Hard Chrome Plating Services

Hard chrome plating is an electroplating procedure in which chromium is deposited from a chromic acid solution. The part is made the cathode and, with the passageway of a DC current via lead anodes, chromium metal builds on the component surface. A wide diversity of parts can be coated; it requires only the proper fixture, a large enough bath, sufficient existing capacity, & adequate power sources. It is used for wear and erosion resistance in addition to its tribological Character.

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Detailed Description for Hard Chrome Plating Services

Hard chrome plating is chrome plating that has been applied as a fairly heavy coating (usually measured in thousandths of an inch) for wear resistance, lubricate, oil retention, and other 'wear' purposes. Some examples would be hydraulic cylinder rods, rollers, piston rings, mold surfaces, thread guides, gun bores, etc. 'Hard chrome' is not really harder than other chrome plating, it is called hard chromium because it is thick enough that a hardness measurement can be performed on it, whereas decorative chrome plating is only millionths of an inch thick and will break like an eggshell if a hardness test is conducted, so its hardness can't really be measured directly.

Hard chrome plating is almost always applied to items that are made of steel, usually hardened steel. It is metallic in appearance, and can be shiny, but is not necessarily decorative. Hard chrome plating is not a finish that you would want on a wheel or bumper.

 

Properties of Hard chrome Plating

 

High Hardness

Electro-deposited Chrome is extremely hard, with typical values of 850 - 1050 HV (63 - 70 HRc), hence the term "Hard" Chrome. This makes it an excellent coating for wear resistant and abrasion resistant applications such as Moulds and Dies, Punches, Bearing and Seal surfaces, and sliding components.

 Low Coefficient of friction

Hard Chrome has a very low coefficient of friction, approx. one half that of Steel. The coefficient against Steel of 0.16 lubricated (0.21 dry), makes it ideally suited for such applications as Bearing and Seal surfaces, and machinery components.

 

Wear Resistance

The high hardness and low frictional properties of Hard Chrome provide it with extremely good resistance to abrasive and erosive wear, extending the life of components such as Moulds, Dies and Punches etc, up to ten times in most cases.

 

Corrosion Resistance

Hard Chrome has an extremely high resistance to atmospheric oxidation, and a good resistance to most oxidising and reducing agents.(with the exception to Chlorides and other Halides), hence its wide-spread use in the Food and Chemical Industries.

 

Sacrificial Wear Layer

Since Hard Chrome deposits are readily removed with chemical strippers, without detrimental effect to the base material, the part can be stripped and re-plated repeatedly, when wear shows, without loss or damage to the base part. This is a significant advantage for high wear, high cost parts such as Plastic Moulds and Dies where abrasive filled plastics are used.

 

Machining

Hard Chrome deposits can be successfully finished by grinding, linishing or polishing.

 

Applications

·         Hydraulic and Pneumatic Piston Rods and Cylinders

·         Plastic and Rubber Rolls, Moulds, Dies, Screws, etc.

·         Automotive and Mechanical components

·         Press Tools and Punches

·         Print Cylinders and Plates

·         Food Machinery

·         Valves, Gates and Bodies

·         Mining Equipment

·         Timber and Paper Processing Equipment

·         Pump Shafts and Rotors

·         Textile Components

 

Chrome Plating Process

1. Receiving and Inspection. The first step is to determine what work you, our customer, wants done, and to assess what will be required to achieve the desired result. Metal can deteriorate and corrode to a point where restoration is outrageously expense; after evaluating the part, we must first agree on a price, level of quality and expected completion date.

 

2. Stripping. Parts are stripped to bare metal; all paint, dirt, oil and grease, rust, old plating and any other foreign material must be removed. Items brought to us stripped clean will cost less to plate then if we perform the stripping step (sand blasting is a typical method for stripping parts).

 

3. Polishing. Polishing is the removal of surface metal using a series of abrasive wheels and sanding belts (at any plating shop, the words "sand," "grind" and "polish" basically mean the same thing). We start by using coarse-cutting grinders, working down to soft cloth buffs. The end result is a high-gloss polished metal part with all pitting, scratches and impurities removed.

 

4. Wiring and Racking. We use hooks, racks, copper wire and other methods to hold parts in the plating tanks; this also provides electrical contact to the part.

 

5. Cleaning. Parts must be surgically clean before plating -- the slightest spec of dirt, grease, oil, buffing compound, rust, or other foreign matter will cause a reject. In our shop we use an elaborate series of soap, acid and water solutions to guarantee a clean, spotless surface.

 

6. Copper Plating and Buffing. Parts are copper plated and then buffed to a brilliant shine. This is an important step in the process, as copper offers an added layer of corrosion protection and helps to fill-in polishing lines and pits. (While copper is very thin, many layers of coppering and sanding can slowly build-up surfaces. In fact, copper can be used to level and fill much like a painter uses primer and block sanding.)

 

7. Wiring, Racking and Re-cleaning. The processes of steps 4 and 5 are repeated before nickel plating.

 

8. Nickel Plating. It is the nickel which provides the deep luster of a chromed part, in addition to providing another layer of protection for long-lasting chrome. Parts remain in our nickel plating tank for about an hour.

 

9. Chrome Plating. Chrome, the final plating step, is actually a protective coating over the shiny nickel which prevents the nickel from tarnishing.

 

10. Final Inspection. Parts are cleaned and inspected; some parts may require minor buffing.

 

 


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