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Need information on electroplating copper to steel


I make small metal sculptures. I am interested in applying different patinas to them, however there are very few patinas for steel. I would like to electroplate steel with copper because I have a plethora of patina choices for copper. Can someone please tell me if this is a suitable application? If it is what would I need for the process, or is there any reference material available suitable for my needs.

Thank You,

David H
- Carsen City , Nevada, USA


You don't mention exactly what kind of metal you are casting. It does make a difference in the plating process. At a guess, I would say 1.remove all burs and flash. 2.glass bead blast. 3.dull nickel plate 10 mins to seal metal. 4.acid copper plate half hour. 5.towel dry and place in dryer oven until warm. If you are serious about making a quality product, at a reasonable cost, you are best to use an established plating shop. Plating seems quite a simple process, but I can assure you it is anything but. Save yourself the headache, heartache and half a million dollars!

Mark Gunn
- NSW, Australia


I face a similar problem.... sculptor, want to copper plate steel for extra patina possibilities... how do I do it? Copper Sulfate [affil link] solution seems a good place to start, but other postings on site seem to say it won't work to steel.... does anyone know a good reliable simple small scale process for copper plating steel? does one exist!?

Miles Halpin
- Matlock, Derbyshire, England

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