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Väinämöinen file photo [8547]


Ship ClassVäinämöinen-class Coastal Defense Ship
BuilderCrichton-Vulcan Shipyard, Turku, Finland
Laid Down1 Aug 1929
Launched29 Apr 1932
Commissioned28 Dec 1932
Displacement3,900 tons standard
Length305 feet
Beam55 feet
Draft16 feet
MachineryDiesel-Electric powertrain, four Krupp engines, two shafts
Power Output4,800 shaft horsepower
Speed14 knots
Armament2x2x254mm Bofors guns, 4x2x105mm Bofors DP guns, 4x40mm Vickers, 2x1x20mm Madsen AA guns
Transferred to Russia29 May 1947


ww2dbaseVäinämöinen was the lead ship of her class of Finnish coastal defense ships. Along with sister ship Ilmarinen, these two ships were the most concentrated naval artillery ships ever built. They were designed by the Dutch firm NV Ingenieurskantoor voor Scheepsbouw and were built in Finland. Designed for home waters, she was shallow and unsuited for the open sea. This was demonstrated when Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen sailed to attend the fleet parade in honor of the coronation of United Kingdom's King George VI in 1937, where Väinämöinen needed tug help from the bigger Swedish ship HMS Drottning Victoria. Upon arrival at Spithead in the UK, they were praised for their beautiful lines and their heavy armament.

ww2dbaseDuring the Winter War of 1939-1940, Ilmarinen and Väinämöinen were initially deployed to the Åland Islands to prevent landings by Russian troops, then were transferred to Turku harbor in Southern Finland as a floating anti-aircraft gun platform. During the Continuation War, she bombarded the Russian base on the Hanko Peninsula on five occasions between Jul and Nov 1941. On 13 Sep 1941, she participated in Operation Nordwind, during which operation her sister ship Ilmarinen was lost to naval mines. Starting in 1943, she was deployed to the area between Helsinki and Kotka on the Finnish coast for patrols. During the Russian offensive against Germany in mid-1944, the Russians placed stress on the destruction of Väinämöinen, but she evaded most attacks and survived the war.

ww2dbaseOn 29 May 1947, Väinämöinen was turned over to Russia as war reparation. She was renamed Vyborg and served 6 years with the Baltic Fleet, based in Porkkala, Finland. She was modernized in the early 1950s and served as a residential ship in Tallinn, Estonia. She was scrapped in Leningrad, Russia in 1966.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia.

Last Major Revision: Sep 2009


Coastal defense ship Väinämöinen, 1938Finnish coastal defense ship Ilmarinen or Väinämöinen, circa 1930s

Väinämöinen Operational Timeline

28 Dec 1932 Väinämöinen was commissioned into service.

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Coastal Defense Ship Väinämöinen Photo Gallery
Coastal defense ship Väinämöinen, 1938Finnish coastal defense ship Ilmarinen or Väinämöinen, circa 1930s

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