This beauty comes right out of my own personal collection and was bought from a private (non collecting) seller a number of years ago when I first started this site. It has only the smallest amount of cosmetic wear from handling and appears to never have even been brought into service. I have had several mint LW helmets in the past and they do come up from time to time unlike Heer and Polizei where you almost never find un-issued examples. Most probably during the middle and especially at the end of the war as Luftwaffe ground units were being redeployed to fight alongside the Wehrmacht many Luftwaffe helmet stock supplies found themselves out of service and no longer needed. As the war progressed against Germany the Luftwaffe in general ended up with less and less planes and pilots which left far too many remaining support crews without any aircraft to service.
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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