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Thread: Hi–Finish castings – Birmingham – Feb 2018

  1. #1
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    Default Hi–Finish castings – Birmingham – Feb 2018


    The History


    Like anyone else who has reported this I too struggled to find any history about this place.


    Hi-Finish was originally founded in 1920 but on different site to this one at Hall Green. They specialised in the manufacture of high pressure die castings and surface coatings. Their client list included Bentley and Jaguar.

    Perhaps more interestingly, this specific works was originally part of the Rootes Group empire (of Sunbeam and Hillman fame), under the guise of their 'Special Products Division'. A few relics of the Rootes days remain, most notably a couple of abstract murals in the lobby and canteen.

    Hi-Finish appears to have become insolvent in around 2008 with a loss of just 42 jobs.




    The Explore



    After getting the tip off from @Clebby on this one I decided to have a look.

    Was quite impressed with what was left inside, a few nice bits inside.

    I think it’s always sad to see what gets left behind when a company like this goes to the wall.

    Some of the old castings lying around reminded me of a bygone era, from when we had a great engineering backbone in the UK. The old BL, Ford and jaguar bits lying around where interesting to see. Along with the large fibreglass casting in the reception area.

    The offices where largely stripped but I did love what must been the MD’s office with it lush wood panelling and hidden drinks cabinet

    Was a nice way to waste a few hours.....

    Enjoy the pics
















































































  2. Thanks given by: etc100, Hugh Jorgan, krela, Mearing, oldscrote, smiler
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  4. #2
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    Default


    Interesting, thanks.

  5. Thanks given by: mockney reject
  6. #3
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    Default


    Nice history write-up. Picture two shows an interesting table. Looks like it can be heightened by knurled nuts above the legs. The office table and cabinets is not your usual Office Supplies bog-standard office furniture, looks like its hand-made.
    When the going gets tough - the tough get going.

  7. #4
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    It's a surface table, most likely used by someone inspecting the finished castings

  8. Thanks given by: Hugh Jorgan
  9. #5
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    [QUOTE=Hugh Jorgan;353927 Picture two shows an interesting table. Looks like it can be heightened by knurled nuts above the legs. The office table and cabinets is not your usual Office Supplies bog-standard office furniture, looks like its hand-made.[/QUOTE]

    As mockney reject has stated, this is one of three surface tables that were originally situated in the Quality Control Department - one of Windley Brothers best. The office furniture in the Management Offices was to the Rootes Group corporate standard I believe, but the most valuable and interesting item is the cast Mazak plaque shown in photo 15 - That needs saving! Visited this place 2 or 3 times; when they tried to produce some die castings for a business I was involved with. Sadly the cost of the dies and the small production volumes meant the project was a none starter on cost grounds!

  10. Thanks given by: Hugh Jorgan
  11. #6
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    I'm pretty sure the large plaque thingy is fibreglass

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