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WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Discussions on other First and Second World War militaria and collecting in general.
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WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Yoda1959 on 30 Aug 2010 21:53

Hi there fellow enthusiasts,
Can anyone shed any light (possibly used for a flashlight?) on the device attached to this MK2? The helmet is marked 1943 BMB and is a light olive color but it's the device that I can't identify after exhaustive searching! My guess is that it held a 'torch' (flashlight) and that the helmet may have been used by A.R.P. or post post war by the Dutch due to the liner. Any thoughts? I have a photo of the underside of the device showing how it latches around the rim of the helmet but alas, I can only add 3 photos at this time. (Sigh)

Thanks,
Donald
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby phylo_roadking on 30 Aug 2010 22:23

Donald - is the spring grip brazed/welded askew on the strap like that???
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Yoda1959 on 30 Aug 2010 23:18

No weld, the spring piece you're referring to has a rivet through the strap. I could take it off the helmet and photograph it separately if the need should arise. The device appears to have been on the helmet for a loooong time. Thanks.
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby phylo_roadking on 31 Aug 2010 00:14

Hi, I should have expressed that better - is it free to turn on the rivet, or attached tightly?
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Yoda1959 on 31 Aug 2010 00:23

Right...I realized what you were asking after I posted. It does not turn NOW but I wonder if it once did? I don't know. I could try WD-40. Hope that clears it up a bit.
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Mark in Cleveland, Tn. on 02 Sep 2010 02:31

This is a super rare Bicyclist Helmet. This bracket held a rear-view mirror set up that helped the soldier see who was behind him... :D
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Yoda1959 on 02 Sep 2010 15:06

Seriously? You're not just pulling this old guys leg, are you? I've heard everything from a beer holder for football games to a fattie holder so I'm very skeptical (and easily duped!). If you're being serious...are there any websites that you're aware of that describe its' use?
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Mark in Cleveland, Tn. on 02 Sep 2010 23:02

My friend, just messing with you!! :D
Could this me a non miliary used miners helmet ?
Miners lamp attached ?? possible !!!!
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Yoda1959 on 03 Sep 2010 00:02

Anything is possible. The BMB 1943 markings stamped on the helmet made me assume they were WW2 period. I doubt Briggs Motor Bodies Ltd, Dagenham (British helmet and liner manufacturer) would have made this helmet for a miner...but again, anything is possible. Thanks.
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Inselaffe on 03 Sep 2010 11:01

Maybe NFS? Helmet looks a bit more grey than olive in the photo and I think they did have some helmet mounted torches though I can't find a picture of one currently...

Cheers.
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Yoda1959 on 03 Sep 2010 17:03

Thanks for the most recent post...yes, the helmet is more of a grey color. NFS? What is the acronym short for please?
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Inselaffe on 03 Sep 2010 22:55

Yoda1959 wrote:What is the acronym short for please?


Sorry, should have been clearer, NFS is National Fire Service, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Fire_Service

Cheers.
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby phylo_roadking on 04 Sep 2010 01:00

Ah, that's a thought!....and spot the screw fitting on the crown!

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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby Inselaffe on 04 Sep 2010 23:09

As the photos Phylo has posted show, NFS helmets came in different shades and whilst they were supposed to have the NFS badge and the force number (see http://wwiifire.co.uk/Fire%20Forces.htm ) on them, many clearly did not. To further complicate matters, photos also seem to show the NFS used grey, khakhi and black helmets.

Like many other things on the Homefront in '40-'41, it seems NFS uniform was cobbled together from available stocks, hence a mix of pre-war municipal fire brigades, armed forces and even (apparently) Royal Mail uniform. It's an interesting area that I've only read bits and bobs on, if anyone can recommend a good book on the NFS I'd be keen to hear.

Of course this could be a complete red herring I'm afraid Donald! :lol:

Cheers.
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Re: WW2 British Helmet device - what is this?

Postby phylo_roadking on 05 Sep 2010 15:46

if anyone can recommend a good book on the NFS I'd be keen to hear.


The Fire Service Museum in London should be able to help on that, they've certainly been very cooperative over the last few years with a number of contributors to CMV writing about the NFS/AFS' heavier equipment...! :wink:

EDIT: I've just come across this list of titles elsewhere, but no authors or ISBN nos....

-- Organized Against Fire: A Short Organisational History of the London Fire Brigade and Its Predecessors from 1833 to 1996.

-- From Canada Against Fire: A Short Account of the Corps of (civilian) Canadian Fire Fighters Which Operated in Wartime Britain as Part of the National Fire Service Between 1942 and 1945.

-- Overseas Against Fire: A Short Account of the Overseas Contingent of the National Fire Service with Particular Reference to No.4 Overseas Column in the North West Europe Theatre of War During 1945.

-- London Fire Service Directory of Auxiliary Sub-stations September 1939 to August 1941.

-- United Against Fire: The NFS 1941-1948.
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