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Nickel Chrome Plating over parts with a gold PVD finish

September 5, 2012

Q. Hello there,
I work for a electroplating company and it has been asked by one of our customers if we would be able to chrome plate over parts that already have a PVD finish. Being new to the plating industry, I do not have much knowledge on the PVD finishes. The part itself is made of solid brass in which they have gotten a gold PVD finish put on. So the question is this... Can the part be nickel chrome plated without stripping the PVD finish, and if the part does need to be stripped first are there any recommendations as to what would be the best method of doing so??? Thank you in advance for any advise you may offer.

Jennifer Jeske
- Spring Lake, MI USA

September 6, 2012

A. Hi Jennifer. If the coating really is gold (not just gold-toned), I think that it can be directly decorative nickel-chrome plated. If it's actually titanium nitride, it would probably be better to strip the coating first. Please search the site for "strip titanium nitride" or "remove titanium nitride" -- you'll find lots of threads on the topic. You can also search for "strip TiN", but it's easy to confuse tin with TiN in this age of carelessness born of too much texting :-)


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

September 11, 2012

A. What is the substrate? It is common to plate brass and steel substrates with nickel and chrome prior to PVD when the PVD coating is to be used for decorative purposes. The plating is used for corrosion resistance and to provide a hard base for the PVD coating. If so, all you need to do is strip the PVD coating and you'll have a nice chrome finish.

One thing to keep in mind is that it is still common to PVD deposit TiN, then PVD a thin gold layer on top of the PVD. If that's the case, I would recommend that you strip both coatings rather than try to plate directly onto the gold-covered TiN.

jim treglio portrait
Jim Treglio - scwineryreview.com
PVD Consultant & Wine Lover - San Diego,

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