Museo Máquina Herramienta (Elgoibar)

The museum is located in Elgoibar, the machine-tool capital, where the first machine tools were made at the end of the 19th century, though industrial production did not begin until 1911.

Industrial heritage

Museoa barrutik
Museoa barrutik

After several years in the pipeline, the desired triple objective has been achieved:

  1. To pay homage to the men who strove to develop the machine-tool sector.
  2. To transmit what has been one of the foundations of the economic development of the area to new generations.
  3. To portray both the history and current situation of the area from an industrial perspective.

The museum is also clearly intended to draw visitors, thus constituting one more attraction in the effort to promote local tourism, which has already come to be known as "Iron Tourism".

The Museum is located in a new building, the design of which recreates the form and content of Basque industrial workshops at the turn of the century. Fulfilling a didactic role, the aim is to show the origin and evolution of the different kinds of technology used in industrial processes.

The building has two floors and a total surface area of 400m²; the ground floor of the building has three rooms, a large central section and two spacious lateral galleries containing more than 60 exhibits. Of these one must highlight the first universal milling machines, as well as horizontal lathes, filing machines or sensitive drills. These parts were first produced at the end of the 19th century by the pioneers of the Machine tool industry in Elgoibar.

Nave central del Museo de la Máquina Herramienta, Elgoibar (Euskadi).

In the museum it is possible to visit a machining centre, a forge and an exhibition room where visitors can see the historical and technical evolution of the machine tool industry.

Machining centre or Central Pavillion

The central hall is the largest; here visitors can see the machines actually running, using various props and propeller shafts with pulleys supported on beams under the saddle roof of the building.

This section is the centrepiece of the exhibition and shows a typical machining workshop as they were at the beginning of the 20th century. On display are a variety of machines, such as pedal-driven spring lathes and saws, traditional machines for removing swarf, deforming and cutting. There are also lathes, filing and drilling machines, saws and other machinery that was in use until the middle of the last century.

Forge mill or lateral pavillion 1

This area houses a reproduction of a forge mill, including the tools required for traditional craft production; also on display is one of the few samples in existence of the semi-metallic substance "agoa", which used to be produced in our furnaces.

The aim of this exhibit is to portray the preindustrial era of the sector with production models typical of the old-fashioned forges and mills of the area.

Medieval machinery or lateral pavillion 2

In this section, visitors will walk through an exhibition of medieval machines and display cabinets with various tools and devices. These are accompanied by explanatory panels on the walls, recounting the history of the sector with photographs, drawings and texts in Spanish, Basque and English, thus reminding us of the didactic and informative purpose of the museum.

The museum accepts school and company visits, with prior booking. (IMH, tel.: 943 744 132).



Address: San Roke auzoa, 1
20870 Elgoibar (Gipuzkoa )


T. +34 943 74 84 56