I'm unsure if I should post my opinion regarding the sale of items in the classifieds by unregistered users (that is, users who are not club members), as I don't collect helmets and that is the subject of this thread. I didn't vote in the poll for that reason, but I will say that I disagree that membership should be required to post an ad in the classifieds, beyond the basic free membership. That is for the same reasons as given above by Michael: with eBay disallowing the sale of 'Nazi' items, there are very few outlets to sell such items effectively. If someone is selling an Iron Cross for $75 and nothing else, it's not really feasible to ask them to pay $25 for club membership before doing so. After all, they probably aren't militaria collectors. That said, the person who buys the Iron Cross probably is. Maybe the buyer is a club member, so he will benefit from the 'fly by night' seller who simply wants to sell his item. It's beneficial to everyone involved; the seller gets his money for an item he doesn't want, and the buyer gets something he needs for his collection. If a fraudulent item is posted, the classifieds are extremely visible, so it's more than likely that the item will be flagged and, assuming consensus is reached regarding its inauthenticity, it can be swiftly removed by the moderating staff. In my time here, I've seen only a handful of items pointed out as fake.
Regarding the auction house, it's not their responsibility to determine whether the item(s) they're selling are authentic. As the owner posted above, there is an inspection period and they also apparently supply additional photos as requested. All items sold in such auction settings are bought and sold as-is. Some auction houses offer guarantees, but it isn't and shouldn't be their responsibility to do so. In a world of money-back guarantees and 'satisfaction of your money back's, auction houses are one of the last true gambles, in which the buyer and not the seller takes a gamble and hopes for the best. The classifieds section of the forum is not an auction house, of course, so the helmet should naturally be removed. Besides that, it appears to be an ad for the auction house rather than for the item itself, which seems to be even more reason to take it from view.
08-27-2014 04:18 AM
Hi Melissa, thanks for your reply's, most appreciated and welcome to the forum. Just as a "small" aid for you, here are a few of the problems that this helmet has that prevent it from being a genuine original SS helmet made by the ET concern. The decal itself is placed over the top of at least one heavy scratch to the paintwork as I have highlighted in the image below. Although it is not impossible that the helmet was already scratched before application it is unlikely. The decal also has a "hard break" to the shield which is incorrect for the ET type decal, it should be a soft curve. Also the very obvious "repetitive" scrapes/tool marks on the decals surface are completely out of character to the wear on the rest of the helmet. Lastly and most certainly in this case least, is that the Lot number (ET66 2115) is that of known HEER helmets and not SS, although lot numbers are only a guide and not guarantee. I hope this helps you, personally I would give this one back to whoever consigned it to you "armed" with this information and say "thanks, but no thanks!" All the best, Leon.
"Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut." Ernest Hemingway
Hi Melissa and thank you for your forthright response. Unfortunately as I have said, this is a reproduction decal without question. There is a guide to these decals I published in an article and pinned thread here on the forum for reference.
Leon has pointed out a few things that are incorrect, the "break", the tool marking, the scratch going under the decal, and the lot number. The ET maker on an M42 helmet, there is not a single known SS, even with field issue Pocher decals, that I am aware of. No ET M42 were SS, they were ckl issued by ET.
The decal itself is actually a copy of an NS decal, and lacks the sharp break on the right side of the shield, the sharp print of the runes is indicative of modern print methods unavailable in WW2. The bottom appears to be torn off, a typical problem as these decals had a pointy bottom, often the fakes are rounded, and thus torn off to simulate damage but in reality to hide the red flag of fakery.
Finally the silver pulver is a flat monochromatic look with the incorrect backing as seen though the damage, in other words the construction of the decal is way off, and typical of a one dimensional reproduction.
So I hope this sheds some light on why the decal is fake and your able to return the helmet to the owner who I hope can come here and read the truth about the decal, which probably will not make his or her day as I am sure they have a thousand or two invested in the helmet.
I believe the chinstrap to be a fake also and if i'm not mistaken, there are scratches on the inner shell from the chinstrap bales that appear to have exposed the grey primer underneath. I contend that this helmet is a ground-up rebuilt meant to deceive (either the seller or the auction house he is attempting to 'flip' it through)
Yeah I did stretch that one a little bit. ; )