Repairing/re-plating Chrome kitchen table legs
An ongoing discussion from 2001 through 2015 . . .(2001)
Q. I found 4 1970's chrome plated folding chairs with clear Lucite panels; however, the chrome has some rust and pitting. What can I do to remove the rust and bring back the shine?
Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks in advance!Don F
- Providence, Rhode Island, USA
A. I have found that steel wool [linked by editor to product info at Rockler] works the best to remove light rust from chrome. For heavier rust try tin foil, the results are amazing. To give your chrome a nice shine I always use Turtlewax Car Polish. Chrome RULES!Ben P
- Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA
RFQ: I have an old formica top kitchen table with chrome legs. I would like to replace a few legs for they have rusted off. The table has 8 chrome legs. They are 2 at each corner. I can bend the chrome to match if I can find it.Marcia P
- Harrisburg, Illinois
I have a 1950's formica table with chrome legs. I need to repair or replace two of the legs and would like to know who to call in my area. The legs are two legs at each corner coming together at middle.
Any help would be appreciated.Beth W
- Orland Park, Illinois, USA
RFQ: I, too, am interested in replacing the chrome legs on a formica top table that I purchased used. Please give me any information you may have regarding replacement chrome legs for tables. As in the original inquiry I read posted, my table also has 2 legs at each corner that need replacing.
Thank you.Quay G
- Greenfield, Massachusetts
RFQ: I am also looking for hairpin chrome legs for a formica top 1950s table. Where were these located?Lyn H
- Edwardsville, Illinois
RFQ: I recently purchased a vintage dinner table and 4 chair set, the chrome legs and trim on the table and chairs has rusted. I am looking for some advice as to cost of getting the chrome restored. If needed I can supply pictures of the pieces to be refinished.Jason B
homeowner - Rochester, New York
I am writing to follow up to the questions about replacing chrome table legs on an old formica table. Does anyone know where I can locate legs to replace the ones on my table? The ones I have are rusted and old.Katie H
- Charleston, South Carolina
!! While searching for "table legs" I came across a vendor selling legs that sound like just what you're looking for: 50's style chrome steel tube legs that would go great with your formica table top. The legs look pretty sturdy, with a large plate to attached to table top.Mark Adelson
- San Bernardino, California
Mark gave us the search term that leads directly to a number of "new retro" suppliers. But the authentic approach, if you find it affordable, is to have your existing table legs replated. These table legs are fabricated of steel and then are nickel plated and chrome plated.
If the steel is still structurally sound, replating is certainly an option. Good luck.
The question that I have may not be appropriate for this site bit I will post it anyway. My business partner and I are starting a small furniture line. Part of the line is 50's inspired dining tables, we have been trying to find a source for the chrome legs and trim that one found on original 50's tables. I have looked all over the internet but all we find are companies that either sell vintage tables or ones that make the tables to order new. So far I have not been able to find a supplier of these chrome legs and trim that we can buy from. We are desperate to get started but without these legs and trim a large part of our line is at a stand still. Does anyone know if there are companies that make these. We appreciate all replies and suggestions.
Thank you,Andrew C
- Miami Beach, Florida
A. What you might want to do, Andrew, is find a metal working shop and a plating shop (or ideally a metal working shop that deals with a plating shop and gives you the finished product).
The metal working shop buys steel tubing from a steel distributor and cuts & bends it and punches holes and welds it as required to your design. Then the plating shop polishes it and plates it and ships it to you. Plating is a jobshop oriented industry. Plating shops and metal working shops love to have jobs like yours! I think you are just not yet envisioning how it is normally done. I'll bet you'll get private offers from your posting here.
A. Do a search for plating shops in Thomasville and High Point NC. That is a big furniture producing area. There are a several shops in the area that may be able to help you.Todd Osmolski
- Charlotte, North Carolina, USA
Andrew, it only just now hit me that you may not have realized that there is actually no such thing as legs and trim made of chrome; you may not have realized that these are steel items that are nickel-chrome electroplated.
You might find our "Introduction to Chrome Plating" interesting. Good luck.
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey
April 14, 2009
Q. I recently bought a 1950s kitchen table--formica top with chrome legs and apron. I've managed to buff out most of the small rust spots with steel wool [linked by editor to product info at Rockler] (I haven't gotten around to waxing yet). However, one leg has spots that are rusted through the chrome layer entirely and cannot be buffed out. Would chrome paint provide an adequate cosmetic solution? Are there paints available that do not require special equipment for application? If this is a reasonable fix, I would like to try it. If it's not worth the time and money, I can live with one rusty leg on an old table. Thanks!Leah Krynicky
hobbyist - Arlington, Virginia
April 16, 2009
A. Hi, Leah. Yes, there are inexpensive spray paints that are at least intended to be chrome colored, like Plastikote Bumper Chrome Paint. Or you may wish to try the cleaning and preservation tips on letter 41759, "Rechroming or removing rust from vintage 1950s chrome leg kitchen table". Good luck with it.
"Chrome" colored bumper paint
July 27, 2009
Check out www.classickitchensandmore.com for 1950's table replacement parts.Mike Kleinhans
- Manitowoc, Wisconsin
May 18, 2010
RFQ: I RECENTLY PURCHASED A SET OF FOUR VINTAGE CHROME STEEL CHAIRS, ONE OF WHICH NEEDS SOME MINOR WELDING REPAIR AT TWO POINTS WHERE STEEL WIRE MEETS THE FRAME. WILL I HAVE TO HAVE THE ENTIRE CHAIR RE-CHROMED AFTER IT IS REPAIRED OR CAN IT BE SPOT-CHROMED? ARE THERE ANY COMPANIES IN THE KANSAS CITY AREA THAT DO THIS AND WHAT IS THE GENERAL COST?
COLLECTOR - KANSAS CITY
January 17, 2015
Q. Hi, I am cleaning up a vintage Formica kitchen table. The legs are pretty much the only issue. The tinfoil and water method is working great!
What I would like to replace is the plastic band that runs around the table edge. Anyone know where I might find this?Kathleen Figueroa
- Lomita California