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Refinishing of Rusted Silver Cadmium Hardware

Q. I'm refinishing several Honda CT70 mini bikes. I am looking for a way to inexpensively refinish rusted specialty fasteners and hardware that were originally silver cad plated. I am a small, one man shop so ease of use and cost are of importance.

I would like a way of putting some type of silver metal finish on old, non-replaceable hardware. I have bead blasted the parts, but have not done any acid treatments. I am looking for a durable, rust resistant coating, not necessarily a bright finish. I see that the Eastwood automotive catalog caries a home zinc plating kit .
I was wondering if anyone has had any success with that.

Perhaps electroless nickel plating? Any help would be appreciated.

Jordon Reif
- RAF, U.K.

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A. Hello Jordon,

The process I would like to recommend is brush plating.

Brush electroplating is a versatile process that has the ability to deposit a wide variety of metals, including Cadmium and Zinc. The process is more inexpensive than most processes because there is little in the way of capital purchase. The process is also easy to learn, it usually take a day or so to be able to do simple brush plating procedures.

Chris Helwig
- Valencia, California

A. By the way, Jordon, "electroless nickel" is an "autocatalytic" process, not an "immersion plating" process that you can wipe on. I can understand why you might think--from its name--that electroless nickel is simpler than electroplating, but unfortunately it isn't.

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

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