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chrome plating
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Luegolover



Joined: 02 Mar 2017
Posts: 15
Location: London

PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 7:01 pm    Post subject: chrome plating Reply with quote

Hello,

I am working on a '54 Austin Healey and several of the parts need re-chroming. I have never had anything chromed before and would like some indication of the best route forward.

For example, the windscreen pillars are made of brass and the chrome is flaking in some areas and worn through in other whilst being reasonable in places. Should I forcibly remove the existing chrome and polish it up or should I just send to a suitable workshop for them to do it? Another item is the handbrake which is made of steel and in a bit of a state with pitted rust etc.

I'm not the Bank of England just yet so I am interested in doing as much as I can before I pass it over to somebody else.

Thanks in advance
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MikeEdwards



Joined: 25 May 2011
Posts: 2053
Location: South Cheshire

PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would let the plater do it. Apart from anything else, I believe most parts are dipped in various acids to remove old chrome, paint and anything else to get the item back down to a base where it can then be plated again.

Your plater will probably do that anyway, whether you've cleaned off the flaking bits or not, so there is probably no saving in cost, only the potential for something to go wrong if you scrape too hard or mark the relatively soft metal underneath, which then adds costs as the plater has work to do to rectify. I think the acid dip is just a case of them wiring the items to a carrying frame and dunking them in a tank, there's only work involved in shifting stuff that the acid doesn't.

I had a gear lever trim plated recently, that started out very pitted to the extent that I asked the plater whether he thought it was even worth bothering with. But he added some copper, I think, which built up the pitted areas to a flat surface which could then be chromed. Result is (as I recall, it turns out I used a different one in the end) as good as the one that wasn't pitted, that I had chromed at the same time.
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peter scott



Joined: 18 Dec 2007
Posts: 6578
Location: Edinburgh

PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Mike. The platers are normally very good at preparation.
Whilst not particularly near to you I can recommend:

https://www.yell.com/biz/prestige-electro-plating-mexborough-993510/

I have no connection with this company but have seen lots of their work much of which required extensive preparation.

Peter
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Rootes75



Joined: 30 Apr 2013
Posts: 3149
Location: The Somerset Levels

PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2017 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have recently had some hub caps from my lorry re-chromed. I spoke to the plater at a show to ask his advice and he said never try to remove anything, the acid dips etc will clean the old material off without causing any surface abrasion.
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ukdave2002



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 3666
Location: South Cheshire

PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2017 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had the same advice too; any mechanical stripping of chrome is likely to leave abrasion marks especially in brass, and the plater will still have to dip the parts to ensure the surface is correctly prepped.

Not cheap, I think I paid around 400 for my MGA windscreen frame.

Dave
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Ray White



Joined: 02 Dec 2014
Posts: 4214
Location: Derby

PostPosted: Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have had exceptionally good results from DERBY PLATERS. I have no connection with the firm but I am happy with the work they have done for me. The downside is that they are not cheap. Then again, you only want to do the job once.

You need to be careful with some platers who skip the copper plating part of the process to keep the cost down. I once bought a refurbished bumper for my Triumph GT6 only to find it had been re - plated in India and the chrome soon started lifting off. I ended up having to get it done properly properly.
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baconsdozen



Joined: 03 Dec 2007
Posts: 1119
Location: Under the car.

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I once bought some new chromed bumpers for my old taxi cab. They were chromed on top of galvanised steel,the rust came through within a week and after trying to keep them looking presentable for a couple of months I gave up and painted them black.
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Kleftiwallah



Joined: 27 Oct 2016
Posts: 222
Location: North Wiltshire

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I needed some push rod tubes replating, with the aid of rotary sanders, polishers and buffing wheels I've done most of the prep myself. But then I'm on a tight budget. Just do what you can to keep the costs down, which you can spend on something else.

Cheers, Tony.
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Ray White



Joined: 02 Dec 2014
Posts: 4214
Location: Derby

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 6:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kleftiwallah wrote:
I needed some push rod tubes replating, with the aid of rotary sanders, polishers and buffing wheels I've done most of the prep myself. But then I'm on a tight budget. Just do what you can to keep the costs down, which you can spend on something else.

Cheers, Tony.


Those small items should not cost that much.
If, however, you have the patience you could always get a kit and do it yourself. I have got all the gear and have had pleasing results but a good kit doesn't come cheap.

I tried re plating a radiator shell but found that the time it took meant taking a break and the problem with that is there always seemed to be a line between where you left off and started again. Eventually, I gave up and had it done properly. No regrets; it was an experience.
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MikeEdwards



Joined: 25 May 2011
Posts: 2053
Location: South Cheshire

PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've got a nickel plating / yellow passivating kit, and I've had mixed results to be honest. Most of that is down to how well I can clean the item, and I think real platers have access to better acid (!) than the average person does.
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richardlw



Joined: 08 Jun 2009
Posts: 138

PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 1:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have had bumpers re-chromed for my Corvair and Dauphine, as well as other pieces, logos, hinges, etc. My place of choice (because they do welding and patching too) does not do antimony, so I take those parts to another place. But I always let them do the prep.

But many things are not chrome. Stainless can be straightened, sanded, and polished. Here is the process.. http://www.widman.biz/Corvair/English/Links/stainless_rotation.html

My Corvair bumpers were rechromed 8 years ago. Still fine.



The Renault bumpers were done a couple of years ago.


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Keith D



Joined: 16 Oct 2008
Posts: 1021
Location: Upper Swan, Western Australia

PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am not a chemist, nor am I a plater, but according to someone here who is a plater, the procedure to remove old chrome is to reverse the process. Connect the positive and negative back to front and this removes the old chrome painlessly. (They change the anode into the cathode and vice versa) I understand that the reclaimed chrome can be used again.

Perhaps one of the forum members is an expert on chroming and can either confirm or correct this?

Keith
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tolley



Joined: 29 Dec 2019
Posts: 17
Location: gloucester

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

got 2 wiper arms that need doing , but I think the cost just to do these will be to much .
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MikeEdwards



Joined: 25 May 2011
Posts: 2053
Location: South Cheshire

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You should just ask the plater you intend to use. They do seem to be quite busy, and could probably add your arms into another batch of stuff. It's not as if they'll set everything up just to plate those two items.
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tolley



Joined: 29 Dec 2019
Posts: 17
Location: gloucester

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will do mike thanks
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