The collection of historical diving gear is slowly growing

There are not too many museums of diving history in the entire world (we have a list). In Finland there is none. A lot of diving gear is scattered around the country and displayed in small museums (or in small displays). This amount of equipment would already fill a proper museum. A permanent display would encourage further donations. To our knowledge, the most extensive and most complete collection is the one owned by our society. It is slowly growing, and that is good!

The Honorable Sukellusneuvos Öhman

In the spring of 2019 a “madam” contacted us and asked us to accept old diving gear for safe-keeping. She called this collection of gear as Sukellusneuvos Öhman. It comprised a standard diving dress and a single cylinder “baby-pump”. Opportunities like this do not rise often so we absolutely had to take it. We will publish the background story of this diving suit at a later point in time. Öhman will become our mascot and he will follow us to wherever we go. Until mid-august he will sit in the public library of Naantali, but we will make a short excursion to Naantali on saturday 3.8.

Öhman in Naantali during “Naantali heritage day” arranged by Lions club Naantali.. The church of st Birgitta is visible in the background.

Another splendid donation was done by an old-time diver Pekka Laitinen. He emptied his garage of diving gear and donated us, among other things, a neoprene drysuit made by the local company Ursuk (now Ursuit) in 1970. That suit is one of very few remaining.

Gear donated by Pekka Laitinen. The pump (blue wooden box) still needs to be assembled. Its internals are in the garage.

In the spring of 2019 we also received two portable recompression chambers as a donation. Both chambers have room for one patient. These chambers were originally on display in Pansio naval base in the Mine museum created by Eero Auvinen.

Both chambers.
One of the Dräger recompression chambers on display in Naantali. Arja Hoikka and Ralf Strandell from the diving section of Turku YMCA show the chamber to interested visitors. Children were especially keen on beeing enclosed in the chamber. Adults were more suspicios.

The donations mentioned above are recent. Everything we own has been received as a donation during our ten years of existence. The only exception is the pump in the foreground. We paid a whoping 300 euro for it once in a time.

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