Bulgarian helmet M.36 - photos

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Interbellum
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Bulgarian helmet M.36 - photos

Post by Interbellum » 05 Mar 2020 18:40

Here are the pre-WWII and WWII photos of Bulgarian soldiers and officers wearing helmets M.36. Since 1937, M.36 helmets became the main helmets of the Bulgarian Army, they were used in combats till the end of World War II, when Bulgaria switched sides and together with USSR took part in battles against Germans. Repainted and with updated liners these helmets were used in the Bulgarian Army until late 1970s.
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Last edited by Interbellum on 06 Mar 2020 16:42, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Bulgarian helmet M.36 - photos

Post by Interbellum » 06 Mar 2020 16:33

Bulgarian helmet M.36 was developed in Bulgaria in 1936 as the replacement of obsolete German M.16 helmet used by Bulgarian Army since WWI. Because the restrictions imposed on the Bulgarian Army by the Treaty of Neuilly-sur-Seine of 1919 were overcome in the mid-1930s, the High Command ordered the design of a new army helmet. The shape of the new helmet was quite original and only vaguely resembled the German M.16. The weight of M.36 helmet was about 1200 g, and the steel thickness was 2 mm. A characteristic feature of the M.36 were two ventilation holes located on the right and left sides, resembling the ventilation holes of the German M.16. M.36 helmets were produced as Bulgarian order in Slovakia (Sandrik factory in Dolné Hámre) and in Czech Moravia (Brüder Gottlieb und Brauchbar factory and Bratří factory, both in Brno).
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Re: Bulgarian helmet M.36 - photos

Post by Interbellum » 07 Mar 2020 21:36

There were three types of M.36 helmet - type A, type B and type C. M.36/A and M.36/B were distinguished from M.36/C only by the rolled edges of the helmet (type C had the sharp edges) and the method of attaching a liner, in the first two types the liner was attached to an aluminum hoop, which in turn was riveted to the helmet. In M.36 type C helmets, the liner was also attached to the aluminum hoop, but this hoop was not attached to the helmet directly, but through four steel shock-absorbing plates that were attached to the helmet. M.36/A and M.36/B differed in the number of rivets that secured the liner's hoop. The liner of M.36/A was fastened with four rivets, while the liner of M.36/B - with three rivets, just like the German steel helmet M.16.
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Re: Bulgarian helmet M.36 - photos

Post by Interbellum » 08 Mar 2020 20:33

The designs of the liner and the chin strap were different. As a rule, the liner consisted of 6-7 single leather sheets, fastened with a cord in the upper part. The chin strap usually consisted of two halves, fastened with a rectangular clasp. Sometimes on M.36 helmets, a Czech chin strap was used also, a characteristic feature of which was a bifurcation in the middle part for a more reliable hold of the strap. The chin strap was fastened with D-shaped rings, which were installed in special holders riveted to the helmet.
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Re: Bulgarian helmet M.36 - photos

Post by Interbellum » 22 Sep 2020 14:50

These are Bulgarian soldiers in obsolete German helmets M.16 (designated as M.17 in the Bulgarian Army) during military parade. Bulgarian three-colour flag decals are visible on the right sides of the helmets. Could anybody identify the type of unit here? Machine-gun cavalry squadron? What are they trasnsported in horse packs, ammunition?
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Re: Bulgarian helmet M.36 - photos

Post by Interbellum » 14 Nov 2020 20:59

One more interesting photo of Bulgarian soldiers in German helmets M.16 (M.17). The photo quality is not good, but am I right that this is a crew of German MG 08/15 machine gun? MG 08s were supplied to Bulgaria before the Balkan wars and during World War I. About 1262 different machine guns of MG 08 type were still available on 01.01.1944 in the Bulgarian Army.
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