Accuracy of GFDB Sallet
Hey guys. Been looking into a sallet recently and this one is pretty appealing to my eyes. 14 gauge which is in the useable range. I know the liner is pretty inaccurate but that can easily be changed.

My question is more the labeling as Venetian. My (very) limited research suggests Italians preferred open face or T-cutout sallets during the period when they were widely used.

Can anyone more knowledgeable provide some input?

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Sallets, used in Italy tended to have closer necks as well. That said Italy imported tons of armour all over Europe and their direct neighbors in the style that would sell.

It looks OK. The eye slots are a bit wide but other wise it is ok. Looks more Northward in Europe to me actually than Italian.

looks more burgundian to me.
so a italian sallet for the burgundian market
We've discussed that one elsewhere, but here's the short version. If the brow reinforce is only riveted I'd see if those rivets are far enough above the edge of the bowl to pierce a new hole and move the reinforce down as much as possible. Then, it looks like you could remove the lining rivets immediately to the rear of the visor pivots, tip the visor back and put new pivots through the arms of the visor and old lining rivet hole. That will help close the gap in the sight. I suspect that the visor change is all you'll be able to do but it's worth investigating. Those are easy changes. If it has the usual GDFB liner, you can just peel and cut away everything to just below the rivets, then stitch-in a proper liner. You can leave the stuff above the level of the rivets because the new liner will cover it.

Here's what I did to my GDFB sallet:
Hi Cole,

Welcome to the world of sallets!

I have only a couple of things to add:

First, in some contexts, you might see people claim that sallets with only a jawbone visor (as opposed to a 'whole face') were only worn in (what we would now call) Germany, not Italy. This claim has notably been made a few times on another forum by a fairly prominent person; it's not borne out by period art.

Second, folks who have owned the GDFB have talked about it being clunky and too heavy.

Third, if that one is pretty appealing to your eyes, I'd strongly recommend taking a few hours and surfing through here (and The Armour Archive) to find links to pictures of sallets - both in museum collections, and good modern reproductions (such as by Stanislav Prosek, who made the one in my avatar; Patrick Thaden, Francois L'Archeveque, Eric Dubé, White Rose, Jiri Lucius, Anshelm Arms, and others). While you might not be able to afford their work - at least now - look at them closely for lines, detail in the work, construction, and so on.

Immerse yourself heaviliy in images of sallets, and I think you'll find you'll see the GDFB one with new eyes - and you might decide to save for a bit longer and buy elsewhere.

While secondhand can be a good avenue, fitting can be a gamble, and helms should ideally be custom-made - there are a couple of threads on here as to why. One option, after studying the historical models and good modern repros, is to find reasonably-priced makers who still have clean lines and good construction. Search through here, and TAA, and you'll find lots of leads (for example, Maxim at Wildarmoury, Hammerbreaker, Roman Tereschenko, Willy Trambone and friends, Armoury Marek, and others). Such a sallet will look a lot better than the GDFB, function well, and still have good resale value should you decide to 'trade up' down the track.

I hope this doesn't sound like 'armour snobbery' - I was in exactly the same place as you a couple of years ago: wanted a sallet, found the GDFB first (of course: it's mass produced and mass marketed), but then read a post just like this one. I then spent a few hours using the search function, collecting images, and learning what I could about helm design, construction, and fitting, and keeping an eye on the classifieds here and elsewhere. Among my modest sallet collection, I've managed to pick up a couple secondhand that were not much more than a GDFB, but were handmade, are beautiful, and would fit the bill no matter what the purpose: using in contact WMA sparring, living history / reenactment, passing on to grandchildren, or simply just holding value in case of resale.

I hope that's of some help!

Mark T
Thanks for the input everybody.

I did wind up having to tear out the liner and redoing it, a little tight but I'm guessing the cloth batting will wear in to be just about right. Does not seem too heavy but that may be due to the weight distribution being more even with a proper liner.

If anyone is an armor snob I suppose that makes me an armor peasant, but I like project pieces and they're more affordable than something custom-made for me. I know they'll never reach that level of quality though.

I do appreciate the post regardless.
what i find funny asbout people saying this one is more akin to a german sallet.
is that, my understanding is that german sallets tend to have a much longer 'tail' ,
while i realise there is always alotof regional variation between austrian, burgundian and italian sallets.

seems to me the GDFB sallet, based purely more on the presence of that deep inward curve at the back of the skull before flaring out again and the fact the 'tail, isnt as tall, all the german ones seem to forego that deep curve and start almost immediately flaring backwards.

though im wary of the fact a few replicas dont make a typology, and there are probably a few aspectsof helmet design ive missed. feel fre to point out any i have missed

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manning imperial's north italian sallet based on a brescian sallet in the churberg collection

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German sallet from 15th century also by manning imperial

I think you might be right. I thought this had a much longer tail but just looked it up on CAS's website and it is a much closer tail. That said looks like they have lost some of their helmets that were their earlier.

its also worth noting that the 'tails', of some sallets are of a laminated construction.
like the one on this page (i THINK its german )

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