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Corpsman Helmet


Pro Libertate
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2 hours ago, Pro Libertate said:

 

As I've already stated, I'm hardly concerned with folks "buying their crates full of Army Surplus shells out from under me". I am concerned with the possibility of buyers contacting the company and requesting unique and unusual helmets--as I have--and thus depleting what I'm sure is a dwindling store of such helmets.

 

Again, as has already been mentioned, the subsequent layers of paint seem to be incompatible, prompting flaking; it's not the first time I've seen it. It's not beyond the realm of possibility that this helmet was stacked beneath other helmets (relatively protected from damp conditions and high humidity), and that the flaking took place during that time. Of course, this I'm just theorizing here.

 

I'm sorry, but I don't think your characterization of the helmet as "lacking patina" is correct. There's plenty of oxidation and scattered rust throughout. I own a World War II lid (photos below) that exhibits similar and substantial paint wear... does the fact it's not all rusted to the point of disintegrating indicate it's a reproduction or reenactment piece? I hardly think so. We see different levels of wear and decay based upon innumerable factors and circumstances surrounding a helmet's storage.

 

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"lacking patina"

all helmets have different levels of wear, all depends on what theyve seen and whos hands or heads theyve passed through, so a lack of wear is hardly proof unless it perfectly mint

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Pro Libertate

As others have pointed out, I only paid $20 for this helmet, so if it's not the genuine article, it's at least worth what I paid for it. Would I love to believe it's the real McCoy? You betcha'! I can't deny that. But I want that because of the historical significance it would hold and not for financial gain-- it was never my intention to turn around and sell this helmet.

 

In any case, I'm just incredulous when it comes to the insistence that my helmet is "most likely from the 80s", as two of our members have stated. Based upon what? Neither has offered up any explanation (beyond the name written in Sharpie along the inside). And I'm just supposed to concede because they're longtime collectors held in high esteem by the administrator, and I'm a lowly newbie?

 

The email below is from my correspondence with a member of the sales team, which aligns with what I was told by the individual responsible for their buying and procurement. Could she be feeding me a line? Perhaps... but why? What would she have to gain from that? I'll let you come to your own conlusions.

 

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CavalryCombatant

I standbye my opinion of it being mid ‘70s to ‘80s.  Since you’re curios, here’s my reasoning behind this.

 

#1 - The name marking inside the shell is consistent with what I’ve seen on 1970’s and 1980’s helmets.

#2 - The chinstrap bales appear to have had the post Vietnam clip on chinstraps, not exactly sure why but almost all the surplus helmets I’ve seen have dissformed bales when Vietnam period chinstraps were removed.

#3 - The paint seems consistent with postwar repainted helmets I’ve owned, if you want I can happily send you pictures to demonstrate any of these points.

 

I could probably go into more, but these are the ones that jump out to me. 
 

That’s as far as I’ll go, if you like it enjoy it as what it is.

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Pro Libertate

With all due respect, Combatant, you've neglected to answer the questions I've posed to you previously, seeking to explain these items. 

 

These helmets were in use up until '85, yes? Why is it so hard to believe that the helmet was reissued to a soldier (or soldiers) after the Vietnam conflict and that the name belongs to one of them? In fact, indications of wear caused by later clip-on straps (introduced in '72/'73, I believe, according to the equipment field manual I have) would support this theory, not hurt it. With respect... just how many helmets have you had the pleasure of analyzing? How many have had names Sharpied in them, and how do you determine when exactly this was done?

 

I'd love to see any photos you care to send me.

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bigschuss
3 hours ago, Pro Libertate said:

 

As I've already stated, I'm hardly concerned with folks "buying their crates full of Army Surplus shells out from under me". I am concerned with the possibility of buyers contacting the company and requesting unique and unusual helmets--as I have--and thus depleting what I'm sure is a dwindling store of such helmets.

 

Again, as has already been mentioned, the subsequent layers of paint seem to be incompatible, prompting flaking; it's not the first time I've seen it. It's not beyond the realm of possibility that this helmet was stacked beneath other helmets (relatively protected from damp conditions and high humidity), and that the flaking took place during that time. Of course, this I'm just theorizing here.

 

I'm sorry, but I don't think your characterization of the helmet as "lacking patina" is correct. There's plenty of oxidation and scattered rust throughout. I own a World War II lid (photos below) that exhibits similar and substantial paint wear... does the fact it's not all rusted to the point of disintegrating indicate it's a reproduction or reenactment piece? I hardly think so. We see different levels of wear and decay based upon innumerable factors and circumstances surrounding a helmet's storage.

 

 

 

 

OK.  Sounds good man.  I was just trying to help.  I only collect high quality examples of untouched WWII M1's and German helmets...been doing it since I was a 13 year old in the 80's.  In that field, lack of patina is absolutely a red flag unless it's an unissued mint example.  That's what I meant.  But yes, storage conditions can certainly affect that, and for typical USGI surplus that helmet could have been anywhere in the past 50 years.  

 

You expressed frustrations with those who espoused wild theories but didn't back them up.  Said they didn't add to the conversation.  Let's flip the coin.  What is so wild about the opinion that this could be an 80's era M1?  That's a wild claim?   Doesn't seem like a wild theory to me at all.  I don't know if your helmet is 1980's, 1970's, or indeed...a 1960's Vietnam used helmet as you seem to be theorizing.  I DO NOT personally think it's a re-enactor helmet.  But that also is not a WILD THEORY.  It's a fairly plausible theory actually.  Some of the best "good guy" M1 and German helmet dealers out there have been discovered to be engaging in nefarious selling practices.  Is it such a stretch to consider that Mom and Pop Army/Navy store is telling you what you want to hear to make the sale?  

 

So, in my quest to learn more about your helmet and gain some knowledge, I asked you to name the oufit you bought it from so I could do a little research and see what kinds of M1's they sell and seek some clarity.  You chose not to.  Instead, you changed your location to throw people off.  That doesn't seem like that was in the spirit of "adding to the conversation" as you are now bemoaning.   

 

At the end of the day, it's your helmet.  It's on your shelf.  As others have said, for $20 I would have bought it too.  As long as you are happy with it is all that matters.  I am happy for you.  And truthfully, as a fellow collector, I am rooting for you.  I am always happy when fellow collectors hit the jack pot.  Maybe you did.  And maybe it's a 1980's NG helmet.  

 

 

 

 

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The Rooster

Only reason I rule out 1980's is that by then all helmets had a cover on them.

Why would anyone paint any symbols on a helmet in the 1980's, that would be covered anyway?

National guard too. Heres mine from 1986. I swapped another one for it when we turned them in for kevlars.

Everyone wore a cover on their M1 in the 1980's.. At least that I saw. I wore this one from 82-86.

No body was painting anything on the steel back then. No point in it.

DSCF4078.JPG.d08528999f3b0ca3600f5ad886c96596.JPG

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CavalryCombatant

 

14 minutes ago, bigschuss said:

 

OK.  Sounds good man.  I was just trying to help.  I only collect high quality examples of untouched WWII M1's and German helmets...been doing it since I was a 13 year old in the 80's.  In that field, lack of patina is absolutely a red flag unless it's an unissued mint example.  That's what I meant.  But yes, storage conditions can certainly affect that, and for typical USGI surplus that helmet could have been anywhere in the past 50 years.  

 

You expressed frustrations with those who espoused wild theories but didn't back them up.  Said they didn't add to the conversation.  Let's flip the coin.  What is so wild about the opinion that this could be an 80's era M1?  That's a wild claim?   Doesn't seem like a wild theory to me at all.  I don't know if your helmet is 1980's, 1970's, or indeed...a 1960's Vietnam used helmet as you seem to be theorizing.  I DO NOT personally think it's a re-enactor helmet.  But that also is not a WILD THEORY.  It's a fairly plausible theory actually.  Some of the best "good guy" M1 and German helmet dealers out there have been discovered to be engaging in nefarious selling practices.  Is it such a stretch to consider that Mom and Pop Army/Navy store is telling you what you want to hear to make the sale?  

 

So, in my quest to learn more about your helmet and gain some knowledge, I asked you to name the oufit you bought it from so I could do a little research and see what kinds of M1's they sell and seek some clarity.  You chose not to.  Instead, you changed your location to throw people off.  That doesn't seem like that was in the spirit of "adding to the conversation" as you are now bemoaning.   

 

At the end of the day, it's your helmet.  It's on your shelf.  As others have said, for $20 I would have bought it too.  As long as you are happy with it is all that matters.  I am happy for you.  And truthfully, as a fellow collector, I am rooting for you.  I am always happy when fellow collectors hit the jack pot.  Maybe you did.  And maybe it's a 1980's NG helmet.  

 

 

 

 


Well put.

 

I hate to be the kind of person to not finish a conversation but I don’t feel like going any further, I apologize Pro Liberate.

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Pro Libertate

That's a mighty shame, CC. I'd ask you to reconsider, because yet again, you haven't attempted to answer the questions I've presented. All I want is some validation that my posts are actually being read and not dismissed, and I can't even seem to be given that courtesy.

 

Why is that colorful language written in Sharpie on a Mitchell cover has the potential to be Vietnam-era, but a name written inside a shell with that same Sharpie indicates it must be from the 80's? That's all I'm asking.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Pro Libertate said:

 

...folks often make wild assertions regarding the authenticity of an item (either yea or nay) and don't expound on how they came to that conclusion-- they add nothing to the discussion and bring nothing to the table.

 

Again, I just haven't seen that here at all so there is no need to push other's comments to the fringe. This is a "forum" and that does have a meaning.

Sorry if I'm being defensive of other members but I also really don't think you were in any way treated like "...you're being an unreasonable and argumentative jerk."

To me this is more important than the helmet and you are doing yourself a disservice.

As to the helmet and timeline, regardless of all the patina and speculation, what about it being seen in use? Are there many pics of M-1 helmets in use with these crosses in the time frames suggested either by the OP or others? A brief search came up with nothing. I can't remember those crosses used on M-1s very late in their issue. This is exactly the type of basic evidence required to even consider a theory IMO.

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CavalryCombatant
5 minutes ago, Pro Libertate said:

That's a mighty shame, CC. I'd ask you to reconsider, because yet again, you haven't attempted to answer the questions I've presented. All I want is some validation that my posts are actually being read and not dismissed, and I can't even seem to be given that courtesy.


I assure you I’m reading your posts, but having a hard time understanding exactly what you’re asking.  
 

If you feel it’s Vietnam period enjoy it as such, I’m not In a position to say if the markings are real or not so no point debating the age at this point.

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Pro Libertate
2 minutes ago, CavalryCombatant said:


I assure you I’m reading your posts, but having a hard time understanding exactly what you’re asking.  
 

If you feel it’s Vietnam period enjoy it as such, I’m not In a position to say if the markings are real or not so no point debating the age at this point.

 

I'm sorry if I'm not conveying things clearly enough. I'd like to refer you back to this, which is what I'd love a response to:

 

These helmets were in use up until '85, yes? Why is it so hard to believe that the helmet was reissued to a soldier (or soldiers) after the Vietnam conflict and that the name (written inside the shell) belongs to one of them? In fact, indications of wear caused by later clip-on straps (introduced in '72/'73, I believe, according to the equipment field manual I have) would support this theory, not hurt it. With respect... just how many helmets have you had the pleasure of analyzing? How many have had names Sharpied in them, and how do you determine when exactly this was done?

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The Rooster

Sharpie on a Vietnam cover??? Hmmmm. Maybe late Vietnam??  Fact is... most covers that are authentic have grafetti on them written in ball point pen.

Because ball point pens in the military were common and accessible. Sharpies on the other hand were not.

Ball point pens were Govt issue. Sharpies I do not believe were.

It looks like a late 50's early 60's medics crosses painted on there as that kind of thing was in fashion after Korea and before Vietnam.

And its a nice job for someone to have spent so much time to just put a cover over it.

After Vietnam everyones M1 had a cover unless you were unsat and if you were someone would fix that pronto.

Fact is  that sharpie name could have been written by some kid? Or anyone well afetr its service life.

Who knows? Look up the name rather than keep beating a dead horse.

If you find a name thats relevant post it. Ive got my last name written inside my NG helmet in sharpie marker.

About 10 times. Mine was a new issue helmet. So thats not uncommon for the 1980's.

 

"These helmets were in use up until '85, yes?"

 

I think they were still used by the Navy into the 2000's ?

 

 

 

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USMC_COLLECTOR

Yeah. I believe we should leave this helmet behind.

One, being rude to members on the forum is a way to get banned, especially if you are a new member.

I do not think that a TWENTY dollar helmet deserves this trouble.

I think this has gotten away as a discussion of credibility and honor.

So lets leave it behind.

If this was an extremely rare helmet, or one with a lot of provenance, then this discussion would make more sense.

But this has gotten into a conversation about insulting other members.

Let's just leave it here.

Regards,

Porter

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The Rooster
4 minutes ago, USMC_COLLECTOR said:

Yeah. I believe we should leave this helmet behind.

One, being rude to members on the forum is a way to get banned, especially if you are a new member.

I do not think that a TWENTY dollar helmet deserves this trouble.

I think this has gotten away as a discussion of credibility and honor.

So lets leave it behind.

If this was an extremely rare helmet, or one with a lot of provenance, then this discussion would make more sense.

But this has gotten into a conversation about insulting other members.

Let's just leave it here.

Regards,

Porter

Yup.

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bigschuss
7 minutes ago, Pro Libertate said:

 

These helmets were in use up until '85, yes? Why is it so hard to believe that the helmet was reissued to a soldier (or soldiers) after the Vietnam conflict and that the name (written inside the shell) belongs to one of them? 

 

Totally plausible theory about the name.  

 

And no...M1's were used well after 1985.  I was in an Army Reserve unit in '87 and '88 and we had M1's.  I also deployed to Desert Shield in 1990 in an active duty AF unit and we had M1's.  

 

 

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Pro Libertate

Alright, guys. Fair enough.

I don't have any recollection of insulting any other members here. I've just been eager to learn, and it's frustrating to be offered opinions on why things are so with very little substance (ie. background, experience, evidence, etc.); there seems to be this odd reluctance to answer. But I guess we're not supposed to question what we're told by members with a high post count.

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USMC_COLLECTOR

No, all I'm saying is this seems to be carrying on from the original post. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I am just saying that I believe we can all move on. You got a cool cheap helmet, and potentially some info you can use. I believe we can leave this post behind as it has gotten to the point where we are pointing fingers. I don't know what any other members think, but this is my opinion.

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The Rooster

"I don't have any recollection of insulting any other members here."

 

"But I guess we're not supposed to question what we're told by members with a high post count."

 

"there seems to be this odd reluctance to answer."

 

4 Pages of reluctance.

 

Enjoy your helmet.

 

 

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USMC_COLLECTOR

Mods, I think this post has nothing else to receive. If possible, I think we should close it off for anymore comments.

Pro Libertare, enjoy your helmet. Hope you are happy with your purchase.

Have a nice day,

Regards, 

Porter

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bigschuss
43 minutes ago, Pro Libertate said:

Alright, guys. Fair enough.

I don't have any recollection of insulting any other members here. I've just been eager to learn, and it's frustrating to be offered opinions on why things are so with very little substance (ie. background, experience, evidence, etc.); there seems to be this odd reluctance to answer. But I guess we're not supposed to question what we're told by members with a high post count.

 

I think the thing with this helmet is that you'll just never know for sure.  Ever.  It's not a one-looker original.  It's also not a one-looker obvious fake.  Kind of caught in between in no man's land...impossible to validate completely or reject completely.  So all you and me and the other members have to go on are the clues...and yes, gut feeling based on years, if not decades, of experience.   Establishing some provenance for this helmet..that unbroken chain of custody...would help to understand its pedigree, or at least rule out some scenarios.  Thus my question about the source.  

 

I will say this.  Your pics are terrible.   On some of the German helmet forums I frequent if I showed up with pics like that I'd get laughed off the forum.  Large clear pics of your helmet taken in natural light might shed some light.  Lots of macro shots of the paint.  USB scope pics of the white and red could help.  

 

Still rooting for you!  And no...you can't believe everything you read on the net.  And no, I wasn't lying.  👍

 

 

 

 

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