Lithgow Small Arms Factory Museum

Showcasing Australia's industrial history in technical and human terms

The history of the Lithgow Small Arms Factory is about people - their aspirations, achievements and disappointments, the economic and social hardships endured, the influence of our British heritage on Australia in the early 1900s, and sheer human stubborness. It is also about the introduction of new technologies into the emerging new nation. Lithgow SAF was Australia's first high precision mass production facility. This Museum was formed to celebrate its history.

Situated on the existing Factory site, this unique museum is widely recognised for its comprehensive collection of modern firearms from around the world, but more than that, it is a showcase of Australian manufacturing. Displays show the production processes and social history of this renowned facility. Visitors are amazed by the myriad of commercial items produced which provided the Factory's lifeblood between wars and preserved the valuable skills of its workforce.

Museum gun room

A comprehensive display of machine guns, rifles, handguns and related items from around the world. Unique to this museum are Australian designed and produced experimental, prototype and pre-production weapons.

Historic photographs

The historic collection of photographs and memorabilia reveal early to modern day production processes and the involvement of factory employees in the social, sporting and cultural events of Lithgow since 1912.

Pinnock sewing machine

Non-military items manufactured during 80 years of precision engineering give an idea of the versatility of the factory and its workforce. Commercial production included sewing machines, sheep shearing handsets, hand cuffs, medical implants, and many other items.

Hayes Handgun room

In 2006 Ron Hayes donated his amazing handgun collection to the museum. Rarities in the Hayes Gallery include the Borchardt, Webley 1904, and the Persian Luger. Among the 800 varied handguns featured are a number of gold plated and hand-engraved presentation masterpieces.

Opening hours

Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday 9:30am to 2:00pm,

Weekends & public holidays 10:00am to 4pm,

School & public holidays
7 days, 10am to 4pm

or by special appointment for groups.

more visitor information ...

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The Fact'ory July 2018

About us

This Museum is run by volunteers as an independent trust on behalf of the people of Lithgow. We are entirely volunteer run and receive no ongoing financial assistance from Government or Corporate entities.

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Help with research?

We are currently researching Lithgow and Slazenger single-shot models for an upcoming book, and are seeking information from owners of these rifles. Please see the side-bar on our Research page


Phone: 61 2 6351 4452