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Syrian Army commandos wearing SSh-68s while operating a MILAN ATGM
Russian KFOR soldier wearing an upgraded SSh-68 with an added inner Kevlar shell in 2001

The SSh-68, Russian: СШ-68 (стальной шлем образца 1968 года/stalnoy shlyem, or steel helmet) (English: SSh-68 steel helmet model 1968) - is a steel helmet of the Soviet and then Russian Armed Forces. The SSh-68 is further development of combined-arms helmet SSh-60. It differs primarily in its greater strength, greater front slope of the dome and the shorter outer edge. It is usually painted in dark green.[1]

The mass of the helmet - 1300 grams (with leatherette balaclavas - 1500 grams). SSh-68 provides protection from impact shock (machetes, etc.), and steel fragments weighing 1.0 grams at speeds up to 250 m/s.[2] The SSh-68 is not meant to protect against bullets.

The SSh-68 was provided to the armed forces of the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact allies, and others. At the present time is in service in most countries of the CIS, as well as China, Vietnam, North Korea, Iran, Singapore[citation needed] and other countries. Due to the advent of improved helmets, the SSh-68 progressively withdrawn from service. In the Russian Armed Forces, they are gradually replaced by the newer 6B47 helmet.

Variations and modifications[edit]

SSh-68M/СШ-68М (GRAU index - 6B14) - A modernization of SSh-68 by installing an aramid fiber liner, called SVM, inside the helmet, as well as modern harness belt and restraint systems. As a result, the mass of the helmet is increased to 1.9 kg. The helmet is designed by "Special equipment and communication", for the personnel of the Russian Ministry of the Interior Internal Troops. The SSh-68M provides head protection of class 1 (pistol and revolver bullets).[3]

SSh-68N "blank"/Заготовка (Grau index - 6B14) - Modernization of SSh-68 by increasing the thickness of the aramid membrane inside the helmet, as well as by the installation of modern harness belt and restraint systems. As a result, the mass of the helmet is increased to 2 kg. This helmet is designed for the personnel of the Russian armed forces. The helmet protects the head in class 1 (9×18mm Makarov pistol and revolver bullets), as well as from fragments of steel of spherical mass of 1.1 g (6.3 mm diameter of fragment) up to 400 m.[4]


SSh-68 are available in three different sizes, P1, P2, and P3. P1 (small) is good to about a 58 head, size 2 (medium) is between about 59 and 61 and size 3 (Large to extra large) is from 61 up. SSh-68s are not sized as NATO helmets are since they are designed to be able to adjust for soldiers to wear an Ushanka or other heavy hat underneath it during the winter.


In early 2000s the Russian military attempted to replace it by a new 6B7 helmet, which was never widely used. By 2010s a new model, 6B27 (see ru:6Б27) replaced SSh-68 in Russia; this model is also gradually introduced in other ODKB countries. In other post-Soviet states (except for Baltic countries and Georgia) there are still large stocks of SSh-68 in use, although in Ukraine it was sporadically replaced by Kaska-1M (see ru:Каска-1М). During the conflict in Ukraine several hundred SPECTRA helmets were donated to Ukrainian volunteer nationalist battalions (Aidar, Azov, Donbass etc.).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Sergey Monetchikov. Uniforms: From helmet to the steel helmet Magazine "Big Brother», № 6, June 2009
  2. ^ Dmitri Mamontov. Cast iron forehead: Keep your head "Popular Mechanics", February 2007
  3. ^ NL-68M, a protective helmet of steel upgraded
  4. ^ upgraded bulletproof helmet NL-68N "blank"

External links[edit]