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SS-Polizei Helmet?

Article about: Certainly rules were meant to be broken, I own several variant SS helmets and validate SS helmets from all over the world and Kelly and I collaborate on many SS helmet projects and helmet va

  1. #21
    ?

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Certainly rules were meant to be broken, I own several variant SS helmets and validate SS helmets from all over the world and Kelly and I collaborate on many SS helmet projects and helmet validations. Could this be an SS helmet, sure it "could". However SS decals had a certain structure to them and this could be only 1 decal, a CA Pocher as was used on all SD/SS Polezei reverse decal helmets including civic and non combat versions. This decal from this distance does not appear to be a correct CA Pocher printed decal, as the decal would have pulver typically open underneath the runes. From all I have seen, this isnt adding up to an SS and the arguments for and against on this thread that I have read are with all due respect, much too simple. Quite frankly the debate on "could" this be an SS helmet really makes no sense. Post proper photos and you will find out pretty quickly.

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  3. #22

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Quote by DougB View Post
    Certainly rules were meant to be broken, I own several variant SS helmets and validate SS helmets from all over the world and Kelly and I collaborate on many SS helmet projects and helmet validations. Could this be an SS helmet, sure it "could". However SS decals had a certain structure to them and this could be only 1 decal, a CA Pocher as was used on all SD/SS Polezei reverse decal helmets including civic and non combat versions. This decal from this distance does not appear to be a correct CA Pocher printed decal, as the decal would have pulver typically open underneath the runes. From all I have seen, this isnt adding up to an SS and the arguments for and against on this thread that I have read are with all due respect, much too simple. Quite frankly the debate on "could" this be an SS helmet really makes no sense. Post proper photos and you will find out pretty quickly.
    Thank you for the response, Doug. Please excuse my questions and naivety. I certainly did not mean to anger or annoy any of you... this is a learning process for me. As I said before, the helmet is currently in transit to me. I will post large and close up pictures of the decals once it arrives. Hopefully tomorrow.

  4. #23

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Quote by Walkwolf View Post
    Noobs at the factory putting out inferior product ?
    I don't think so - they'd have been shot !

    I do think it was once a Luftschutz........
    Sarcasm?

    So you don't even think that the field gray/ apple green is authentic?

  5. #24
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    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Quote by GIZMO8Z View Post
    Thank you for the response, Doug. Please excuse my questions and naivety. I certainly did not mean to anger or annoy any of you... this is a learning process for me. As I said before, the helmet is currently in transit to me. I will post large and close up pictures of the decals once it arrives. Hopefully tomorrow.
    I'm not angry at all, its just rather pointless to debate speculation. Nobody wins. Once the helmet gets in take some nice closeups of the decals and the question will be answered.
    Cheers
    Doug

  6. #25

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Wait for the helmet and post some good, clear shots as Doug suggests.

    Regardless, you have one of the best kinds of helmet.
    It was free............
    Regards,


    Steve.

  7. #26

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Quote by DougB View Post
    I'm not angry at all, its just rather pointless to debate speculation. Nobody wins. Once the helmet gets in take some nice closeups of the decals and the question will be answered.
    Cheers
    Doug
    Quote by Walkwolf View Post
    Wait for the helmet and post some good, clear shots as Doug suggests.

    Regardless, you have one of the best kinds of helmet.
    It was free............
    Thanks for keeping me grounded, gentlemen.

    Although as you said... it was pointless... I must admit that I enjoyed this conversation and I learned a lot from it. I will continue to hold some hope... but we'll find out for sure soon after I post better pictures.

    And yes, regardless if it's an SS or the lowliest, saddest looking Luftschutz helmet on the face of this earth, I'm still glad I saved it from being melted down.

  8. #27

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Quote by GIZMO8Z View Post
    For example, I understand that a directive declared that decals must be put on the exact location on each and every helmet... BUT... Aren't rules meant to be broken? Why can't it be possible that there was an error in production or a distracted factory worker placed decals on the wrong side/ wrong location? These things were produced under war-time conditions by human-beings after all, weren't they?

    Still, wouldn't you be a little excited and hope against all hope if you were told that a helmet of yours that you thought was once worthless may actually be an SS lid?
    GIZMO8Z, if it was made in the US -you'd be exactly right. Here, quality control often takes a backseat to meeting production deadlines. In the TR however, they micro-managed everything... and kicked back anything that didn't meet specs.

    Wartime conditions? Remember that while England, Russia and the US (that wasn't being bombed) were working 3 shifts per day to produce war materials... the Germans were only working 1 shift... until at least late 1942 - early 1943. For sure, factories were being bombed... but they weren't on the verge of being physically overrun until 1944 -so the impetus to 'just get the decal on and get it out to the troops' wasn't there.

    Also don't forget, the German High Command did away with decals all together in 1943-44 'til the end of the war. They simply painted over them. Helmets were reissued en masse to new troops heading to the front lines -and sometimes the reissued helmets came from corpses.

    As to that last part... ABSOfreakinLUTELY! Everone in this hobby has that dream of finding a rare SS helmet underneath coats of paint... and since the TR simply repainted over decal'ed helmets, it is not outside the realm of reason.

    My 'almost realized dream' happened many years ago, when I bought an M35 with a poorly applied black paint job. It had a 1935 dated liner band and rivets, but no leather suspension. I think I paid $80 for it at a gun show.

    Anyway when I got it home, I took a needle and started to very carefully chip paint off the area the decal would be on the right side of the helmet. I started about the middle of where the decal should be. I started to see some white. So, I moved to where the top of the decal should be... and got nothing. I picked up where I had left off previously and continued down, and down... and down. The white went all the way down the side of the helmet -well past the crease over the ear. After I finished chipping -I had a white shield shape with no other design to it.

    I thought to myself: "Damn, what a piece of junk! Some faker couldn't even get the decal in the correct location!" In disgust, I sold the helmet a few months later for $100. Sure, I made $20... but the story gets worse.

    I was still building my reference library at the time and picked up a book called NSKK/NSFK: Uniforms, Organisation & History by John Angolia & David Littlejohn. In perusing the book I spotted something peculiar... on page 178 was a picture of an M42 helmet with the same plain white shield in the same position as the one I had on that M35! WTF!?!

    It turns out to be a helmet issued to 'stateless persons' serving in the "Transportkorps Speer" of the NSKK. Going back to the person I sold it to was of no use... he claimed he didn't know where he put it.

    Value? Fellow collectors and mentors of mine said... "Oh, that one's worth about $1800". Today, it would be worth about $2500-3000.

    So, in general terms -going on specs:

    1. Any beaded helmet (M35, M40 [like yours], M42, Gladiator) is typically only a Luftshutz helmet. Although there are SA issued (and decal'ed) Gladiators known to exist.
    2. Decal placement will generally only be in the location (left and/or right) mentioned earlier.
    3. Paint will generally conform to the period of use (helmet model, double decal, single decal, no decal, different theaters)
    4. Reissued helmets from other countries (Norway is commonly found) were generally simply overpainted -without removal of old paint or decals. There MAY be treasures under that repaint...

    Great thread and turning into a great adventure!

  9. #28

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    That is a fantastic story! haha I hope that happens to me, but only the first half.

  10. #29
    ?

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Quote by Mil Spec View Post
    GIZMO8Z, ....In the TR however, they micro-managed everything... and kicked back anything that didn't meet specs.

    ... the Germans were only working 1 shift... until at least late 1942 - early 1943. For sure, factories were being bombed... but they weren't on the verge of being physically overrun until 1944 -so the impetus to 'just get the decal on and get it out to the troops' wasn't there.

    Also don't forget, the German High Command did away with decals all together in 1943-44 'til the end of the war. They simply painted over them. Helmets were reissued en masse to new troops heading to the front lines -and sometimes the reissued helmets came from corpses.
    Interesting read Mil Spec, some points however I think are overgeneralized by collectors and the historical record proves otherwise in many cases.

    The myth that German production standards were always impeccably high is false. There are many cases of poor quality and production-sabotaged military goods, remember vast quantities of arms, munitions, uniforms and kit were made by forced and slave labor often working under horrendous conditions. Pre and early war years compared with mid to late war years the differences in quality of all of the above is noted. Also I have seen factory made helmets without split pin washers, crooked decals, decal misapplication, etc. Procurement issues also forced quality changes over time. Slave labor often worked 1 shift, but the shift was typically 15 hours long. Often factories were in foreign countries such as Poland and Czechoslovakia.

    Production and procurement delays of raw materials, power to run plants, water, etc was often interrupted and this often resulted in quality issues through hurried production to get the arms, ammunition and supplies into the hands of the troops.

    For reissue helmets it depends if they were factory reissued, or depot reissued. However SS helmets were more often than not reissued from former SS helmets. That said I do own a former double decal M35 Heer with an SS Runic decal overtop the tricolor and the eagle overpainted. The helmet was a reissue or the soldier was a draft transfer in 44 to the SS who knows. I also have a Double Runic SS helmet reissued with the Heer soldier name and rank, Gefr. which is not an SS rank. Again, reissued or draft transfer into the SS. Who knows. (its a very cool helmet).

    There is also a record of SS decals being applied to early transitionals in the formative years of the SS behind the vents, and I have seen M34 non combat helmets issued to the SD with decals behind the vents. The fact this is a beaded helmet, and the decal positioning doesn't validate or invalidate the helmet as to being an SS.

    But the historical record and research into German manufacturing shows the micro management and impeccably high quality control standards were not at the mythical level collectors often believe them to be.

    That said, it is an open door to fakers and collectors to use this as an excuse for their item. But "textbook" collectors and paranoid collectors often set standards too high and give up on an item without proper research as well. In the end you must really know the subject matter well to make a proper evaluation.

  11. #30

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Helmet?

    Great responses, everyone! I appreciate the information!

    Edit: No helmet in the mail today. Hopefully tomorrow...
    Last edited by GIZMO8Z; 09-13-2011 at 08:54 PM.

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