A Brief History


Dawmac Industries has been a part of Berrigan history, having been founded in 1967 by Malcolm and Dawn Lane.

The name of Dawmac was born from the combination of Mac and Dawn’s Christian names and still today sits proudly as our trading name.

Our father – Malcolm John Lane, known as Mac from an early age. Roger, Mac’s younger brother of 6 years, was unable to pronounce Malcolm and Mac is what came out, this nickname stuck with him until his parting from this world 3 ½ years ago.

1967 – Malcolm Lane and his wife Dawn moved their automotive electrical business from 770 Nicholson Street, North Fitzroy to 14 Chanter Street, Berrigan.
1967 – In May/June Mac and Dawn commenced trading with the business name of ‘Dawmac Engineering and Welding Supplies’ operating out of the building known as ‘Charlie McGinley Hardware’.

1969 – The current main shop site in Berrigan was purchased from Charlie McGinley.   It was an old tin shed with a sagging front that had been added in the early 60’s, one very large gum tree and two peppercorn trees in the back yard.

1974   John Lane joined his parents working in the business.

1976 – The acquisition of the adjoining property in Chanter Street that operated as “Goldsmithsmort & Co”.

1977 –  The partnership of MJ & DL Lane ceased trading and the formation of the creation of Dawmac Industries Pty Ltd.

1977   Paul Lane commenced working at Dawmac.

1979 –  The acquisition of the former Accountants building in Chanter Street from Howard Martin. This site was the original trading premises of Howard Martin & Co.

1980 – The demolition of an old fibro building attached to the building front at 20 Chanter Street and the rebuilding with concrete bricks in its place.  This building then allowed for the first major infrastructure development.

1981 – The building of a new covered workshop which today houses store area, toilets, workshop etc. This development was completed in 1982.

1982 –  Mac leaves both the business and Berrigan. Dawn, John and Paul continued operating Dawmac.

1989 –  John and Wendy Lane purchased JDS Industries in Finley.

1995 –  Dawmac took over the former premises and yard of “R & R Plumbing” (Rob & Ruth Rennick) in Jerilderie Street.

1995 – Dawmac purchased a parcel of land from Wayne and Jeannie Milne who owned the Berrigan Hotel. This land is where our Poly Tanks are currently stored.

1995– The opening of the “New” two storey Dawmac building at 14 Chanter Street, Berrigan after complete demolition of the original premises.

1995– Dawmac held their first Community Christmas Breakfast.  This event has been now running for almost 40 years – spanning four decades and two centuries!  The free community breakfast hosted with the Berrigan Lions Club is an annual event always on a Saturday morning prior to Christmas. Originally held at Dawmac’s 14 Chanter Street premises, it is now held at the Big Store with a special thank you to the Berrigan Men’s Shed for allowing this function in their shed!

1998 – A side awning and roof added to the workshop area with concrete replacing the dirt and stone.

2010 –  Saw the acquisition of land formerly known as “Burwood Enterprises” providing us with both a Davis Street and Jerilderie Street presence.

2011 – March saw the passing of Co-founding owner Mrs Dawn Lane.

2012 –  In January the skillion onto the existing workshop was completed providing a larger shelter area for our Team.

2013 – Dawmac purchased the “Big Store” which is now the home of the Berrigan Men’s Shed plus another display area for our extensive stock.

2014 – The Big Store Façade was restored using existing Marble and some sourced from overseas.  The Burwood Block was levelled and fenced as another display area.  Our Davey Pump Department was relocated to the Big Store and the Auto Electrician workshop doubled in size.

2017 – Dawmac celebrated 50 years, with a successful Trade Show, which saw 14 major suppliers on display.

Mac Lane’s Australian built 1966 AT4 329 Dodge tow truck

History of Dawmac - Mac Lane's Truck

Our father, Mac, purchased the Australian built 1966 AT4 329 Dodge tow truck, fitted with 225ci slant 6 petrol engine and 4 speed gearbox, as a single cab truck and chassis.  He had some body builders add the extra cabin – which only has one door (left hand side entry).

Mac then added an additional fuel tank, the 50 CWT winch (approx. 2500kg lifting capacity) and running gear.

Mac built the tower, work bench that originally had a toolbox the same size which laid on top of the bench when the truck was moving and was hinged to lift up.

Two extra batteries were fitted between the chassis, plus an Austin A4 petrol engine in the centre of the tower. This provided fast charging and welding capacity.

Mac was never shy and the truck had many lights wired up that he fitted himself – the tow truck was like a Christmas tree coming down the road! It’s a fair chance that back in 1967 this was the flashiest, if not the brightest, tow truck in Melbourne.

In 1967 Mac and Dawn along with their two young boys moved from Melbourne to Berrigan. The truck did 95% of the moving, allowing not just household effects but hobby items and accumulated work tools and goods. He built a very large single axle trailer for the moving task which we used for many years at the Berrigan Show to display Dawmac products.

The overhead arm I believe was added when he arrived in Berrigan. The addition of the 24v electric winch along with the overhead arm made it possible to completely lift a vehicle from an accident scene and transport to the repair shop. The arm was also used to lift pumps in and out, once he even repossessed a diesel engine from a customer who had gone into bankruptcy by lifting it over the fence!

His TRB (Transport regulation board) License number TT-2536 states that the licensed driver (Mac) MJ Lane.

Mac left Dawmac & Berrigan in 1982, leaving the truck behind. Paul and I used the truck 2 or 3 times a year for accidents before selling the vehicle to Fred Smith in around 1990. Gordon Yelland came across the old tow truck while cleaning up on Glenn Martin’s property and we thank him for returning it to its former home.

For many years this tow truck was used as our main vehicle – there are many stories we can relate, we travelled everywhere in the tow truck.

Many older customers would remember in the early years of Dawmac, Mac driving this tow truck to work each day, parking it out the back in the elements using the trucks vice and work bench as his main workstation. The Dodge serviced Mac very faithfully and returned his investment and belief in the vehicle’s profitability.

The truck is a legacy to a man that had a vision and the ability to achieve his imagination through his skills and can now be seen holding pride of place in our yard facing Jerilderie Street.