Filin-class guard ship

Filin-class guard ships were a class of ships originally built in Finland as patrol vessels for the Imperial Russian Navy. With the withdrawal of Russia from the area, the ships went to other use.

Model of ORP General Haller
Class overview
Operators: Finnish Navy, Polish Navy, Kriegsmarine
Built: 1918-1919
In commission: 1918–1952
Planned: 6
Completed: 4
Lost: 2
Scrapped: 2
General characteristics
Type: Gunboat
Displacement: 342 tons
Length: 50 m (160 ft)
Beam: 7 m (23 ft 0 in)
Draft: 2.9 m (9 ft 6 in)
Installed power: 1,150 shp (860 kW)
Speed: 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)
Complement: 48–63
Armament: Filin class:
Turunmaa after 1941:
  • 2 × 75 mm/50 guns
  • 3 × 20 mm Madsen AA
  • 1 × 12.7 mm machine gun
  • 2 × DC mortar (SPH/37 or SPH/43)
  • 30 mines


Four ships were constructed, two of them were sold to Polish Navy where they served as General Haller and Komendant Piłsudski and the other two were commissioned into the Finnish Navy as Turunmaa and Karjala.[2]

They were initially classified as patrol cruisers though the name did not describe them well. The class had good accommodation for a their size but they hardly resembled a warship. Foreign observers' comments on the ships of the class in Finnish service was that they were 'graceful tugs'. The ships were only suitable for coastal patrolling as they were not particularly seaworthy and their structural strength and power were limited. Also the structure did not allow guns larger than 75 mm to be installed.[2][3][4]

Ships in class

Ship Laid down as Launched In commission Service with Notes
Turunmaa Tshirok
1918 1918 - 1952 Finnish Navy Sold for scrap 1953
Karjala Filin 1918 1918 - 1952 Finnish Navy Sold for scrap 1953
General Haller Vodorez 1919[1] 1921 - 1939 Polish Navy Sunk September 1939
Komendant Piłsudski
Lun 1919[1] 1921-1939
Polish Navy
Sunk September 1939
Raised 1939. Sunk September 1943.
Gorlitsa Gorlitsa - - - Never completed, scrapped
Sova Sova - - - Never completed, scrapped

Last two ships of the same class - Gorlitsa and Sova - were being constructed before the work on them was halted. They were never completed and instead were scrapped.


  1. Gardiner, Robert, ed. (1985). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1906-1921. London, England: Conway Maritime Press Ltd. p. 319. ISBN 0-85177-245-5.
  2. Auvinen, Visa (1983). Leijonalippu merellä [Lion flag at sea] (in Finnish). Pori, Finland: Satakunnan Kirjapaino Oy. pp. 34–35. ISBN 951-95781-1-0.
  3. Kijanen, Kalervo (1968). "Erikoistietoja Suomen Laivastovoimien Aluksista" [Special information on the Ships of the Finnish Navy]. Suomen Laivasto 1918–1968, II [Finnish Navy 1918–1968, part II] (in Finnish). Helsinki, Finland: Meriupseeriyhdistys/Otavan Kirjapaino.
  4. Kijanen, Kalervo (1968). Suomen Laivasto 1918–1968, I [Finnish Navy 1918–1968, part I] (in Finnish). Helsinki, Finland: Meriupseeriyhdistys/Otavan Kirjapaino. p. 112.

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