WWII Paratrooper M2 "D-Bail" Airborne Helmet Shell
This is an original early-WWII M2 paratrooper helmet shell, commonly referred to as the "D-bail." Its heat stamp of 206A dates the helmet's production to June 1942. During WWII, McCord Radiator & Manufacturing Co. produced roughly 20 million steel helmet shells. Of those 20 million, just 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; any considerable pressure put on the loops, would often cause them to snap at the welds. Finding an original M2 like this one, with its factory welds still intact, is quite uncommon. Due to limited production numbers, the design flaw, as well as having to endure a war, original M2 helmets are incredibly scarce. I planned on carefully removing this helmet's post-war blue repaint, but time has become limited; until that changes, it is available. This helmet would display quite nicely when paired with an original Inland paratrooper liner.