The VM44 is a Second World War Civil Defense gas mask issued to Civilians during Nazi Germany.
Mask overview Edit
The VM44's face-piece made from simple canvas originally given a thin coating of rubber(the inside of which being the most coated) to provide a tight seal to the user. Unlike it's predecessor the Volksgasmaske 40, the VM44 uses a proper exhale valve covered with a thin metal protection grate though the intake valve remains the same being held on with metal. The eye-pieces on the VM44 are also made from cellulose as the older models, the only exception being the fact they have been cut down to reduce costs.
The harness on the VM44 is completely unique to the VM44 face-piece. The harness consists of five piece head harness, the upper straps directly attached to the face-piece and held together with a thin rubber connection piece that would rest on the back of the user's skull. The bottom two straps were not attached to the face-piece by default and would be hooked similar to other Nazi masks at the time. This was to make it easier to transport the VM44 within it's wooden box.
The VM44 was created to reduce costs for civilian respirators for Nazi Germany, as the VM40 used prior was expensive and used more rubber than that was required so they reverted to canvas rubber designs first introduced in World War One. Despite this, when new the VM44 worked fine.
The mask went through several production changes just as the VM40 did, it was originally issued in a wooden box with a string to wear at all times encase of an enemy bombing/gas attack. The kit itself included a face-piece and filtration canister, with a manual tucked on top with a plastic sleeve. Later on in the war, they began to only coat the inside of the VM44 face-piece instead of the entire mask to reduce costs. By the end of the War, they began just making VM44's in any factory they could which made VM44 with GM30 components.
The VM44 was issued it's own unique filter similar to the Volksgasmaske filters except instead of a silver color the filter has a dark brown color. The production stamps are also located in slightly different locations on the filter compared to those issues with previous versions. It was sometimes issued with the older VM37 and VM40 gas mask filters.