Thos Begbie & Co specialises in the manufacture of water cooled copper and other components to the pyrometallurgical industry across the globe.

Hearth temperatures vary from 1,000° C to 1,800° C. at these temperatures most metal furnace shells would burn through, often with disastrous results.

A company with a colourful history of over 133 years with a culture of excellence, that simply would not lie down and die.

Thos Begbie & Co is a world-wide known and respected brand that boasts successful projects, both small and large, in 23 countries across the globe.

Company Overview

A company, with a history of more than 133 years serving the mining industry in South Africa and with a value-system that enabled it to survive many challenges.


Strategic partner to our Global customers, providing expert holistic solutions in the mining and smelting industry whilst creating a better future for all.


Add sustainable value to our customers and all stakeholders, whilst remaining the global preferred supplier, through innovation and collaboration.


1. Integrity

We always act honestly, fairly, transparently, ethically. Your word is your honour.

2. Respect

Consideration regarding all people and environment.

3. Teamwork

Collaboration with colleagues and stakeholders towards a common purpose

4. Safety

We commit ourselves to ensure a safe environment to all.

5. Quality

Through continuous improvement and innovation, we ensure quality products and services.



1. Financial:

Revenue, cashflow, profitability, sustainable growth.

2. Customers:

Market share, customer satisfaction, competitive positioning

3. Internal:

 Zero harm to all employees and environment.

 Productivity and effectiveness.

The company has a proud South African history and was started by the Scottish marine engineer and pioneer Thomas Begbie in 1887 during the gold-rush era in the newly proclaimed town of Johannesburg.

As a consequence of the Boer War Settlement Agreement after the British troops defeated Paul Kruger’s Republic, the company was relocated to Middelburg, 100 miles east of Johannesburg.

Little was it considered at that time that over the next century, Middelburg would become one of the most progressive growth areas in mining and industry and the electricity generation hub of the country. 

70% of South Africa’s electricity is produced in coal-fired power stations in this district which also supports world renowned stainless steel and ferroalloy production.

In 1989, the management of the company successfully engineered an MBO and Thos Begbie, as it is now known, has grown from strength to strength to the world-class manufacturing, foundry and heavy engineering company it is today.

The company boasts being the preferred vendor to the majority of smelters in 23 countries around the globe. They specialize in providing water-cooled pure copper elements to the pyrometallurgical industry for both wall and roof components of the furnaces. Every item is produced to strict tolerances and specifications in accordance with the ISO 9001:2015 certified manufacturing facilities in Middelburg.

Products & Services

Thos Begbie & Co specialises in the manufacture of water cooled copper components for the pyrometallurgical industry across the globe.

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General Engineering and Machining

The extensive heavy engineering facility houses the machine shop, pre-assembly hall, boiler shop, pipe manipulation and robotic welding centre, comprising a range of lathes, horizontal and vertical boring mills, turret and deep-hole drilling machines, surface grinding, band saw and circular saw units, and drill sharpening equipment. Most equipment is CNC or DRO controlled with 4-axis capability and tables able to handle castings and other items up to 8 tons.

A sophisticated CNC programming department develops 3D models from drawings supplied by engineers, which allow highly accurate interpretation of customers’ requirements.

The Fabrication, Refurbishment and Preassembly plant comprises welding and bending capabilities, where water-reticulation tubing made from Monel 400 is fabricated into the most complex of coils and other coils, which eventually are incorporated within the copper castings. The Refurbishment section caters for the repair of castings returned to the
company to be refurbished for re-use in clients’ furnaces.

The Preassembly area is a high-precision floor where completed components are assembled and inspected by the customer and our inspectors, clearly marked and disassembled and packed for transport to the construction site. This process prevents any unnecessary delays due to components not fitting exactly in the designed position and packed in the logical order that the construction team requires them to be.

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Thos Begbie is strategically unique in that all pipe and tube manipulation of most metals and alloys, are done on site using sophisticated CNC programmable tube benders supplied with CNC based internally generated drawings and designs, giving us a distinct advantage over competitors.


capabilities and services

  • In-house non-destructive testing laboratories
  • Unique Radiographic bunker
  • Infra-red thermal modeling
  • Pressure and ball-testing station
  • Solidification and Methoding software
  • Computer-aided design & drawing office
  • On-site pattern shop and tool making
  • On-site emergency crew
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  • Pyrometallurgical Components Manufacturing
  • A 7,000m² metal foundry is equipped with 6 overhead high-temperature cranes, 4 gas-fired, and 3 induction furnaces giving a cast mass capacity of 17 tons, in ferrous and non-ferrous alloys.
  • Typical metals and alloys produced are: Chrome-zirconium alloys and stainless steel as well as speciality bronzes.
  • Modern automatic sand and resin mixing plant provide constant good quality moulds irrespective of weather and other variables affecting high integrity mould surfaces.

Thos Begbie & Co’s long history has resulted in it excelling in a vast range of cast and machined engineering products for the mining industry in general. The company’s vast experience in the disciplines mentioned above, give it the versatility and integrity to cope with the exacting requirements of the critical mining and smelting

Often when a catastrophic event occurs on a smelting unit, time is of the essence to get back into production as soon as possible and the company is well known for its ability to achieve the impossible. Furnace operators worldwide rely absolutely on the company’s reliability to perform under difficult circumstances.

Thos Begbie runs a 24/7 operation, thereby catering for the different time zones across the globe.