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These presses were used in shearing sheds around the country to create bales of wool by hand in preparation for transport to the wool markets for purchase and distribution. Bales have been used to store and were a standard trading unit for wool for centuries. A standard wool bale holds about 60 compressed wool fleeces and weighs a minimum of 120 kgs. The square shape and weight enabled them to be stacked on wagons or in warehouses, and a large pack horse could carry one on each side. With technological advances, the bales are now formed in electrical and hydraulic presses.
Victorian Collections acknowledges the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
peoples as the first inhabitants of the nation and the traditional custodians of the lands
where we live, learn and work.