Land acquisition for expansion, new machine ranges from partners OTEC and AM post processing machines from RENA Technologies, see the company continue its mission to bring the most advanced surface finishing technologies to the UK.
Founded by Jonathan Dean in July 1981, originally as Finishing Techniques, the company established itself in the UK as experts in metal surface finishing. From aerospace to F1 components, through medical devices, to mass finishing small and thin parts, the company has attained a wealth of cross-industry experience.
“Starting a business at the peak of a major recession and contraction in the manufacturing base, seems almost reckless when I look back now,” stated Dean. “However, change was coming, industry was also renewing itself and advanced surface finishing technology was in demand.”
In the mid-90s, a step change came when OTEC, then a little known German start-up, launched its first surface finishing machines. Fintek now supplies exclusively in the UK, the full range of OTEC disc, drag and stream finishing machines and offer extensive subcontracting services.
“We have been 'day-one' OTEC suppliers, starting in 1996,” said Dean. “Very special to have been there at the beginning. I first met Helmut Gegenheimer in Germany when he was working for Dannemann. When I found out Helmut had left Dannemann, I had to track him down using the telephone book – no web searches in those days! I found that he had set-up a business with Soran Jota, initially building machines in a garage, so I returned to meet with them. It was clear, that their new machines were going to lead the market and that Fintek should bring them to the UK. I was also there for the first machine switch-on.”
Fintek has grown significantly with OTEC and says that all the CF and DF machines have been well received in the UK. However, the biggest game-changer came with the SF range. Stream finishing has opened-up many high-end applications, where increased controllability and precision are essential. This has driven machine sales and rapidly expanded Fintek's subcontract services.
"As a machine seller, our wealth of knowledge gained from real world subcontract projects means we understand the challenges faced every day by engineers,” added Dean. “We currently run 16 OTEC machines, eight of which are newer stream finishing systems, some with their patented 'Pulsfinish' and step-processing. This gives us tremendous insight in any machine sales situation.”
Additive manufacturing is a maturing technology and surfacing finishing is advancing to meet the post processing needs of 3D printed metal parts. Removal of support structures, powder cakes, partially melted grains, and penetrating extreme geometry complexity and small diameter holes, requires a new approach. Forming a new partnership in January 2021 to bring to the UK RENA Technologies H-series machines, allows Fintek to offer manufacturers the RENA Hirtisation process for post processing AM parts as a subcon service or machine sale.
"In our 40th year anniversary, Fintek is in a unique position to offer under one roof AM part processing using Hirtisation and, should the customer want to take external surfaces to an even greater smoothness or mirror-like polish, we can use an OTEC stream finisher," concluded Dean.