Gas Mask and Respirator Wiki

The GM30 is a military gas mask used by Nazi Germany in the Second World War and the S-maske is the civilian version of it.


The GM30 uses a 5-point head harness and an additional neck strap, made from cloth and elasticated by steelsprings. The face-piece itself is made from a thick canvas material coated in a thin layer of rubber, which is covered with a thin canvas layer and an even thinner rubber inner layer. Cellulose eyepieces are placed in brass assemblies, which are threaded, making eyepiece replacement rather easy. The valve housing is made of aluminum. The 40 mm DIN intake is on the front, while the glimmer type exhale valve is behind it.

The mask mainly stayed the same throughout the years; only the valve house changed. The first model has a simple valve house with a slightly separated intake screw part. The second one is the most well-known one, where the exhale and the inhale are in one flat plain. This update was implemented because the valve was soiled quickly and the soldiers hit their front teeth while falling. The masks were retrofitted with the rubber protector and the pre-chamber lid. (In the military, the modernization was easy, but not all the civilian ones were returned to be modified, resulting in some rare masks nowadays). The third variant has a valve house made of only one mould. The mask was made in 3 sizes; 12% are large, size 1 masks; Most, 80%, are size 2; and the rest 8% were the smallest size 3.

Military versions[]


The mainly military intended variant.

GM30 Telefonmaske[]

A normal GM30 with a built-in microphone in the left cheek.

GM30 Luftwaffe[]

The Luftwaffe had an additional lateral round thread connection depending on the aircraft type, right or left, with a corrugated hose or filter. Depending on requirements, the unneeded connection was sealed with a round threaded plug. For experimental purposes, these masks were used at the end of the war on tanks (prototypes with collective filtration system). These masks were not crew equipment but remained in the aircraft or tanks.

GM30 Funker/Mikrofon[]

It had a removable metal cap on the side into which the microphone was screwed.
This mask has been developed for the Kriegsmarine (navy), but has also been used in other branches for radio operators.

Civilian version[]


There is no difference between normal GM30 and S-maske masks except for the RL (RL1-38/3) stamp. To simplify gas mask production, the manufacturers could only produce certain masks. Each year, the Wehrmacht discarded a certain percent of the stock to refresh them with new ones. These discarded masks were inspected and then sold to civilians for 12 Reichsmark.


The mask was issued with many different filters, depending on the users. The Civil Defence used it with S-Filter. The armed forces used various filters, mainly FE 37, FE 41 and FE 42. In genera,l all filters were round canister filters painted in green colors. Markings:

  • FE: combat filter
  • Fe: ferrum (iron)
  • AL: aluminum
  • NM: not magnetic
  • R: Drinked Improved Ring-shaped Nebula Filter (In older filter-tops the R was stamped, in the newer ones) soaked = hexamethylenetetramine Refilled
  • HN: hexamethylenetetramine refilled
  • Tp, Tr or Tropics: tropical filter

Carrying canister[]

The mask came in a round steel canister called Gasmaskenbüchse (gas mask canister). On the inside of the lid, there is a separated section for the anti-fog inserts.

First model Reichswehr and Wehrmacht canisters used between 1930-35 are around 26cm high with a diameter of around 12cm.

The second model, used between 1935-36, is bit shorter at 25cm. The diameter remains the same. The closure system changed, adding a canvas pull strap for easier opening.

The third model, used between 1936-38, has an updated closure system again, which remains the same for all following models. The dimensions are the same as the second model.

The fourth model (1938-45) keeps all the hardware features of the third, but is longer (around 27cm) to better accommodate the rubber GM38 mask.

Early versions of the fourth and previous types are not waterproof, but later variants are. A waterproof canister is marked with a "D" for Dicht ((water)tight) on the bottom.



Flag-de-wh Wehrmacht (Army of Nazi Germany)

Flag-de-ss Schutzstaffel (Nazi pary army)

Flag-de-n-rlb Reichsluftschutzbund (Nazi pre-Civil DefenceFlag-civil-defence)

Flag-pas Civilians

The GM30 was created as a successor to the GM24 and was issued to the Wehrmacht and to other branches in Nazi Germany. Early variants of the mask were used with rebreathing devices like the Dräger KG rebreather serie.

The mask was used for protecting the user's face form the back blast of the rocket, leaving the tube of the RPzB 54 Ofenrohr ("stove pipe" - early Panzerschreck without protecting shield).

In concentration camps like Auschwitz, the mask was used by the guards when dealing with Zyklon B, where it required a special "J" filter.


Flag-cs-ca Československá armáda (Czechoslovak Army)

At the end of the war, the newly reformed Czechoslovak state and army seized all German equipment on its soil, including, gas masks. The GM30 was adopted into the service along with the GM38 (Vz.38N) as the Vz.30N (Vzor 1930 Německá - Pattern 1930 German). The mask was kept in service until a 1952 modernization effort in the army, when they got rid of all non-GOST masks. The postwar used GM30 masks have a proofmark featuring a year alongside either a lion in a square or two crossed swords.


Flag-tr-tsk Türk Silahlı Kuvvetleri (Turkish Army)

Turkey imported masks and other military equipment from Germany just before the war. Just like in Bulgaria, the GM30 was used with GM24 type filter and hose, and later with normal lightweight filters as well. The mask was in service until the 1990s for training.


Flag-gr-es Ελληνικός Στρατός (Hellenic Army)

Greece bought the license sometime in the mid-1930s. The mask is slightly different than the original GM30 as the harness is removable and the eyepieces are made of triplex glass, not cellon. The text on the antifog inserts is written in Greek, but it is possible that it was manufactured in Berlin by Auer, just like the Hungarian 34M antifog inserts. The mask came with hose and GM24 type filter.


Flag-pas Civilians

Lithuania, like previous countries, used the early GM30 masks with 1st type valve housings.

Republic of China[]

Flag-kmt-a 國民革命軍 (Chinese National Revolutionary Army)

Since 1926, the Kuomintang had hired German advisors to improve the tactics and equipment of the Army, alongside the production of its own armament. During the mid-30s, a great deal of equipment was imported, alongside some GM30s which saw some use alongside the multiple other respirators issued. Some relic carriers dated 1934 were found in the Shanxi province.


Flag-es-scw-n Bando sublevado (SCW Nationalists)

Flag-es-a Ejército de Tierra (Spanish Army)

During the Spanish Civil War, the Condor legion and some branches of the Nationalist army were issued with this mask. Under nationalism, they'd be designated as N 24. They'd be used after the War by the Spanish army until the adoption of the M2-73 under the N.24 designation. Facepieces used after the War may have a number of differing features stemming from repairs done in certain ways:

  • The metal carriers were repainted with the Spanish Army's olive paint, and some kits are found with CMP-made cans instead of original ones
  • The filter can be either a recovered original filter (FE or FE37, usually painted blue with a label stating its recovery origin) or one of any type that was used by the Spanish Army at the time for their masks with directly-attacheed filters (Victorias, Dagsas, L.T.35s)
  • The exhale valve can be either an original one or one from a Dagsa mask
  • The inlet valve could be either original or be one from other masks (Victorias, Dagsas, L.T.35s, L.M.33s)
  • The lenses can either be the original cellulose acetate ones or they can be made of triplex glass, either 65mm or 63mm wide (in the second they'd use adapters to fit into their housing)
  • The facepiece can be found with patches and cold vulcanization spots where cuts were present
  • The straps can have parts mixed in from other models