An M42 Army (Heer) Helmet with Wire & Named
An M42 Army (Heer) Helmet with Wire & Named; Steel helmet, magnetic, rolled edge, original apple green exterior, without appliques, covered in hexagon-patterned fencing wire (AKA chicken wire). The inside comes complete with its original eight-panel butterscotch-coloured leather liner, each panel with five ventilation holes, three with a circular reinforcement on the underside, the other five reinforcements and the drawstring having been lost to time. It is size stamped in black ink "66" on one of the rear panels, the name "BLINDA" with the "N" reversed in black ink on the left side. Original two-piece leather chinstrap has been lost to time as well, steel buckles are affixed to the liner's steel frame, the helmet with its original pins holding the frame firmly in place. The underside of the skirt is stamped "1217" at the rear. Measures 240 mm x 285 mm x 170 mm in height. The original paint on the interior and exterior has experienced light contact and scattered surface rust, paint loss on the head of two pins, the leather liner exhibiting light soiling and wear from active use. Very fine. Footnote: Different grades of wire were used to provide the framework for which foliage could be attached to helmets. In many cases, the wire itself served as a means of camouflage without the aid of leaves or branches. A variety of methods were used to attach wire to a helmet. Both strait bailing wire as well as fencing wire (often called chicken wire) was also used in various gauges. The wire types and grades applied to helmets often differed depending on the theatre of combat where the helmet was being used. Helmets that used wire for camouflage were typically found in the Italian and French theaters in 1943 and 1944. However, as a whole, Continental Europe with its strong agrarian base was an abundant source of farm yard and fencing wire. Helmets used in Russia however were not commonly camouflaged with wire. This is verified by the relatively few photographs showing men in the East with wire camouflage helmets. The premise being that in many parts of the desolate Russian steppe (and often isolated village settings), wire was a scarce commodity. When applied, wire was often attached by means of small collar hooks, bent wire hooks, or simply crimped over the edges of the helmet. In most cases, it appears as though each individual soldier hand crafted his own wire configuration. Although it is possible that it was also done on more of a small unit level.