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M16 Helmet for authentication please.

Article about: Hello, I obtained this helmet from a good friend for a song. He got it from a long gone family member and his wife was unhappy with it being in the house as she lost a great grandfather in t

  1. #1
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    Default M16 Helmet for authentication please.

    Hello, I obtained this helmet from a good friend for a song. He got it from a long gone family member and his wife was unhappy with it being in the house as she lost a great grandfather in the war. He was happy to find that I had an interest and that it was finding a good home. I am sure that the nuts in place of rivets are incorrect and I am reasonably sure that the liner is some frankenstein job done to enhance an empty shell. I can see a slight difference in the paint on the helmet and that on the nuts where they tried to match the color. I am inclined to rip it out as the shell seems good and the chin strap also looks good to me. But some older guys at the local market said they wouldn't be so quick to take it out as it could have been period replaced in the field. The leather inside is very very brittle. It tears easily even though it's pretty thick. Those nut just look new to me (last 20 years new) and they are holding the liner in. Only one river was retained and re used for the liner (the rear one). Just looking for opinions on how much of this helmet is good and if it's worthy of being kept for collecting purposes. The maker mark is a bell shape followed by L64 ( I assume it means large size 64). Thanks in advance for any opinions and facts, they are much appreciated.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  


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  3. #2

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    Its an original helmet and chinstrap. The liner is not authentic, but I would check to see if there is an original leather liner band underneath. The helmet liner attachment studs are indeed replacements as you suggest. These are not period alterations. The liner stud at the back of the helmet looks like an original. I think the helmet has been also repainted overall. If so, its collectible value is very limited. Size 64 is a medium size.

  4. #3

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    The chin strap is not an original WWI strap.

  5. #4

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    It's a good solid shell and worthy of restoration. There are some very fine reproduction liners out there, and would certainly benefit from one being fitted. Don't be tempted to try and replicate the disruptive camouflage pattern, it rarely comes out looking right.
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

  6. #5
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    Thanks for replies. I paid $100 for it. Don't feel too bad.

    helmet2id, are you suggesting that another strap was added to the strap connectors? They seem to fit the fittings on helmet really well and the ageing looks consistent on both metal pieces. Thanks for your reply as well.

  7. #6

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    helmet2id, are you suggesting that another strap was added to the strap connectors? They seem to fit the fittings on helmet really well and the ageing looks consistent on both metal pieces.[/QUOTE]

    Yes, the type of buckle on the strap on this helmet was NOT used on the chin straps of M16's. The original straps had slide connectors. Jim G.

  8. #7

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    Here are a few M16's with partial or complete original straps. Look at the slide buckles on them. The last picture is probably the best shot. None of the original M16 straps have holes punched in them to receive the pin on the type of buckle on the strap on your helmet. The strap on yours was added postwar. Jim G.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.   M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.  

  9. #8

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    My first thought was that the chinstrap was simply an old waistbelt.

    If you seek an original chinstrap to restore this helmet, be prepared to fork out around $250. Such things are not common and fakes abound.

  10. #9

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    Although the chinstrap is not period-original to the helmet, this type of strap was certainly used during the Great War. Have a look at the remnants of the chinstrap on my M17. Soldiers often modified equipment for ease of use.

    M16 Helmet for authentication please.
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.... 'A Salford Pal: Pte Thomas Jay.'

  11. #10

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    Well worth $100!....
    It's a wasted trip baby. Nobody said nothing about locking horns with no Tigers.



    I'm Spartacus, not really i'm Paul!...

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