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15C – new lease of life!

Goetz machinery just seems to keep going, on and on… a testament to the build quality.

Here’s a 15C 15 Ton Power Press about to get a new lease of life on the NSW central coast, as a press to make parts for an ingenious guttering system for houses and other buildings. Sections of the guttering can be swung down to empty the leaves.

Thanks to Michael Bell for the info and photos.

Unloaded: I-Beam attached to the base as a travel prop

 

Variable Frequency Drive inverter – how to run a 3-phase machine on 240V single-phase

 

The work table – can be tilted to enable pressed parts to slide off easily into a bin for increased productivity.

 

The cast lettering in the frame of the press shows W. G. Goetz & Sons Pty. Ltd. at West Melbourne – a reference to their Batman Street site. Goetz moved from West Melbourne to the Hall Street, Spotswood site in 1939. It was on 29th April 1939 that Goetz changed from being a Pty. Ltd. entity to a publicly listed company, becoming W. G. Goetz & Sons Limited. Further castings and ID plates showed their base of operation simply as “Spotswood Melbourne” or just “Melbourne”.

Iron Safe Tender 1880 – W. G. Goetz defends his tender

It seems that W. G. Goetz had a few disagreements with government institutions, including that of the Post Office Scandal where he was accused of inflating prices for supplying items to the post office and bribing a senior post office engineering employee.

In the letter below he sent to The Age (10th May 1880), Goetz defends his position regarding a tender he made to the Treasury Board. (See below for transcript and the Argus Tender advertisement.)

 

TENDERS FOR IRON SAFES.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE AGE.
Sir, — In answer to a charge brought against me by Messrs. M’Lean Bros. and Rigg, as to not having acted in a straightforward business like manner to the tender board, I charge the same tender board, of whomsoever it may consist, with not having dealt in a fair and business-like manner with me. I leave the public to decide. In the tender, as advertised in the Argus, there were no such conditions that the safes had to be tested beforehand and must have been in use in some public institution supplied by the tenderer. If these conditions had been stated beforehand I would never have come forward, and would not have lost my time with it for the last two months. I did not go to the Treasury as an unemployed begging for work but was invited to tender for iron safes ; and according to the tender rules this should have been settled after ten days, or my deposit returned, if the tender board did not want to accept my work. But, in place of this I was kept on week after week. I do not want to be humbugged like this by any man, not even by Mr. Service himself. I am no importer of safes, and cannot be expected to keep safes in stock, as nearly all pawnbrokers shops have them for sale. I submitted to the tender board patterns and a drawing, and told the secretary at the onset that I never made safes in the colony, but engage and stand good with my deposit to make a better and cheaper safe than any imported safe I lave seen in Melbourne, and I will submit any one of these safes to any test whatever, only asking that the safe be paid for if it stands the test, otherwise I will lose my deposit and pay the expense ; besides, I challenged Mr. Gain to open the safe he has in his office without any noise in one hour, which could not be done with my work. — Yours, &a,
W. G. Goetz, Engineer.
140 Queen-street, Melbourne, 9th May.

 

Below: Possibly the Tender advertisement Goetz’s letter was referring to, from The Argus, 6th March, 1880. See Schedule item 7: Ironmongery, fireproof safes, &c. For security, 10% deposit was required when tendering.

Unsuccessful tenderers were supposed to have their deposit returned within 10 days, but it seems that after 2 months, Goetz’s tender was undecided and his £30 deposit had not been returned. It seems that from his letter and other reports of the Post Office Scandal, that he was not fond of bureaucrats! Who is?

Goetz Dust Coats

These Goetz dust coats were a heavy navy blue cotton drill, supplied by Jones Workwear of West Footscray. Jones was established in 1893, later renamed Can’t Tear’em P/L. In November 1980, they again changed their name to CTE P/L. A recent web search failed to find any current presence of them. Click images  for larger views

Generic dust coat with embroidered Goetz pocket and visible buttons. 

Another design had hidden buttons and an iron-on Goetz logo, with embroidered employee name. 

Thanks to Terrence Linehan’s daughter Robyn for supplying the coats

Albert Goetz


Albert Goetz (21 Dec 1884 – 27 Dec 1952) was the second youngest son of Wilhelm Gottlob and Sarag Goetz. Along with younger brother Otto, Albert was a director at W. G. Goetz and Goetz’s Hall Street Spotswood neighbour, RVB Engineering, until (or close to) the year of his death. In July 1953, Peter Moss was appointed as a director to fill the vacancy left by the death of Albert, and Otto was appointed Chairman of Directors.

Albert was married to Vera, whose sister May was married  to Albert’s brother Otto.

Below: This photo of Albert Goetz appeared in newspapers in 1940, when he was 56 year old, but looks like it may be an earlier photo. It was used as a file photo until 1950.

Below: The Herald, 15 August 1950, p.6

 

Albert died on 27 December, 1952, aged 68. The Herald, 29 December 1952, p.3

Superannuation

Employees of W. G. Goetz and Sons had a superannuation fund available to them by arrangement with National Mutual Life. Unfortunately when Goetz was bought in the late ’90s, the new owner did not fulfil his obligations to make sufficient contributions to the fund, leaving employees entitlements in the hands of Administrators. Read about how the business practices of the new owner caused the ruin of the company here.

Below: A letter to a Goetz employee to advise that his application for superannuation had been successfully processed. The booklet and nomination form referred to in the letter are shown below. Click image for larger view.

 

Below: Accompanying the letter above was this information booklet signed by company secretary Frank Craddock c.February 1969, including a Nomination Form for payment of the employee’s benefits, should the employee die whilst working at Goetz. Click images for larger views.

 

 In a Report to Creditors on 12 October 1999, the Administrators “estimated the value of the entitlements at $587,229, including redundancy & notice.” However, a report to creditors from the Pattisons (business advisors and insolvency specialists) on 28 June 2004 advised “that the employees of W. G. Goetz, as priority creditors in the liquidation have been paid approximately 91 cents in the dollar out of their total claims of $862,806.44. Regrettably as there are no further assets to be realised there will be no further dividends paid to employees.” The Pattisons report also mentioned that the liquidators of Goetz subsidiary Goetz Manufacturing P/L had finished their administration.

A newspaper article in The Mail, 29 March 2000, reported that Goetz Manufacturing’s 48 employees had been paid off in full, “including redundancy, entitlements, superannuation, annual leave and long service leave.” (see newspaper clipping ‘Hammer falls on history’ on this page.)

Below: During the demise of W. G. Goetz and Sons, employees received notice from the ATO advising them of the lack of superannuation contributions by the company (under its new owner) and that they would need to contact the Liquidator for further information.Click image for larger view.

Fax Pad

Facsimile transmission has been around in some form since Scottish inventor Alexander Bain created a rudimentary fax device he called the ‘Electric Printing Telegraph’ in 1843. Xerox Corporation introduced the first commercialised version of what is regarded as the the modern fax machine in 1964. In 1980 a standard fax communication protocol called G3 was adopted by the International Telecommunications Union including fax manufacturers, which saw fax uptake rates soar as prices dropped – in 1982 a fax machine could cost $20,000!

Despite the fax’s huge popularity before email came along (bringing with it in 1990 the first incidence of email spam), the fax ‘dinosaur of tech’ isn’t dead yet. Many businesses and medical services still like to use fax; it doesn’t require computer literacy to operate, and is generally more secure than its digital counterparts – it’s hard to hack a fax!

W. G. Goetz and Sons Ltd. fax pad, A4 210 x 297 mm. Click image for larger view.

Ledger Book

This is part of a ledger book with the name W. A. Morris printed on the front. This image below of the inside front cover and first page are an index of the contents and pages. However, most of the pages are blank. The first date is for 30th May 1952; the last entry, following P. 28, is for Hand Guillotine work for a customer W. H. Creek & Sons on 10th September 1982. There are few entries in the pages between, but they include work for customers such as Pak-Pacific, Gadsen, Cadbury, Queensland Can, RVB, Victorian Railways, Ansair and Goetz Manufacturing.

Click image for larger view