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You are here: Summer > Activities > Radwerk IV furnace museum

Radwerk IV is the biggest attraction relating to the iron mining history along the IRON ROAD between Leoben and Steyr and is the only fully equipped charcoal furnace in the world. Water-wheel furnaces are charcoal furnaces where a water wheel powers the bellows for the combustion air. In Vordernberg, 14 water-wheel furnaces could once be found along the river. Radwerk IV was built in 1846 at the site of a former plant in a monumental classical style and closed in 1911.

In 1928, it was listed as a protected monument given its significance in the region’s iron mining history. Following extensive redevelopment work, the Radwerk IV now offers disabled access throughout most of the site (lift) and operates as a furnace and iron museum. Over 4 floors, the ore roasting plant, work equipment and ore and charcoal conveyors can be seen along with views of the furnace from above and insight into the outflow and solidification of the iron in the casting hall. The operation of the large water wheel which gave the site its name and the charcoal hoist are demonstrated.

Documentation areas provide information about the historic development of iron extraction, the history of the 14 water-wheel furnaces in Vordernberg and the iron ore transportation system from the Erzberg in Styria to Vordernberg. The working world of the 19th century is brought back to life by the equipment and work clothing on display. The significance of Radwerk IV is known far beyond the borders of Austria and is reflected in the site’s title of ‘Historic Landmark’ as awarded by the ASM International (American Society for Materials).

Tours always available – register in advance: 8794 Vordernberg, Hauptplatz 14, Wolfgang Dokulil, Tel.: +43(0)664 927 66 10, Fax: +43(0)3849 208 36, wolfgang.dokulil(at)gmx.net,

Information Office for the Styrian Iron Road in Vordernberg, Tel.: +43(0)3849 832 - eisenstrasse.vdbg@aon.at www.radwerk-vordernberg.at

 

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Getting there

  • Hochsteiermark
  • Steirische Tourismus GmbH