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German Helmet factory paint finishes.

Article about: Hi All! I know before I even explain the purpose of this thread that German helmet paint finishes varied greatly during the war years and it might be difficult to be definitive but I just wa

  1. #1

    Default German Helmet factory paint finishes.

    Hi All! I know before I even explain the purpose of this thread that German helmet paint finishes varied greatly during the war years and it might be difficult to be definitive but I just want to try and clarify on the differences between green and grey paint finishes on factory issued lids, Schiefergrau or slate grey and feldgrau, Field grey paint finishes. The helmets I own or have owned are and were what I would describe as the typical lighter shade feldgrau. I want to ask the more advanced collectors out there, Were German helmets ever painted grey or slate grey because as I read and study online even schiefergrau finishes appear to still be green to an extent. This is just purely for curiosity's sake, But is bugging me as for all the reading I am doing I can't seem to find a straight answer. So the question really is, Were all German helmets manufactured during the war technically green in some shade or another or were helmets also issued in grey tones of paint? Regardless of branch of service as well I might add. Any insight appreciates guy's! Cheers, Sean.

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  3. #2


    According to the Goodapple book, WW1 helmets wre finished with a Matte Field Green,
    Austrian helmets a matte light field brown
    during the reichswehr period the fiels green was retained
    Third reich 1933 a parade finish light green was used for helmets intended for army and navy while the left over transitional helmets m16,m17,m18 cutouts were painted a satin parade finish blue/grey
    Allegemeine SS used a satin finish black
    waffen SS and fielf police adopted a parade finish light green
    m33 helmets were only issued in parade finish light green
    m35 helmets were painted with the same parade finishes but the quality control vastly improved over the 1933-1934 periods
    the army, navyWaffen SS and field police retained the parade finish light green on m35 helmets and the Luftwaffe parade finish blue/grey
    m37 and m38 helmets the army remained consistent with the parade finish light green but the luftwaffe used both the parade light green and parade blue/grey
    In 1940 the the colour and mixtures were changed, the new m40 were all painted in darker shades and had Aluminium oxide added to texture the paint
    the army ,navy waffen SS and field police units used a rough texture green/grey
    a small quantity of m40 helmets used by field police were specially painted in parade finish medium green
    luftwaffe used a darker rough texture blue/grey
    m38 helmets were first painted rough texture blue/grey but later changed to rough texture green/grey
    many m35s were factory refinished in both the rough texture green/grey and blue/grey
    In 1942 Waffen SS , field police, to a greater extent changed their colour requirements, a few m40s and many of the m42s used by the two organisations wre painted in a slate grey better known as rough texture SS grey, but as with any colours , variations existed from all the services

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    Cheers Dave appreciate it! So many variations exist it is just mind boggling. See as said I always thought schiefergrau was simply grey so there were green and grey combat helmets. But from recent research even that finish appears to be actually green but much darker which I found quite surprising. I should add, I am judging these paint finishes by pictures on my pc and probably dont get the actual correct shade of paint through your monitor, Either way I think it would still be difficult to make a clear conclusion without vast comparisons. Cheers, Sean.

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    I suppose you could get a colour comparison chart from the RAL range, apparently these are alleged to be the closest to the wartime german colours for modellers ???

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    That is a good point Dave, Does anyone know the RAL codes for Feldgrau & Schiefergrau? Even any more colours the German armed forces may have used? Cheers, Sean.

  7. #6


    Its a shame that Humbrol removed their colour charts on German military colours, they were pretty good as well

  8. #7


    I just googled RAL Schiefergrau and got the code, I believe 7015 and it does indeed seem to be simply grey, No green shade to it. Hmm..

  9. #8


    Feldgrau is 6006 and does look as it does on the helmets I have and have looked at online. I wonder then why schiefergrau looks green on helmets. Also on that google search I got a hit for German RAL battlefield grey??

  10. #9


    Hey Dave. This the kind of chart? RAL Color Chart |

  11. #10


    Dont forget, some of these colours relate to military vehicles as well

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