Product Description: A fantastic example of an Single Decal M35 Heer Helmet with Leather Helmet Carrying Strap. Like all M35 helmets, this helmets started out as a Double Decal Heer Helmet. In 1940, orders from the German High Command ordered the removal of all national shields from helmets. This meant that existing decal’d helmets in factories, or previously issued M35 helmets were subject to decal removal. Most helmets previously issued typically had their decals scrapped off at the depot or in the field by the individual, which is usually very evident by the scratching or markings from the removal. The factories removed the helmet decals with a bit more finesse, and this helmet seems to be one of those done in the factory as virtually no marks are visible where the decal was. The base color of the helmet is the typical darker apple-green found on the NS produced M35 shells. The paint has a few very minor paint chips on the dome and some surface marks on the exterior from general handling. The Heer decal is a nicely toned Pocher made decal which remains in 98% condition and almost pops off the helmet when looking at it. All of the apple-green painted brass liner split pins are tight to the helmet, retain 100% of their factory paint, and show absolutely no signs of tampering on the inside. The inside skirt of the helmet, as well as the interior dome, has a few small areas where the paint has lifted. The skirt is stamped “NS64” for the maker and size; the rear of the skirt is stamped with the helmets lot number “5595”. A faint dome ink stamp is visible on the interior dome. The helmets liner is a single banded steel liner, which is 100% original to the helmet. It is known that late produced M35 helmets received steel banded liners in the factory, this is one of them. The leather liner is made from a nice quality pig-skin which remains supple and in a fantastic condition. The liner has just a slight amount of wear that can be seen in the darkened areas of the leather caused by sweat and/or hair products. A very nice, full length, 13 hole chinstrap is affixed to the D-rings of the liner system, and is wrapped over the helmets bill. The chinstrap utilizes a steel buckle, and remains very pliable and workable. An extremely scarce helmet carrying strap is affixed to the helmet. The strap is made of a thick leather, which remains somewhat pliable. The exterior of the leather remains in excellent condition, and matches the look of the helmet itself perfectly. The carrying strap is dated “W.W.Su 1934” with the Weimar style eagle under it. This carrying strap was originally produced for the much larger M17 style German Helmet, so the buckling strap was much longer than it is now. The strap was most likely shortened to fit the smaller M35 helmet a bit better by keeping excess pieces from hanging off haphazardly. There is no immediate signs of interaction between the strap and the surface of the helmet as one would come to expect after 70 years of being fastened to a helmet. So we cannot say 100% if this strap is original to the helmet. What we can say, is that the two pieces look fantastic together and match each others condition perfectly. An M35 Heer Helmet with Leather Helmet Carrying Strap isn’t something that is seen on today’s market frequently. The Carrying Straps themselves are virtually never seen for sale, and usually not in a condition such as this one. This M35 Heer Helmet with Leather Helmet Carrying Strap would make a perfect addition to an early war mannequin display, or any helmet collection for that matter.
Historical Description: When the German Army first marched into war in 1914 it went to the front lines wearing the traditional “Picklehaube” helmets. The war soon developed to necessitate the need for an improved headgear to protect the wearer. The German Army developed the M16 helmet in 1915 and began issuing it in mass quantity to its fighting troops in 1916. The M16 underwent changes to bring about the next model, the M18. Both the M16 and M18 saw use by the German Army during WW1, as well as the interwar years by the Reichswehr and Freikorps. In 1931, a new liner system was developed. The M16 and M18 helmets were in mass supply right up to the time the Nazi Party took control of the German government. During Adolf Hitler’s rearming of the German military in the early 1930’s, the M16 and M18 helmets saw extensive refitting with the newer liner system, fresh paint, and the addition of a centralized decal system for the newly formed Wehrmacht’s respective branches. Decals were generally placed on each side of the helmet, one side being the branch and the other the national colors shield or party shield. In 1935, the M35 helmet was introduced. This new design was lighter and more streamlined than the older style helmets and is what the world now recognizes as the iconic helmet of the German Military. M35 helmets can most easily be identified from the separate rivet ventholes and rolled eadges. With the outbreak of war, some changes were made to bring in a new model, the M40. The changes made to this new model was the use of a more matte field grey finish and the vent holes were now integral to the helmets shell. In 1940, the national colors decals and party shields were ordered to be removed. It should be noted that many M35 helmets were brought up to date by repainting them with the matte field grey finish and/or other modifications if necessary. These refitted helmets are what collectors now term “reissue helmets”. The next model helmet to evolve was the M42. The model M42 has the same features of the M40 with the exception of the edges of the helmet not being rolled and remain flared. This was to speed up production and lower cost as the war dragged on and the German economy began changing to a total war economy. In 1943 all decals were ordered to be removed from combat helmets.
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