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Anodizing or Plating?


I am trying to get a job promotion at major airlines. I have done chromic and sulphuric anodizing at another airlines. The present company is not considering me as they are saying anodizing is not a form of plating. Could you send me info stating otherwise or what each process involves? Any info to relate the two would be greatly appreciated and if done in timely manner would be of help also.

Thank you ,

T. Schutt
- Tulsa, Oklahoma

simultaneous replies

While both are electrochemical process, anodizing produces a coating made from the oxide of the base metal (generally done on aluminum). Electroplating involves deposition of a metal on the surface of another metal.

I wonder why your experience in anodizing doesn't count in the airline you're working with because both are utilized to process airplane parts.

Dado Macapagal
- Toronto, Ontario

Anodizing is almost the opposite of plating, in that the polarities are reversed. Unfortunately, simply reversing the polarity (making the work cathodic) does not qualify you as a plater. Just as there is some degree of skill required for successful anodizing, a similar amount of skill should be expected to be a competent plater. And since there are so many different plating scenarios, you haven't even scratched the surface...

George Brackett III
- Utica, New York

Dear Mr. Schutt:

In a strictly technical sense, anodizing is not plating because anodizing is the creation of an oxide film on a part whereas plating is the creation of a film of metal on a part.


- Anodizing is covered in the major training courses for plating (including the American Electroplaters and Surface Finishing Society course, and the American Society for Metals Electroplating course).

- Anodizing constitutes a chapter (or more) in most of the major plating textbooks including--
the Electroplating Engineering Handbook [adv: this book on Amazon, AbeBooks, eBay]
The Metal Finishing Guidebook,
The "Products Finishing" Directory and Products Guide ,and
The Canning Handbook [affil link to this on eBay, Amazon, AbeBooks]

- The equipment is designed and supplied by the same engineers at the same suppliers, and most of the pieces of the equipment function identically.

- The pretreatment steps are similar, the wastewater treatment is similar, the heating/cooling, filtration, exhaust ventilation, rectifiers, bussing, tanks, tank linings, racking, material handling, etc. are similar.

- Many shops do both plating and anodizing and the employees shift from one area to another, as easily as shifting from one plating to another.

- In a practical sense, few people attempt to build a practical barrier between what is plating and what is anodizing, and I would think that experience in anodizing is roughly as valuable to a well-rounded plater as experience in any particular metal plating.

Good luck in your efforts.

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

Anodizing is an electrochemical process that thickens and toughens the naturally occurring protective oxide. Plating is also an electrochemical process, but applies another metal with the properties you are seeking as the protective coating.

Richard Van Dyk
- Orlando, Florida

The main difference between anodizing & plating is that when you plate you are depositing one layer of metal onto another, where as in anodizing you are creating a coating that builds up & build into the part. Anodizing can not chip off like a layer of plating. If I were looking for a job, I would say the two are rather similar in that they are both types or metal finishing.

David A. Kraft
- Long Island City, New York


Where I work, they consider anodizing plating, we also use this method on airplane parts.

Freddie L Duncil
- W.Alex.Ohio, Preble

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