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Posts posted by aef1917

  1. 1 hour ago, normaninvasion said:

    Only clue that I see, "World's War", I believe it WW1 was always refered to as The Great War until the start of the 2nd??


    "World's War" was fairly common usage at the time.  Collier's New Photographic History of the World's War and The 37th's Bit in the World's War of 1914-1918 are two examples that come to mind.

  2. It's out of the ordinary for a 4th Marine Brigade helmet, but not all WWI Marines were part of that organization.


    From the August 1919 issue of Recruiters' Bulletin, reporting on the return of the 11th Marine Regiment:  "Nearly all of the Marines had their helmets painted with all the colors of the rainbow.  The men said that a camouflage artist aboard was responsible for the tortoise-shell effects given to the tin hats."

  3. 1 hour ago, warguy said:

     If the Marine went over there early, the likelihood was higher they would get a British helmet but replacements during the summer of 1918 and those on occupation duty in 1919 that didn’t see much fighting might more likely ended up with a US helmet.


    This is "collector wisdom" that is not supported by documentary evidence.  The US continued purchasing helmets from the British until 1919.  Troops shipping out were not issued helmets stateside until September 1918.  The 8th Division somehow wound up being widely equipped with British helmets despite not even starting overseas movement until October 30, 1918.

  4. 6 hours ago, Okie96 said:

    At first glance I like it but looking closer the wear seems a bit odd. Just the way it's distributed.


    The liner may provide a clue here.  It's American, but the shell is British.  Usually that combination has a heavy sand exterior finish that was applied as part of the reconditioning process.  The "wear" looks similar to other helmets I've seen where the sand finish was scraped off to provide a smooth surface. 


    I sort of like what I see overall but I'd really want to give it a thorough going-over.  There's something about the method of painting the insignia that is rather unusual and gives me pause.  (doyler's helmet is painted the way I expect.)

  5. 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.

  6. 1 hour ago, DumpsterBaby said:


    Ahh I see, lot codes makes sense for the early examples, especially before any major consolidation and contracting for full-swing manufacture.  Great information overall, thank you! Another question on early models: Does Simmonds Saw fit in anywhere for early manufacture? I think I have seen them mentioned at least once outside of Dean's reference, but that seems to be the only mention of them. They aren't ever mentioned on the running lists of final manufactures; I just find it strange that if they had a hand in early development, they wouldn't continue on to manufacture. Or maybe they simply never got a contract?



    Eric, my notes are looking about the same, except for Worchester, can I ask about that one? Also, I tentatively have "H" as American Car and Foundry, but I will admit this is based on loose connections from bits of information. Nothing concrete, but something to consider.


    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.

  7. 19 hours ago, DumpsterBaby said:

    IIRC Bashford Dean mentions the Crosby Company being involved in early work on these helmets, presumably "C co" is them? Inevitably they were assigned "A"? With N being the foundry they sourced from or maybe identifying the earlier vanadium compositions?



    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.

  8. 1 hour ago, Costa said:

    no way Jose!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! what kind of weird buckle is on that chin strap??? looks to be from some sort of web gear. put on your sun glasses and walk away.




    You're not familiar with the rigger-modified 517th PRCT helmets?

  9. 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.

  10. 8 hours ago, rooster77 said:


     I thought maybe there were more than 2 manufactureres during ww2 but I guess not.



    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.

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