Third Party Press

Questionable Camos

M45

Well-known member
A snow camo from Ken's gallery.
Note similarities from the previous two:

Dark, low light background when photographing
Excellent condition with near 100% coverage
Similar shade/style of brushed on white paint
No vet provenance whatsoever

We know that this helmet and #2 were each in Ken's collection for awhile (the 1st one may well have been also).

It would appear that some of Ken's camos, (after they are "found" by "pickers") go into Ken's collection "gallery" for a time before being sold on his website.
This may be not only to slow the outflow of these a bit so they are not piling up too much on his for-sale page, but also to give the newly found camos some "ownership history", which seems to be very important to some collectors.

Recall the "DougB McChicken" helmet (sorry for the outrageous slang) that first appeared in Ken's "gallery" and sat there for a time. It then moved on to DougB's collection before finally ending up on the Ruptured Duck.

Now the potential buyers of the "DougB McChicken" were informed that some big names had been associated with the work of art. Those deep pocket collectors short on brains but long on safety in numbers get good "feelings" about so many big names liking it.

Period photos show us how many snow camos fared after a time in real combat. Notice any difference with the snow camos being recently "found" in the "woodwork" ??

EDIT: One may question whether all of the shuffling of the McChicken helmet to garnish "ownership history" was worth all of the effort. I think it was, because an essentially $500 postwar modified movie prop was transformed into a $12,500 "original".
 

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Hambone

Community Organizer
Staff member
A couple of my “whitewash” or “snow camo” or what’s left of it…..
 

Frank F.

Well-known member
My one and only. I suspect that's kinda what a whitewash would have looked like in the spring of 1945...
 

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heavy_mech

RKI- Reasonably Knowledgable Individual
One may question whether all of the shuffling of the McChicken helmet to garnish "ownership history" was worth all of the effort. I think it was, because an essentially $500 postwar modified movie prop was transformed into a $12,500 "original".
That is absolutely insane.... at least in my book. The buyers of these must just be guzzling the forum Kool Aid. 'Toady vetted'
 

M45

Well-known member
Consider how improbable it would have been for Western Allied forces to have acquired German snow camos:
Afrika Campaign - little snow
Italian Campaign -little snow
Normandy landings to German border - little snow
Southern France offensive to German border - little snow

During the winter of 1944-45 was the main opportunity to acquire these, but during the first part of the Battle of the Bulge the Allies were being pushed back west. The second part of the Battle the Germans were pushed back into Germany (no large surrender piles). If some US GIs wanted to pick up a snow camo at that time, they would have to have hoofed them roughly 350 miles to the Czech border where the war ended. That is a long way to lug several extra pounds of bulky steel.
 

Hambone

Community Organizer
Staff member
The only whitewash helmet I have with substantial traces of whitewash left, which was not scrubbed / overpainted, is the one in the link. It came from an old Belgian collection. I have pictures of it from about 30 years ago on a shelf and it's lost about 10-20% of the whitewash, just through handling. If I got on it with a nylon toilet brush all of the whitewash remains could be removed, flaked right off. I had a splinter reversible winter jacket that was combat used. The white side had gotten dirty and was whitewash painted to restore it to white. That old whitewash was flaking right off. If you shook it little tiny flakes would come right off. It wasn't designed to stay on a helmet past a winter.
 

M45

Well-known member
Exactly. The vast majority of winter camos found today are those with only traces of whitewash. I cannot recall seeing one painted snow camo I thought was original in 40 years of collecting. I believe a handful do exist, but now with all of the questionable ones out there, how to tell the authentic from the fake ?
 

Frank F.

Well-known member
German surrender in Czechoslovakia. Some lids matched to the vehicles they are hanging from, nothing white. A bunch of drunk SSens...

 

Hambone

Community Organizer
Staff member
Exactly. The vast majority of winter camos found today are those with only traces of whitewash. I cannot recall seeing one painted snow camo I thought was original in 40 years of collecting. I believe a handful do exist, but now with all of the questionable ones out there, how to tell the authentic from the fake ?

I have several to maybe five whitewash.......former whitewash that is. Scrubbed, spring overpainted, or camoed, but you can see the whitewash under them. Here's one, with the wire on it.....I think I paid $400 for this ugly crappy lid....

 

M45

Well-known member

Set of 4 matching Luftwaffe Camouflage Helmets (Stahlhelme). These helmets have been painted in green, brown and tan camouflage having sawdust flakes added to the paint. This type of camouflage could indicate usage at the Normandy front. The helmets were undeniably painted at the same time and are from the same FLAK unit, names have been written in the liners. Three of these helmets are M35's, one helmet is an M40 that once had a rubber band around it, paint reactions with the rubber band can be seen around the helmet. All four helmets are showing normal traces of usage and are complete with their original liners and chinstraps. Take a look at the photos for more details. This set of helmets has been published in the famous Schiffer reference book 'German Paratroops in North Africa' by 'John E. Hodgin'. Stunning set of 4 matching original Luftwaffe Camouflage Helmets!

The PJF Kamo Kwadruplets are for sale for the low price of € 19000,00

The helmets were undeniably painted at the same time...... I agree.
 

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Hambone

Community Organizer
Staff member

Set of 4 matching Luftwaffe Camouflage Helmets (Stahlhelme). These helmets have been painted in green, brown and tan camouflage having sawdust flakes added to the paint. This type of camouflage could indicate usage at the Normandy front. The helmets were undeniably painted at the same time and are from the same FLAK unit, names have been written in the liners. Three of these helmets are M35's, one helmet is an M40 that once had a rubber band around it, paint reactions with the rubber band can be seen around the helmet. All four helmets are showing normal traces of usage and are complete with their original liners and chinstraps. Take a look at the photos for more details. This set of helmets has been published in the famous Schiffer reference book 'German Paratroops in North Africa' by 'John E. Hodgin'. Stunning set of 4 matching original Luftwaffe Camouflage Helmets!

The PJF Kamo Kwadruplets are for sale for the low price of € 19000,00

The helmets were undeniably painted at the same time...... I agree.

Wow, WAFloid, who proclaimed my two identical 100% original camos as "suspect" and stated then that finding two identical practically means they are fakes, later turns up with two to four and all is well and "wow, one lookers!" Typical. The look on his mug.... I've always been skeptical of these helmets. They've been passed around quite a bit it seems, over at least the last 15 years, all together, then some individually, some as pairs and threes, then they come together again and are offered for sale. Whenever you see camo helmets being passed around like this to me it is a bad sign. The two identical camos that WAFloid and the waftards did not like. The most hilarious thing was I remember one of the waftards said the one with the label was fake because "it didn't have a zip code." True idiocy that. But, these are all just my humble opinions.

 

Hambone

Community Organizer
Staff member
Here are the four joined all together at one table when they were owned by others I believe. No doubt that they were done at the same time ;) They seem to have been passed around a bit, singularly and in groups.

WAFloid four.JPG
 

M45

Well-known member

A stunning M35 German three-tone Normandy camouflage combat helmet with bailing wire. This helmet was found in the small village of Jort in Calvados (Normandy, France), very close to Falaise. The helmet is an « SE64 » with an unreadable lot number. The helmet' exterior features a period application of heavy electrical cable wire with wire securement along the perimeter of the helmet in three areas. Hand-applied camouflage in the classic three-tones paint is present well over 95% of the helmet's surface. Matte in feel and still contrasting colors present. Of interesting note and desirable amongst the collecting community is the paint is over the wire camouflage system and remains nicely in place. This is clearly seen in the multiple detailed photos below. Split pins remain untouched, complete and retaining their camouflage finish. The Heer decal is present under the camouflage. The helmet's interior is matching to the exterior. Untouched and complete. The leather liner is fully present and still pliable. Separated along the back with age and nicely named to the soldier along the side. Ink stamped with the size « 56 » on the leather tongue. Drawstring is present. Leather chinstrap is also complete, maker marked and stamped with the year of manufacture « 1940 ». Roster number is painted along the back skirt in white paint « 42 ». Slightly dusty and undisturbed all around. One of the nicest helmets we have seen in a while and a true choice offering. Top shelf helmet !

Ref:LMA09518

This one has sold, but I would suspect the price was between 4-5K. Questionable camos have historically been priced in the 2-4K range, but now they seem to be pushing the 4-5K range.

Hand-applied camouflage in the classic three-tones paint is present well over 95% of the helmet's surface.

'The classic three-tones paint' I believe is in reference to the standard 3-color "Normandy" style camo, but "hand applied" is definitely a red flag as this scheme was usually applied en-masse in the field at the unit level with the same spray equipment used to paint vehicles: Dark yellow base with red-brown and green splotches.

Also, the paint colors are not true but appear to be someone's approximation of RAL paints. This helmet does not even fit into a WWII German military theme IMO.

Even as a movie prop it fails to inspire.
 

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M45

Well-known member

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: The sheet steel construction helmet retains about 85% of its hand applied, splotch camouflage paints in shades of tan and green with spots of wear to the underlaying Luftwaffe blue/grey paint and the base metal. The left side of the helmet has a second pattern Luftwaffe eagle decal which is about 60% visible. The right side of the helmet has remnants of a national tri-color shield decal with about 55% being visible with heavy chafe and scratch wear. The helmet has the addition of Third Reich era, European style, chicken wire applied for securing camouflage foliage, etc.. The wire is formed into fairly consistent six sided opened panels with the correct amount of twists to two sides of each panel. The chicken wire is secured to a thicker horizontal wire which is situated at the bottom edge of the crown where the visor and neck guard start to flare outward. The thicker wire is in turn secured to the rim of the helmet by an additional wire hooked over each side of the forward visor and a additional wire hooked to both the obverse and reverse centers. The wire shows moderate to heavy rusting and has created chafe marks to the helmet. All three liner retaining rivets and both inset ventilation bushings are all intact. The interior of the helmet still retains most of its original, smooth, Luftwaffe blue/grey paint and has an age and usage darkened M31 tan leather liner with minimal chafe wear to the edges. The liner is fully intact (two torn tips) with all the fingers and the original tie string and the leather is still quite supple. The reverse interior neck guard apron is serial number stamped, "E171" and has white hand painted owners name, "Kleist". The interior left side apron has stamped manufacturers code and size, "NS66", indicating manufacture by Vereinigte Deutsche Nickelwerke, AG. Schwerte, size 66. The helmet comes complete with a blackened leather chinstrap with an aluminum, pronged length adjustment buckle and retaining studs. The reverse of the chinstrap is in natural tan leather. The chinstrap is a quite dry and stiff. Attractive camouflaged helmet.


GRADE **** PRICE $2,499.00

Call me a Camo novice, but is this price a mistake $2,499 ? Is that all for a fantastic looking named DD Luft half-basket two color tan/green camo in overall very good used condition ?

I have been watching camo prices for about 10 years now, and this one seems way under-priced to me, considering all of its features. Anyone ?
 

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M45

Well-known member

Original German WW1 camouflage helmet with outstanding camo job. cannot read the maker stamp looks like a size 64 or 66. Name and unit written on the rear skirt.​


$2,250 on hold​

 

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M45

Well-known member

Original German WWI outstanding pattern camo helmet model 1916. Two of the pins looks like were replaced not sure when but looks an old job. Nice size 66 shell.​

SOLD​

 

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Hambone

Community Organizer
Staff member
 

M45

Well-known member
The paint on the above two WWI camos is in fantastic condition, basically unissued with some shelf wear/chipping. I understand these were painted up at depots using new helmet stock with standard color paints and instructions.

The problem is the liners show sweat staining/considerable use, which does not match the new condition of the camos. Thus, the WWI German style camos are now being replicated almost perfectly.

Could these be two of Walt's creations? Check the underside domes for Mickey Mouse stickers.

We've discussed this before, when we see a piece of supposed TR era militaria in unheard of fantastic condition, we are amazed beyond comprehension. But that amazement seems to quickly evaporate when we see ANOTHER near identical example soon afterward.
 

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