A wonderful example of a rarely encountered textbook mid war M38 ET68 fallschirmjager single decal helmet. German paratroopers were far less common than the Waffen-SS and only numbered 9 regiments 3 of which were never activated. The rear lot 4883 dates the helmet production year to March of 1940 however since they used to stockpile finished shells at the Eisenwerkes factory it could have been assembled later according to Ken N's latest book. The adler decal is your classic ET factory applied eagle and is in remarkable condition. The inside liner is made by the Karl Heisler firm of Berlin and size stamped 68/56. All four spanner bolts are the early war painted version later replaced by unpainted aluminum.
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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