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We don't want to use HCl activation for zinc plating

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Q. SIR,
WHAT CAN BE USED INSTEAD OF HCL(ACID) TO REMOVE SMUT, AND A GOOD ACTIVATING AGENT ON A ZINC PLATING LINE WHICH HAS LOW FUMES AND LESS CORROSIVE PROPERTIES?

ADITYA KOCHAR
BUSINESS OWNER - JAIPUR
July 20, 2023


A. Hi ADITYA,
The thing is, which acid will be required to activate metal so that it can be robustly plated upon depends on what that substrate metal is and its condition. Also, activating is the last step before plating (except for rinsing), so you do not want to contaminate your plating solution with an activating agent that causes problems for it.

So we would need to know what the substrate is, probably whether it's a rack plating line or barrel plating line, and what type of zinc plating you are doing (cyanide, alkaline non-cyanide, chloride zinc, ammonium chloride zinc).

Still, assuming this is a zinc plating on steel production line, I haven't seen one which lacks HCl activation in decades. But if it's aircraft components, where cost is less of an object, blasting can substitute for acid activation. More details please. Luck & Regards,

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




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