U.S. AN-H-16 Winter Flying Helmet
The AN-H-16 is described by Jon A. Maguire in his excellent ‘Gear Up’ as ‘one of the more difficult WW11 flying helmets to locate today’ and that was written back in 1995! It is scarce simply because it was not produced or issued on a wide scale. The US Navy had its own version (despite the AN designation of this helmet) the AN6543 which is much more common. This example appears to have had minimal service use and is in close to perfect display condition. The leather shell is very soft with all its original finish in place with the seams tight and is set off nicely with a large AAF logo stamp to the front brow. The helmet is fully wired with ANB-H-1 receivers by Roanwell fitted and attached to a classic Y loom and finished with a PL-354 jack plug. The leather chin strap retains a shearling rubbing strip and the silk laces are still in place. The snaps for an oxygen mask are correctly spaced for an A-14 with the left side fitted with two single straps, one high and one low, and the right side positioned for the clip. The only issue with this helmet is both the snaps for the Y loom rear straps are a little tender, a fault common with shearling lined helmets. To ensure these are secure we have cemented the end of each strap in place so they are no longer operative yet on display this restoration is virtually undetectable. Inside the helmet is close to mint. The shearling is again stamped with the AAF logo and the woven label confirms this is a desirable Large size and the helmet was manufacturer by Bradley Goodrich Inc to an order nos. (33-038)44-3755 which we assume to be a 1944 contract. In conclusion a hard to find fully wired helmet in excellent display condition in a large size that would sit happily in a specialist helmet collection. Many thanks to Mick Prodger for his assistance in preparing this description.