Roller Buckle Chinstrap (top) and M1931 Chinstrap (bottom).
The type of chinstraps used on World War II
German helmets first appeared in 1931 when liner systems were
undergoing a redesign. The first chinstraps made to
replace the standard World War I two-buckle sliding chinstrap
was a type that used a roller buckle (shown at top). The
roller buckle chinstraps saw service during the early to
mid-1930's until a new design was introduced for use with the
updated M1931 aluminum liner band system. This chinstrap
might best be termed the "M1931 chinstrap" (shown second from
top) since it was designed to accompany the new liner M1931
liner system. Despite the introduction of the new M1931
chinstrap, many roller buckle chinstraps were used well after
1940. They continued to be issued with helmets that had
been in storage or already in use. The new M1931 style
buckles used a smaller buckle design and were made to attach
directly to two "D" rings on either side of the helmet liner.
The first M1931chinstraps produced were made with aluminum
as well as steel buckles. After 1940 many steel buckles were
produced with a coat of gray or green paint. The paint was
intended to cut down on the reflective qualities of the metal as well as
to help prevent against rust. In 1937 a standard was introduced
that required all manufacturers to mark their chinstraps to ensure
quality. Many chinstraps produced prior to this year were left
By 1942 a wartime industry produced the need
for a systematic way of marking material without giving away the name of
the firm and its location. A new system was introduced that
required manufacturers to mark their product with a serial code known as
an "RB Number." The National Business Number (Reichsbetreibsnummer-RBNr.)
was placed by manufacturers on the long end of each chinstrap.
Interestingly, many chinstraps produced in 1944 did not receive the RB
Number. One can only assume that the omission was an error or that
the practice was simply discontinued in order to speed production.
Each section of German-Helmets.com
is divided into separate Information Tracks that outline important
details, facts, and historical notes pertaining to steel helmets used by
the German Armed Forces during World War II.
Information Tracks are organized
by subject matter and their content is directly related to the service arm
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bridge one subject matter to another are cross linked within each Information Track.
This Information Track provides historical
facts pertaining to helmet chinstraps circa 1931-1945. Individual links related to this subject are