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New member and helmets question...

Article about: Hello, happy to find your forum. Recently i bought two helmets from a junk shop with the idea to convert them.One would be massively converted for a robot head design i had in mind and the o

  1. #1

    Default New member and helmets question...

    Hello, happy to find your forum.

    Recently i bought two helmets from a junk shop with the idea to convert them.One would be massively converted for a robot head design i had in mind and the other would be cleaned and repainted, converted to be usable as a prop.
    After i got back home and thought about it... i wouldn't want to ruin something that might have a vintage value (my collector self awoke) (and anyway i could mold and cast a fake one from them in order to make the convertion idea, without destroying the originals).
    So maybe i am entering at the weird, spooky, freakish with no return world of collections (just being funny, i love collecting stuff even if i am steping into a new world here).
    And here i need your help on how to continue this.... suggestions, ideas, even discouraging me to continue.

    These are the photos of the two helmets.
    I am not completely sure but i think they are Bulgarian M36 not sure the type.
    Both rusty with many scratches filled with dirt. They dont have any markings on like some pictures i found online that had some emblems on them.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This one has more rust and a small crack at one side,the straps and lining where in a disgusting state (unfortunately or not, i removed them).

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This one was in a better shape.The straps and lining are in better shape but are a bit wear with small rips in places. This one has a folded edge unlike the first one. I thought it might be a M36 A but i am not sure since i dont know what else should be there to check.

    So here are my questions: Are they really M36, can you tell the types. Do they have any vintage value or i should just go on and do what i was thinking in the first place?
    I was thinking to restore the second one (the first one needs too much work and i dont know if it will worth it), remove rust, fill any areas that have been too rusted , repaint it as close to the original and repair or replace the lining and straps. But it is my first time and i am not sure if this is the way to treat it.
    Or maybe it is not such a great find after all and it doesnt matter...

    What are your opinions?
    thanks in advance

    (I apologise to the administrators and moderators if i didn't post in the right section and if my post is too big.I will try to fix any problem if noticed, or feel free to change anything)
    Last edited by Ikarus; 11-05-2010 at 01:18 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: New member and helmets question...

    hello, you are correct these are both Bulgarian M36 helmets, but they do not have original WWII paint, they have the cold war era bright green Russian type paint used during the 1960's & 1980's era

    these are Very common and have low collector value in this condition and finish and post war liners

    the second one with a liner , chin straps and the rolled edge looks good and I wouldnt do anything to that one

  3. #3

    Default Re: New member and helmets question...

    Thank you much!
    Should i just leave it as it is? Is there a way to treat the rust so it wont do any more damage and something to do in order to preserve the liner?

  4. #4

    Default Re: New member and helmets question...

    Welcome to the forum Ikarus. I think you'll find that this site will be a valuable tool as you continue to collect.

    Most collectors want to buy original, untouched items that have some age to them. Most collectors' opinions are that you should never try to clean, polish, or in any other way mess with an original item. That being said, the M36 is so common that it would just be a waste of money to refurbish your shell. Instead, you can easily find a complete one for sale for almost the same price that it would cost to refurbish it. If you look around, you should be able to find a near mint example with the Bulgarian tri-color shield decal intact.

    Like you said, once you start collecting militaria, you never stop. It really is a world of no return. : )
    Here are the steps I suggest you should take to continue:

    1. Think about some kind of militaria that really interests you. Whatever you pick, try to make sure that it has a wide range of variations and that you can afford to indulge yourself in it. You can pick anything. Some people love collecting Iron Crosses, but if U.S. army toothbrushes 1900-1980 is your thing then go for it. : )

    2. Study original examples of whatever it is you are interested in and study the hell out of them. Read books, sift through the forums, and use other websites. Learn about every detail, variant, important date, and so on. Make sure that you study mostly original examples long and hard. Learn the known fakes and things to look for when you're examining a piece. Militaria can be worth a lot, depending on the item. There are people out there who are looking to make a quick buck and they fake almost everything you can think of. Some fakes are obvious, some are really good, and they can fool even the most experienced collectors.

    3. Post absolutely everything you find here so that we can all look at it and so that ultimately, you can learn.

    4. I thought I would need a fourth step, but I guess not. : )

    Happy Hunting!
    Looking for WWII U.S. dog tags

  5. #5

    Default Re: New member and helmets question...

    Thanks for the welcome and pointers ObKrieger!
    I haven't decided to collect something in particular yet (as the helmets where bought for other reasons ) but i like so much the design of the certain helmet and i will surely try to find one in a good shape! (I will try to learn more about the certain helmets and try to find more clues to understand how to tell the types).
    I might also try to find other helmets that i find attractive.
    I looked around the forum and the thing that concerned me most are of replicas and fakes trying to be authentic. Looks like a headache to know what to avoid and it can be a discouraging factor....
    As you suggested, for now i will just look around and see what is there to collect and it might help me get to decide if i want to collect something in particular and how hard it is, what period stuff i like most etc.
    Thanks much!!

    Btw an extra step is always good to be planned beforehand, even if it is not used

  6. #6

    Default Re: New member and helmets question...Bulgarian M36

    Hello, I'm new here too and I just got a Bulgarian M36-A helmet painted the same strange green pictured in Ikarus' photos. It too has a post-war liner/chinstraps.
    I understand about leaving things alone, but since this one is not that rare or collectible I'm thinking about painting it a correct pre-war or wartime color.
    So can anyone direct me to color photos or at least a description of the color used during the time of Tsar Boris when these helmets were new ?


  7. #7

    Default Re: New member and helmets question...Bulgarian M36

    Hi Skip,

    Have a look at this site. It is the most extensive treatise on Bulgarian helmets. It might give you more insight in this topic! Untitled Document


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