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What Does A $24,000.00 Fake Helmet Look Like?


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#1 Bugme

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 11:08 AM

Well, it looks good enough to fool even the best collectors, creating a group think pattern and causing them to rally the troops so as to silence those who claimed it to be fake. I am only showing the one photo below because the fake involves other photo's of a German SS rune and it doesn't belong on this forum. The point is, the runes were painted on, proof was shown in the photo below and many collectors chose to ignore it. However, some things learned as a result of this and many other TR helmets which were originally claimed as legitimate need to be applied here. I suggest and strongly encourage you to take the time to read this entire thread: http://www.usmilitar...f-spectroscopy/  This thread was started over 2 years ago and you can follow the progression as XRF technology, which was being used on helmets, went from a possibility to being debunked. It ends with a critical update today. It was proclaimed as: "Provenance Through Science". COA's were issued, money back guarantee's were made and the whole thing came crashing down.

To say that this is the biggest shake-up in helmet collecting circles would be an understatement. It wasn't just about XRF but, about those who were involved. Fakes, fraud, incorrect analysis, helmet lot numbers, protection of reputations, lies, greed etc. were all involved. As we are now seeing $10,000 to $15,000 U.S. helmets, it is not too far of a leap to think it can happen with us. The easy_green type of fakers are mere child's play and we need to educate ourselves or get out of this. We need to learn now and not make the same mistakes that our TR collecting friends have made as literally millions of dollars in fakes are now sitting on collectors shelves worth less than 1% of the purchase price.
SS Fake.jpg



#2 vintageproductions

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 11:17 AM

We would usually close down any thread that talks about German items, but this is one instance where we include a link to WAF so you can read the whole story:  http://www.wehrmacht...ad.php?t=834155

 

I am not a German collector, but the above thread was for sure an eye opener.

 

I always shake my head when people ask for COA's, and here is another instance where they just give a buyer a false sense of security.



#3 Bugme

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 02:28 PM

We would usually close down any thread that talks about German items, but this is one instance where we include a link to WAF so you can read the whole story:  http://www.wehrmacht...ad.php?t=834155

 

I am not a German collector, but the above thread was for sure an eye opener.

 

I always shake my head when people ask for COA's, and here is another instance where they just give a buyer a false sense of security.


This was also a case of helmet collectors from both the German and U.S. sides of collecting working together to call this stuff out. It was truly an amazing thing to see. I will say that those on the German side of this, faced much stiffer opposition than we did and I applaud their willingness to hang tough.



#4 kammo-man

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 02:43 PM

Its a big deal and affects all who collect head tin.

 

I have seen the German ones in person.

 

Seems like 1 source peddled these and put them into a book.

Same place that vouched for bad helmet covers.

Not rocket science to work the culprit out.

 

COA's..........are not worth the paper they are written on IMHO.

 

owen



#5 willysmb44

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 03:13 PM

Art dealers have been tearing their hair out for centuries already on exactly these very issues. Only in recent years has military collecting gotten to a stage where the stakes were this big for field gear and uniform items.

I once heard George Peterson from NCHS (who, I'm told had a massive Fallschirm helmet collection at one point) who said it best, that collecting German stuff, there was no such thing as 'authentic' as in the end it all depended on the opinion of the last 'expert' who looked at the item in question.

US stuff, generally, isn't there yet, but I'm sure it will someday. Painted M-1 helmets are probably as close as we get right now to those who collect stuff previously owned by one of Der Fuhrer's boys...



#6 Grant G.

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 03:35 PM

How long has this been going on? From what I've read it seems around 3-4 decades. Were these early reenactor helmets that just got sucked into the collecting world or were they always created with the intent to deceive? Does anyone know how many are on the market and where they originated?



#7 manayunkman

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 04:10 PM

I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer nor do I follow the latest faking trends so correct me if my assessment is wrong.

 

Someone has faked an SS decal and some sort of scientific instrument (XRF) determined it was good and now we find out the decal is bad and the XRF doesn't work?

 

Thanks for clearing it up.



#8 dustin

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 04:38 PM

And Certificates of Authenticity (COA) are involved to legitimatize them as well 



#9 Ronny67

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 04:45 PM

This is big for the hobby. What is being done to prosecute the offenders? $24k is no small change. Is this legal fraud? 



#10 Bugme

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 04:59 PM

This is big for the hobby. What is being done to prosecute the offenders? $24k is no small change. Is this legal fraud? 


Who knows, this is only one of several hundred.



#11 Dave

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 05:09 PM

Well, if people want to see an example of how to properly prove a fake other than simply saying "it's fake!" in a post...that's an outstanding example. 



#12 kammo-man

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 05:15 PM

Its NOT a decal its a painting pretending to be a decal.

 

And I do believe you CAN just say its FAKE sometimes.

Not EVERYONE has the time to write a 16 hour long post.

Doug has been amassing these helmets for years and is one of the most advanced painted German helmet collectors in the world.

MANY have been fooled by these.

Many did NOT trust them.

 

Please read the entire post as NOT to ask silly questions as its worth the time and you will all learn something about how the real world works in military collecting.



#13 dustin

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 05:49 PM


 

Please read the entire post as NOT to ask silly questions as its worth the time and you will all learn something about how the real world works in military collecting.

 

Important statement! when you hit the link in Post #2 it in turn links to another website with the article in question. Note some of the comments "What does it say? I don't have time or want to spend time joining another forum?" and continues with follow ups that can be seen here and there waiting for someone to come along and explain it all. It took 1 minute to register and about a 20 minute wait for an authorization email to access that forum. If your truly that lazy to learn then maybe this hobby isn't for you or your doomed to be that $24,000 sucker! So...yes! the real world military collector researches and studies example after example. The article in its essence does not deal with a German helmet but is a valuable learning tool for every collector in any field ...well worth the read!



#14 Ronny67

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 06:39 PM

Good points Dustin. 



#15 manayunkman

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:04 PM

I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer nor do I follow the latest faking trends so correct me if my assessment is wrong.

 

Someone has faked an SS decal and some sort of scientific instrument (XRF) determined it was good and now we find out the decal is bad and the XRF doesn't work?

 

Thanks for clearing it up.

 

I for one read all the posts.

 

What I got out of it is that XRF either doesn't work or is a complete hoax. 

 

And in addition to that is Kelly Hicks being implicated or was he fooled by it.

 

After a second reading I still could not come to a conclusion on either of these points.



#16 kammo-man

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:16 PM

Then you missed the the painting part complete with masking tape and splashes.



#17 manayunkman

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:28 PM

Then you missed the the painting part complete with masking tape and splashes.

 

 

That's the easy part. I understand that.

 

I want to know if XRF is a hoax used to legitimize the painted decal or was it fooled by it ?

 

I also want to know if Kelly Hicks was fooled by it or was he part of it ?

 

And do all the fakes have paint splashes that are a masking tapes width from the decal ?



#18 kammo-man

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:35 PM

Read the entire thread.

All the answers are there.

If your cant work it out....

Have a long walk with your dog and think of summer.



#19 Ronnie

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:38 PM

Owen, hanging out with you would be a trip indeed!
Wish I lived closer to weirdville.
Ronnie

#20 manayunkman

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:45 PM

I've read it twice and have walked several dogs and it is summer :D

 

Frankly I'm so out of the loop, I no longer collect and I have a lot of work that's being left undone because I get obsessed over things that no longer apply to me.

 

Thank you for your time as I know you are busy too.



#21 dustin

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:46 PM

He focused namely on the decal itself but several additional times he does highlight "overspray" under and around the emblem..... So in short multiple examples have the paint spalshes.
What I liked most is his point not to place all your eggs on ONE source. I certainly can relate to that,I like to have multiple documents and or photos for supporting reference..... Checks and balances. The second thing is the legitimacy when something hits print..... Authors that do not use checks and balances only hurts the community. How many of us know of "facts" that are known now as merely here say rumor-ville that is now gospel. Third ask questions , forget what you know or heard and see if you can trace a trail and see if you come to the same facts. In short there is a lot to be taken from that write up.

#22 Bob Hudson

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 08:54 PM

This is big for the hobby. What is being done to prosecute the offenders? $24k is no small change. Is this legal fraud? 

 

I doubt any prosecutor would file criminal charges in something like this: can you imagine having to explain all this to a jury?

 

Now if someone who got burned had plenty more spare money for lawyers they could filed a civil suit, but the legal costs could easily be many times what they paid for the helmet and you'd have little chance of winning, and if you did win, chances are the person you sued would not have the money to pay back the cost of the helmet and the lawyers bills.
 



#23 manayunkman

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 09:03 PM

Thanks Dustin, I did understand that having read the long WAF posts.

 

I was more interested in XRF and Kelly.

 

What I read was ambiguous or not addressed in the post on WAF.

 

Back in the 80's I had many dealings with Kelly, as a matter of fact I sold him his first SS jacket, so I would be dismayed to find out he was involved in this.

 

Thanks again Justin

 

Peter



#24 Bugme

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Posted 03 December 2015 - 06:06 AM

I want to know if XRF is a hoax used to legitimize the painted decal or was it fooled by it ?

If you read the XRF(X-Ray Fluorescence Spectroscopy) thread(link in the first post) here on the USMF in it's entirety, you'll find that XRF is a completely legitimate tool. However, when it was used on helmets, it became a misapplication of the technology. It was never meant to be used in the way that the XRFacts folks were using it. It was misapplied science in the hands of amateurs. I'm simplifying it here but, you get the idea.



#25 kammo-man

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Posted 03 December 2015 - 08:45 AM

And don't forget to mention NO third party overseeing the results coupled with the fact that there was NO set standard to begin with.

All of this is just a smoke screen for the fake helmets to be given Status as WW2 period.

Thats a big part of the findings.

I know of several of the bad helmets in friends collections and they are scary.......complete with COAs.

Its a massive shockwave through the helmet collecting house that they are bad and have been proved so.




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