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kenny andrew

Wehrmacht Heer M.35, M.40 and M.42 Helmets

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They did not always have the Luftschutz decal!

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Here's a photo I forgot I had of the other M35 helmet with SS single decal never sure if the decal was original stamped SEst 64.

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Decal is a copy but the helmet looks fine :thumbsup:

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Ok, here is a new one, looks like a M34 type Police helmet, maybe you all can help me ID it. War time, post war? No stampings that I can see inside the helmet, it does have a lot of rust and pitting though. The vents on the sides of the helmets have 7 holes, one in the center and 6 circling it. The vents are also curved outwards not flat. Sadly no liner though. 

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I would say this is a wartime example - see the square turndowns behind the peak. The helmet has a black finish, this would not be police, as they had greygreen, and also wore a proper steel helmet, this is a lightweight non-combat helmet, and is for the fire service - Feuerwehr or Feuerschutzpolizei, who wore a black helmet with their own insignia (same as police).  However, they did not always have insignia, as for instance the volunteer fire services - Freiwillige Feuerwehr.  At the end of WW2 the decals were always scratched out - all symbols of the Third Reich were illegal under the Allies, most helmets landed on the scrap heap, or were taken by Allied troops as souvenirs, a matter of luck if any original insignia was not de-nazified (entnazifiziert) or removed, posession was also illegal. The helmet could also be fitted with a (removable) nickel-plated comb.  Helmets were also fitted with a removable leather neck guard.  The fire services were needed again after the war, and continued to wear their stripped-down uniforms and helmets. Here are some examples:

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Awesome Fritz! My second guess after police would have been fire department. Just wish it would have had the liner... 

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There are some original liners to be had, important to find the right size, which could be difficult, and the rare original studs for holding them. The leather rear neck apron would be harder to find, earlier post-war examples might turn up.

If you had a steel liner band, you might be able to make a leather liner to fit, finding the light tan soft natural leather might be difficult. This was fitted with 3 stiff T-shaped leather tabs, to which the apron could be attached.

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The leather helmet worn till about 1936 by the volunteer fire brigades, until replaced with light steel helmet

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No fire brigade could cope with these conditions - Hamburg after the raids in July 1943. Most of the entire city was devastated, estimated casualties around 45.000

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Post-war fire brigades.

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I will keep an eye out, you never know. The measurement of the helmet on the exterior is 26 inches, so its a large sized one. 

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Try measuring the inside! The inside will be smaller! Not inches, you will have to use centimetres to get a correct fitting! It must be an exact fit. The shell is always a good bit larger than the actual liner/head size.

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Fire brigade personnel and railway personnel were often indiscriminately shot by invading American and Russian troops because of their dark blue uniforms, thought to be SS.

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Measurement is a 66. I have used the inches to CM conversion charts in the past that is why I mentioned inches earlier. It was not easy, but used a CM cloth tape to measure the inside. So it is a relatively large size, and has 3 posts for liner attachment. 

I think those firefighters had it worse than some of the men at the front, dealing with all the air raids, fires, unexploded ordnance, etc. Must have been terrible.

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The head size would then be about 58/59 - roughly, this is only an estimate. Liner leathers were usually stamped with the head size underneath.
Here are some photo impressions of the damage to Hamburg and some other cities:

https://www.google.com/search?q=feuersturm+hamburger+feuerwehr+feuerschutzpolizei&client=firefox-b-d&tbm=isch&tbs=rimg:Cd1u_1axqVvioImBhwY7KZ0gHyBa79Z0cTgoR7B3DVK9pDpCmYSFw4_19U-cD9cf8Si44CNcDmd6agpJw2jcBUf1AcT8w_1grwQmYasoNDG68TnbfN2VtesMNbmMLDz9m6q_127XfGjJZrGo8-oqEglhwY7KZ0gHyBETsqMpTDYNsyoSCRa79Z0cTgoREZJQ67RkgICNKhIJ7B3DVK9pDpARfH-fRWfEBsAqEgmmYSFw4_19U-RHrbhvw6mJATioSCcD9cf8Si44CEZ5-AJPvTXndKhIJNcDmd6agpJwRqDzPIaUAyuAqEgk2jcBUf1AcTxFueG5f57DKByoSCcw_1grwQmYasEQ6_1wHt7QM7fKhIJoNDG68TnbfMRgSYW2XpKUHAqEgl2VtesMNbmMBEJNacEfwpnLSoSCbDz9m6q_127XEfABUzN3TjBcKhIJfGjJZrGo8-oR3EmVrenWje0&tbo=u&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjmr46C6sbkAhXR3KQKHf7_DjQQuIIBegQIARAs&biw=1366&bih=654&dpr=1

Yes, the Firefighters and Luftschutz had a very difficult time - there was one raid after another for nearly 2 weeks, day and night, first of all the high explosives and then the incendiaries - and the water mains were destroyed. The entire city centre was engulfed in a raging firestorm, which sucked everything and everyone into it's path like a firey whirlwind... ash and debris rained from the sky, there was a dense cloud of black smoke for several kilometres over Hamburg. People in the cellars and air raid shelters simply shrivelled to dust.

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I have read several stories about similar bombing raids in Japan, unfortunately they lived in very flammable structures, which only added to the chaos. It is hard to imagine today that level of destruction on cities and population centers. Good link to the photos! 

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image.png.d2b16c04e2c3f71ad194e28416b73727.png

Dresden after February 1945

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Victims of Allied air raids, Berlin, Autumn 1944

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Defences were insufficient in every way, one of the flak towers in Hamburg-Heiligengeistfeld

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The centre of the city and Hammerbrook were fenced off for months, Hammerbrook for several years after the war, until the dead were recovered and the rubble cleared, there was a danger of an epidemic.

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Wow, powerful images...When I lived in Germany from 2009-2012, my counterpart in leading the section I was in charge of, was a German. Very nice man, he was a Flak Helper in WW2, he said his job was to bring ammunition for the guns to fire. Since he was young, small and fast, he was a good choice. He didn't like to talk about it very much, understandably. 

In the Kaiserslautern area, you can still see carved out tunnels in the cliffs, these were used as shelters during and after air raids. They are barred up now, and sealed up. I lived in this area for many years. I also remember seeing the Flak mounts along the Autobahn in the area when I was younger, huge concrete slabs with metal rings for the guns. They have been removed now. 

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