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Safety of Cadmium plating with chromate conversion coating

RFQ: Looking for someone who can do "Gold cadmium dichromate" plating, similar to that used in automotive restoration for items such as power brake boosters, backing plates, brackets, etc. Any info appreciated. Thanks

mike m [last name deleted for privacy by Editor]
- Hemet, California

Ed. note: Sorry, this RFQ is outdated so private contact is no longer available, but public technical replies are still welcome! No public brand/source suggestions please ( huh? why?)


A. By 'gold cadmium dichromate' I'm pretty sure you're referring to cadmium plating followed by a gold tone chromate conversion coating, Mike.

Unlike in the past, today cadmium is reserved for essential uses because it is a chronic cumulative poison like mercury and lead. I don't think aesthetic authenticity is really an essential use. So for brackets and such, I'd be very surprised if the judges insist on cadmium plating. Zinc plating with gold dichromate will look very similar and should suffice.

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

April 29, 2009

⇦ (tip: readers rarely show much interest in abstract questions, but people's actual situations usually prompt responses)   smiley face

Q. What about the safety of cadmium gold?

Ashraf Mustafa
work in electro plating - saudi arabia

A. Hi, Ashraf. As mentioned, cadmium is a chronic cumulative poison. Cadmium electroplating is not necessarily an activity that will harm you whatsoever, but it could be if you inhale cadmium oxide dusts, etc.

There should be MSDS (material safety data sheets) available, and technical data sheets, that instruct you in safe handling. If you have a specific concern, please describe it. Thanks. Good luck.


Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey
May 1, 2009

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