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topic 6812

Removable masking paint/coating for chrome plating of plastic

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Q. Does anyone know about some kind of masking paint/coating which can be removed after plating? I need to plate some plastic parts and need some kind of masking which is easily removed afterwards.

G. Mensing
- Hong Kong


A. What type of plastic are you using? There are some maskants available for chrome plating but most of them contain solvents that will attack plastic. ABS plastic is more resistant to the attack of some solvents.

Tim Cornelius
- Texarkana, Arkansas


Q. Currently, we use epoxy paint to insulate the part of item we do not want to plate. Sometimes, we can also use polystyrene plastic melted in M-3 solvent.

However, these insulators are difficult to take off after plating.

Anyone has better method ?

Irwan Nusantara
- Jakarta, Indonesia

May 7, 2013

A. What I will recommend to you is that first cover the area that you don't want plated with lead tape or even aluminum tape, then paint over the tape with micro-stop off lacquer. Doing so the paint will not damage your plastic part, you can also leave the lead tape unpainted. 3M and Shercon have some very good masking tapes for plating, that you can shape to your convenience and are also conductive. I hope this help you solve your problem (you can also use a razor blade to trim what you don't want).

Nick Cordero
Plating Specialist - New York, New York

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