Product Description: This M43 Heer Cap is a beautiful, all original example of this iconic and very desirable piece of German Army headgear, in lightly worn condition. It’s a factory made cap, as issued to enlisted men and NCOs. It’s made of a typical, wartime quality field gray wool. The wool is in beautiful condition, with no moth holes or other damage, and still retains most of the original surface nap. The front of this handsome cap bears its original factory machine applied trapezoid insignia, which is a standard Bevo version. The trapezoid is applied in a typical “zip and flip” fashion, and is in perfect condition with no fraying. The two closure buttons on the flap are held in place with the original stitching, and retain virtually all of their field gray paint. The inside of this textbook M43 Heer Cap is lined with artificial silk (rayon), as most of these were. It’s well marked, with the size 57 and an RB number manufacturer code both stamped in black ink. Some light wear inside the forehead area is the only notable sign of use. This cap is correct in every detail, from the bias material under the front scallop to the ear warmer loops under the flap on the sides. These caps are very sought after and have become difficult to find in original condition. This one rates a strong excellent.
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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