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Why Nickel Chrome Plating on Stainless Steel?





2003

Q. When I see posts specifying Decorative Nickel/Chrome plating on stainless steel. Does "Chrome" refer to Hex or Trivalent chromate OR is there some other type of chrome that this refers to? Also, does this add additional corrosion resistance and/or added decorative appeal?

Thanks very much.

Joe Trattner
- North Aurora, Illinois, US



2003

A. It is neither hexavalent chrome nor trivalent chrome, Joe, it is electroplated metallic chrome of oxidation state zero (although hexavalent chrome is generally used within the plating tank to achieve the metallic coating). It adds additional corrosion resistance and added decorative appeal.

Ted Mooney, finishing.com
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey



2003

Q. Mr Mooney,

Thanks for the response - I really appreciate it! Since Hex chrome is used in the tank to achieve the metallic chrome, does that mean this process has the same safety issues as all the controversy in regards to hex chrome as a post treatment? We are looking to get away from using hex chrome.

Thanks again,

Joe Trattner
- North Aurora, Illinois, USA



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2003

A. There is nothing hazardous about a chrome plated surface, Joe. A chrome plated surface is metallic chrome and has even been used even as a surface to eat off of (decorative plates and knives for example).

There are two things which tend to keep people confused about this:

1. Hexavalent chromate conversion coatings (which are used on aluminum and on zinc plated surfaces) are a gel of hexavalent chromate salts. These are not shiny; they are usually yellow and more like what dried maple syrup or molasses would look like on brass. Some hexavalent chromates are clear, rather than yellow; they are not metallic, although they may let the shine of the zinc plating show through. Hexavalent chromate is now forbidden on cars in Europe and the pressure to eliminate hexavalent chromate conversion coatings can be expected to continue.

2. Even though there is no hexavalent chrome on a chrome plated surface, and no danger to the consumer, the chrome plating process usually involves hexavalent chromium so care must be exercised in the plant for the safety of the workers and proper management of any wastes.

Ted Mooney, finishing.com
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey



2003

A. Nickel chrome on stainless steel is usually done so it will cosmetically match the copper nickel chrome plating done on the carbon steel parts of the vehicle. Bare stainless or stainless with just chrome will have a different appearance.

Todd Osmolski
- Charlotte, North Carolina, USA



2003

thumbs up signThanks again for the responses and for clearing this up for me. This site has been a tremendous help to me on several occasions. Thanks for providing such a great vehicle for the sharing of knowledge. Also, thanks to all the kind people who willingly share their knowledge.

Joe Trattner
- North Aurora, Illinois, USA



2003

! You're certainly welcome, Joe; your questions are always interesting. When the opportunities present themselves, please try to invite those helpful responders & the advertisers who make the site possible to bid on the plating services you need.

Ted Mooney, finishing.com
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey


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