detecting paint loses its reactive quality over time, becoming inert to toxic chemical exposure. 2. Paint application and texture. Gas detection paint has a certain thickness to it and always seems to present in the same way, texture-wise. Unfortunately, it is hard to describe but easy to show

    The bottom line is that once you are familiar with the different types of gas-detecting paint and the way it looks 60+ years after it was first applied, it is relatively easy to spot.

    My apologies for the lengthy and disorganized post; hopefully this answers your question at least to a degree, and does not create more confusion!

    Respectfully, IPutski

  3. #83

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Nice one Tony,
    Thanks for posting it up Mate.
    Mick

  4. #84

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Hi Fellas,
    I think i posted this one before,but it might have been in the wrong section,as i didnt get much of a reply.

    This Polish Eagle is on an Australian 1941 MkII.
    Looking at the Eagles on this thread,i fear i already know the answer,but what do you think.
    Im a little bit worried about it being on an Aussie Lid.
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  5. #85

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Hello,
    I am afraid... I don't feel this helmet... You asked the question ?
    Best regards.
    ZP

  6. #86

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Hello,
    Another polish helmet from Normandy.
    This item was found in 1993 in “Les Champeaux” near Montormel. It is very probable he was worn by a man from 8th Rifles Battalion, and “lost” there the day just before the fighting on Maczuga.



    Uploaded with ImageShack.us

    Best regards.
    ZP

  7. #87

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Quote by ze-pole View Post
    Hello,
    I am afraid... I don't feel this helmet... You asked the question ?
    Best regards.
    ZP
    Thanks ZP,
    As i said i didnt think it was good.Makes you wonder why someone would bother to put it on there in the first place,eh

  8. #88

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Quote by aussie mick View Post
    Makes you wonder why someone would bother to put it on there in the first place,eh
    Hi,
    My english is not enough good to understand this sentence...
    ZP

  9. #89

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Mr Putski,

    Thank you for taking the time and effort to provide such a detailed and comprehensive reply.

    Quote by IvanPutski View Post
    . . . Gas detection paint has a certain thickness to it and always seems to present in the same way, texture-wise. Unfortunately, it is hard to describe but easy to show.
    If at all possible it would be most helpful to see close up pictures that illustrate the texture characteristics you describe.

    Quote by IvanPutski View Post
    . . . I have also noticed color variations in the paint that is applied to a single eagle, possibly resulting from the degeneration or exposure of the chemical detecting paint. On some examples you can see what appears to be a sort of chemical reaction to one part of the eagle, while other parts are not affected. . . .
    Here’s a helmet picture from my archives with an eagle possessing colour variations that may be illustrating what you are describing.

    Regards,
    Tony
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    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  10. #90

    Default Re: Polish Exile helmet Eagles

    Quote by ze-pole View Post
    Hi,
    My english is not enough good to understand this sentence...
    ZP
    Mick is questioning why someone would paint this eagle onto this helmet, if it is indeed a fake.

    Thanks for posting the “Les Champeaux” helmet. Nice honest looking survivor.

    Regards,
    Tony
    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

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