Here is a beautiful example of a mid-war Luftwaffe helmet in a large size Q66 with rear lot number of 131 placing it's production year to early 1941.
The original Luftwaffe blue gray (blau-grau) paint has survived remarkably well and still shows it's original slightly lighter blue than most other helmets which naturally darken over time. The inside leather is so crisp and mint that it almost looks like a repro but I assure you it is 100% original and untouched since the day it was installed at the Quist factory in the city of Esslinger. The Luftwaffe adler/eagle is 95% in tact with only a slight application error at the very bottom of the swastika as the LW decal is very fragile and rather difficult to work with. Based on it's remarkable condition this helmet either belonged to an administrative type soldier or was just plain never even issued. A true survivor of the war and shows one how a Luftwaffe helmet would have looked when it first left the factory.
The Luftwaffe pattern national eagle was originally introduced for wear by Fliegerschaft, (Pilot Base), personnel of the DLV, Deutscher Luftsportsverband, (German Air Sports Association), the clandestine, civilian, forerunner of the Luftwaffe on August 18TH 1934, and adopted for wear by the Luftwaffe on March 1ST 1935 along with the national tri-color shield for wear on the helmet. The first pattern national eagle was utilized until a modified second pattern eagle was introduced in late 1936 or early 1937. Regulations of June 12TH 1940 discontinued the use of the national tri-color decal and further regulations of August 28TH 1943 abolished the national eagle decal and dictated that it was also to be removed from all helmets although the directives were not completely adhered to
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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