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Thoughts on WW1 painted steel Helmet


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This was in my friends Grandfathers attic. His Grandfather has been gone about 35 years already, but his family still lives in the house. I have no dog in the fight, the helmet is not for sale but I offered to dig out the relics and clean and preserve them. Two of these the other is sand finish and green. A few bayonets as well WW1 US and German. I am mostly a weapons guy. Is this a Brit helmet used by a GI or a WW1 US? The helmet has heavy brush strokes on it. And the insignia on 4 sides. I read the post below on painted helmets very informative. Any thoughts on value are appreciated.

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A very nice and rare helmet! Although the camo pattern was not really used by US troops during the war, it was more common to see this added later on by the troops - the same with the armored forces triangle as well. any name inside?

Mr.JERRY
Collector of WWI & WWII Home Front Flags, Unit Flags & Guidons,US & German helmets, insignia, uniforms, medals,

Women's Military Uniforms,Wisconsin Vocational School made Fighting Knives.

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It's is clean now. Had 40 years of mouse poo and dust on it. The bayonets were starting to rust. I told the family the plain WW1 pot that was good condition was prob worth $100 if the house burned or was robbed. Any thoughts on this one? I was thinking $350?

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How is the leather in the liners? One thing that you could do to preserve the leather is hand rub some Picards Leather Dressing in it. I have had to do this with some boots, liners, and pouches and it makes the leather soft again. I would not touch the paint at all. The bayonets...I have not figured that out yet to get the rust off without destroying something else. I have a WWII German Dress Bayonet that was given to me buy my Second Cousin that her father brought back and the metal is pretty corroded. All that I did was put a light coat of gun oil on it IOT not continue to rust.

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The leather is soft and dry showing cracks. I used a big bore 44 cleaning pad on the bayonets. It's made for cleaning corrosion off guns. It's fairly gentle on bluing but if you get too ambitious it will leave scratches.

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One thing that you could do to preserve the leather is hand rub some Picards Leather Dressing in it. I have had to do this with some boots, liners, and pouches and it makes the leather soft again.

 

Absolutely the worst thing you can do. There are no "magic potions" for leather. Pecard or other will make it appear soft and oily. A few years later you will notice a white "halo" form on the leather--this is a result of the Pecard or oil potion leaching the tannins from the leather, leaving it far more vulnerable than it is now.

 

Pecard or other treatment actually lowers the value of relics because most serious collectors know that harms the long-term health.

 

It's like makeup on an old person. It might cover wrinkles or make the surface appear moist and supple, but in the end, it is still old tissue--and their ain't no cure for that!

 

JAG

Top dollar paid for WWI AEF Tank Corps uniforms, medal groups, equipment and photos,
unit histories and rosters...especially anything associated with

301st (Heavy) Tank Bn
Drop me an email and let me know what you have.

 

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Not to start an argument here, but I disagree. Picards and Blackrock have been recommended through multiple collectors. I have used it on antique leather, baseball gloves, horse saddles, etc. and have never had a problem and have no white film. Yes Picards will leave a white film in u apply it in large quantities, hence why I said hand rub it in. A little goes a long way.

 

But make sure you use your own judgement then.

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It's is clean now. Had 40 years of mouse poo and dust on it. The bayonets were starting to rust. I told the family the plain WW1 pot that was good condition was prob worth $100 if the house burned or was robbed. Any thoughts on this one? I was thinking $350?

 

Back to your question of value, I believe $350 is a good start. I think this helmet would bring more on eBay. I say this having been outbid recently on a few painted helmets!

Very nice helmet. If the initials you speak of match the vet then of course value goes up. I'm curious what some of the more experienced members have to say regarding value.

Bob Davis
Secretary, Arizona Chapter, The Orders and Medals Research Society
ASMIC Member #5364, OVMS Member #11939
US Army Infantry 2001-2009, OIF/OEF Veteran

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I just carefully moved the liner to the side. It is either KP or KD in yellow paint that matches what is on the helmet. I do not believe this would of been there grandfathers but their great grandfathers. But there is a 2nd helmet as well with no markings so maybe grandpa was just a collector.

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Not to start an argument here, but I disagree. Picards and Blackrock have been recommended through multiple collectors. I have used it on antique leather, baseball gloves, horse saddles, etc. and have never had a problem and have no white film. Yes Picards will leave a white film in u apply it in large quantities, hence why I said hand rub it in. A little goes a long way.

 

You'd likely lose the arguement anyhow. ;) Picards and others like it are fine for NEW leather. However, leather creams / preservatives / magic snake oil treatments, etc are bad mojo. Leather is organic, tanning only slows the inevitable state of decay that it is in. Even museum curators now agree, that while the treatment will make it look good for a short time, it WILL speed up the rate of decay in the long haul. Please, please, please, do not treat this old leather.

"There is no such thing as an expert, only students with different levels of education."
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You'd likely lose the arguement anyhow. ;) Picards and others like it are fine for NEW leather. However, leather creams / preservatives / magic snake oil treatments, etc are bad mojo. Leather is organic, tanning only slows the inevitable state of decay that it is in. Even museum curators now agree, that while the treatment will make it look good for a short time, it WILL speed up the rate of decay in the long haul. Please, please, please, do not treat this old leather.

 

Guys I never intended to treat the leather. Thanks for the comments on the lid, I will send them back to the family and let them know it should carry about a $400 insurance value. Very much appreciate the wisdom on this board!

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We will keep that in and glad this did not end up in insults.

 

Back to guys helmet...thanks for sharing.

 

You'd likely lose the arguement anyhow. ;) Picards and others like it are fine for NEW leather. However, leather creams / preservatives / magic snake oil treatments, etc are bad mojo. Leather is organic, tanning only slows the inevitable state of decay that it is in. Even museum curators now agree, that while the treatment will make it look good for a short time, it WILL speed up the rate of decay in the long haul. Please, please, please, do not treat this old leather.

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