Ateliers Actin-Jourdin (1945)


the scrapbook of diving history

With special thanks to Monsieur Laurent ROBLIN, curator of the Musée de la Batelerie et des Voies Navigables in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, France for allowing this website to show the photo’s and information here below.

Established in 1945 by Mr. Jean Jourdin, ‘Les Ateliers de Chaudronnerie et Tôlerie Industriel et Naval Actin-Jourdin’ started manufacturing the copper parts for diving helmets in Gennevilliers (near Paris). After the war there was a shortage of diving equipment and lots of work in harbors, rivers, locks etc. Actin-Jourdin only manufactured the copper parts in their workshops, the brass parts were ordered from a foundry.

A standard 3 bolt helmet by René Piel was taken as an example and only some small differences can be found between the Piel (left) and the Actin-Jourdin helmet (right). The ‘neck’ (upper part of the breastplate on the Actin-Jourdin helmet seems a bit shorter, it has no ‘eyes’ in the lower corners next to the face plate (to attach air hose and comms cable). Unfortunately the Actin-Jourdin has na badge (if it would we had discovered years ago I think). Also is the cover of the exhaust valve formed slightly different when comparing with the Piel. When comparing both photographs it seems as if the Piel is larger in diameter but it can of course be that a different lense was used when taking the photo of the Actin-Jourdin helmet (photo not taken by me).

Photo above: Mr. Jean Jourdin taken around 1980, next to him a helmet for which he hammered the copper parts himself and then assembled it with the brass parts ordered elsewhere. Mr Jean Jourdins father, Désiré Jourdin was a teacher at the apprentice center of the ‘Chausson’ metalware factory. The helmet shown here above is presented in the permanent exhibition of the Musée de la Batelerie et des Voies Navigables in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, France. For opening hours and exact adress etc. please visit the website of the museum: