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Unit Marked SPH-4 HSS Helmet


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#1 mwesson030

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Posted 25 August 2019 - 07:42 PM

Hi all,

Just arrived in the mail a few days ago and thought I would share. Besides a broken microphone boom and a few scuffs the helmet is in great shape. Interestingly there seems to be a painted over unit insignia in the shape of what I think is a bird talon that I have yet to identify.


On a side note, how did night vision work on these helmets? I see it has the velcro and some kind of loop involved but there isn’t exactly dedicated mount for the goggles.


Best,

mwesson030

Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Imagehttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20190826/fac4203eb9e8babf1f3499f4583e8f5c.jpg






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#2 mwesson030

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Posted 25 August 2019 - 07:44 PM

Another shot of the insigniaPosted Image


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#3 mohawkALSE

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Posted 25 August 2019 - 10:24 PM

That talon looks familiar but I cant put my finger on it.   That helmet might have been setup for the PVS-5 NVG setup before it was modified for the Cobra HSS, or it had the ANVIS V2 bracket at one time and was removed.  With the HSS setup, the V2 bracket mounted offset on the front left of the visor housing.  It also utilized the center visor slot for the lock knob to hold it in place so the visor cannot be using with the ANVIS mount is installed.  Those mounts pop up time to time on ebay.  People sometime think its the style for a HGU-84 since it has the plastic plate behind the ANVIS mount.  Looks totally different though, and lots of them that Ive seen are missing the adapter plate that mounts in the lock knob slot in the center.  If you find the AN/AVS-6   -10 from around 1991, it will show the V2 mount for the Cobra HSS.  I actually have a new  V2 PAS for the AVS-6 goggles.  Was thinking if one day I ever got a SPH-4 with the HSS and V2 mount I could change over the pair of V1 AVS-6 goggles I have to the V2.



#4 mwesson030

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Posted 26 August 2019 - 03:18 AM

After a bit of digging and asking around I found this - 2/101 ABN. Possibly a match?



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#5 mohawkALSE

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Posted 26 August 2019 - 05:46 PM

Found a pic online that was decent for showing the offset viewer mount for the PVS-5 GM-2 or AVS-6V2 goggles. 

 

Other note, the Adel clamp on your visor housing is indeed for the power cable of the NVG mount.  You can just make it out with the cable in this pic.  You will see alot of ANVIS setup SPH-4 and 4B helmets with those adel clamps.  The one that comes with the viewer mount is cheap aluminum so were swapped out.

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  • AH1HSSV2OFFSET2.jpg

Edited by mohawkALSE, 26 August 2019 - 05:50 PM.


#6 mwesson030

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 10:18 AM

Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image


Added NVG mount/battery pack. All that is left now is to find a new microphone boom assembly.

#7 mohawkALSE

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 01:54 PM

Good find on the V2 offset mount and looks like it was complete with all its hardware.  Not to common to find complete.  Ive seen people selling incomplete ones and stripping off the actual mount to use for other purposes.



#8 mwesson030

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 07:30 PM

Thanks. 

 

Just out of curiosity, were these mounts just used on HSS helmets or had the Army moved to the SPH-4B by the time these were introduced?



#9 mohawkALSE

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 05:02 PM

The V2 ANVIS mounts were specifically for the AH-1 HSS assemblies in the late 80s before the SPH-4B existed.  These actually were also used with the COBB mounts using the PVS-5 goggles for aviation use.  They had a V1 COBB mount and a V2 offset COBB mount for the PVS-5.  COBB mounts were also called a Guard Mount or GM-1 and GM-2.  These were the PVS-5 using a ANVIS style mount and external battery pack.

 

When the 4B came out in the early 90s, some AH-1 helmets probably still trucked on til retirement with the original SPH-4 shells but some got the lightweight SPH-4B shells and the dual visor assembly removed for the AH-1 HSS visor assembly.  Even go in to the late 90s with the decline in AH-1s in Army service, they came out with a HGU-56 AH-1 dual visor assembly for the HSS and ANVIS setup.  Never saw any photos of them in actual Army use on the 56P helmet but I have seen the visor housings around, and a few of the helmets with it setup for sale.  Im pretty sure the ALSE shops would have basically stripped the old SPH HSS housings for their wiring and sight then installed them on the 56P visor.  The 56P AH-1 housing uses just a standard ANVIS mount but was mounted offset like on the SPH setup.  

 

Id love to get one of these AH-1 helmets complete someday.  If that ever happens I am going to convert an original pair of AVS-6(V1) goggles I have to the V2.  I have a NOS offset V2 PAS assembly to convert them.

 

They still use the same basic parts for the AH-1 HSS on Marine HGU helmets for the AH-1W.  The sight mounts on their ANVIS dock located at the top front of the shell.  If you ever look at a standard HGU-84, you will see that block is divided into 2 sections and will see the electrical connections for the ANVIS.  The other side would be where the electrical pins are when a HSS wiring loom is installed.  Can only use 1 or the other, cant mount the sight and ANVIS together like the SPH seup did.  When the HGU-84 is setup with the HSS, it becomes a HGU-67.



#10 Retro

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 08:20 PM

Allegedly from Army Aviation Digest's May, 1983; found through the S21K page on facebook (excellent if you like special operations stuff). Also looks to be some very early versions of ANVIS, which is interesting for 1983. Thanks.

 

 

44533084_308737929723090_825709725244771



#11 mwesson030

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 09:01 PM

The V2 ANVIS mounts were specifically for the AH-1 HSS assemblies in the late 80s before the SPH-4B existed.  These actually were also used with the COBB mounts using the PVS-5 goggles for aviation use.  They had a V1 COBB mount and a V2 offset COBB mount for the PVS-5.  COBB mounts were also called a Guard Mount or GM-1 and GM-2.  These were the PVS-5 using a ANVIS style mount and external battery pack.

 

When the 4B came out in the early 90s, some AH-1 helmets probably still trucked on til retirement with the original SPH-4 shells but some got the lightweight SPH-4B shells and the dual visor assembly removed for the AH-1 HSS visor assembly.  Even go in to the late 90s with the decline in AH-1s in Army service, they came out with a HGU-56 AH-1 dual visor assembly for the HSS and ANVIS setup.  Never saw any photos of them in actual Army use on the 56P helmet but I have seen the visor housings around, and a few of the helmets with it setup for sale.  Im pretty sure the ALSE shops would have basically stripped the old SPH HSS housings for their wiring and sight then installed them on the 56P visor.  The 56P AH-1 housing uses just a standard ANVIS mount but was mounted offset like on the SPH setup.  

 

Id love to get one of these AH-1 helmets complete someday.  If that ever happens I am going to convert an original pair of AVS-6(V1) goggles I have to the V2.  I have a NOS offset V2 PAS assembly to convert them.

Thanks for the NVG info. This is something I really don't know much about. On the topic of service life, this shell was made in 1978 per the label and was last due for inspection in October of 1996. Funny to think of this thing still in active use while they are just starting to issue the 56/p helmets. 

 

 

Getting a complete setup on one of these helmets with night vision and all would be great to see. Quite the challenge to get all the parts together. 

 

 

Attached a photo of an HGU-56 Cobra helmet that you were speaking about below for some frame of reference. Looks like you could be right in saying it uses surplus HSS components - it appears to use the exact same wiring harness as seen in my helmet. I do wonder though what the reasoning was behind offsetting the rear mount. 

Attached Images

  • Capture2.JPG
  • Capture3.JPG
  • Capture4.JPG


#12 mwesson030

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 09:05 PM

Allegedly from Army Aviation Digest's May, 1983; found through the S21K page on facebook (excellent if you like special operations stuff). Also looks to be some very early versions of ANVIS, which is interesting for 1983. Thanks.

 

 

44533084_308737929723090_825709725244771

 

 

Very cool photo.  Is it just me or have the lower ear sections of the shell been trimmed back? You can see much more of the earcups than normal. Also the boom knob looks more like those found on the IHADSS helmets than on an SPH-4.


Edited by mwesson030, 05 December 2019 - 09:11 PM.


#13 Retro

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 09:29 PM

Does appear to be a trimmed up shell. Here's the only other photo from the set with that helmet:

44533084_308737929723090_8257097252447715328_ox.jpg

 



#14 BEAST

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Posted 06 December 2019 - 06:55 AM

Possibly the same Warrant Officer?

 

U.S. Army CHIEF Warrant Officer James Legaspi and CPT Matt Baldwin, helicopter pilots from A Company, 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment prepare for a take off before an Air Assault operation with units from Forward Operating Base Remagen, Tikrit on April 30, 2006. Operation Savage Strike was conducted by Soldiers from 3-320th Field Artillery Regiment and Iraqi army soldiers.(U.S. Army photo by SPC. Teddy Wade) (Released)

 

us-army-chief-warrant-officer.jpg

 



#15 mohawkALSE

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 03:24 PM

Good pics Retro.  I was looking to see if I could find that whole article from Aviation Digest and unfortunately the Army apparently stopped hosting the old issues.  The Aviation Digest site used to have all the issues available for download and now dont have any hosted beyond 2013.  I downloaded a bunch of those from the 60s and such related to ALSE.

 

What mask is that in the 2d pic showing that modified SPH?  Is that a early MCU-2?  Even that helmet looks to have a different retention assembly, has 3 snaps for O2 masks like the early versions with the leather strips yet this looks to be just the cloth like that later style.



#16 mwesson030

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 08:19 PM


Taking another look at this helmet and I was wondering if the yellow paint underneath is some sort of custom paint job or just some kind of primer. Anywhere the paint has started to rub off or there are some deeper scratches in paint I see yellow. Anyone else with an HSS see something like this?


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#17 72psb

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Posted 12 December 2019 - 06:52 AM

It could be a zinc chromate primer as the sight base is aluminium. I checked my example,no sign of yellow under the paint.



#18 AMT369D

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Posted 12 December 2019 - 07:03 AM

most probably zinc chromate. 

Very common with everything aviation for many years until most recently.



#19 Retro

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Posted 12 December 2019 - 11:55 AM

Good pics Retro.  I was looking to see if I could find that whole article from Aviation Digest and unfortunately the Army apparently stopped hosting the old issues.  The Aviation Digest site used to have all the issues available for download and now dont have any hosted beyond 2013.  I downloaded a bunch of those from the 60s and such related to ALSE.

 

What mask is that in the 2d pic showing that modified SPH?  Is that a early MCU-2?  Even that helmet looks to have a different retention assembly, has 3 snaps for O2 masks like the early versions with the leather strips yet this looks to be just the cloth like that later style.

Hey, Tom. Mask is an XM29; one of the masks that led up to the MCU-2. The army trialed the XM29s and later XM30s. There were variants for CVC and aircrew as well. They also tried the XM43 in the AH1s in the late 80s as well. Thanks.




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