M1942 German Helmet Shell

M1942 German helmet shell in as found condition. Remnants of the single decal are still visible. Slight surface rust outside and in. It’s been around the block. No dings though!
This is late war production and is missing the rolled edge of earlier helmets. Now in my private collection.


Good find.
Decals are pretty rare in any shape on a used helmet.
Most you see are never issued helmets of fakes.


Upon closer inspection me thinks the decal may be fake. Thoughts? I’m in it for less than the price of the shell.

Original decals had a foil backing on them and then over coated with a lacquer or something.
A water transfer decal is a dead giveaway of a fake.
Also since there is corrosion on the helmet I would look at the edges of the decal and see if the corrosion is lifting the edge or the decal was placed over it.
Unfortunately these are the most faked helmets out there and more fakes then real.

Maybe you guys can help. I have this Luftwaffe helmet. Stumbled across it cheap and figured I’d take a shot. Based on limited research a while back, it seems to be authentic. But, I’m not an expert. Anything y’all can tell me about it would be great as this is not my area of expertise.


That’s really a nice piece of history you have there. I remember one like it sitting on my grandfather’s fireplace. It was real- he brought it back from the war.

I’m no German helmet expert. I’m still learning. All I have are two real shells- one with corrosion and one Afrika Corps rolled edge that has been refurbished.

I would love to say YES, you have the real deal, but honestly I don’t know. The liner is in rough shape. Good sign. @Grenz45 is right though. They were and are faked a lot. I hope yours is real!

That being said- looking to trade it or sell? :thinking:

I wouldn’t be opposed to the idea. I have no idea of the value.

I’d be willing to take the chance, private message me with what you’re looking for!


you have to remember a real helmet that had a “decal” applied after is still a real helmet. I collect swords and trying to tell a modern reproductions can at times to be hard. A prime example is Japanese post Taisho period, The fact is that there were more swords made during the Showa period than the whole period prior to Meiji. It came to a point and I believe 1935/36 concerning “fake” ancestor swords within the Imperial Japanese military that a law was passed and all swords had to have an acceptance stamp. The Shin Gunto was a specific type of specification that was closer to the Tachi and not a Katana and in truth there really wasn’t that many pre Meiji made.
So if there is more ABCDE that match and add up as compared to A—E than consider it real and a lot of times the “experts” can be wrong.


You’re absolutely right @srdiver. I have various helmets that have been upgraded, re-used, and re-furbished. Sticker or decal be darned, it’s still a real piece of history. Boo on those people that try to pass off fake stuff though. I hate it, but it happens. A lot.

Fortunately I have a local dealer that does not mis-represent what he has. A batch of shells that have been painted are still authentic shells. They’re just not worth what the minty examples are. Buyer beware of anything that is too good to be true. If you want the best of the best, you may end up paying what it’s worth. :tired_face: Even then, the owner may not be willing to part with it for anything less than what they think it’s worth.


If you want to open Pandora’s proverbial box here and do the real/fake thing with swords, I’d be up for some learnin’. Start the thread!

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