Dr. Del-
What's the story on those early '60's facemasks that seem to be a transitional model between schutt's cowcatcher, square front mount and their later butterfly mount masks? I would guess they first appeared in the 1960 season and were worn, primarily from my observations, until 1964 or so, mostly, if not only,  by the Chicago Bears. And hey, take it easy on those old MacGregor helmets. They were cool. Great site. Thanks---Art


Dear Art:
The Schutt "cowcatcher" masks bolted on the helmet at the top square mount and on both sides. This type of mask was replaced by the "butterfly mount" mask which originally bolted on the helmet just like the "cowcatcher" did. In the mid 1960s the "butterfly mount" mask was modified so that it mounted at both sides of the helmet with facemask attachment clips. This mask was further modified so that the "butterfly" mounting plate was eliminated and the mask was attached to the helmet at both the top and sides with facemask attachment clips. Joe Namath wore this type of mask in Super Bowl lll. We are not aware of a cage type -- rubber coated steel mask that was introduced between the two types of masks described above (including their variations). Please send us a picture of the mask you are referring to and we will try to identify it.


Hi Doc,
Can you explain why the helmet logo of the Miami Dolphins was so inconsistent during the early years of the team?  As far as I can tell it started off with the dolphin’s head touching the sun “hoop,” then it was moved inside the hoop.  During Super Bowl VIII against the Vikings I remember seeing both logo styles on the field at the same time.  The logo seemed to gain some consistency in later years; finally in 1997 Miami got it together and modernized the thing.  Was this an attention-to-detail gaffe by the logo manufacturer, indecision by ownership, or a little or both?
BTW, great site!

Dave Marr
Riverview, FL


Dear Dave:
The major change in the original Dolphin logo had to be its reduction in size. It started out huge and considering the poor quality of adhesives and decal material available in the mid 1960s it was virtually impossible to apply the decal to the helmet without major creasing. Helmet Hut has featured a late 1960s actual game worn Bob Greise Dolphin helmet in which the round decal was actually cut in half and applied as two pieces to avoid creasing. In the 1970s the logo size was significantly reduced which made it less attractive but easier to apply without creasing. The position of the dolphin in the hoop has varied over the years without official explanation. Our guess is that it was the result of having the decals manufactured by several different suppliers during those years including Vista Craft, Pro Decal and Mulheisen (the low bid supplier usually got the job). Due to a lack of league or team controls during that era each supplier had the opportunity to tweak the decal as they saw fit without major repercussions. Other teams including the Packers, Redskins (Indian head), Colts, Steelers, Rams, Chiefs and Buffalo have also had their logo's slightly modified during this era without the team's knowledge or permission. Sometimes the only person who knew something was different was the team's equipment manager. Unofficial or unauthorized tweaking of a team's helmet logo provides yet another example of the great charm of professional football back in those good OLE days.



Hello Dr.
First love the site, it is incredible the collection you guys have, I have been told that this is just the beginning.  Good luck to you!  Now I have a very simple question, when did the
NOCSAE stamping on the back of the helmets start?  Thanks for the information.

Dear Terri:
The NOC-SAE mark was stamped on the rear of Riddell helmets starting with helmet shells molded in the mid 1970s. Keep in mind the actual "born on" or warranty sticker date of the helmet which reflected its completion (or full assembly) date could be months and even years different from the date stamped in the shell which reflected only when the shell was molded. For instance a shell molded in early 1974 without the NOC-SAE mark stamped in the shell might not have been fully assembled and ready for use until late 1975 or later depending on inventory levels of that shell's size and color type. Rare shell sizes and colors would stay in inventory unassembled much longer than more common sizes and colors.

Dr.  I was looking on e bay the other day & came across a helmet for sale that showed the Charger helmet in a baby blue shell with the yellow lightning bolt. I can vaguely remember them playing a game in this color scheme but can't remember when or where? Every web site I have come across never shows this color scheme? Did the Chargers ever play a or any game whether pre-season, anniversary, TB, special day, proto or just for the heck of it? Whether in L.A. or San Diego? Thanks

Dear Sirs:
Sorry but the Chargers have never used baby blue colored helmets which would have matched their original AFL home jersey color. They changed from white to navy colored helmets in 1974 and aside from the shade of the navy helmet being slightly darkened in the latter 1980s (as it was for all Riddell navy colored impregnated shells) there have been no further changes that involve baby blue. The original Houston Oilers wore a light blue helmet (Columbia blue) in the early 1960s.