M1935 Stahlhelme

M1935 Stahlhelme

M1935 Stahlhelme

An M1935 pattern Steel Helmet (Stahlhelme)

Picture taken by Stahlkocher and published under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version


The German M1935 Helmet History

Due to the types of warfare taking place prior to WW1 helmets were not at all like what we use in today’s times. Made of cloth or leather they did little to help protect the head during battle.

Think of the German Pickelhaub , the spiked boiled leather helmet the German’s wore up until 1916, headgear made to protect from saber cuts not for bullets or shrapnel.

Once the highly dangerous trench war of WWI began these types of helmets became a big problem and of little protection. Due to the high number of casualties and deaths as a result of severe head wounds during the Great War the French designed and initiated the use of the first steel helmet.

This helmet, the Adrian Helmet, became the helmet by which all further steel helmets evolved from. The British army then developed the Brodie Helmet which would also become the helmet used by the US army.

The Germans, slow to follow suit, finally developed the Stahlhelm or steel helmet. Initially, in 1915, the Army Detachment of the Vogesen developed a new helmet that consisted of leather but with a steel plate to protect the soldier’s eyes and nose.

By 1916 the Germans developed the M1916 and this helmet became instantly recognizable by it “coal shuttle” shape. The design of the M1916 was made by Dr. Friedrich Schwerd from the Technical Institute in Hanover. After studying the types of head wounds that were suffered in battle Schwerd designed and produced the Stahlhelm based on a 15 th Century sallet. The helmet was made with a much harder material, martensitic silicon/nickel than the Brodie helmet which was steel. Finally completed in February 1916 it was first distributed to the troops of Verdum and was a marked improvement for the troops.

The M1916 went through several changes in its early life mostly with the chin strap arrangement and the internal liner systems resulting in the M1917 and M1918 helmets. The M1918 came designed with a cut out on the sides of the helmets for the Ears. After Germany lost the Great War, most of the M1916 helmets were destroyed as per the terms of the Versailles Treaty, though some remained for use by the police.

By 1932 a new helmet was being modeled to replace the older types. The new helmet, M1933, retained the original shape but it was made from a composite plastic material which was more lightweight. The M1933 helmet was only used in small numbers and was quickly removed from service after the introduction of the M1935 helmet. The M1933 though no longer issued to the military was used still used by police and fire brigades.

With Dr. Fredrich Schwerd again in charge of the improvements to German helmets he worked with the Eisenhüttenwerke Company in 1934 to rework and re-design and test a newer model. This would become the M1935. Made with pressed Molybdenum steel, the size of both the visor and skirt were made smaller with the edge of the shell still being rolled.

The ventilation holes became smaller when they were replaced with hollow rivets and a major change was made to the helmet liner making the helmet considerably more comfortable to wear and easier to adjust. It was also outfitted with a new chinstrap to replace the cold carbine clip and roller buckle style.

The M35 would begin distribution in June 1935. During the first 2 years more than 1.3 million were manufactured. One variant of the M1935 was issued to Fallschirmjagers. In order to help reduce the risk of a head injury upon landing from a jump, the projecting visor and flared rim were removed from this helmet. This major change in the design of the helmet called for a change in the liner and chinstrap designs.

Due to the economics of a long war, the need for faster production and a change in manufacturing methods slight modifications were made to the M35 resulting in the M1940 and M1942. The M1942 no longer came with the rolled edges and was stamped of a single sheet of metal, to save money and increase manufacturing efficiency. Changes also occurred to the ventilation hole instead of being an external metal piece that was pressed into the hole after the helmet was made it now became part of the helmet during it's pressing.

Much more uncommon and hard to find where two variants made in 1944 and 1945. The M1944 helmet, which was a simpler helmet with sloped sides, similar to the British 1944 Type MKIII. Hitler did not approve of these helmets so there was limited distribution. The M1945 variant, was like the M1942, however it no longer had the ventilation holes. These were of limited supply due to being manufactured during the final months of WW2.

To prevent rusting all of the German helmets were painted inside and out. The Heer M35’s had a smooth field gray (green grey) finish and the Luftwaffe with a grey blue finish, SS helmets used a satin black finish.

With the modification of paint processes and the change of manufacturers and paint suppliers it was difficult if not impossible to maintain paint color or texture consistency. Another big change to the color of helmets was made by the soldiers themselves. With helmets being repainted by the men who would depending on their own personal circumstances and experience. There really were no two helmets made that were of the same color.


Steel Helmet, M1935 Stahlhelm: Waffen-SS

All Rights Reserved except for Fair Dealing exceptions otherwise permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, as amended and revised.

Accepted Non-commercial Use

Permitted use for these purposes:

If you are interested in the full range of licenses available for this material, please contact one of our collections sales and licensing teams.

Use this image under fair dealing.

All Rights Reserved except for Fair Dealing exceptions otherwise permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, as amended and revised.

Accepted Non-commercial Use

Permitted use for these purposes:

If you are interested in the full range of licenses available for this material, please contact one of our collections sales and licensing teams.

Use this image under fair dealing.

All Rights Reserved except for Fair Dealing exceptions otherwise permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, as amended and revised.

Accepted Non-commercial Use

Permitted use for these purposes:

If you are interested in the full range of licenses available for this material, please contact one of our collections sales and licensing teams.

Use this image under fair dealing.

All Rights Reserved except for Fair Dealing exceptions otherwise permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, as amended and revised.

Accepted Non-commercial Use

Permitted use for these purposes:

If you are interested in the full range of licenses available for this material, please contact one of our collections sales and licensing teams.


Origin

The design of the Stahlhelm was carried out by Dr. Friedrich Schwerd of the Technical Institute of Hanover. In early 1915, Schwerd had carried out a study of head wounds suffered during trench warfare and submitted a recommendation for steel helmets, shortly after which he was ordered to Berlin. Schwerd then undertook the task of designing and producing a suitable helmet [5] broadly based on the 15th century sallet, which provided good protection for the head and neck. [6]

After lengthy development work, which included testing a selection of German and Allied headgear, the first Stahlhelms were tested in November 1915 at the Kummersdorf Proving Ground and then field tested by the 1st Assault Battalion. Thirty thousand examples were ordered, but it was not approved for general issue until New Year 1916, hence it is most usually referred to as the "Model 1916". In February 1916 it was distributed to troops at Verdun, following which the incidence of serious head injuries fell dramatically. The first German troop who had to use this helmet had been the stormtroopers of the Sturm-Bataillon Nr. 5 (Rohr) which had been commanded by captain Rohr.

In contrast to the Hadfield steel used in the British Brodie helmet, the Germans used a harder martensitic silicon/nickel steel. As a result, and also due to the helmet's form, the Stahlhelm had to be formed in heated dies at a greater unit cost than the British helmet, which could be formed in one piece. [7]


M1935 Stahlhelme - History

Post by pablo10 » Thu Sep 07, 2017 7:48 pm

Here are the codes to German helmets: credit to German-Helmets.com for this

More than 25 Million German combat helmets were manufactured during the Second World War. This massive effort was accomplished by five independently owned metal fabrication plants with experience in steel production. The largest producer of steel helmets (Stahlhelme) was the firm of Eisenhüttenwerke located in the city of Thale. The Thale firm and its engineers played a major role in the initial design and prototyping of the M1935 steel combat helmet. Production records indicate that nearly 20 Million helmets were manufactured between early 1939 and May 1944. Beginning as early as 1935, manufacturers began marking their helmet shells with the initials of the factory or company names. Over the course of time, several of these changed making it initially appear as though there were more than five manufacturers. The change in the factory designated name and marking had to do with the fact that the company names changed. These factory names were stamped directly into the helmet shell using two or three letters. Next to the letters was stamped the metric shell size of the helmet. In addition to these markings, helmets also received a stamped number in the rear center of the helmet's flange or skirt. This second set of numbers indicated the production number of the entire lot to which the helmet could be attributed. In some cases, the Quist firm also produced helmets bearing a "DN" stamp in the same location. The "DN" referred to the patent identification associated with the helmet's model or type. It should be noted that on occasion a helmet can be found bearing no markings whatsoever. If the helmet is a wartime shell, the explanation generally falls into to possibilities. The first is that the markings are there but shallow or buried beneath a thick coat of paint. The second relates to the fact that some helmets do not appear to have been marked at all. This may be related to a factory error, or something done intentionally. No clear rational has been found to explain this uncommon occurrence.


History Of German Military Helmet From WW1-Nowadays

Was Designed in 1842 By King Frederick Willian IV Of Prussia,It is not clear whether this was a case of imitation, parallel invention, or if both were based on the earlier Napoleonic cuirassier. The early Russian type (known as “The Helmet of Yaroslav Mudry”) was also used by cavalry, which had used the spike as a holder for a horsehair plume in full dress, a practice also followed with some Prussian models
Design German Pickelhaube
German Army were standard prior to 1914, but the basic construction of the infantry Pickelhaube was an exception. There are three main leather parts of the helmet a basic shell with a front and rear visor, that are sewn on. The shell was formed by pressing a piece of steamed leather through a large mould. The helmet was then covered in many layers of black lacquer until it could be polished to a bright finish. The helmet had two brass renforcing trim pieces, at the front visor and a brass spine at the rear of the helmet. The front of the helmet is covered with a large gilded brass helmet plate. Guard regiments, train battalion units, and Bavarian Pioneers, had silver plated helmet fittings and related trim to distinguish them from the ‘line’ regiments. Each German Kingdom, Dukedom, Earldom, Free City, etc., had it’s own unique helmet plate. A full description of all the different helmet plates would, and does, make a very thick book. This discussion is limited to the basic ‘line’ infantry enlisted man’s helmet of 1895, and wartime changes up to 1916. The drawing below, illustrates the basic details of the 1895 model line infantry helmet.

Bavarian Pickelhaube A standard Bavarian line infantry helmet, 1895 model, in rough condition. In 1886, Bavaria adopted the Pickelhaube, the last German State to do so. The kokade on the right side is the German Reich kokade. Black, white, red, were the national colors of Germany. The kokade on the left is the Bavarian Land kokarde. White, blue, white, were the State colors of Bavaria. Each German State had their own unique color scheme for the Land kokade, and unique helmet plate. The gilded brass plate on the helmet bears the Bavarian State coat of arms supported by two lions, and the State motto, In Treue Fest (In Loyalty Steadfast). The inside of the rear visor is stamped ‘15 I.R.‘, indicating the 15th Bavarian infantry regiment, the regimental number is embossed, and not an ink stamp, indicating that this helmet was made prior to 1914. All fittings and kokades are original to the helmet. The title of the regiment was ‘König Friedrich August von Sachsen‘. The King of Sachsen (Saxony) was the honorary, commander of the regiment. This was a common practice of courtesy among the aristocracy in the pre-war German, Austrian and British armies and navies. The Kaiser was an honorary commander of various British and Austrian regiments and an admiral of the British Navy, until 1914. King George V and Czar Nicholas II were both honorary commanders of a German Regiment.


Ersatz (Substitute) helmet, made of lacquered steel, made in early 1915. The start of the war brought on the British blockade of Germany. Leather for helmets was imported from Argentina, and the demand for helmets exhausted supplies almost immediately. Manufacturers of kitchen utensils were called on to turn out helmets of thin steel and tin. Although the helmet is steel, it offered no real protection in combat, nor did the leather helmet. All other fittings are standard 1895 model brass fittings. The helmet plate is a pre-war type and not original to the helmet. The kokades are from the 1914 era, but are not original to the helmet. The chinstrap is a modern reproduction. Collectors refer to this as a ‘parts’ helmet, as it is an assembly of original parts. It does not have the same value as a complete helmet with all original fittings. Other examples of this type of helmet were painted field grey, with brass or steel fittings and plates, also painted field grey

Ersatz Prussian Artillery Kugelhelm (Ball Helmet), made in mid-1915. All fittings are 1895 model parts, but steel, painted field grey. Other examples of this type of helmet used brass fittings when available. The helmet plate is the standard Prussian line eagle plate, with the King’s motto, Mit Gott Für Koenig und Vaterland (With God for King and Country, i.e. Prussia). The right kokade is the German National kokade, and the left kokade is the Prussian Land Kokade, black, white, black, being the state colors of Prussia. The kokades and chinstrap are modern replacements. Many Artillery units had a ball on top of their helmets in place of a spike. By 1915 the detachable spike attachment had been developed so that soldiers in the trenches could remove the spike, as the spike was incompatible for service in the trenches and they made excellent targets for British and French snipers. A collateral benefit for this was that the same helmet could be used for infantry or artillery artillery units, simplifying the manufacturing and supply process

Designed By Dr. Friedrich Schwerd of the Technical Institute of Hanover. In early 1915 Schwerd had carried out a study of head wounds suffered during trench warfare and submitted a recommendation for steel helmets, shortly after which he was ordered to Berlin. Schwerd then undertook the task of designing and producing a suitable helmet broadly based on the 15th century sallet, which provided good protection for the head and neck.
First Stahlhelm were tested in November 1915 at the Kummersdorf Proving Ground and then field tested by the 1st Assault Battalion. Thirty thousand examples were ordered, but it was not approved for general issue until New Year 1916, hence it is most usually referred to as the “Model 1916”. In February 1916 it was distributed to troops at Verdun, following which the incidence of serious head injuries fell dramatically. The first German troop who had to use this helmet had been the stormtroopers of the Sturm-Bataillon Nr. 5 (Rohr) which had been commanded by captain Rohr.
In contrast to the Hadfield steel used in the British Brodie helmet, the Germans used a harder martensitic silicon/nickel steel. As a result, and also due to the helmet’s form, the Stahlhelm had to be formed in heated dies at a greater unit cost than the British helmet, which could be formed in one piece

M1916 & M1917
The model 1916 Stahlhelm was a mix between the obsolete Pickelhaube and the French made ‘Adrian’ helmet. Unlike the ‘Adrian’ helmet the M16 was a grey (feld grau) color, rather then a bronze color (this tradition was carried on to all stahlhelms up until 1945). It should be noted that as early as 1915, the German High Command was aware of that the Pickelhaube was obsolete and various ‘improvised’ headpieces were constructed on the field. One example of a German ‘improvised’ headpiece is the ‘Gaede’ helmet. The ‘Gaede’ was put together by connecting a metal sheet to a German skullcap. The ‘Gaede’ was developed and put to use by Lieutenant-Colonel Gaede in central France in 1915.

M1918
1917 the Model 1917 Stahlhelm was manufactured. The M1917 was basically an exact duplicate of the M1916, but with a more defined cutaway area around the ears. Later, in early 1918, the Model 1918 Stahlelm, with a clear cutaway between both ears was introduced to service and saw a limited distribution. Only small numbers were given out until the end of the war.
During the German pre-Wehrmacht period (1919-1935) the Model 1916 remained the most commonly used piece of military headgear in Germany outside of the military sphere. With the Treaty of Versailles’ implementation in June 1919, large numbers of Stahlhelms M16, M17, and M18 were destroyed pursuant to the purpose of the Treaty which was to basically crush future German war efforts. In the late 1920’s and early 1930’s, however, the M16 and the M17 were remanufactured for military and police use.
Members of the Reichswehr and auxiliary formations wore two versions of the Stahlhelm Model 1916 and Model 1917-(and various other models, the Pickelhaube, the M1918, etc.). It should be noted that after Hitler’s rise to power wearers of the Model 1916 and Model 1917 also wore the decorative German tri-color shield and the Wehrmachtadler (a white eagle grasping a swastika). The Stahlhelm Model 1916 and Model 1917 remained in service until 1935 when it was replaced by a lighter model of the Stahlhelm, the model 1935.

M1935
With the re-introduction of conscription and the formation of several new armed service branches (the Heer, Luftwaffe, and Kriegsmarine into a new armed force title the Wehrmacht) a new helmet type was needed to keep up with the modernization’s of the country’s forces. Therefore the Model 1935 was introduced into German service on July 1, 1935. The sheer weight and size of the Model 1935 didn’t vary much from that of the Model’s 1916 and 1917 Stahlhelm. A very distinctive feature of the Model 1935 was the crimping of the helmets rim this was later discontinued for economic reasons. It is interesting to note that large numbers of the M35 were exported to foreign countries in both the Weimar republic and Third Reich periods, particularly to Argentina and China.

M1940
In 1940 a new version of Stahlhelm was produced, the Model 1940. The Model 1940 was almost identical to the model 1935 in every way except that the tri-color shield was removed along with the Wehrmachtadler. The M40’s ventilation holes on the sides of the helmet were also increased for maximum combat and production efficiency. The crimping of the rim of the Model 1935 was still in use for this Stahlhelm variation.


M1942
In 1942 another new version of the Stahlhelm came into Wehrmacht service, the Model 1943 (in the United Kingdom, the Model 1942 is usually referred to as the Model 1943.) Because of wartime production troubles and the lack or raw materials, the Model 1943 Stahlhelm was stamped out of only one sheet of steel. This process eliminated the distinctive rim crimping seen in earlier models of the Stahlhelm.
Because of the M43’s lack of crimping it had a sharp appearance and the size of the helmets based increased slightly. The Model 1943 Stahlhelm remained in production until the end of the war and saw a wide use by the service branches of the Wehrmacht and auxiliary formations (i.e. HJ squads, Schuma units, etc.).
Though various models of the Stahlhelm was produced throughout World War II no models ever completely vanished from German service. The Model 1935 and Model 1940 Stahlhelms remained in service with various foreign units and both helmets saw a widespread use in the Waffen-SS’s ‘Freiwilligen‘ units. The Volkssturm, a troop of under aged and overage aged Germans, also used the older models of the Stahlhelm and even the Model 1916 was used in Volksgrenadier divisions.

Luftwaffe Paratroopers Helmet
The above discussed the uses of the Stahlhelm in the traditional military and police sense. But the Stahlhelm was also produced for more specialized tasks. For example the Luftwaffe introduced the Fallschrimjaeger (Airborne and Glider borne troops) helmet in 1936. The Model 1936 Fallschrimjaeger helmet didn’t differ much from the Model 1935. With the exceptions of its lighter weight and lack of helmet crimping, it basically resembled the Model 1935 Stahlhelm without a helmet rim. There was also more padding in the interior of the helmet to protect the wearer during airborne operations. Another example of a specially designed Stahlhelm is the plastic, extremely light weight Stahlhelms that were produced for use by aged, high ranking soldiers and injured soldiers, for non-combat uses.
In conclusion the Stahlhelm and its different versions proved to be the most effective combat helmet produced during the war. The Stahlhelms gave more than adequate protection to the wearer and prevented most forms of shrapnel from injuring the wearer. It’s light weight gave the wearer maximum mobility and proved excellent for fast paced operations, perfect for the blitzkrieg tactics employed by the Wehrmacht in the WW 2.


The M1935 is a single-action semi-automatic blowback pistol that fires the .32 ACP ammunition. It is made out of carbon steel with plastic grips. It is fitted with a manual safety and when the last shot has been fired the slide is retained open by the empty magazine. The magazine capacity is 8 rounds. As this pistol was built for the Italian army, all parts were interchangeable, which simplified maintenance and manufacturing: a first at the time.

The M1935 was purpose built and designed for the Italian armed forces, however it was also sold to the civilian market and issued to the German forces in 1944 and 1945.


Pulled from Service

Such materials afforded the wearer very little protection and the army soon recognized that its famous helmet was better suited to the parade square than the front lines. The following year, the pickelhabue was gradually withdrawn from service and replaced with a larger and more protective steel pot-style helmet, known as the M1916 stahlhelm.

Equally recognizable as a symbol of German militarism, the newer helmet resembled a large oversized rounded cauldron. It featured a peaked visor with a flared bottom that extended low over the ears and the back of the neck. It also had ventilation holes on the side and two protruding bolts.

Although much heavier and with an unpleasant tendency to impede the wearer’s hearing, German troops preferred more protective head gear. Many reported that it stopped bullets and shrapnel that likely would have been fatal had they been wearing their earlier helmet. In fact, casualties from head wounds dropped considerably with the stahlhelm, according to some sources by as much as 70 percent.

German troops soon began to paint camouflage patterns on their new helmets. Official paint schemes were soon established that specified green and brown areas separated by a finger width of black.


History

The Browning Hi-Power was first produced in 1935 and was adopted for military service as the P35 in Belgium. During the Axis occupation of Belgium from 1940 to 1945, the German forces used FN's weapon plants to produce P35s for their own usage. The Germans designated it the P640b and it saw service with the Waffen-SS. 

Many soldiers, both Allied and Axis, kept the P35s that they came across on the battlefield because of its reliability and large magazine capacity (13 rounds).

The Hi-Power was also adopted for military use with the Canadian armed forces. The Canadians produced their own models, as they realized that the FN plants in Belgium would fall to the Germans. Hi-Power pistols produced in Canada as the John Inglis version were also issued to the American OSS and the British SOE and SAS. 


FEG 35M (Mannlicher M1935)

Following the end of World War 1, the Austro-Hungarian Empire was no more, giving rise to the "Kingdom of Hungary" in 1920 and forcing a new military arm to be born from remnants (likewise for Austria). At this time, the national army was stocked with Austrian 8mm Mannlicher M1895 "straight-pull" bolt-action service rifles dating back to 1895. As such, design work on a new standard-issue service rifle began in 1928 with chief changes being a switch to the upcoming Austrian 8x56R cartridge as well as reworked iron sights to be read in metric measurements. However, these converted rifles were simply not designed to fire the more powerful 8x56R rimmed cartridge and this led to issues with the extraction system.

A new initiative was formed to find a new rifle that could fire the new cartridge. A Romanian Mannlicher - the M1893 - design was used as the basis though the "straight-pull" bolt-action system was also dropped in favor of a traditional rotating bolt-action assembly. Additionally, the forward portion of the rifle was shortened for a more manageable length. A new bayonet was also designed and this could be conventionally affixed to the muzzle end of the weapon for close-quarters work. A projection clip-fed magazine fitted ahead of the trigger group held five 8mm cartridges. The weapon could be loaded either through individually-inserted 8mm cartridges or fed with prepared 5-round "clips". The wooden body was now a two-piece system. The endeavor produced the 35M (or "35.M") series of 1935.

The 35M was essentially a very conventional bolt-action rifle in the traditional sense. The operator managed the firing action through manual actuation of the presented bolt handle set to the right side of the gun body, ahead of the trigger group. This action introduced a fresh cartridge into the firing chamber while ejecting any spent casings therein. The bolt locked along lugs found on the bolt head, rotating into "seats" on the receiver. The body was a long-running piece of wood consistent with rifle designs of the time to which the metal components were inlaid into the wood. The trigger was a curved assembly underneath the receiver and protected by a slim, oblong trigger ring. The wooden body also made up a contoured hand grip joining the shoulder stock and main body together. The internal magazine was held just ahead of the trigger group. Overall length (without bayonet affixed) was 43.7 inches with a 23.6 inch barrel assembly. Overall weight was 8.9lbs without the ammunition in place. By all accounts, the 35M proved a serviceable weapon - though a glut of Mauser-based rifles were still in circulation at the time, casting a long shadow over the Hungarian design. As such, she led a rather short service life with one notable fault being its two-piece stock, sometimes coming loose from the receiver. The 35M was produced from 1935 to 1942 with official Hungarian use ending in 1945.

By the end of the 1930s, World War had come once again to Europe and Hungary found itself allied with the Axis powers in 1941. As the German war machine was stretched to the limit, the army found itself in need of more weapons, forcing it to look outside its borders for solutions. One such source was Hungary and the weapon of choice became its 35M series. However, before delivery, the weapon underwent several notable changes to produce a rifle suitable for the German Army need. The action was reworked to accept the German 7.9x57mm IS rimless cartridge firing from a Mauser-style, charger-loading internal magazine. The bayonet mounting was reengineered to accept the standard German infantry bayonet. The new rifle form took on the designation of "G98/40" ("Gewehr 98/40") and these were produced at Hungarian factories in Budapest. Following in line with their German overseers, the Hungarian Army itself adopted a similar form of the same rifle as the "43M" (or "43.M"). These differed slightly in a cosmetic sense, with Hungarian military-style furniture. Germany eventually occupied Hungary in 1944 until it came under communist rule after the war.

Some 35M rifles were used in the inspired Hungarian Revolution of 1956 which was forcibly crushed by the Red Army.