RARE Luftwaffe SSK90 (fighter) pilot protection helmet 1941 with summer flight helmet
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Textbook SSK 90 Luftwaffe pilot helmet. Officially adopted by the Luftwaffe on 8 May 1941, the SSK 901 helmet was manufactured exclusively by the Siemens Company. The helmet was made out of interlocking and hinged steel plates that were designed to protect the head from shrapnel. The entire assembly was then covered with thick padding and dark brown leather identical to that found on standard air crew helmets. Each side of the helmet had an “ear cut-out” that was designed to accommodate the earphones found on the cloth and leather flight helmets. The chinstrap assembly utilized components identical to that found on German paratrooper helmets including the buckle, leather, and snaps (by PRYM). A large protruding pad (or comb) running from the front visor to the crown was designed to protect the head from direct frontal impact during crash landings or aerial combat. Due to the weight of the steel plates inside the SSK 90 helmet it was eventually withdrawn from service on 26 May 1941. Having been used for only a short period of time, the helmet became essentially obsolete although some continued to see service after 1941.
This wonderful example is in excellent condition complete with inner lining, full function chin strap, and makers label that reads: SIEMENS, Baumuster, SSK 90, Hersteller: LUFTFAHRTGERATEWERK, HAKENFELDE GMBH, STRIWA, Kopfgröße 57-59 (Head size in centimeters).
Easily fits a 59cm head, the leather, comb and steel plates are all in excellent condition, this is the best example of an SSK we have ever seen.
Having been used for a short time, the SSK 90 is a scarce pre-jet age flight helmet. It should be noted that for many years, collectors incorrectly assumed that the SSK 90 helmet was specifically made for pilots flying the Messerschmitt Me 262 jet fighter and therefore incorrectly labeled the SSK 90 as a “jet fighter helmet”.
The helmet comes together with a summer ‘Flieger Kopfhaube’ in worn condition, missing the cable and interior head phones and a mannequin head for presentation.
A seldom seen flight helmet, missing in many pilot collections!