I have now invented a new category of restored helmets I am naming "Tribute Restorations". What this is means is that I have decided to restore these original helmet shells based on their rear lot numbers as set out my Brian Ice's lot data book indicating which branch of Wehrmacht service they originally left the factory as. In this particular case this is an M42 EF68 from the Fulda factory with rear lot number of 0496 which was originally issued as a rare late war Kriegsmarine naval helmet. This is exactly the same way the helmet may looked during the war and was a restored as a "tribute" to the helmet itself if that makes any sense. KM original shells are very hard to find with only about 1/100 being traced back to them in Brian Ice's factory adata book.
Here is a beautiful example of a mid-war everyday man's fighting helmet in a blue/gray shipboard over paint via crude paint brush taking extra caution in avoiding the naval kriegsmarine eagle. The eagle in this case is golden metallic and a textbook EF eagle design. Not to be confused with a tea toned Heer eagle this decal is actually golden like an American eagle coin.
This particular configuration is based on known KM originals whereby the soldaten was issued with a standard textured feld grau M42 helmet with a single golden EF eagle. Being part of an active battleship crew member or other naval on board service pride was taken in trying to match up the outside helmet colors to paint colors on the ship itself. This was usually done by a simple horse hair brush and in most cases the soldier paid careful attention at leaving the KM eagle exposed and completely visible.
I tried to give the overall helmet a nice muted tone appearance as if a little dirty still from ship's black diesel exhaust and general wear and tear from it's mid war service from 1942-45.
Just very neat that this helmet was actually a KM during its wartime years and now has been brought back to that.
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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