Japanese Suicide Boat Pilot Helmet-This super scarce helmet was worn by the driver of a Japanese suicide boat. They were rugged in design for obvious reasons.
The Shinyo (震洋 "Sea Quake") were Japanese suicide boats developed during World War II. They were part of the wider Special Attack Units program. These fast motorboats were driven by one man, to speeds of around 30 kn (56 km/h; 35 mph). They were typically equipped with two depth charges as explosives. Around 6,200 Shinyo were produced for the Imperial Japanese Navy and 3,000 Maru-Ni for the Imperial Japanese Army. Around 400 were sent to Okinawa and Formosa, and the rest were stored on the coast of Japan for the ultimate defense against the invasion of the Home islands.
There is a heavy brow plate to protect the driver so he could complete his mission. The finish is a drab grey which remains 80% intact. There is a hand painted anchor of yellow over a red background at the front. That is also 80% present. At the rear is hand painted Kanji and the number 80. The interior has the original three pad brown leather liner that is in great condition with only minor discoloration. It has detached from one anchor point but still remains tightly affixed. It is very heavy, being produced in thick steel and having a plate at the front. There is only minor visible surface rust. Super desirable and scarcely encountered, especially in this condition! I have owned a total of three of these over the years!