Without a doubt the Mark V is the most popular helmet we handle. While difficult to find authentic examples, these were made in sizeable quantities during World War 2. While many were used up, destroyed or simply lost, a precious few do still exist. Of those few still only a small percentage retain their original hardware and matching serial # parts. This Mark V made by Diving Equipment & Salvage Co (DESCO) is just one of those examples! DESCO would later in 1945 change their name to Diving Equipment & Supply Co and are still in business today.
This Mark V is dated June 6th, 1945 - excatly 1 year after D-Day. It does have a US Navy inspection stamp on the brass faceplate frame. This stamp proves without a doubt the helmet was part of the Navy inventory. In addition, the neck rings on the inside have the matching # as well. Inside the bonnet the air vents are present as well as a WWII speaker or reproducer. This piece also has a US Navy inspection stamp on it!
The copper body is in very nice condition. The bonnet does show signs of use over the decades, but no big dents. One of the rear brails does appear to be a period replacement due to the slightly different color of brass. All 12 wing nuts are intact as well as the four copper shims. There is one screw broken off on the faceplate guard. Overall the helmet has a fantastic patina on the copper body and brass hardware.
This is a fantastic example of a World War 2 Mark V with all the correct stamps, #'s and parts all present!
1945 US Navy Mark V Diving Helmet
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