Weiteres folgt ...
Josef Eder founds a wagon shop in Hafnerbach,
initially he only employs a journeyman and an apprentice.
Back then it was a daily achievement to manufacture 1 wagon wheel.
1920 was also the year of birth of Franz Plank, who later made it a daily achievement in Kilb
of two wheels, the quicker he came to his Leopoldine in Prinzersdorf
to be able to - because then he was allowed to leave work earlier.
Motivation is everything.
The company moves to Prinzersdorf . 4 - 8 employees.
Due to the progressive mechanization (cars, tractors, "rubber wagon trailers" instead of wooden wagon) the end for the wagner was preprogrammed.
The switch to other products was made.
This is how skis and sleds were made.
But the manufacture of tool handles was also a source of income. Meister Eder was always technically ahead and was one of the first in the region around Prinzersdorf who had a "Permission to drive vehicles with explosion engines" (today: driving license ).
Technical improvisation was also often carried out in the workshop, so an old motorcycle was converted into a band saw. Around 1930 , Maria Eder, the "boss", discovered that there were traces of rust on the outside of bentwood parts for tobogganing.
Bending wood under steam was also used by Eder.
The wood, which is steamed with low-pressure saturated steam (110-120 °), is bent by a flexible sheet metal plate with a limited length, while still hot. The bending plate prevents the wood from tearing. Initially, the "muscle strength" was used for this. At the time, these insights were still kept by the companies as "company secrets" and were not readily accessible through specialist books and teaching.
For the future, wood bending should be the basis for the continued existence of the company.
Relocation from Prinzersdorf No. 45 to Prinzersdorf No. 62.
Acquisition of the former Schicho house. Construction of a new workshop on this property. During the period of the Second World War , the wagon shop was covered as a "war-important company" with orders from the Wehrmacht (wooden wheels) and also employed a french prisoner of war.
Although he was forced to work, he was relatively satisfied with his lot because of Maria Eder's good cuisine. He visited the former war boss with his whole family in the 1970s, this time to spend a week of vacation here.
Right after the end of the war, bentwood parts manufactured by Eder were distributed throughout Austria. The customers were mainly wholesalers, who resold the goods to various joinery companies. Back then, chairs were still made by every carpenter themselves, and curved parts were required.
Franz Plank (son-in-law) joined the company.
Large customers from the furniture industry, such as the companies Pollak in Vienna, seating furniture manufacturer, and Sleepy , a upholstered furniture factory, were also won in Vienna (Vösendorf) and represented the main occupancy of the company.
Animated by these contacts, frames for the manufacture of upholstered furniture were subsequently produced. Many decorating companies soon processed upholstered furniture frames from the factory in Prinzersdorf. An important customer is Pfusterschmid , Vienna 2nd. Particularly high-quality armchairs and couches were manufactured here using the Eder / Plank frames.
How it all started ...
Company takeover by master wagner Plank, the number of employees rose to around 15 in the 1970s. The variety of products was constantly expanding, but the location Vienna (in the middle of the city) did not turn out to be good for the large customer Pollak. Since no successor was found, Pollak had to close. Because of a major fire and an unsuccessful market strategy (direct sales), Sleepy also had to close its gates forever after the reconstruction. But even before that, Franz Plank's foresight expanded the product segment to include the production of wooden seating furniture.
Customers mainly included carpentry businesses in the Lower Austria / Vienna area. There were also major customers such as the Austrian Army , where thousands of team stools, armchairs, tables and armchairs were supplied by Plank. Own designs were created and, for example, the Schallaburg (castle) was equipped with suitable chairs by Plank on the occasion of its renovation. Again the furniture industry became aware of Plank and companies like REDI in Weyer were good customers. Leopoldine Plank ran a trading business at Linzerstraße 14 where, in addition to its own products, sports items such as skis (although bought in) and tobogganing (from its own production) as well as gifts were sold in line with tradition. The workshop at the Linzer Straße site, although continuously expanded, became too small and a new production facility was considered.
Son Ing. Franz Plank, trained at HTL-Mödling, joins the company after the master carpenter examination and the completed army. Father and son work very consistently with a good team of employees and success is inevitable. Plank chairs have earned a good name and are often used by joiner colleagues to complete their orders. Major customers such as the renowned upholstered furniture factory Wittmann in Etsdorf, Breitschopf in Steyr, Gruber and Schlager in Ort / Innkreis were among the main customers. Plank also increasingly gained a foothold in the furnishing of objects such as retirement homes , student residences and schools .
"Franz Plank GmbH" is founded.
Good and motivated specialists, as well as a focus on quality in all manufactured products, helped to ensure the best long-term utilization of the company. The space in the workshop was often very tight and there were new decisions in the air.
Plank knew that the current high would not last without action, as more and more low-quality, but also very cheap products from eastern countries came into the market. It was important to distinguish themselves through more quality and flexibility. Products from this period:
Martin Sepp - Heurigenschank Grinzing
The ladder armchair
Changes . . .
However, since the old production facility at Linzer Strasse 14 was no longer expandable and, because it was located in the core area of Prinzersdorf, would have required high investments in the future in order not to cause neighborly conflicts, the decision was made to build a new one.
Now considerations about a new location began. Neighboring municipalities were interested and especially from Loosdorf came a tempting offer. It was particularly Leopoldine Plank's concern not to leave Prinzersdorf and she (as always) successfully asserted her point of view.
Later the decision for Prinzersdorf turned out to be the right one, since an excellent place for the new company premises was found directly at the Prinzersdorf bypass built in 2006.
Edelaustrasse 20 , in the undeveloped north industrial area, is the new address. There is enough space here and there can be no impairment of neighborly interests.
Plank set about planning and immediately implementing this large project.
Start of construction in winter 1985/86
The Schemmel company was commissioned with the construction of the company building.
The companies Elektro Brosenbauer and Installer Kleebinder worked here as well.
All companies are from Prinzersdorf or the surrounding area.
That is a difference ...
In the summer of 1987 , the large relocation of all plants and machines took place.
After the "vacation" the new plant was already working.
The employees appreciate the new, bright rooms and the extra space.
This investment will pay for itself within a few years.
Plank continues to defy international competition through improved working methods.
Franz Plank jun. founded a family with Hildegard Johanna Holzinger (from Upper Austria).
As usual, business is not easy, but it is going very well and investments are still being made.
Senior Plank already supports the company from the "background", but still with full strength.
The company Plank works with full power and can with the now proven school furniture and new products for senior citizens, as well as a designer armchair, which a little later caused a sensation (TopTen Udine Promosedia - International Seating Fair, Italy) assert themselves on the market.
Franz Plank sen . dies after a short, serious illness in the 83rd year of life .
At the age of 82, he was fully involved in the actions of Plank GmbH and was familiar with everything until the end.
We are particularly grateful for his selfless support, even in old years.
Franz Plank sen. with his grandchildren on the occasion of the birthday anniversary of Bruno Hartensteiner (60), a well-deserved employee and pillar of the Plank company, who had been with our company for more than 40 years.
In order to be prepared for future challenges, additional CNC machines are being invested. With the help of good employees, the appropriate technical equipment and all the creativity we have brought in, we are confident that we will be able to perform the tasks that are almost impossible to manage for production companies in Austria, and we will tackle the tasks of the future that are definitely not easy with an excellent team !
The establishment (2005) of the Simpl cabaret in Vienna shows the capabilities of Plank GmbH in cooperation with Zeheter from Gerersdorf, particularly clearly:
45 days for the design and furnishing of this Viennese cabaret cult site according to special requirements. 200 single chairs and approx. 200 theater chairs .
First program after re-equipping the cabaret: "Mitten am Rand".
Three 5-axis CNC controlled production machines currently support the production.
20 employees are employed, the challenges of the future will continue as a production company
After an intensive model development phase, an important business relationship develops with a renowned Swiss wholesaler. We have launched the "Viena" model series in excellent cooperation.
The first CNC- controlled machine accelerates production. Current order: 500 chairs with a folding seat for the regional court in Vienna. The work steps that are now to be carried out virtually succeed immediately and "high-tech" is now a MUST for Plank.
Incidentally, the most important thing of the year 97: the youngest of 3 children -
after Rafael (1991), Klara (1993) Maria was born !
After three years of teaching at the state vocational school for carpenters in Pöchlarn, Franz Plank finally decided to continue the business exclusively. Working as a vocational school teacher was certainly very enriching, because here you learned professionally how to deal with young people and pass on knowledge. In addition, it was not an easy decision to leave school because of an excellent team and the very interesting job.
But Franz Plank was able to take some things from these years:
Learning and imparting knowledge is also important in a production company, because only well-trained employees can meet the high demands placed on them.
Effective July 1, 2018, Rafael Plank has been appointed Managing Director of Ing. Franz Plank GmbH. Ing. Franz Plank retires from the management, but will still provide the company with advice.
A fourth CNC-controlled machine and a painting robot are purchased.