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Chinese M35 Helmet

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WW2 German helmets are pretty rare today, depending on branch of service and condition of the helmet. However there is a WW2 German helmet that is considered quite rare, the Chinese M35. China purchased 220,000 M35 helmets for their army between 1935 and 1937 from Eisenhüttenwerk AG (marked ET in the shell). The helmets were almost identical to those worn by the Germans with a smooth green-gray paint applied. A distinguishing feature of the Chinese M35s was a dome stamp of a prone Lion, which represented the company mascot of Eisenhüttenwerk AG. On the inside of the helmet skirt is a heat lot stamp, which for the Chinese models was from the 2000s to 3000s. 

The Chinese also applied the Nationalist symbol to their helmets. The white sunburst (about 3 cm in diameter) against a blue background was applied to the wearer's left side. These were painted on, no decals were used. Additionally, a enameled disk with the nationalist pattern could also be used instead of the painted version. 

The Chinese were using these helmets in combat against the invading Japanese army, co-incidentally with German advisors. After Hitler saw the Japanese in action he decided they were the stronger and lent towards an alliance with them, and cut all material off to the Chinese and recalled the advisors. As the M35 helmets were no longer being supplied and spare parts were not available, the helmets were repaired in any way they could be. New liners were made, or liners from other helmets were jury rigged to work. Once the US forces began to arrive in China, they supplied them with the M1 steel helmet, however the Chinese M35 continued to be worn into the mid 1950s by the communist Chinese forces. 

So finding a mint example of these helmets would be extremely difficult if not expensive. A few have turned up over the years from families of veterans that brought them home. However most encountered today are fakes or reproductions. If you are lucky to find an original one, that has not been tampered with, or modified over the years, you can expect it to be a good investment. 

(information and photos source, internet)




Above, Chinese soldiers on parade with the new helmets. This was a source of great pride for them. 


A reproduction helmet showing how the real one should have looked.




Image of the Chinese 88th Division fighting in Shanghai. 



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