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Strange Finnish M40/55

Article about: Hello, I again have another Finnish M40/55 helmet. However this one is very interesting to me and I was hopping some of you could answer some of my questions. I purchased this helmet from IM

  1. #1

    Default Strange Finnish M40/55

    Hello, I again have another Finnish M40/55 helmet. However this one is very interesting to me and I was hopping some of you could answer some of my questions. I purchased this helmet from IMA-USA who in turn bought a whole warehouse of these from a private collector in Estonia. That collector purchased these directly from the Finnish government when they become surplus in the 70s/80s. So technically I am the first collector to own this for home display. It's a WW2 produced one as you can tell by the extra rivet holes in the side (the Finnish had surplus ww1 m1916 helmet liners and installed those because it was cheaper than to buy fully complete helmets from the Germans. This one in particular has a lot of faint etching all over the helmet, what appears to be names, and serial numbers. The most intriguing thing is the well known symbol on the front of the helmet. This helmet wasn't repainted post war, it only has one layer of paint and there is bare metal on the dome from use. Also one of the etchings goes around the paint where the old rivet was, not through it. If anyone has any ideas behind the backstory or can pick out what the words mean it would be greatly appreciated. I believe one spells out "SAINT" and one maybe says " Vilanen Laihia I57 KRHK (this name pops up twice) as well as TJ89. My best guess is a name and unit marker, but I'm not sure.

    Strange Finnish M40/55
    Strange Finnish M40/55
    Strange Finnish M40/55
    Strange Finnish M40/55
    Strange Finnish M40/55Strange Finnish M40/55

  2. # ADS
    Circuit advertisement Strange Finnish M40/55
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  3. #2

    Default

    Hi does this have any maker stamp or number stamp inside the rim of the helmet , for me it looks like a M55 helmet , The Finnish army sold a lot of these off and i think they sometimes still turn up for sell from the Army .The extra holes are found on wartime and post war helmets where a newer liner has been fitted
    The markings on the paint will just be the owners name and unit , still a nice helmet for the collection

  4. #3

    Default

    Thank you! I bought it from IMA USA who bought them in the thousands off a collector who purchased them from the government. It's a WWII produced shell but I've yet to see a heat stamp or any sort of markings besides the etchings on the helmet itself. It's definitely a war production one but since has been refitted with the m55 updated liner
    Strange Finnish M40/55

  5. #4

    Default

    With them air vents and no marking its more likely to be a M55 shell

  6. #5

    Default

    The thing is, the extra rivet holes on the side were only done during wwii because at the time the Finns used the m1916 style liner. It wasn't until 1955 with the new production that they removed the extra rivet holes and used a more wwii German style liner like this one. Hard to say really there's a lot of conflicting history on these

  7. #6

    Default

    At the weekend i will take photos of the Finnish helmets i have , Trust me the extra holes were done post war for the fitting of post war helmets liners, If you look at wartime photos of Finnish troops you will see what i mean no extra holes drilled for the liner, I lived in Finland for 10 years and i have handle over 300 of these helmet over the past 20 years when the Finnish army were selling off their surplus helmets so know what i am talking about

  8. #7

    Default

    I believe you know what you're talking about, and obviously have more insight than I do. However I own quite a few of these with and without the extra rivet holes, and I've seen German made ones with heat stamps and all with the extra rivet added. And the post war liner doesn't have the need for the extra holes as the chin strap is attached to the liner itself. And the 1955 produced ones also differ slightly in shape from the German as well as the wartime Finnish ones. Again I'm sure you know more than me and the whole point of this forum is to share knowledge so please help me gain information on these interesting helmets!

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