Product Description: This Heer Panzer M43 Cap is an extremely beautiful example of this very rare and desirable late war field cap. It’s a factory made, enlisted issue cap, with outstanding character. It shows light honest wear throughout. The exterior of the cap is made of black wool, indicating the Panzer branch. Wear to the surface exposes the weave at high points. The front of the cap features a desirable “T-Trapezoid” insignia, with a Bevo machine woven “T” form insignia (originally intended for the M42 cap) applied in the shape of an M43 trapezoid. The insignia is factory machine applied with straight stitching. In some areas, the factory stitching used to construct the cap has faded to a lighter shade, from sunlight. The black plastic buttons retain the original factory stitching. Inside, this Heer Panzer M43 Cap is lined with a typical rayon fabric. It shows some discoloration and wear, with a few small areas of fraying as well as hand-stitched repairs. Faint traces of what is likely a size stamp and RB number are visible. These original Panzer M43 caps are extremely hard to find, as most are either fake, or have had some type of alteration post war. This one is as textbook as they come, nicely worn, and in original condition, with a very desirable insignia configuration. The condition rates as excellent plus.
Historical Description: Model 1943 Field Caps: Prior to WWII, all branches of the German military issued their soldiers a field cap in the traditional “side cap” style (there were other types of field caps for certain specialized units). This type of field cap, called “little boat” (Schiffchen) by the troops, was found to be inadequate in the harsh extreme cold weather conditions on the Eastern Front in the brutal winter of 1941-42. As a result, in 1942, some units started issuing a type of field cap that had flaps and a button closure that could be folded down and fastened under the wearer’s chin, to provide protection to the ears. This type of cap, known as the M42, saw limited issue and was replaced a year later with a new model field cap, the Einheitsfeldmütze, that was intended to be issued to all branches. This final model of Wehrmacht field cap, which collectors have termed the M43, was based on the cap that had originally been issued to Wehrmacht mountain troops and featured the fold down ear flaps, as well as a visor. These caps were made out of wool and were intended for year-round wear in all regions where tropical uniforms were not issued. The caps were apparently very popular, as they very quickly replaced the earlier models on the heads of the troops in the field. By 1944 this was the most commonly seen field cap in combat units. These caps remained popular after the war, and many had their insignia removed and were worn out and discarded.
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