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Heavy mechanical nickel plate

March 4, 2017

Q. Drawing of a special fastener calls for HEAVY MECHANICAL NICKEL PLATE finish. Please advise what thickness of plating is typically considered HEAVY. Please also advise the definition of MECHANICAL nickel plate.

Al Barry
Engineer - Worcester, Massachusetts USA
  ^- Privately contact this inquirer -^

March 5, 2017

A. In mechanical plating, energy from an open-ended tumbling barrel is transmitted through glass impact media to extremely finely divided metal powder of a ductile metal or alloy in an acidic medium. This energy 'cold-welds' the metal powder to the substrate, which is almost always ferrous in nature. This process eliminates the risk of hydrogen embrittlement in hardened steel parts. Ductile metals include zinc, cadmium and tin. Nickel is not considered a ductile (soft) metal. Therefore, there is no such process as mechanical nickel plating, regardless of the thickness desired.

Tom Rochester
Plating Systems & Technologies, Inc.  

Jackson, Michigan, USA

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