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Chinese Planemakers in Melbourne, Australia

Lim Toon, Louey Woon & Louey Wing

The Sands & McDougall's Victorian Directories ( S & M) have been a valuable source of information about Chinese Cabinet makers and Planemakers. The period between 1900 and the World War I was the high point of Chinese furniture making in Melbourne. By 1912, there were 818 Chinese cabinetmakers working in 168 factories, along with 2108 Europeans working in 378 factories. It is during this period that specialist Chinese toolmakers can be identified.....The S & M Directory for 1899 lists Lim Toon as a cabinet maker working in Hayward's Lane. Lim Toon remained at this address until 1902 and then his name disappears from the directory.

Louey Woon is first listed as a planemaker in 1908 and again in 1909 at 14 Leichardt St.

Louey Wing appears in 1911 as a cabinetmaker. Each year until 1920, Louey Wing appears at either 9 or 14 Leichardt Sts as cabinet maker or planemaker (ref 1)

Considerable numbers of planes in the traditional Chinese style, made from red ironbark appear in plane collections in Victoria. Most commonly found names are Lim Toon and Louey Woon.

At the time of constructing this webpage, there was only access to pictures of the Toon and Woon planes. Others will be added when available.

If anyone out there can supply pictures of other Chinese style planes from that era, please make contact (details below) for example C. Foo and Chay Gum

References 1 - extract from article "Chinese Furniture Makers in Melbourne" published in the Federation Isue of the Tool Chest, issue #61, August 2001.


Selection of Chinese style planes made in Melbourne by Lim Toon around the period late 1890's to early 1900's


Selection of Chinese style planes made in Melbourne by Louey Woon around the period early 1900's

Made in Melbourne by Louey Woon around the period early 1900's. Picture courtesy Adam Lee. Adam can be contacted on the following email:
Chinese style plane made in Melbourne by Chay Gum around the period early 1900's

Chinese style plane made by Kennedy, made in Melbourne in the early 1900's




Thanks to Kevin Chamberlain, Rod Thomas & Gil Rogers for the above information and pictures

The HTPAA welcomes any additional information, pictures and ephemera relating to this maker or any other Australian makers.

Contact the Australian Curator by email Webmaster

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This Webpage was last updated on 28 July, 2011

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