German-Helmets.com  - The Online Reference Guide to World War II German Helmets 1933-1945

    Collector Topics:  Fakes and Reproductions

 

Photo:  Two Reproduction Chinstrap Markings,

 

Fakes and Reproductions

Identifying an original German helmet is not as difficult as many people believe.  Even quality reproductions or high end fakes leave a "tell tale sign" of having been altered, repainted, or forged.  Often times the determination as to whether or not a helmet is original or "fake" comes down to the nature and quality of the decal (or decals) on the helmet.  However in recent years even this focus has been complicated by the fact that many fake artists have successfully remanufactured quality liners, chinstraps, and even paint that could fool an unsuspecting buyer.  These materials enhanced through chemical aging effects can create the illusion that a given helmet is in fact from the period.

The problem with identifying reproduction helmets is that most beginning and intermediate collectors have little experience in examining originals and comparing them to common forgeries.  In addition, so many collectors have become wary of fakes that most will dismiss any helmet they feel unworthy of being called an original.  That sometimes includes rare configurations or historically correct field modified helmets that they simply have never seen before or believe are too rare to exist.  While there is no substitute for direct experience in handling original helmets, the following guidelines should provide even the novice collector with a reasonable amount of information that can assist with identifying original examples of wartime German helmets.

Beginners often ask why there so many fakes in the market place?  The reason is really quite simple.  Because World War II collectables have increased in value over the last 10 years, many people have resorted to "faking" or creating "forgeries" that look similar to originals for the simple sake of making profit by selling them.  Interest in World War II collectables, and in particular items by Axis nations, has risen at a steady rate.  Many people interested in collecting original examples are now finding that the majority of items currently offered for sale in the open market are in fact newly made or very old reproductions.  Some are easy to spot while others are not. While this dynamic may be initially discouraging to new collectors the advice in this section should be of some help.

Overview

Each section of German-Helmets.com is divided into separate Information Tracks that outline important details, facts, and historical notes pertaining to steel helmets used by the German Armed Forces during World War II.  

Information Tracks are organized by subject matter and their content is directly related to the service arm or organization to which each topic is related.  Topic areas that bridge one subject matter to another are cross linked within each Information Track.

This Information Track provides collector facts pertaining to modern helmet fakes and reproductions.  Individual links related to this subject are outlined below.

    Reproduction Topics

Basic Tips for Collectors

Reproduction Buckles

Reproduction Chinstraps

Reproduction Decals

Reproduction Dome Stamps

Reproduction Helmet Labels

Reproduction Liners

How to Identify a Fake

    Collector Topics

Chinstraps

Camouflage

Decals

Dome Stamps

Factory Production

Foreign Use

Helmet History

Liner Systems

Paint

Fakes and Reproductions

Rare and Unusual

Appraisals

 

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