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Finnish M34 "SA" marked Compass

Article about: Hello gents, As we still do not have a Finnish section i will post my newly acquired wonderful Finnish M34 SUUNTO compass here. I would much appreciate if i could get some more info on it th

  1. #1

    Default Finnish M34 "SA" marked Compass

    Hello gents,

    I will post my newly acquired wonderful Finnish M34 SUUNTO compass here. I would much appreciate if i could get some more info on it than i already have. So here are the pics and info i have been provided. I am of course very interested in the specific year of manufacture

    Upper left corner: The SA marking. SA=Suomen armeija= Finnish Army. They used this marking from 1942 - 1968.

    Right below the SA initials, there's a circle with arrows behind it and number 7 engraved in the middle. That's the mark of the Weapons Depot 7. The was located in Iisalmi, Peltosalmi village (1944 - 1953) and then they moved it to Ähtäri, Inha village 1954-1992.

    The letters PVT. It means Puolustusvoimain Taisteluvälineosasto (Defence forces ordnance organization).

    The base plate says: "Patentoitu Suomessa ja ulkomailla" (Patented in Finland and abroad) and there are the instructions how to convert 60 degree system to 360 degree system.

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    Cheers and thank you for your time

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  3. #2


    Good to see you posting again Lars and that's a very cool compass!....I've been watching your Youtube channel, very interesting!...

  4. #3


    Just been busy and have not really had time for collecting and so. Just a bit of digging, work and family I have been following on the sideline of course. Never quit! It's a very nice compass indeed. I would really like to know the year of manufacture Thanks Gunny mate!

    Cheers and a great weekend!

  5. #4


    After the war the Allied Control Commission (led by the Soviet Poliburo member Zhdanov) gave an order that all Finnish war material must be moved and stored in those weapons depots (there were 9 of them). All this had to be done by december 1944. It's possible that the compass was stamped with the weapons depot 7 mark at this point.

  6. #5


    Just a couple of snapshots of my "m34". It's made by Suunto's rival Physica. Also based in Helsinki. These two companies had a bitter court battle over the ownership of this compass' design. (from the 30's until early 50's, only interrupted by war)

    The markings are basicly the same as in your Suunto. The serial number a bit earlier. It has the marking of the Weapons Depot 3.

    Also notice the "gun sight" circle alignment system. A bit different than your painted slot. But working principle exactly the same as Suunto has.
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  7. #6


    Thanks Totaali Some good info indeed! So it's possible my compass is prewar if i understand correctly? Interesting design on yours. I like the "rifled" look.


  8. #7


    It's possible. But I dare not to date this compass.

  9. #8


    It's very understandable Totaali Thank you for your time friend.


  10. #9


    Everything Totaali said about the Allied Control Commission in Finland is true. But that moving and storing of war material was not a unique situation. The system worked like this: Whenever the army ordered any war materials, they were first delivered to a given weapons depot, then the depot distributed the goods to the army unit in need. In case these materials were not needed anymore, they were returned to that weapons depot that delivered them in the first place. That's why the weapons depot mark exists in these compasses.

    Totaali's compass looks like the mark is engraved at the Suunto factory already. It's fine work. So probably they knew at the factory: this compass will be delivered to the weapons depot 3. The mark in Datrus' compass is much more crude. Probably it was stamped there at the weapons depot 7.

    Anyway here's a photo taken in 1942 (Just before time the army began using that SA stamp) It has the weapons depot mark, number 0 in Helsinki, but no SA stamp, no serial number.

    I can't date the compasses either :-)
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  11. #10


    Some good and interesting additional info and nice to see you here "Pop" I will try and contact SUUNTO and see if they are willing to cough up some info on my compass. Let's see


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