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WWI US Helmet Blackish-Blue Paint Color?


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Hi

So I recently bought a WWI American helmet at a nearby flea market and had a question about the paint color on the helmet. It is like a black cracked paint color, and I thought it was maybe a naval helmet. When I returned home, I was sort of puzzled. I really don't know much about WWI helmets and I'm hoping you guys can help me with this one.

Thanks,

CCF

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Can you post a picture of the interior, when you have a chance?

Without data, your just another person with an opinion...................

 

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Most of the Kohler helmets had a number painted inside though, right? This one looks darker as well. For what it's worth, I suspect this was painted well after the helmet was mfg.

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It looks like there is some sort of cloth underneath the paint. Am I seeing that correctly?

 

I think that's probably due to heat exposure (in an attic?) and direct contact against something. The paint melted and pealed off onto whatever material it was against (probably a M1910 pack that now has a nice black streak on it)...

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That crumbly edge doesn't look like melting... it'd be a lot more smooth or only on obviously raised bits of texture.

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There's a bit of oilcloth stuck to the outside, which suggests that it was stacked with other helmets. The ZC232 lot number is pretty consistent with the range seen in the Kohler m1917s.

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The Kohler riot helmets were all over the map for color. There was blue, dark blue and light blue but, they all had one thing in common, of the 150+ that we located, they ALL had a number on the brim and none of them looked melted. Some were found in canvas bags packed 5 to a bag. Some of them had a heavy paper stuck between the helmets which stuck to the oil cloth on some of the liners and was a bugger to clean off. Others were stacked directly upon each other which could account for the oil cloth look. However, none had a smooth finish, the blue was painted over the heavy sawdust finish. Sadly, a few got turned into mouse huts(shown below) but for the most part they were preserved like the day they were packed away.

This is all based on what I saw on those which we located. I do know that about 50 others were sold by the Kohler police dept a few years before I got these out of the Kohler Town Hall attic when they were slated to go to a junk yard but were saved by a janitor. This helmet could be from that earlier batch.

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Looking at this again, I see remnants of the packing paper that we saw on the liners found in our bunch. This could actually be one of the Kohler helmets.

"There is no such thing as an expert, only students with different levels of education."
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