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aef1917

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    Hellaware
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    Helmets!

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  1. From what I have been able to gather, Simonds never got a helmet contract. Their war effort seems to have focused on tools and armor plate for the most part. Likewise, I have seen references to Hale & Kilburn making m1917s, but I haven't seen any evidence to confirm that. They were heavily involved with experimental helmets and body armor for much of the war. Mullins got a contract less than a month before the Armistice and only pressed about 100 helmets. Sturges & Burn also got a contract around the same time but it's unclear whether they actually made any before all of the helmet contracts were canceled.
  2. Simonds Saw did a considerable amount of experimental work in 1916 and early 1917, and was the first American company to press a copy of the British Mk. I helmet. Based on this work, the Army offered company president Alvan T. Simonds a commission as a captain in the Ordnance Department overseeing the development of the US helmet program. Simonds accepted, but refused to divest his interest in his company, and conflict-of-interest regulations prevented Simonds from getting a helmet contract. Following a legal dispute, Capt. Simonds resigned his commission and was replaced by Bashford Dean. Based on documents and helmets I have, the list of manufacturers in Dean, Crowell, et al. is missing at least 6 companies, and I have been unable to confirm that Benjamin Electric actually made any. Knowing that Worcester Pressed Steel made the Wilmer eye shields was my initial clue that they were B, which I was subsequently able to confirm.
  3. Mostly correct. All of the documentation I have found points to the CCo helmets being among the first m1917 helmets manufactured. I have several of these helmets and N is not the only leading letter. Others I can remember off the top of my head are K and O, which suggests to me that they are lot codes. The company asked to continue using their logo when regular production began, but the Ordnance Department required them to adhere to the same marking scheme as the other companies, and they were assigned the letter A. Since the W steel consisted of a single lot of helmet blanks, there was no need for a numeric lot code. As a side note, it's not surprising that there are no marks inside the liner. Prior to December 1917, Ordnance Department regulations for liners prohibited makers' marks as they were considered advertising. Any liner made prior to then would only bear the occasional Ordnance inspection stamp.
  4. Would it blow your mind if I told you the WA helmet and the NCCo helmet were made by the same company?
  5. Seems to me that using an obviously post-WWII liner is just as effective as putting "replica" somewhere inside.
  6. Manufacture of M1-C helmets did not begin until January 1945, which, if my understanding of the space-time continuum is correct, came after 1943.
  7. You're not familiar with the rigger-modified 517th PRCT helmets?
  8. The pool of dedicated WWI experimental helmet collectors is very small, but the Model 8 tends to appeal to people outside of this group. Not having the original finish will reduce the value, but as you said, the potential to move it when a better example presents itself is always there. The liners in these tended to deteriorate pretty badly, so an original one in this condition is a plus. For the last few years,, there have been several examples available at the SOS in the $3-5K price range.
  9. It's an original Model 8 with the original liner. Looks like the exterior was smoothed off and repainted, possibly as part of a theatrical knight costume.
  10. This particular example looks to be a civilian helmet rather than a reused m1917.
  11. I had one once. Helmets of the ETO says they're early, which makes sense since mine was the straight style that seems specially designed to slice through the leather.
  12. There are also WWII chinstraps with brown hardware. M1-C production began in January, 1945.
  13. Yeah, with the clearer pics I'd say some sort of refurb. I'm always interested in potential Parish-Reading helmets, since everything we know is based on about 10 known examples.
  14. There were. The third manufacturer had lot codes starting with a P near the right chinstrap loop and 9 spot welds around the rim in addition to two at the seam. They were late war, so they should have rear seam manganese rims. Your pictures are too dark to make out much detail so I can't really tell what's going on with this one.
  15. Oh really? Then why is this guy shooting helmets with a .45 and why do they just have dents in them?
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