1932 – 1957

Ski production at Griesgasse 11 grows rapidly within a matter of years. It is not long before nine journeymen are working at Fischer and some 10,000 pairs of skis are made in 1932/33. At that time, each pair of skis is cut from a single piece of timber to ensure that the elasticity is exactly the same.

Josef Fischer wants to expand his company further. In 1936 he has the old building of the former wagon makers C. Bauer completely demolished and builds new, even larger premises. An extractor system is installed and machinery includes a belt saw, a milling machine, a planing, a grinding and a thicknessing machine. The ski-making process is divided into steps and there are first signs of series production, a prerequisite for making and selling larger quantities. In the 1930s the skis are delivered mainly to Vienna. Customers include GöC as the central purchasing organisation for all co-operatives, the sports retailer Mizzi Langer-Kauba, and in Graz the department store Kastner & Öhler.

Production continues throughout the Second World War from 1939 to 1945 thanks to extensive orders from the army. Short white skis with a green stripe down the centre are produced for the army supervisory unit. The company also makes canvas chairs for use in military hospitals. Fischer gradually loses skilled workers as they leave the company for military service. Women begin to work at Fischer for the first time. At the end of the war the Innviertel region becomes an American occupied zone. US soldiers move into Fischer's premises and take control of the production facilities, but there is no damage.

Production can be resumed shortly after the end of the war. To begin with, Fischer makes scooters for children, toboggans and rack wagons which are particularly sought after both during and immediately after the war, since they serve as an important means of transport for people. The focus soon returns to ski production, however, with 13,000 pairs of skis produced in 1947. Fischer is represented with its first stand at the first Ried Festival after the war, also in 1947. The skis are set out in the form of a church organ and presented as a type of "ski organ". Scooters, rack wagons and toboggans are also put on show. A landscape painting with skiers is commissioned especially as a backdrop for the stand. In winter the company produces skis only, with rack wagons and toboggans made from March to July. The constant but necessary changing over of the machines, however, involves too much work and is inefficient. As a result, the company soon stops producing rack wagons and toboggans.

Further plots of land are bought in 1951 and additional space is created for work. Ski production is now unmistakably industrial with systematic working steps and series production. Production of solid skis in pairs from one and the same piece of timber continues until 1952. The company launches the era of individual ski fabrication as early as 1949/50 with the gluing together of layers and by installing presses made by the company itself. The following years are characterised by an ever-decreasing number of solid skis and an ever-growing number of layered skis.

On 15 November 1957 a fire breaks out at the company, and the overall damage amounts to 1.8 million Austrian schillings. What hurts most is the loss of 6,500 pairs of mostly layered skis worth almost 1.5 million schillings. The fire is caused by a sawdust explosion in the bunker into which the sawdust is blown. The fire fighters are able to prevent the fire from spreading to the rest of the factory. Nobody is injured and the damage is covered in full by insurance. The production stoppage is made good through overtime in the weeks following the fire. As a result, Fischer is afterwards able to continue on its successful path.

The production facility in Griesgasse grows to a remarkable size in the 1950s. Nevertheless, Josef Fischer drives expansion on even further. In 1957 another plot of land is acquired from the nuns at the adjacent St. Anna convent. The company premises now span an impressive 8,000 square metres; further expansion in Griesgasse is no longer possible.

Further stories 1924-1958