Before the second world war started Finland fought its ‘winter war’ with the Soviets and since the British had a pact with the Russians, Finland had no other choice then to get closer with Germany. As a result Finland was forced to fight on the side of the Germans during the second world war. Due to the initial war with Russia and later the German alliance, Finland could no longer obtain the Siebe Gorman diving equipment from England for some time and started to produce its own helmets. These helmets look a lot like the Siebe Gorman 12 bolt helmet but they are not.

Finland’s ‘Raumalainen’ 12 bolt divers helmet


the scrapbook of diving history

G.W. Sohlberg was a metal company founded in 1876 by Gabriel Wilhelm Sohlberg in the Ullaninna district. The companies’ main product were tin boxes until in the 1940’s one of Sohlberg’s workers entered a working site in the harbor of Rauma where divers were at work. This man measured up one of the divers helmets and returned to the factory with his notebook, some time later the first Finish made diving helmets entered the market, these helmets were named ‘Raumalainen’ helmets, after the harbor town where the man had visited the divers.

G.W. Sohlberg

The photo above dates from 1948 and shows an exhibition of the Sohlberg company at a trade fair in Norway. Among a selection of tin flashlights, metal badges also a brand new Raumalainen helmet is displayed.

With many thanks to Jouko Moisala of the  Historical Diving Society in Finland for sharing the info from his research