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For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

Article about: Maybe I missed one that is already here but if not I thought it would be a good idea to make a thread which is directed to completely new collectors. Like some kind of “read before buying th

  1. #1
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    Default For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    Maybe I missed one that is already here but if not I thought it would be a good idea to make a thread which is directed to completely new collectors. Like some kind of “read before buying thread!”

    It is now about a half year since I started collecting these German helmets and I feel lucky that I didn't get burned in the beginning. When I started out looking after my first helmets it seemed like I had a big magnet on me who said please offer me a bunch of fake helmets.! It have been all from bad dealers offering fake helmets, private people on ebay and other auction sites who claims they have an original helmet but it’s not and all the way down to the really dirty scumbags like Pawel Nowak which is trying to cheat you completely by letting you transfer your money and then never send you the items.

    Again I feel lucky but there must be a lot of new collectors out there which haven’t had the same luck. I mean someone must buy these fake helmets since there is this many of them around. Note that I think a lot of the new collectors which shows up on a forum like this already are “saved”. Those who have patient and keep reading the discussions and hereby get to watch a lot of original helmets compared to fakes should be “saved” someday. That’s what happened to myself when I began reading a lot of threads on the forum and hereby slowly got a lot wiser and asked questions when I had some.

    With the word “saved” I mean that a collector knows his area well enough to judge if he is offered a good or bad helmet and if he isn’t sure he always makes a thread on a forum like this to get some wiser heads opinion about it. Posting before buying must be rule nr 1 if you aren’t sure. A collector who wouldn’t fall into the category "saved" is an inexperienced collector who keep on making bad decisions on his own resulting in a collection full of fakes and “messed with helmets”.

    To give some of these people some extra help I think it wouldn’t be a fine idea to make a thread which summarizes all the best advises people on the forum can give about collecting helmets because it in the end would help the new collectors to get a good start

    - - Updated - -

    Okay here comes my best advises to the new collector who just started collecting.




    First of all, always be aware! There must be at least 10 fake helmets out there for sale for every good one. (The number is probably much higher!)

    Always buy your helmet with a return option. If you find out that you got burned it is nice to have the option to return the helmet and get your money back!

    Be aware that auction sites like ebay are a dangerous place to buy your helmets. Ebay is full of fake helmets and there are a lot of people who bids on the few good ones. In other words it is difficult to make a good deal but it is easy to get cheated.

    Don’t take for granted that a helmet is good because the seller says it is, even if it is from a dealer site. There is a ton of sellers on for example ebay that claims they got the real deal but it isn’t. Some of the sellers haven’t a clue what they are selling. A lot of them just want to cheat you and get in your wallet.

    Note that if a deal sounds way too good to be true it probably is. Everyone have the internet today and is able to make a quick google search to find out the value on whatever they have. So if you for example are offered a SS helmet for a couple of 100 bucks it is 99.999 out of 10.000 times not an honest helmet. An original SS helmet starts around 5 k unless it is in bad condition.

    In the beginning I would advise people to keep away from any collared and wired camos and not to mention SS helmets unless you are buying it from a well respected dealer site.

    Be aware of helmets being sold from eastern European countries like for example Latvia, Rumania, Ukraine and Lithuania. The German army sure was around in these areas under the world war which means of cause there are found many good helmets around there but a LOT of fake helmets comes from these countries.

    If someone is selling a rare helmet but claims they are not expert in the area and therefore they can’t confirm if the helmets is original a lot of the time it’s not. Who would not make the effort of finding someone who could confirm if their wired SS helmet was worth 15.000 USD instead of 250..?

    Always get some good and sharp pictures of the helmet you are considering buying. If someone is sending you a couple of blurry pictures of for example the decal it is often because they are trying to hide something. In other words it could very well be a 5 $ decal which has been added to the helmet.

    Never buy helmets from someone which only takes payments like western union. Many have been cheated by people who only accept this kind of payments and once you have transferred the money to some hustler trough this payment option the money is gone!

    The cost is a couple % higher when you pay via paypal but it is a good insurance if you are dealing with someone you don’t know or trust.

    Buy some good books like for example Ken Niewiarowicz's book about German helmets and get to know the different types, decals, collars, liners and so on.

    And the best advice above all. Like mentioned earlier until you get the experience - Always post some good pictures on a forum like this before even thinking about buying a helmet





    Keep in mind and good luck with the hunting




    Cheers Alex

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    That was what I could think of so far. So let’s hear all kind of advises you guys could think of which can help some of the new collectors from getting burned.

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    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    Post before you buy!

  5. #4
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    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    Buy the reference books, the best ones are not cheap, but a lot cheaper than blowing a few grand on a dodgy lid. Read them until your eyes bleed!

    Best Regards

    Andy
    Best Regards,


    Andy

    [COLOR=#ffa07a]
    [/COLOR][CENTER][COLOR=#ff0000][SIZE=3]URGENTLY LOOKING FOR: 1982 era Argentine military issue goggles. Fravida 109, and "Sanbuee" French lens type
    [/SIZE][/COLOR][/CENTER]
    [CENTER][COLOR=#ff8c00][SIZE=3]

    [/SIZE]Have a look at my 20+ (so far, work in progress) albums for lots of M1's, rare liners and other stuff, including WW2British helmets, Falklands battlefield pickup helmets and let me know what you think!
    [/COLOR][/CENTER]

  6. #5

    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    Οne more ..if possible see live the helmet.i know that from internet it is not posible.But i prefer a shop where i can see and touch it

  7. #6

    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    I would also say that not all dealers sell legit items - so dealer purchase is not always a safe purchase.
    Looking for following WWII German items:
    - anything dealing with Allenstein (Olsztyn) and Wehrkreis I in East Prussia,
    - entrenching tool carrier (straight and folding),
    - forestry and hunting items,

    Polish Militaria 1914-1945 - https://www.facebook.com/groups/124584324789966/
    GTA Militaria - Discussions and Sales - https://www.facebook.com/groups/890720157646923/

  8. #7

    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    Always (if you can) post before buying. And if you have ANY inkling or if your gut tells you something is awry, then it probably is. if I question a helmet and can't confirm it to be completely authentic than I walk. Maybe that means I miss out on a good helmet or a good deal, but I prefer to keep my money secure and bide my time for an authentic lid that I feel good about than to lose money and be made a fool of.

  9. #8

    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    I enjoyed reading this, and i am just glad that i am not one of the many who bought their first German helmet as a fake! I definitely have a lot to learn!

    Haydn

  10. #9

    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    This is part of the reason I collected 5 relic lids before finally getting a 'nice' one. Relics are cheaper, not so faked and those that are faked seem to be easier to spot (fresh rust, paint/decals over the rust etc)

  11. #10
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    Default Re: For new collectors – Read before buying your helmet!

    Οne more ..if possible see live the helmet.i know that from internet it is not posible.But i prefer a shop where i can see and touch it.

    No doubt about this Herrzark. Have hands on the original helmets is for sure the best way to get to know them. For all of us it’s just not an option very often because there simply aren’t any shops around where they got original German helmets for sale. I have one militaria shop in my hometown and the owner told me that the helmets he gets mostly are gone before even getting into the shop :/ So far I haven’t seen one down there. When I begun collecting I waited 3 months before there was a militaria fair here in Denmark. I went and had hands on a lot of good helmets. It was a nice experience and I bought a nice heer helmet fairly priced. So far I have 10 helmets in my collection, 3 of them I have bought in person. Rest of them I bought through the internet. I am not 100% sure but I think most collectors today also buy most of their helmets on the internet.



    I enjoyed reading this, and i am just glad that i am not one of the many who bought their first German helmet as a fake! I definitely have a lot to learn!

    Haydn

    Yeah Haydn, like we all mentioned in your thread you did very well with your Luftwaffe helmet. It also sounds like you meet a good and honest dealer right away. My first dealer tried to sell me a fake DD SS helmet at around 2k. I had no clue how much a price for a SS helmet was at that time. So I searched a bit around and quickly found out that this was a pretty good deal… Until Doug, Samir and all the other SS collectors said it was a terrible fake





    This is part of the reason I collected 5 relic lids before finally getting a 'nice' one. Relics are cheaper, not so faked and those that are faked seem to be easier to spot (fresh rust, paint/decals over the rust etc)

    Glenn that is also a way of doing it if you want to be sure you are getting genuine items from beginning Not all who get their pulse high from these relics though. I think most people just want a nice conditioned helmet right away. That’s how I had it when I started. Have I seen your relic SS collection it might have been different I just saw your thread again today and that is for sure a nice collection. Wouldn’t mind to see some more pictures of that SS helmet someday.

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