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Thursday June 30 2011, 3 new helmets on the website.

Today I put photo’s of the following helmets on the website :

  1. -Chapter 1860 Rouquayrol Denayrouze 2: the 1957 pattern Piel 3 bolt french navy diving helmet

  2. -Chapter 1899 Draegerwerk: the Model 1915 Bubikopf helmet

  3. -Chapter 1839 Augustus Siebe 3: the Siebe, Gorman & Co. Ltd. 6 bolt helmet with first style ‘flat’ company badge

Friday August 12 2011, a new chapter has been added: ‘Fake Helmet Alert!’

Since the early nineteen eighties diving equipment has been reproduced to be sold as genuine antiques. Read the amazing story about the rude dealers and be alert for the next generation of bad helmets on the market: last week the second fake Siebe Gorman ‘Utility’ or Heinke ‘Harbour’ helmet has showed up on the collectors market, apparently these are currently manufactured in a workshop near Gdynia in Poland.

Go to the ‘Fake Helmet Alert!’ page

Monday september 5 - 2011, a new ‘Fake Helmet Alert!’

Only 3 weeks ago the new chapter ‘Fake Helmet Alert!’ has been added to this website after a new series of fake helmets had been discovered: the 3 bolt Siebe Gorman Heinke helmets. Last week I received a sad email from Denmark where a collector had bought such a helmet and a fake Draeger helmet. The helmets were sold to him as genuine diving helmets by a young man calling himself ‘Johnny from France’ who drove a white van with french license plates. The german dealer and his son who sold an identical fake helmet here in Holland have an address in France and drive a bleu Mercedes Benz E class sedan with french license plates. The danish collector provided the license plates number of the van ‘Johnny’ drove in and currently these license plate numbers are checked out with the french police. The young man calling himself Johnny is believed to be the son of the german dealer family, the van might be a rental. The license plates numbers are: 250 BVL 83 please let us know when you are contacted by or have met with these dealers.

At the pictures here below the two fake helmets are shown which were sold in Denmark last week, the Draeger is of a less quality then the ones which appeared for sale around 2002 but still looking good enough to be sold as a genuine helmet to a collector who never owed a genuine one...

In het Nederlands, en Français oder auf Deutsch:

Friday November 25 - 2011 FIVE(!) New Chapters Added To The Website

Today 6 new chapters have been added to the website, all explaining the projects we have been working on since 2004. ‘We’ is Rob Krul and myself, the projects are: a steel Rouquayrol Denayrouze regulator, the ‘Pig Snout Mask’ from the same inventors, the brass regulator backpack as used by the German Imperial Navy and last but not least the Modele 1873 Denayrouze underwater lamp. Click HERE to go to the first of the new chapters.


In English

Saturday May 12 - 2012. Two new chapters on the website!

The Denayrouze chapters have a third chapter to it. It explains about the Piel SIDEP EP100, EP200 and EP300 helmet, and the Piel ‘Bulle’ helmet model CA 101. Click at the photo here above to enter the new chapter

The La Spirotechnique chapters have one more chapter to it: ‘La Spirotechnique Diving Helmets’. Click at the photo here above to enter that new chapter

Saturday June 16 - 2012. News Update ‘Fake helmets are still sold’

This email came in today:

Dear “guardian” of a clean business, J


Today,  at the front door of my house was offered to me a Siebe Gorman and Draeger-3-bolt diving helmet. The last time I have dived in 1987 with a Dräger helmet. That is why I cannot say of whether the helmets were real.  The driver / salesman spoke perfect German. His white VAN had French number plates. He asked for 1900, - € per helmet. He asked several times for when I had that money available. In his car he had several maritime items, such as a "historic war ship" in a glass case. We have agreed to speak together again on Monday at 08:00 clock by mobile and complete the "deal". Let's see what he does when I offering him 500, - € per helmet or less. He said farewell with the announcement that he still has customers are waiting of him in Rostock .


Maybe I prevent another big disillusionment of a com-diver colleague.


Regards/Mit freundlichen Grüßen

Read the whole story about these fake helmet dealers in the chapter ‘Fake Helmet Alert’


the scrapbook of diving history!

I have been working on a new website the last time. Not that this dutch diving history website in’t good, in fact I get good feedback on it. The thing is however that this website ‘as is’ only tells the story about diving equipment used in Holland. And there is much much more around. So I created a scrapbook / register type of website which can ‘grow’. The chapters will ‘one day’ all have the history part explaining the story about the manufacturer pretty much like how the chapters look on this website. But they also have an ‘image’ chapter with it. In this image chapter I try to bring together all images I can find ( in a legal way ) about this manufacturer, and that provides a great source for any research or a great scrapbook to go through for who ever is interested in historical diving. I also count on the visitors: please share any snapshots and pictures you may have, also I still need a lot of info on certain manufacturers: the site is still very incomplete ... Please see for yourself, the website is online now! ( pls click the logo above to enter )


Following the new ‘index minded’ website which opened on the 4th of July ( ) it was time to re-organize the for sale and wanted chapter and make it accessible from both websites. The old one was a bit of a mess and a bit hard to go through. So today I opened 3 new shops and have 1 more planned. The items for sale are now arranged in 4 ways:

‘Antiques’ ,   ‘Pro’ ( Diving ) ,    SCUBA and Rebreather,     and last but not least: ‘Books’.

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November 23 2013. Creator Historical Diving Websites awarded by Historical Diving Society

The ‘Frank Oschman Award’ 2013 of the Historical Diving Society in England has been given to the creator of the websites and The award was handed over on November 23rd 2013 at the annual HDS Conference and Dinner at the RNLI in Poole.

Photograph David L.Dekker   ( click at the photograph for more info / images )

November 18 2013. WARNING: rare helmet for sale in ARGENTINA

At the photograph here at the left a rare German light weight diving apparatus is shown as made by the ‘Hanseatische Apparatebau Gesellschaft’ in Kiel, Germany. It is an equipment with a small size diving helmet. I bought such a helmet (for a lot of money) in early october 2013 in South America. I prepaid both the helmet and the shipping to the seller, and the deal was that the helmet would be shipped to me within 1 week. But the tracking numbers the seller provided appeared not to be genuine, a lot of ‘stories’ followed but no helmet was ever sent. On Nov. 26 it appeared that the seller had sold the helmet to at least 1 other buyer but still offered it for sale in his shop in Buenos Aires, asking an insane amount of money. I was lucky to have started up a claim procedure right in time with PayPal and 7 weeks after having paid for the helmet I got my money back.

Be very careful when sending money abroad and when you really have to send money then use PayPal, and keep in mind that you only have a limited period of time to claim your money back ....

July 12 2014. Two New Chapters on the DiveScrap Index

Today 2 new chapters have been published: the first chapter of a series of chapters on Siebe Gorman Divers Accessories showing several variations of the Siebe Gorman Divers Knife with a flat sheath. And a chapter on the London based Diving Apparatus manufacturer Samson Barnett. Click on the images here below to get to the new chapters.

November 7 2014. Several New Chapters on the DiveScrap Index

In the last week some work has been done on the divescrap website. The albums on Siebe Gorman helmets got overloaded so I had to split them up in more chapters: one chapter for early helmets (A.Siebe, Siebe&Gorman, Siebe, Gorman & Co) and three chapters for 6 bolt, 12 bolt and ‘other’ Siebe Gorman & Co Ltd. Helmets. To go to the Siebe Gorman Index click HERE

Many other chapters were updated and hundreds of new photographs were added. Special thanks to all of you who were sharing their photographs. And to those who sent photographs which have not been (yet) published: as soon as I have time I will continue uploading photographs.

Also a since long awaited court case took place last September in Germany, where the theft of 38 Diving Helmets came to court (5 years after the theft) Since the people who were arrested after the theft were also responsible for the sales of important quantities of reproduction (fake) diving helmets, this matter is explained in the ’Fake Helmet’ chapter. Please click HERE to go the chapter.

November 6 2014. Historical Diving Website honored with US Navy Seabee Museum Plaque

Today a large box arrived from the United States of America. Earlier this year the US Navy Seabee Museum in  Port Hueneme, California had asked for some hi res. photographs from this website for an exhibition on the history of diving. In return the website is now honored with a beautiful token of appreciation, see photograph here below. The Seabee museum also provided this website with some photographs of the exhibition, these are shown in a special chapter on ; click at the photograph here below for a virtual tour. An even better option is to visit the museum yourself, all info needed for a visit can be found at the museums homepage:

Above: the plaque from the Seabee Museum. Both the plaque and the exhibit were sponsored/funded by the National Seabee Divers Association.

December 16 2014. Cool stuff brought up by wreck divers!

The last months I have bee driving around (a lot) through Europe to take photographs of diving helmets for my German Diving Helmet book project. On my way back from Sweden I stopped by at some friends down the road to take a look at some ‘cool stuff’ they raised from a sunken diving ship from the second world war. Two and a half helmet were found in the wreck, plus lots of other parts, some packed in the original boxes. The divers count on recovering the third bonnet to complete the last helmet as well. I was kindly allowed to take home one of the helmets with me, so I could take photographs of it for the book. These pictures will be published in the book only, but for the website the divers shared a bunch of exciting photographs showing the actual salvaging of the equipments (and what happened with it since ...) I tried to convince them to leave the last dirty helmet ‘uncleaned’ and would have loved to take photographs of a complete dressed jake with all salvaged parts, but most of the stuff they have cleaned up already. Still I am very grateful for the photographs they share with the site.

An absolute treasure, so congratulations to the dive team(!) The photographs can be found in the bottom link at the Draeger Index page on, you will get there when clicking at the image here below

January 17 2015. ‘Unknown Diving Helmet’ displayed at this website identified!

Since long before this website started, a strange looking diving helmet was known to the Dutch collectors society, but nobody knew who actually made it. This helmet has been displayed at this website since its start as the ‘Unknown Dutch Helmet’. With the help of Professional Diver and Collector of old diving gear Jan van der Slot, we are now able to identify the helmet(!) We still hope to learn the exact story of the helmet but already we know that the helmet was made in Alkmaar, a town famous for its cheese markets in the North West of Holland at only 30 minutes from where I live. And that the makers name was E.P.L. de Hoog. Click at the photographs here below to visit the updated chapter

May 9 2015. USN MK5 Helmet stolen

A quick alert to look out for the Morse MkV in the attached photos which was stolen from HDS member Ken Brown's shop ‘Frank’s Fisherman’s Supply’ in San Francisco. The helmet is mis-matched as follows: 

Bonnet neck ring is number 5940 and the breastplate neck ring is 5501A. 

Brailes/straps stamped 5495

Morse manufacturer's plaque is lead and stamped serial # 551 date 11-44.

If you have or want further information on this stollen helmet please contact Ken or Ron Brown in the CC box or at (415) 775 1165.

Please forward this email to any colleagues who you think may be be able to assist.

May 16 2015. Stolen USN MK5 Helmet back with its owner

Today we received good news: The helmet which was stolen from the HDS members who own Frank's Fisherman's Supply on Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco (read article here below) is back in the shop. The police found it in the trunk of a car in Daly City.

June 14 2015. Can a fake diving helmet be used for diving?

A well respected HDS member from Germany recently provided me with a set of photographs which show a helmet with the Dräger logo stamped in its breastplate, the helmet was damaged and he asked me if I know a workshop where such a helmet could be repaired. I was very much surprised that an HDS member asked me this because to me it was quite clear that the helmet is a fake. And this is exactly why I am convinced that it is important to keep warning divers, collectors and the historical diving society for such fake helmets because apparently even the people who are supposed to recognize a fake do not always spot one. What could happen when someone takes such a helmet into the water believing he uses a genuine helmet? Click the photo to read the article

Above: a fake Dräger helmet. What could happen when someone takes such a helmet into the water believing he uses a genuine helmet? Click the photo to read the article

June 17 2015. New edition of ‘The Journal of Diving History’

Yesterday I found 'The Journal of Diving History' #82 with the mail. An article which I wrote on an exceptional small sized Siebe, Gorman & Co helmet was published in it but unfortunately the most important illustration appears to have been left out of the article: the photographs showing the small helmet next to a standard 12 bolt Siebe, Gorman & Co. Ltd. helmet. This is the only photo which shows how small this older helmet actually is so for the convenience of the readers of 'The Journal of Diving History' I decided to publish the missing photograph on facebook and on this website.

December 31 2015 / January 1 2016.

The last couple of days I worked many hours on some website updates which I was intend to make during the last year but which just never happened: I kept postponing them because of other obligations. The major obligation of 2015 was my book project on German Diving helmets. The ‘Taucherhelm’ book is gradually proceeding but the more I‘m searching the more interesting facts I find so an end is not yet in sight. The major finding of this year is that the book needs more time then expected. The main chapter of the book is on the German Drägerwerk company, right now I am close to 400 well illustrated pages on Drägerwerk alone, and there are 2 more Dräger (sub)chapters to be completed ...

Do you have a German helmet, old photographs or other documents on German diving equipment and want to assist in the book project? Then pls. send me an email. Last year I travelled to several archives, museums and collectors all over Europe to make scans and take photo’s for my project, I will be continuing doing that in 2016 as well.

About the website: the following updates have been made during the last 3 days:

Last but not least: early 2015 I drove to Norway to meet with Jamil, a retired diver who found a new home in Norway after having fled from Palestine in the 1970’s. In Norway he learned for diver and found a job with the Norwegian navy where he was involved in the construction of a submarine base off the Norwegian shore at depth of 150 meters. In 1984, after this job was completed he was offered to take his Yokohama Mix Gas helmet home because replacement equipment had been purchased during the completion of the job. Jamil had kept the helmet for 31 years but being retired and without any interest from his children he decided to sell the helmet. Luckily he found me :o) so now his helmet is shown in the already existing Yokohama chapter:  but also in the new Yokohama chapter where the techniques of this HeO2 ‘recirculator’ helmet are explained:  

I wish you all a very happy 2016


Jamil’s Robert Kirby / Yokohama mix gas helmet. Click on the image to go to the Yokohama chapter

Historical Diving Events 2016.

February 20 to 28 2016. ‘Scaphandriers Mythes & Realités’ exhibition by Jean-Patrick Paszula and Enrico Porfirione in Theoule sur Mer, France.

From Friday May 20 till Sunday May 22 2016 the ‘Northern Divers Meeting’ is organized in Turku, Finland. 

Saturday June 11 and Sunday June 12 2016 the ‘Treffen’ of the Historische Tauchergesellschaft e.V. is organized in Neustadt an der Weinstrasse, Germany

Difficulties with software

By surprise I learned that the iWeb software I obtained from Apple in 2011 is no longer supported by Apple. As a result my websites suffered from disappearing link buttons and through forums on the internet I learned that even when you replace these buttons with text links it is likely that after the next general software update from Apple the next problem(s) will occure so rebuilding the websites seems the only solution. I just finished rebuilding the souvenirs shop, this website and the international index will have to wait until I find the time to do so: it is ‘months’ of work ... I am sorry for any inconvenience until the websites are rebuilt.

When the image button des not show then please use this link to visit the new souvenirsshop: