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topic 4208

Touch up of Zinc Chromate Finished Steel


I restore old radio equipment as a hobby and I am frequently faced with a vexing problem. Equipment from the 1950's and 1960's with steel chassis that have been yellow zinc chromate finished frequently have pits and small rust spots. While I certainly can remove the rust without much of a problem, I also remove the finish at the same time. With complex pieces of equipment it is impossible to strip the chassis and have the piece refinished. Is there a touch up kit that will do a "reasonable" repair on yellow chromate finished steel? If yes, is this solution as toxic as the cyanide based products of 30 years ago?

Lance Wilson
- Scottsdale, Arizona


I'm personally not much in favor of plating except in an industrial environment but, yes, there are brush-plating kits you could use to zinc plate from a cyanide-free electrolyte and then yellow chromate. Vendors in our Directory include Gold Touch [a supporting advertiser], and Sifco.

Ted Mooney, Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

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