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Chromium Free Pretreat For Polymers

I am looking for a chromium free pretreatment for plastics. We are currently looking into ABS plastic infused with glass fiber, and a polycarbonate-ABS alloy. We cannot use a chromium etch, and I'm researching other etching/pretreatment options. We would prefer to keep the entire process on a plating line but are open to other preparation techniques. The final plating will most likely be a electroless-nickel, with no other layers. Any insights will be greatly appreciated, I have little experience in plating and have been assigned the prelim research. Also what experience if any have people had with the PreKote brand product on a plating line set up as opposed to aircraft pretreatment?

Taylor Hobgood
Design/ R&D Engineer - RTP, North Carolina
March 11, 2008


Hi, Taylor

Hopefully the readers will give you some feedback regarding their experience with various etching methods. But due to the anonymity of the internet, requests for experience with a particular brand have time-and-again led to shills pretending they are users and suggesting that another brand is better, precipitating a race to the bottom and the need to pull the thread.

Plus we can't ask our advertisers, who make this site possible, to pay the costs to maintain testimonials to the superiority of a competitors' products :-)

So readers, please keep it generic. Thanks.


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

Mr. Hobgood,

In line with the standards of this website, I will avoid mentioning specific brand names, etc. but my company, Rohm and Haas Electronic Materials, Packaging and Finishing Technologies, offers several hex chrome free pre-treatments for plastic substrates. These treatments fall under both conventional plating technologies as well as direct plating options. Please contact me via our website for additional information. Thanks and we wish you all the best in your endeavors.

Suzanne Redding
Rohm and Haas Electronic Materials, Packaging and Finishing Technologies - Freeport, NY USA
March 17, 2008

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