This is an original M2 paratrooper helmet, commonly referred to as the "D-bail". Its heat stamp of 193A dates the helmet's production to June 1942. During WWII, McCord Radiator Co. produced around 20 million steel helmet shells. Of those 20 million, 392,000 were made as the paratrooper M2 version, with some estimating the production total at a much lower 118,000. These helmets had a significant design flaw; the pressure put on the loops, would often cause them to snap at the welds, as evident on this example. Authenticity can still be confirmed by examining the remaining “feet” of the loops. Original M2 welds have a distance of 36 millimeters, whereas standard Infantry M1 welds are only 31 millimeters apart. M2 feet have a distinctive shape that the M1 lacks. The M1’s loops are also made out of stainless steel, whereas the M2’s loops are not. Due to limited production numbers, the design flaw, as well as having to endure a war, original M2 helmets are incredibly scarce. This helmet would display quite nicely when paired with an original Inland paratrooper liner.

WWII Paratrooper M2 "D-Bail" Airborne Helmet Shell


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