This helmet is a wonderful find most likely never even issued and so I believe pretty much impossible to upgrade. It is your quintessential textbook M40 Q64 LW SD with rear lot number DN173 which was mis-stamped as an IN173 common error to that particular lot number and dates the helmet to late 1941. The paint is simply stunning on it as if just leaving the factory a few months ago retaining it's bright blue color and perfectly preserved LW eagle. Originally inherited by the granddaughter of a vet from Sharpsburg, MA. She told me that her grandfather was stationed all over and also met her grandmother while overseas. She said that years ago her grandfather sold most of his WW2 souvenirs in a garage sale but kept this helmet as well as some civil war items he had found with his father in nearby farming fields which saw the Battle of Antietam. She said that she remembers this very helmet being on display high up in a glass cabinet where they kept their fine silverware. The vet's name was Edward Baker and he was a dentist during the war and was originally from Westminster, MA. Now what's really interesting to me is that sort of shadow line on the right side of the LW eagle. I've looked at that area very closely and am glad to report that the eagle is actually overlapping the shadow mark leaving me at first to conclude that they must have left some kind of round lacquer sponge on a stick at the Quist factory back in 1941 leaning up agains the side of this freshly painted helmet and just before apply the decal. Very interesting though however upon closer inspection and having a few of my collector buddies look at it we noticed that those were not drip lines but rather straight perpendicular lines joining a very oval shape at the top.
I believe in fact it is a spoon shadow mark as he must have had a silver spoon leaning up against the side of the helmet with the left edge of the spoon bowl resting neatly against the right side of the vent hole. Over many years and decades some kind of metallic/electrical interaction took place between the large spoon and the helmet leaving that shadow mark.
What a fascinating idea and wonderful show and tell piece of WW2 Luftwaffe history!!!
Helmet is a bit over priced because I'd rather just add it to my personal collection for now as I know it's impossible to ever upgrade.
Please call, text or email me if interested.
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GERMAN HELMET FACTORY PRODUCTION CODES
(Every original German helmet produced from 1935 to 45 had two factory stampings punched into the side and rear or both in the rear. The alpha numeric number refers to the factory location and the inside metric circumference in centimeters. The rear lot number refers to the production run and was used as a quality control measure. The font styles used at each factory were slightly different but highly consistent throughout the war and so fakes or reproductions will either not have these numbers at all or they will use the wrong font style or letter spacing and so are easily identified as post war made.)
(FS or EF)-Emaillierwerke AG, Fulda, Germany
(ET or ckl)-Eisenhuttenwerke, Thale, Germany
(Q)-Quist, Esslingen, Germany
(NS)-Vereinigte Deutsche Nikelwerke, Schwerte, Germany
(SE or hkp)-Sachsische Emaillier u. Stanzwerke, Lauter, Germany