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M51 French OTAN helmets

Article about: Hi guys. Have been looking around the Internet trying to pick up one of these helmets only because of France's involvement in Vietnam and the battle at Dien Bien Phu in 1954 which was the pr

  1. #11
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    Very nice indeed , I am an avid collector of these particular models, and prefer the fixed bale versions but each one is highly desirable for anyone's collection, thanks for showing your fine examples.

  2. #12

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    Hello,

    Very nice example.

    The 1951 and 1952 are definitively the most difficult to find and these are with this very specific fixed balls (like the USM1). They started geting swivel bales in 52.

    The Mle 51 was tested and used in Indochina. It gots very good coments mostly du to the fact that it was better protecting from rain than the USM1. With the M1 the water was going in your nexk : )

    53 is usualy easy to find. Some other years aren't that easy to find like 55 or 56, maybe due to strong strock of 53.

    You can find additional and detail information on that site (in french)
    .: World War Helmets - Casque Modèle TTA 51 :.

    All the best

    Bruno

  3. #13
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    Quote by bourguignotte View Post
    Hello,

    Very nice example.

    The 1951 and 1952 are definitively the most difficult to find and these are with this very specific fixed balls (like the USM1). They started geting swivel bales in 52.

    The Mle 51 was tested and used in Indochina. It gots very good coments mostly du to the fact that it was better protecting from rain than the USM1. With the M1 the water was going in your nexk : )

    53 is usualy easy to find. Some other years aren't that easy to find like 55 or 56, maybe due to strong strock of 53.

    You can find additional and detail information on that site (in french)
    .: World War Helmets - Casque Modèle TTA 51 :.

    All the best

    Bruno
    Great input as ever Bruno, your nationality brings a "first hand" experience to these particular models which is most appreciated.

  4. #14

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    Hello Opex,

    Always a pleasure to help
    That said, I feel you seems far more pationated than many folk over here

    maybe an other comment
    Liner and shells were provided separately even if some producers produced both. They were all stored separately and provided separately as well.
    Just for the collectors, like I did, that tries to pair them and finaly discovered that is was useless

    All the very best

    Bruno

  5. #15
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    Quote by bourguignotte View Post
    Hello Opex,

    Always a pleasure to help
    That said, I feel you seems far more pationated than many folk over here

    maybe an other comment
    Liner and shells were provided separately even if some producers produced both. They were all stored separately and provided separately as well.
    Just for the collectors, like I did, that tries to pair them and finaly discovered that is was useless

    All the very best

    Bruno
    Hi Bruno, I am a complete "Francophile" and proud of this , in fact I have family who live in Northern France and on the outskirts of Paris, so it's always a pleasure to converse with a Frenchman in regards to French helmets!

    Interesting fact regarding the shell and liners , I assumed the manufacturers would provide the complete unit as it were, many thanks for this added information.

    Cordialment,Opex .

  6. #16

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    Hi Opex

    Always a pleasure
    Let me know next time you come to Paris. It will be a pleasure to met.
    From what i remember, Liner were provided in pack of around 10. I saw this when I was "invited" to visit a military stock wahrehouse where I was able to buy some. A funny moment
    I do not know for shell

    Some examples

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The shell were covered by a paper

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    Different type of liners with the "yeti" one on the right

    Click image for larger version. 

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    An example from 1951

    Click image for larger version. 

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    All the best

    Bruno

  7. #17
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    Hi Bruno, yes indeed the next time I visit my family I will let you know when I am in the area , it would be good to talk

    I also very rarely write "wow", but after viewing your pictures of the unissued shells and liners ( especially the "Yeti" liner) it is indeed one of those "Wow" moments, what an incredible find that must have been, an an invitation not to be missed, I wish I had a similar opportunity.

    Cordialment Opex

  8. #18

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    I received one of these just these yesterday and the shell is quite odd. Totally unmarked, possibly (probably) after rework. The hinged chinstrap bales are not only not matching (two different!!), they are off center in placement somewhat! Is this...normal? The chinstraps themselves are probably replacements as well, as they are put on in a very non-standard fashion. I know I need to post pictures of this item it matches *nothing* on the World War Helmets site, which seems to have the most info about TTA 51 on the net.
    Also came with a nice crisp 1952 Mamou Nylon liner...that's translucent. Held up to light and you can see through, which is a first for me.

  9. #19

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    Hello Cammobunker

    Do you have any photo as it might help?

    @Opex. Thanks for your comment. Yes a very nice and unusual experience. It was alway part of these " I know someone who knows someone who saw so much..."
    I just remember the seller laughing when carryng all the helmets in a wheellbarrow...

    ...., it wasn't yesterday ....

    Bruno

  10. #20

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    Photos as promised. Note the first photo the chinstrap bales aren't quite square with each other? and as I say, not a marking in sight, although the sloppy paint job screams field rework by bored soldiers on punishment detail to me...
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Contrast the two sides...not the same!
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    Chinstrap attachments...note the huge loop left. Most are snugged right up to the bale.
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    And a perfectly normal liner...than you can see light through. It's in nice shape though!
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I'm at a complete loss to explain the odd features of this helmet shell. It's not your normal OTAN M51 shell. The inside also seems to have a lot of abrasive dust, like aluminum oxide powder from sanding, it that means anything.
    At least it isn't dented into a shapeless mass like so many are.

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