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Catching The Fakes Guide - Insignias And Patina


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#51 Bugme

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 09:25 AM

This is the stainless steel rim after exposure to acid's. Like I said, it's a dead give-away!

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  • Helmet_Test_Project_3_MP_001.jpg


#52 Bugme

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 09:26 AM

Insignia area with an acid enhanced patina before:

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  • Helmet_Test_Project_011.jpg


#53 Bugme

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 09:27 AM

And after. You'll notice, the acid was not as aggressive as you would think. This is the result of several treatments:

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Edited by Bugme, 22 June 2009 - 09:28 AM.


#54 Bugme

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 09:29 AM

The area around the 29th insignia before and after:

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  • Helmet_Test_Project_012.jpg
  • Helmet_Test_Project_3_MP_003.jpg


#55 Bugme

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 09:34 AM

CONCLUSION: I don't think acid is used as much as we actually think it is. Again, sulfuric acid may produce different results but, the aggressive nature of this stuff and the possible danger to yourself is too great to try. All other moderately aggressive acids work way too slow for the forger. My thoughts are, they are using the accelerated natural methods previously mentioned. I guess if anything came out of the test, it's that acids reveal themselves on the stainless steel rim by yellowing it.

#56 Bugme

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Posted 24 June 2009 - 04:43 AM

Below is a photo of a recent helmet found on eBay being sold by a known faker. This process was done with a much more caustic acid than what I was willing to work with but, the aggressive nature of the acid can be seen. This particular helmet never even got one bid on it. The word is getting around and helmet collectors are getting smarter! :thumbsup:

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  • 3676_12.jpg
  • 3490_12.jpg

Edited by Bugme, 24 June 2009 - 05:13 AM.


#57 Blake_E

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Posted 24 June 2009 - 05:21 AM

Hey all, interesting discoveries about the acid. After a quick chat with Bugme, I have been pondering how they would be getting so much rust, so acidic looking, so quickly. I think perhaps something along the lines of a mix, a base liquid, with an accelerant, then, they could likely immerse the helmet in this, and air it out, to suck the moisture out of that mix only, rather than the actual air. But obviously, chemical wise, it's much stronger than what Bugme has used, and definately would be more dangerous. Trained scientists do permanent damage hurting themselves using caustic sodas every year. Or they could take it another step and using a similar concuction, but an actual tank electrolisis procedure, sucking all the rust onto every nook and cranny in the helmet's patina. But the giveaway in any scenario is such a thick looking acidic type rust, almost a 'burnt' look, which genuine, even relic helmets do not have. As said, it's a very aggressive procedure, quick thick rust, but not the correct look

Edited by Blake_E, 24 June 2009 - 05:22 AM.


#58 Acadien359

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Posted 07 February 2014 - 08:01 PM

Bugme and Blake,

 

Great articles on a subject which has hit way too close to home for all of us. When I started collecting US militaria back in the late 70s [because I couldn't, and STILL can't, afford German stuff!], nobody cared about M1 helmets--after all, the Army was still using them at the time, and I was able to pick up most of mine before they became hyper-popular. How ironic that another reason I started collecting US stuff was because it wasn't being reproduced like the German stuff. Well, how times have changed, to the point that a unit marked WW2 M1 helmet [depending on type of helmet and unit markings] can conceivably bring more than its German double-decal equivalent in like condition. I guess one of the things that concerns me is that the fakers will read the above posts and have an "Ah ha, THAT'S what I've been doing wrong!" moment and rectify the problem for their next creation. Still a great reference and keep up the good work. One can't be too careful!



#59 Bugme

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Posted 08 February 2014 - 08:53 AM

 ...I guess one of the things that concerns me is that the fakers will read the above posts and have an "Ah ha, THAT'S what I've been doing wrong!" moment and rectify the problem for their next creation. Still a great reference and keep up the good work. One can't be too careful!

You don't have to worry, we've only touched on what the fakers already know, anything that would aid them, I ain't sharing. ;) We're just trying to help newer and casual collectors to not fall for obvious junk.




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