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    Pickelhauben & collecting

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    Take a look at a dying breed, two untouched pickles offered for sale (if legit Karel, Chip, Bozz...). Every blooming year hundreds if not thousands are ruined by idiots calling themselves 'collectors'. Taking them apart adding bits, buffing the things up,, polish. For 40yrs imo its been a blot on this wonderful hobby 'Collecting Imperial German'.

    No, I'm sorry it is not your choice to ruin artifacts just because you lay out coin, forget it leave them alone if people want 'shine',,,,, buy a reproduction.

    Have a nice Sunday gents.


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    Yep, longer than 40 years I reckon.

    I still flinch when I think of those articles by Graham Maddox - leather's a bit dull and wrinkled? Get your pliars, sandpaper, strip the helmet. sand the leather, paint it up nice and shiny.......

    I found some old "Photowar" magazines from about 1970 in the garage today. I think they contain his articles on pikelhaube "restoration". I'll type them up - read them & you won't sleep easy.

    Was it Norman Holden or a later collector/author who mentioned the naivity of early collectors who would swap fittings around just because they look shinier or prettier?

    Now we have people who strip M15s down, cutting out liners, unstitching front & rear peaks just to make more money from the bits.

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    What can I say? You are absolutely right Eric! A lot of helmets and of course other militaria are destroyed by people who don't really know what they are doing, but on the other hand that leaves more good items for the collector who knows his stuff...

    We can also ask ourselves how far can one go in restoration... Take for example the two helmets above:

    The Bavarian is very interesting because it's an M15 officer's helmet with removable chinscales and spike. These are not easy to find I can tell ya! This helmet has a strong heavy patina and it seems nobody ever messed with it... but on the other hand the little checkerred shield of the reserve cross seems not to fit the contours of the helmet plate. What to do now? Leave it (original, but not textbook), replace the reserve cross by one that fits (textbook, but not original anymore) or one can just not purchase it and look for a better one.

    The prussian haube is less interesting because its not that rare, on the other had it's configured as before 1897 because it has the old style Prussian officer's kokarde and has never had a Reichskokarde. It's still in a fair condition, but yet one of the stars that hold the spike base appears to be replaced. Maybe period, maybe 50 years ago... What to do in this case? Remove the star, replace the star or leave the star? That's the question...

    So all I mean is that every collector tries to do it his way and opinions will always be different, but I always try to purchases helmets and other things that don't need restoration in any way, but this has a great disadvantage also... usually this stuff is more expensive! It's hard to draw a line between what's acceptable and what's not to consider an item original...

    Just my two cents of course...


    Adler 1

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