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Type 11 leather flying helmet

Size 58, otherwise unlabelled


The French Type 11 appeared in the late 1930s and became the standard flying helmet of the Armée de l'Air.

It was produced by various manufacturers in large numbers before and during WWII and its basic construction lived on in several successors after WWII, like the Type 14 and Type 15.


Its design cannot deny some resemblance to the early era hard shell helmets and while most other countries now used soft leather or cloth helmets, the French continued with the shock absorbing concept of a « hard » shell made of cardboard or pressed leather and covered with leather.

This helmet features two goggle snap up strap retainers, , four snap up wire leads at the rear and an adjustable chin strap with a double-ring buckle. The inner lining consisted of very soft tan coloured leather with eight fingers forming a string-adjustable opening at the rear allowed some size adjustment. Two small holes at the back provided some aeriation.

Two front-sewn earflaps were to accommodate radio receivers (normally of Ericsson or Elno design) and could be secured close by means of one snap fastener. On this specimen the cut-out is present on the right side only which indicates the use of one-sided receivers, and futhermore it does not feature lateral oxygen mask attachment clips.

Considering the picture on the lower left, these types of helmets were worn by tanker crews as well.

CÉBÉ 4000 flying goggles

This display comes with a pair of CÉBÉ 4000 goggles with the characteristic two-strap arrangement. While the upper strap is elastizised, the lower one is made of non-elastic fabric. Both adjustable straps come in two segments each and are attached to the goggle frames with closable hooks and are closed at the rear by a hook and ring.

The CÉBÉ 4000 further consists of nickle plated metal frames with incorporated air vents, linked by a hinged nose bridge which is embossed with the designation and manufacturer's logo. A chamois-lined one-piece rubber cushion is sewn to the frames which incorporated curved glass lenses. The latter can easily be replaced by opening the frames aftter removing the goggle strap attachment hooks.


Almost identically designed goggles were also produced by French manufacturers OTO and Airoptic, while in the US many features were duly copied for the Navy's Willson Mk I.


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