Virtual Tour – Teck Ban Choon Foundry in Georgetown, Penang
Spent a few days in Penang and while we were in Georgetown we came across these two metal foundry workshops. I was rather timid to walk up and ask these guys if they wouldn’t mind if I took a photo. They had no idea I was going to create a virtual tour / 360 degree image. I asked and they hand gestured that it would be no problem! So I stepped away and set up my tripod and panorama kit. When I started to shoot the first image facing into the foundry the guy on the machine didn’t flinch. When I spun the camera around they all got a little scared. So I put the camera back to a different position and when they weren’t paying attention I spun the camera towards them and acted like I was doing something else.
My wife suggested I ask them if they have an email address where I could send the 360 virtual tour to after it was done. I think most of these guys have never touched a computer in their lives… I asked and they pointed me to another guy who said “no internet”. That’s what I thought… I would love to show these guys the virtual tour but I guess that’s not going to happen.
This blacksmithing workshop makes anchors and iron products, and is run by 64-year old Teoh Huah Guan. A Yung Ting Hakka, he inherited it from his grandfather. It’s been said that the first blacksmith in Penang was also a Yung Ting Hakka. Today, even though the anvil and hammer have been replaced by a hammering machine, blacksmithing is still a labour intensive process requiring skill and strength. In the old days, Teck Ban Choon made materials for shipping, construction, plantations and households, such as nails, anchors, knives and axes – all linked to Penang’s history as a port and supply centre for mining and plantation equipment. Now, their main service is for the production of iron equipment and anchors used in off-shore fishing. Of the four blacksmiths that used to make anchors near Penang’s waterfront, only two remain in operation.
Click the image below to view the full screen virtual tour
Teck Ban Choon
50, Lebuh Gat Armenian, George Town.