Helmet – M40 – Q64 – Waffen-SS Kanonier E. Busch
Arguably the helmet was the most recognizable part of the individual German soldiers appearance. With a design that derived from the type used in world war one, the German helmet offered more protection then ones used by it’s enemies. The quality field gray painted steel helmet with two decals and rolled steel rim and leather liner was a labor intensive product and simplified as the war progressed. The earliest model helmet used in world war two was the model 35 or M35 Stahlhelm. During the war the helmet was simplified in 2 stages. In 1940 the airvents changed from separate rivets affixed to the helmet shell to stamped in the main body of the shell. In 1942 a new model was introduced where the rim of the shell was left sharp and not rolled over as previous models. These models are known in the collector community as M40 and M42. The low sides that protect the neck and ears, the tell tale design that the Germans introduced in 1935 can still be seen in modern day army helmets.
Decal: None, this type with the marking in this position doesn’t seem to be issued with decals.
Paint: Factory applied dull field gray paint with rough aluminium oxide and spray painted three tone camouflage.
Markings: Q64 and DN559, both in the rear.
Maker: Quist, Esslingen.
Size: Shellsize 64, headsize 57 cm
Batch number: DN559
Notes: The helmet is named to SS Kn.(Kanonier) E. Busch. During the war, this helmet was worn by Eberhard Busch. Eberhard was born on 25th of February 1926 in Jena. He fell on the 31st of January 1945 and is buried in a war grave (Block C, grave 202) in Daleiden, Germany. I am unsure what unit exactly, but the abbreviation of Kanonier indicates Eberhard was in a SS-Artillerie unit. The Quist firm produced the size 64 M40 helmet shell right up till late in 1944 whilst the other companies all adopted the M42 model. This helmet was made for all the branches just like the M42 helmet without decal.