Rising Base Metals Rocketing to the Top?

nickel-plating-plated-nitecBase metals are essential in the growth of the infrastructure, manufacturing and utilities sector of the UK.  The mining of base metals refers to major industrial non-ferrous metals like nickel, copper, tin and aluminium.  It is the dramatically increasing energy and urbanisation demand which are making the need for the metals rise, as well as the fact that they are used for automotive systems, metal coatings, electrical systems and make many goods more durable.  But will fluctuating prices negatively impact the base metal market?

 

Nickel Plating is Key

In 2014, Lead-zinc accounted for 24% of the global market and copper accounted for 16%.  Zinc was popular due to its specific characteristics, such as its unique bonding abilities with other metals, anti-corrosive properties and it has the ability to galvanise well.  The attributes have boosted its use considerably.  Copper is predicted to rise, forecast until 2023, thanks to its proven strength in the infrastructure sector.  The use of tin is also set to rise through the use of tin coating for electronic components in the automotive sector.  However, the most interesting sales increase seems to be a very specific area of the Nickel world to increase its sales – this seems to be nickel plating – though the reasons or sectors remain unspecified.

 

Information Regarding Nickel Plating

There are two types of Nickel Plating – Electroless Nickel Plating (ENP) and Diffused Nickel Plating.

Diffused Nickel Plating is a simple process which is the most effective nickel coating, ensuring a high resistance level against corrosion.  This is thanks to its total encapsulation plating method.  It has been proven that their corrosion resistance is more effective than that of the highest grade stainless steel, whilst at the same time being much cheaper.  Diffused Nickel Plating is the perfect plating method if your components are used in marine or salt environments.  This gives them a 30 year sub-sea guarantee.

In a similar way, Electroless Nickel Plating is a high quality but cost effective solution to metal coating which can extend the longevity of components dramatically.  It is creates a good resistance against corrosion and is often used in marine, oil and defence industries.    Electroless Nickel Plating prevents rust, wear and friction.  It can also be hardened through the use of heat treatment and is guaranteed not to chip or flake, like paint or varnish does.

Electroless Nickel Plating and Diffused Nickel Plating

A question often asked is…What is the different between the two types of Nickel Plating?  The basic answer is very simple – the plating processes used are very different.

It has already been deciphered that Diffused Nickel Plating occurs when the encapsulation plating method is performed but this is not the same as Electroless Nickel Plating.  The process for this occurs when a layer of even thickness metal is deposited evenly over the surface of a component, no matter what its shape.  The uniformity in its coating means that it is the perform plating method for components which are used in particular industries, such as Healthcare, Defence, Automotive and Aerospace, where the components are often not standard, need to be hygienic, regularly cleaned and are under constant stress.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel plating or copper plating, then get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Bronze, Silver, Gold

nickel-silver-gold-copper-plating-nitecAmerica, pre-1965.  Everyone had some silver coins, saved silver coins and spent silver coins – silver money was a part of natural, normal everyday life.  Nowadays, the choice you have for acquiring gold and silver bullion, is best if you do so via historic metal, like silver coinage.  This occurred in America, when their government cut their ties with gold in 1933, but they continued to have access with ease to silver for the next three decades.  This however, was abandoned in 1965 due to America slipping in to irreparable bankruptcy.

Gold Price Sells Silver

It’s a known fact that the higher the price of gold, the more silver is sold and copper plated currency isn’t used at all.  The ratio of silver to gold today is 79:1 with prices estimated $16 : $1,250.  So obviously in an economic meltdown, cheap silver will be chosen over the more expensive (90 per cent) and once these have both been exploited they will then turn to the gold.

Common Plating

Plating facilities match base metals with a wide array of coating surface metal finishes.  The most commonly used are copperbrassnickel, steel and bronze.  In order to decide which surface metal is used to coat for the finish, the components uses are highly considered so that the manufacturer can get the highest performance and longest lasting component part electroplated.

As examples:

Gold plating is the perfect solution for electrical conductivity, heat protection and corrosion and can survive in a multitude of environments and temperatures.

Silver plating is commonly used in the electrical industry dues to its low electrical resistance.

Nickel plating is ideal for the chemical industry.  It protects against chemicals and is corrosion and wear resistant.

Copper plating is most commonly used in the automotive industry.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it electroless nickel plating or copper plating or heat treatment which may require specialist assistance, then get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Heat Treatment and Homogenising

aluminium-heat-treatment-alloy-nitecWhen you think of heat treatment, I wonder what type of metal you associate it with?  Aluminium is probably not the first metal that springs to mind.  Why?  Because it is thought of as being a soft metal.  But there are certain, specific alloys which respond incredibly well to heat treatment, in fact, they actually respond in almost the same way as steel and iron.  So, what are the specific types of aluminium alloys?  They are aluminium alloys containing copper, zinc, or a blend of magnesium and silicon which enable them to respond well to the heat treatment process.  Be aware that pure aluminium and aluminium alloyed with manganese or magnesium does not work under heat treatment.  Therefore, when referring to the heat treatment process during this article, it is aluminium alloys containing copper, zinc or a blend of magnesium and silicon that is being referred to.

Harmonious Homogenising

Aluminium alloys come in to contact with the mold via their outside edge first, which forms a layer or skin of aluminium crystals, which are called grains.   This occurs when aluminium alloys are being cast.  They cool from the outside in, with the elements of the alloy precipitating which locks crystals in regionally.  This is how some areas become hard and some remain soft.  To even this imbalance out, we need homogenizing, so that redistribution of the precipitation can occur.  This means that the temperature needs to be taken to just below melting point which is between 900 and 1000 degrees farenheit.  Having reached the homogenizing temperature, the component is left to cool slowly, so that the internal structures uniformity is reached.

Annealing Aluminium Alloys

If you then require you aluminium alloys to be shaped, you will then require another process which is known as annealing.  The alloys must be heated once again to 570°F to 770°F for anywhere between thirty minutes to three hours, depending on the alloys composition and the component part.  Unlike the heat treatment or homogenising processes, the cooling process post annealing is not a critical factor in this process.

NiTEC UK and You

If you or your business are interested in the heat treatment process, or plating whether it is tin plating electroless nickel plating or copper plating, then why not get in touch with NiTEC UK.  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Aluminium and Copper – Which and Why?

copper-wiring-plating-nitecThey are both metals – yes – but other than that they have many differences, the main ones of which are their weight, cost, appearance and their capacitance which, to the average Joe, is a metals ability to store electrical chargeAluminium was, in days gone by, the metal of choice but it seems today that Copper is making a comeback and the designers are switching over!

Copper used in wiring and electrical equipment is nominally pure which is why it is being chosen over Aluminium because Aluminium in its purest form does not seem to be strong enough to cope with many electrical applications.  Different Aluminium alloy properties change depending on the process they are subjected to.  If they are subjected to heat treatment for example, Al6101 becomes harder and stronger.

It has been a rather common misconception that Aluminium has been too soft for some uses and therefore compression connectors must be used to overcome this.  But, with design and plating changes, these compression connectors are no longer necessary.  Alloys and processing can instead be used in order to make Aluminium become just as useful, as good and as strong as Copper…ALMOST!

Copper Coating and Copper Plating

Sounds familiar but this is the opposite way round.  In order to reduce the corrosion of Aluminium and Copper, they are coated in Tin or Silver to reduce their corrosion, because without this Aluminium and Copper are both prone to oxidation and are therefore likely to rust and parts not work appropriately or safely.

All About Copper Plating

Copper Plating is decorative but normally used as it is an extremely functional metal.  It is often used for electricals, road mending techniques, medics and in telecommunications, it really is a multifunctional plating technique.  This is thanks to it being such an excellent conductor, its ability to shield against electro magnetic interference and radio frequency interference, and its excellent levelling properties.  Copper plating is highly thought of in the medical world especially due to the fact that it naturally kills bacteria, thus making it a great protector against infections and diseases, so often also used in laboratory settings, too.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it copper platingelectroless nickel plating or heat treatment which may require specialist assistance, then why not get in touch with us, here at NiTEC UK?  We are a Derbyshire based company and are leading specialists in the plating industry, offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Why Tinplate is Great

tin-plating-company

Tin is a common silvery coloured metal which is obtained from a mineral called cassiterite.  It is produced most commonly by China, though often in Indonesia and Peru do their fair share in world its production, too.  Tin has many uses and is one of the preferred metals due to its multifunctional characteristics.  It is malleable, ductile and does not easily oxidise when in contact with air.  Due to these qualities, tin is therefore great for soldering and tin plating.

Tin for Tin Plating

Tin is used for plating and this is a process of coating another metal.  This other metal is often something like iron or steel, which the tin coats in order to create a corrosion resistant and rust free finish which is also lightweight.  The most common use for tinplate is for roofing and sometimes walling.  The term ‘terneplate’ specifically refers to iron or steel which has been tin plated but which has also has lead added to it for extra durability.

Where did Tin Plating come from?

Tin plating originated in the 1800s, when tin cans were first used in order to preserve food.  They were quickly seen as being appropriate for this use because they did not erode or corrode when left for long periods of time.  Today, tinplate accounts for approximately 17% of tin consumption.

What are the Advantages of Tin Plating?

  • Transformable without any cracking
  • Enhances the performance and durability of the component
  • Extremely resistant to any corrosion
  • Extremely resistant to any tarnishing
  • Good conductor of electricity
  • Usable across a number of industries
  • Not easily oxidized in air
  • Typically non-toxic

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it tin plating electroless nickel plating or copper plating which may require specialist assistance, then get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Spring in to Action in Birmingham with Heat Treatment Services

heat-treatment-nitec-ukApril sees the MACH exhibition at Birmingham’s NEC, where manufacturing in motion will be made visible to anyone wanting to view different techniques and products related to many services, including that of heat treatments, hard coatings and developmental services.

Groups, such as Wallwork Group, are returning again to exhibit here, to celebrate their new expansion project which allows them to offer customers a wider array of heat treatment services, hard coatings and development services.

Heat Treatment and NiTEC

For businesses such as Wallwork Group and NiTEC UK, exhibitions such as MACH, are important ways of bringing business and contacts together from across the industries.  These can include aerospace, automotive, medical, military and engineering contacts which are the most commonly used industries.  Specialists, skilled labourers, technical engineers and highly knowledgeable scientists combine their expertise to guarantee that you gain the product and information that you require so that you gain the perfect component parts for your business.  They are all at hand to help guide you towards the components which is best for you whilst also, often, making you a great, one-off show day deal, to aid with the financial side of things, too.

NEC, Industry, You and Me

So if you are in the aerospace, automotive, medical, military, engineering, oil and gas or energy/power industries then MACH could very well be the placed for you.  With new creations, the latest of developments and all the manufacturing technologies you could possibly need, there will be over 600 companies exhibiting this year for you to see.  At the last MACH there was 6,500 tonnes of live working machinery on show and two years later, it is set to be even bigger.  If you are interested in attending or finding out more about heat treatments or hard coatings then why not get yourself to Birmingham NEC from the 11th to 15th April – We guarantee it will be worth it if you are in the specified industries.

Contact NiTEC UK Today

If you would like more information regarding heat treatment then why not get in contact with NiTEC UK.  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the heat treatment and plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

The Copper Plating Story

story-copper-plating-nitec-derbyshireWe all know plenty about Copper Plating, but what we often don’t know a great deal about is where the process originated from.  I bet you would be interested to learn that it was not at all intentional, but was, in fact, a complete mistake!

Where did Copper Plating come from?

This happy accident occurred centuries ago in 1724, when Thomas Bolsover, a Sheffield cutler, was mending the handle of a silver knife.  He was doing so with the assistance of a copper coin under the pressure vice but got a little distracted and the two metals both became heated.  Due to their heating, they fused together, the silver completely hiding the copper.  This mistake led Bolsover to experiment with other methods of retaining silver and copper together in unity whilst also being one, workable material, and this worked.  This was Bolsovers happy accident, as this was the beginning of the Sheffield Plate.  Dying in 1788, Thomas Bolsover was regarded in his obituary as the first inventor of plated metal, though sadly not the most well known.

All About Copper Plating

Copper Plating is not only undertaken for functional purposes but for decorative purposes, too.  Often used for road mending techniques, medics and in telecommunications, it really is a multifunctional plating technique.  This is due to it being an excellent conductor, has a good ability to shield against electro magnetic interference and radio frequency interference, along with it having excellent levelling properties.  Copper plating is highly thought of in the medical world due to the fact that it naturally kills bacteria, thus making it a great protection against infections and diseases, so often also used in laboratory settings, too.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it copper plating, electroless nickel plating or heat treatment which may require specialist assistance, then why not get in touch with us, here at NiTEC UK?  We are a Derbyshire based company and are leading specialists in the plating industry, offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Everything you need to know about Shot Blasting

shot-blasting-electroless-nickel-plating-nitecShot blasting is a key factor in the fabrication process.  It is essential so that a clean finish can be provided in order for welding to be undertaken.  It also enables a keyed surface to be produced so that paint can be accepted by the prepared façade.

The Process of Shot Blasting

Shot blasting is undertaken by shot being fired or ‘blasted’ directly at steel, yes, the process is all in the name.  The force of the shot being blasted at the surface of the steel displaces dirt and scale, therefore cleaning the steel and preparing it for the welding process.  This is due to the indentations caused by the shot repeatedly hitting the steel surface, creating a rough texture, which is approximately 70 microns deeps.  Due to this abrasion, it enables paint to stick properly and long term to the steel surface, which creates protection and aids longevity to a component part.

Shot Blasting and Electroless Nickel Plating

The shot blasting preparation is often performed prior to the electroless nickel plating process, but for this to happen the surface preparation must be high quality and thorough, which is why shot blasting is used.  To achieve the ultimate final surface finish, chemical cleaning and activation processes, such as aluminium oxide 180-220 grit are used.  By choosing NiTEC UK to undertake your shot blasting and electroless nickel plating solutions, you know that the standards met will be the highest every time.  At NiTEC UK, the stainless steel shot blasting booth has the capacity to take 216m³.  This minimises the particles which settle on the component parts during their shot blasting or heat treatment processes.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in the shot blasting process, electroless nickel plating or heat treatment which may require specialist assistance, then get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end as well as also being cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk if you need more information.

 

Shotblasting – The Abrasive Protection

shot-blasting-nitec-ukShotblasting is a technological process which enables impurities of metal parts to be removed from a wide variety of surfaces, through the medium of abrasionShotblasting can be used as a preparation method performed before other processes, such as welding, colouring, painting, where imperfections must be eradicated to gain a perfect finish, join or seal.  It can also be used as a method of surface protection.  The end result of a cleaned metal surface depends on multiple characteristics.  These can be examples, such as the mass size of the abrasive particle, its shape, density, coverage of strokes (kg/m²), the particle impactor angle and the particle velocity.

The shotblasting process can be undertaken for multiple reasons – the cleaning, strengthening or polishing of metal.  These processes are used in almost every single industry which uses metal, including that of the aerospace, automotive, construction and transportation.  In order for shotblasting to take place, two technological processes can be undertaken – wheelblasting or airblasting.

Wheelblasting for the Shotblasting Process

Wheelblasting is the direct conversion of electric motor energy into kinetic abrasive energy through the use of a rotating turbine wheel.  Each wheel has a capacity starting from 60kg per minute and maximising at 1200kg per minute.  Companies need wheelblast machines where large parts or great areas have been derusted, descaled, deburred, desanded or if they need cleaning in some way.  Often the way to work out how to choose which process your business needs is based upon the size of the metal part that needs work doing to it – the ease of its transportation is the deciding factor.

Shotblasting and the Airblasting Process

Airblast machines are pneumatically accelerated machines which are air powered, with projected nozzles angled on to the component – the process, quite literally, is all in the name!  Airblasting can occur in two ways, either in a blastroom or a blastcabinet.  If special applications are needed, water mix can be used which is known as wet blasting.  Whether you need airblasting or wet blasting, the blast nozzles can be installed in to unique positions to target problem areas.  They can be operated manually or automatically or even by robots.

Shotblasting at NiTEC UK

Shotblasting at NiTEC can occur for component parts which weigh up to 20 tonnes.  Usually, the shotblasting process is required prior to our electroless nickel plating process, as a surface preparation, in order for you to gain the best finish and your metal components to get the best protection.  The better the abrasive finish from the shotblasting process, the better the electroless nickel plating, the better your component part will work and the longer it will last for you.  Shotblasting is an important process.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in the shotblasting process or electroless nickel plating, then why not get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end whilst also being cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, military and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Copper Plating and the Use of Copper Balls

copper-plating-process-nitec-ukCopper balls have been specially designed to aid the quality of electroplating.  The balls are 25mm, 31mm, 40mm or 50mm in diameter and are made up of 99.9% copper and between 0.04 and 0.06% phosphorus.  They enable the quality of copper plating to be heightened.  This is due to them being able to give free flowing material which dramatically reduces the development of sludge during the process of plating.  This is their sole purpose.  It is also useful that they are able to reduce sludge development because this extends the anode baskets life because the sludge does not erode them.

Successful Copper Plating

The anodes are created using the purest of copper which is oxygen free.  The anodes must be made out of oxygen free copper so that the correct phosphorus content occurs for the electroplating process to be successful.  This process is watched and monitored strictly for quality control and this highly automated process creates a product of great uniformity and high quality of plating.

Why Choose Copper Plating?

Copper plating is functional and decorative.  It is well known for being an excellent conductor.  The deposited layer which is left when copper plating occurs is very bright and levels well.  Copper plating is often used in Medical settings or laboratories due to it being able to kill off bacteria naturally without need for any chemical assistance.  In reference to its decorative flare – this is due to its highly polished copper-pink appearance.  Lacquers can be applied so as to prevent tarnish from building up on the copper plating if it is solely intended for decorative use.

Contact NiTEC UK Today

If you or your business are interested in copper plating, or other plating methods, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel platingheat treatment or have a special project which requires specialist assistance, then why not contact NiTEC UK?  We are Derbyshire based, leading specialists in the plating industry who offer a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are not only high-end but also cost effective.  We have experience of working for the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few and offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Is Copper Plating the New Solar Panel Platform?

taiwan-copper-plating-nitecIt seems that the Industrial Technology Research Institute of Taiwan (ITRI) have discovered that Copper plating could be the solar panel platform.  They intend to cooperate with aiding the development of copper plated solar panels on a small-scale, fast production.  The collaboration between Motech Industries, Gintech Energy Corporation and TSEC Corporation and that of the ITRI seems to have captured gaps in the photovoltaic (PV) global market.

Copper Plating and Taiwan

The General Director of ITRI’s Green Energy and Environment Research Laboratories, Dr. Robert Yie-Zu Hu, stated that this brand new development has in fact been in research state since 2012 and that the copper plating for silicon solar cells metallization technology currently achieves 20% energy conversion.  This is a first for copper plated solar cells in Taiwan, where production can reach 200 solar cells per hour.  The efficiency of the solar cell will increase by 0.2% with the cost reducing by 5-7%.

Increased Rating of Copper Plating

Many foreign manufacturers have been developing copper plating technology themselves but no one has so far been able to produce copper plated solar panels on such a large scale.  This could, therefore, be a large profit making scheme for Taiwan, also making them leaders in the global copper plated solar cell market.  Currently, they are the world’s second largest solar cell market, but with the industry now stable and demand rising, this could easily change.  So, will we be seeing these copper plated solar panels in Britain any time soon?

Why Choose Copper Plating?

Copper plating is functional and it looks good.  Copper plating is very bright and eye catching.  It naturally kills bacteria and is often used for decorative purposes.  Copper plating has a smart, polished copper-pink finish and can be lacquered to prevent tarnish from occurring.  But the best reason for it being used as a solar panel is due to it being such an excellent conductor.

NiTEC UK and You

If you or your business are interested in copper plating, or any other plating methods, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel plating or heat treatment, then contact NiTEC UK today.  We are Derbyshire based, leading specialists in the plating industry who can offer you a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are very high-spec and are also cost effective.  We have experience of working for the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few and offer our services to the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Why Choose Electroplating?

copper-electroplating-nitecElectroplating is a modern form of metal finishing.  It is commonly used in the automotive, aerospace, medical, army and electrical industries.  It occurs by means of an electrochemical process when metal ions in an electrolyte solution bond to a metal substrate through electrodeposition.   The required metal component is suspended in solution, whereby a direct power supply provides a direct flow of current to the said metal component in the chemical bath.  This current provokes the ions in the solution to attract to the surface of the metallic part, resulting in a metal coating which covers the base metal thoroughly.

Electroplating Benefits

Electroplating is mainly done in order to enhance the performance and longevity of the component part in question.  Certain characteristics can be added to the part in order to create specific needs for the manufacturers.  These can include areas such as:

  • Lower friction through greater lubrication
  • Better wear, abrasion and corrosion resistance
  • Temperature and impact resistance
  • Improved conductivity
  • Improved solderability
  • Porosity reducing
  • Creating added strength and hardness to the component
  • Creating a thicker appearance to smaller or undersized components
  • Increased protection for EMI and RFI shielding

Common Plating

Plating facilities match base metals with a wide array of coating surface metal finishes.  The most commonly used in this field are copper, brass, nickel, steel and bronze.  In order to decide which surface metal is used to coat for the finish, the components uses are highly considered so that the manufacturer can get the highest performance and longest lasting component part electroplated.

As examples:

Gold plating is the perfect solution for electrical conductivity, heat protection and corrosion and can survive in a multitude of environments and temperatures.

Silver plating is commonly used in the electrical industry dues to its low electrical resistance.

Nickel plating is ideal for the chemical industry.  It protects against chemicals and is corrosion and wear resistant.

Copper plating is most commonly used in the automotive industry.

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it electroless nickel plating or copper plating or heat treatment which may require specialist assistance, then get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for many different industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Nickel Plating and the Heatsink Saving

diffused-nickel-plating-company-coatingTechnical Giants, Thermalright, have recently announced their latest heatsink, multilingual Le Grand Macho.  It is an upgraded, amended version of the pre-existing HR22, which is more economical for buyers whose budgets cannot quite stretch to the HR22.  It is made up of three different types of metal, which include aluminium, pure copper and nickel plating.  It has been designed to replace an active stock Intel heatsink during passive operation, making sure that there is sufficient air flow provided.  When it is paired with a fan, the duo work together to dissipate 300W of heat and the copper base creates compatibility with a large array of different processors, including Intel.  This new heatsink model is soon to be available in the UK and can be chosen in silver and anodised black finish.

Nickel Plating Information

There are two types of Nickel PlatingElectroless Nickel Plating (ENP) and Diffused Nickel Plating.

Diffused Nickel Plating is a simple process which is the most effective nickel coating and ensures a high level of resistance against corrosion due to its total encapsulation method of plating.  It has been proven that the corrosion resistance is more effective than that of the highest grade stainless steel, whilst at the same time being much cheaper.  Diffused Nickel Plating is the perfect plating method for marine and salt environments, so much so that it is given 30 years sub-sea guarantee.

In a similar way, Electroless Nickel Plating is a high quality, cost effective metal coating solution which can substantially extend the life of components.  It also is extremely well resisted against corrosion and used frequently in the marine, oil and defence industries.    Electroless Nickel Plating aids the prevention of rust, wear and friction.  It can be hardened, too, by the use of heat treatment and it is guaranteed that it will not chip or flake, like paint or varnish can do.

Diffused Nickel Plating and Electroless Nickel Plating

What is different between the two methods of Nickel Plating, is the way in which the processes are undertaken.  It has already been deciphered that Diffused Nickel Plating occurs via a total encapsulation plating method but this is not the same for Electroless Nickel Plating.  This occurs when a layer of metal is deposited of even thickness all over the surface of a component, despite the shape of it.  This uniform coating is perfect for components which are used in industries, such as, Healthcare, Defence, Automotive and Aerospace, where the components are often not standard and need to be hygienic.

Contact NiTEC UK Today

If you or your business are interested in plating, be it electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel plating or heat treatment which may require specialist assistance, then why not get in touch with NiTEC UK?  A Derbyshire based company, we are leading specialists in the plating industry offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are only high-end and also cost effective.  We have experience of working for a large array of industries, including the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few.  We offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

First Class Copper Plating

copper-plating-derby-university-nitec-ukFor over two years, an old office in Derby had been left empty and lifeless but is now the centre of the hustle and bustle.  This is due to the fact that it is now home to Derby University’s Law and Criminology Department.  It is a building which cannot be missed as it is such a distinctive, beautiful and abnormal colour.  It is a six storey, 32,000 square foot expanse with an exterior of copper plating.  Originally, it was built as office in order to create around 700 jobs, as a £20 million project, but this architectural beauty, now named, One Friar Gate Square, failed to attract the businesses it was intended for.  The intended space had to be changed so that the layout was amenable and usable for the university staff and students, so it now has a number of specialist rooms relating to Law and Criminology, including an open plan specialist law library, lecture theatres and two fully compliant Court rooms Magistrates and Family Court – and all of this is inside a shell of copper plating!

A Little More About Copper Plating

Copper plating is both functional and aesthetically pleasing.  Copper plating is very bright and eye catching.  It has excellent levelling properties, naturally kills bacteria and is often used for decorative purposes, such as the Derby University building.  Copper plating has a smart, polished copper-pink finish and can be lacquered to prevent tarnish from occurring.

NiTEC UK and You

If you or your business are interested in copper plating, or any other plating methods, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel plating or heat treatment, then why not contact NiTEC UK?  We are Derbyshire based, leading specialists in the plating industry who can offer you a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are very high-spec and are also cost effective.  We have experience of working for the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few and offer our services to the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

 

Nickel Plating takes precedence in new DIY Water Cooling Kit

Thermaltake_fans_nickel_plating_cooling_NiTECClosed-loop water cooling kits are often used in computers or gaming PCs but do not have the greatest of reputations when it comes to safety, though they may be convenient.  Instead, enthusiast are using custom kits due to their performance and the fact that they can customize them to be just as they need them to be.  The new Thermaltake Pacific R360 D5 water cooling kit seems to be a great hit so far this year, because it has everything enthusiast builders need, and everything is all in one box!

DIY Water Cooling Kit in a Box

Inside this Pandora’s box of goodies (for some of us) you will find:

  • A CPU water block – has a copper base an anti-corrosive nickel plating. Block is claimed to fit all modern CPU sockets
  • A D5 pump and reservoir
  • A 360mm slim radiator
  • Six Compression fittings
  • Three Ring 12 LED blue radiator fans – hydraulic bearing and anti-vibration mounting system. This also aids the aesthetics as well as make the cooler quiet.
  • A length of tubing
  • Thermaltake 1000 Blue Coolant
  • Extra accessories – often ordered extras to improve the external appearance of the water cooling kit.

 

What does Nickel Plating do?

The CPU water block has a base made out of copper and anti-corrosive nickel plating.  What does nickel plating do to help?  Due to it being so corrosion resistant, its life is drastically extended, which means that part replacement occurs much less frequently than with other coating types, materials or if left uncoated.  Rust is unable to form where nickel plating has occurred and therefore the quality of the components is improved.  Nickel plating is great because it deposits itself evenly over a surface which not only looks nicer aesthetically, but it also makes the component a lot more durable and hard wearingNickel plating is the perfect solution for components which a subjected to a high amount of friction, wear or use and if it is treated properly, with the appropriate heat treatment, it will not chip or flake either like a top coat of paint or lacquer does.

 

Contact NiTEC UK Today

If you or your business are interested in plating, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel platingheat treatment or have a special project which requires specialist assistance, then why not contact NiTEC UK?  We are Derbyshire based, leading specialists in the plating industry who offer a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are not only high-end but also cost effective.  We have experience of working for the computing, aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few and offer our services to the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Whisky Sipping in Space Thanks to Plating

Gold-plating-aerospace-plating-NiTECDue to inspirational Physics developments, it is now possible for astronauts to drink Whisky in Space.  The activity of visiting to space may be a dangerous one but at the end of each day, the astronauts can rest easy when they are assured that they can have a ‘real’ drink, which isn’t out of a plastic bag.  Apparently, this is one of the most common complaints from the International Space Station (ISS) crews that they miss their familiar Earth-like environment back home.

Plating in the Solution to the Problem

On hearing this, Ballatine’s therefore addressed this by commissioning an Open Space Agency team, led by James Parr, in order to create an innovative, microgravity glass which would enable the astronauts in question to enjoy a glass of whisky, just as they would with their feet on the Earth.  Ballatine’s Space Glass looks like a regular whisky glass but has special, particular features allowing liquid to enter the glass, stay in the glass and which allow sipping.

It has been studied for over a year as to how whisky behaves in a zero gravity environment by building a series of prototype glasses to test their theories.  The final result is something that somewhat resembles a Don Draper balloon glass but which is made out of 3D printed plastic and has a weighted rose-gold plated spiral convex base which sits perfectly in the holders hand.  Its weight comes from the 10kg pull magnet, giving the glass some inertia, anchoring it to the table when in zero gravity.  The base also contains a clever, one-way valve to fill the glass using a standard Ballantine’s whisky bottle, in order to stop the whisky from spilling.

Gold Plated Glasses

The reason as to why the Space Glass has been gold plated was partly due to the aesthetics with the gold plating matching the plating used on the astronauts’ sun visors on their spacesuits.  But the gold plating was also used because it is one of the very few metals which does not affect the taste of the whisky when in Space.

How does Gold Plating help drinking in Space?

When liquids are in Space, they tend to turn in to a sticky jelly, so to counteract this from happening with the whisky, a spiral in the glass creates surface tension which holds it down.  The side of the glass contains a helix with a small channel concealed inside it which picks up the whisky in a capillary action, pulling it up to a gold plated mouthpiece on the rim of the glass.  Why a gold plated mouth piece you may well ask?  This is for multiple reasons – Firstly, so that the astronaut can physically see where their lips are meant to be placed so that they are over the concealed channel exit point and they know where to put their lips.  Secondly, the gold cools the alcohol as it passes through the mouthpiece.  Thirdly, gold plating and not metal plating of any other kind, means that there is no nasty after taste left in the mouth of the drinker and the texture of drinking out of what (at the end of the day) is a plastic beaker, is concealed.

NiTEC UK and You

If you or your business are interested in plating, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel platingheat treatment or have a special project requiring specialist assistance, then why not contact NiTEC UK today?  We are Derbyshire based, leading specialists in the plating industry, offering a wide range of well-developed, tried and tested techniques which are not only high-end but are also cost effective.  We have experience of working for the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries and offer our services to the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

What to Consider before you Electroplate

tin-plating-company

Are you thinking about having parts electroplated?  Here are the most important things you need to take in to consideration before and during the process…

What should you consider Pre Electroplating?

 

  • Nesting

Electroplating involves electrical and chemical reactions on the surface of the part you are wanted to be plated, so exposure is crucial to the result of the final product.  Parts which are nesting will lack adhesion and therefore coverage on the final product.

  • Tolerance

The tolerance on vital dimensions on the part in question should be designated with the plating thickness in mind.  This is should be accounted for when the pieces are ready for assembly after the products have been through the chemical process.

  • Environment and exposure

What is your product going to be exposed to?  A high amount of friction, heat or sea spray?  This is essential for negotiating the thickness of the necessary plating required to maintain the resistance, corrosion and rust protection of the part in question.

  • Geometry

Electroplating involves using a current in order for the reaction to be initiated on the surface of a part, which means that the geometry of the parts surface will influence the distribution of electroplating across the surface.  This is called current density.  It is normal that plating builds up in parts which have sharp corners, bends and threads but it can be prevented if specialists use advanced plating processes.

  • Drainage

The preparation of the surface of a part needing plating must be correct so that the inside surfaces of a part will be sufficiently covered when the process is completed.  This is so that the plating will have the correct bond strength for plating to have been carried out correctly and for the part to have ultimate protection and increase its longevity.  This, for some parts, may mean they need to have a weep hole create during their design phase, so that this can be achieved.

  • Usage

It must be clear what your intended use is for the part you are needing plating.  Make it clear to your specialists what the use and required characteristics are of the part.  Important features include conductivity, low friction, high strength, corrosion resistance, wear, exposure to sea spray or water etc.  This will determine which metal your part is made from (eg. Copper, Nickel, Tin, etc), how your part should be finished and plated.

 

NiTEC UK and You

 

NiTEC UK are a Derbyshire based company and we are leading specialists in the plating industry.  We offer an array of well-developed, high-end techniques which are cost effective and reliable.  We have extensive experience working for industries, such as aerospace, medical, army and automotive and offer our services to the UK, France, Germany, Holland and Brazil.  If you need plating services such as electroless nickel plating, copper plating or heat treatments, then contact us today by calling our friendly and professional team on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or alternatively you can click here to be taken directly to our website and view the services we offer for yourself.

 

Electroplating from the Start

electroless-nickel-plated-componentElectroplating is a form of metal plating which is used by many industries in a range of capacities which include the aerospace, automotive, army, space, medical, electronic and engineering sectors, to name but a few.  It is useful due to the fact that it is so versatile and lends itself so because of its electrochemical process where metal ions in solution are bonded to metal substrates by means of electrodeposition.

Before Electroplating

Pre Electroplating, all parts must be thoroughly cleaned and then a process of chemical baths must be followed so that the parts can be prepared and activated so that the adhesion for the strong bond can take hold and become effective.  This is key in the electrodeposition process.  Many variables must be monitored closely during the electroplating bath process, such as the power supply which provides a direct flow of current to the parts in submerged.  This enables ions to be attracted to the surface of the metallic part evenly.  Every mole of electrons that are transferred to the part, allows one mole of metallic ions in the solution to adhere to the part during the bath process.  A chemical reaction can subsequently occur where the reduction and oxidation of ions takes place.

Types of Electroplating

Specialist plating facilities are able to plate a large array of different base materials to protect various surfaces.

Base materials for electroplating include:

  • Brass
  • Copper
  • Nickel
  • Stainless Steel
  • Nickel Silver

Surface finishes for electroplating include:

About Electroless Nickel Plating

Electroless nickel plating is a high quality but cost effective coating solution which can drastically extend the life expectancy of a stainless steel component.  This is due to the metal layer deposited by the electroless nickel coating creating an even thickness across the components surface, despite its shape.  This makes electroless nickel plating very popular in sectors such as the defence, health, automotive and aerospace industries.

NiTEC UK and You

NiTEC UK are a Derbyshire based company in the UK and are leading specialists in the plating industry.  We offer a large array of well-developed high-end techniques which are cost effective and readily available for you.  We have extensive experience of working for industries, including that of the aerospace, medical, army and automotive sectors and offer our services to the UK holistically, France, Germany, Holland and Brazil.  So, if you are interested or are in need of plating, such as electroless nickel plating, copper plating or heat treatments, then contact us today by calling our friendly and professional team on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or alternatively you can click here to be taken directly to our website and view the services we offer for yourself.

Wheelie Fallen in Love with Copper Plating

copper-plating-process-nitec-uk

It has recently appeared in the news that Ted Baker have teamed up with the famous bicycle producers, Quella.  Together, they are set to create three stylish bespoke models which are predicted to outdo Santander Cycles.  Each of these three new bicycle structures feature copper plating, steel frame, and will have a Brooks England leather saddle.  The bikes will be available in red, green and blue and have been named after fish due to the bikes being inspired by the ability salmon have to swim upstream – Redfinn, Bluetail and Greengill – Well, for the £1,995, you’d expect a pretty name, wouldn’t you!

About Copper Plating

Copper plating is used for both functional and decorative reasons.  Traditionally, it is used for electroforming but can also be used for Electro Magnetic Interference (EMI) and Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) shielding purposes.  The reasons for this are because copper is a brilliant conductor and its deposits from copper plating are very bright.  It also has excellent levelling properties and naturally kills bacteria which is why it is used so frequently in laboratories to plate medical equipment.  The aesthetics of copper plating are used due to its bright, highly polished copper-pink appearance which can be lacquered in order to prevent the copper plating from becoming tarnished if it is intended only for decorative purposes.

NiTEC UK – Copper Plating Suppliers

Here at NiTEC UK, we are experts in the process of copper plating as well as the process of electroless nickel plating (ENP).  We have a friendly and professional team, who are happy to help you with any query you may have.  If you have any questions regarding copper plating, electroless nickel plating or any other of our services or if there is something you or your business would like to find out more about, contact us today on 0845 224 571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or alternatively you can click here to go directly to our website.  As another option, you could use the following links to go directly to information most frequently asked for regarding the services we provide, such as diffused nickel platingcopper platingshot blasting and heat treatment.

The Future’s Bright, The Future’s NiTEC

LED_lights

2008 saw the beginning of the EU process which took four years to put in to place, preventing incandescent light bulbs from being sold.  This was because they performed inadequately and were not eco-friendly due to the high amount of electricity they consumed.  The LED has therefore taken its place on our supermarket shelves, as they are proven to be much more efficient.

Plating Industries

The electronic and automotive industries, as well as most British households and road engineers for road lighting applications, are using LED lights.  The LED substrate can be silver plated either conventionally by rack or less conventionally by reel-to-reel plating procedures.  Plating differs depending on the thickness, and ranges from 20 to 150 A/dm², normally.

Bright Lights

How are LED lights so bright?  This is due to a low free-cyanide silver process which contains brightener additives.  This creates high luminosity.  These LEDs are much more eco-friendly, cost effective and use a fraction of the amount of electricity of an incandescent light bulb.

Heat Treatment gets the Deep Treatment

The silver deposits used to plate the LEDs were initially heated for 60 minutes at 200° and then for 120 minutes at the lower temperature of 170°C but it was quickly identified that significant reflectivity was lost during this.  So it was decided that a post-dip was going to be used in order to prevent the reflectivity loss, in the form of an aqueous treatment post heat treatment.  This seems to have worked, having been tested on multiple different types of nickel, at higher temperatures and with the nickel being treated for shorter lengths of time (up to 1 minute), as the GAM measurements do not diminish dramatically at all.  Thus, proving the effectiveness of the combination of plating, heat treatment and the post-dip aqueous treatment as a trio.

Contact NiTEC UK Today

If you or your business are interested in plating, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel plating, heat treatment or have a special project which you require specialist assistance with, then why not get in touch with NiTEC UK?  We are Derbyshire based, leading specialists in the plating industry who can offer you a wide range of well-developed techniques which are not only high-end but also cost effective.  We have experience of working for the aerospace, medical, army and automotive industries, to name but a few and offer our services to the whole of the UK, Germany, France, Brazil and Holland.  Why not get in touch with us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Boeing up in the World

Boeing_777_electroless_nickel_plating

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The famous aeroplane makers, Boeing, have found what seems to be the “Lightest Metal Ever” known as microlattice.  This is a material which is 99.9% air!  Developed in California, it is a way for planes and even rockets to have their weight reduced.  This 3D open cellular polymer structure will reduce the amount of fuel a plane needs to use during take off, flying and landing.  Currently, Boeing are looking in to using this structure internally on their planes in areas such as the overhead compartments, under the floor and in other fixtures to create a modern internal environment for passengers.

Boeing and Electroless Nickel Plating

Researchers decided that the 3D open cellular polymer structure should be coated with electroless nickel plating, in order to give the structure the required strength, because the web of nickel-phosphorus alloy lattice tubes are only just 100 nanometres thick.  The theory behind using this new structure coated with electroless nickel plating is a lot more advanced in the theory of aeronautical engineering, so has not been trialed yet for space-bound vehicles.  However, it is known that it would be used for exactly the same weight saving reasons to go to space, but also because it has the ability to compress, too, which could mean that objects sent in to space could expand after launch, reducing cargo hold space.  More, evidence will be needed though, before this is trialled as part of a space-bound launch, but nevertheless is a very exciting move forward in science.

Electroless Nickel Plating

Electroless nickel plating as a high quality, cost effective solution for metal coating, elongating the life of a component dramatically, because it leaves an equal thickness metal layer deposit all over the surface of a component, no matter what size or shape it is.  It is ideal for use in harsh environment as it is corrosion resistant, rust is prevented from forming and does not chip or flake which reduces the cost and frequency of repairs and replacement needed.  Electroless nickel plating can be hardened up to 950vhn, is self-lubricating and is non-magnetic.  These are just some of the advantages of electroless nickel plating.  If you would like to find out more then you can find out more by contacting NiTEC UK, the leading suppliers of electroless nickel plating.

Contact NiTEC UK Today

NiTEC UK are experts in the process of electroless nickel plating (ENP) and have a friendly and professional team who are more than happy to help you with any query you may have at any time.  If electroless nickel plating is something you or your business would like to find out more about, then please contact us on 0845 224 571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or alternatively you can click here to go directly to our website.  Our website contains information about other services we provide, such as diffused nickel plating, copper plating, shot blasting and heat treatment.

Plating to Perfection

metal plating company OscarThey were first designed in 1928.  They are made in Chicago.  They are plated in copper, nickel and silver before being coated in 24-carat gold.  What are we talking about?  An Oscar!

These 14 inch, 8.5 pound statuettes are the literally the definition of perfection in more ways than one.  If they are not perfect, then the makers are lead to starting the statuettes from scratch, time and time again.  But once they are deemed perfect, they are guaranteed for life!  The iconic Art Deco Academy Award takes a long 10 days to repeat from start to finish, partly because there is only one Oscar mould and also because so many processes take place in their production, such as electroplating.

About the Oscar

It was designed by Cedric Gibbons, the MGM art director, who sketched the subjected standing on a film reel with five spokes.  These five spokes represent the original five branches of the Academy and was originally called the Academy Award of Merit.  Each Oscar is engraved with a serial number and now over 3,000 Oscars have been awarded.  These Oscars may begin their lives in Chicago but one classified as ‘perfect’ are packaged and flown, with guards, to Los Angeles for the award ceremony.  An interesting fact about Oscars is that although they are guaranteed for life, if they are damaged, an actor can send them back and have them either replaced or restored to their former glory.  They are meant to be priceless objects and there is an act to say that they are not resalable.  However, this electroplated objects of splendour have continued to be traded in the shadows with some of the highest sales exceeding $250,000 and Michael Jackson paid $1.5million for a Best Picture award for Gone With The Wind 1939 in 1999.

Find Out More About NiTEC UK Today

If you are interested in finding out more about any of the plating processes which you have read about in this article, such as copper plating, electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel plating, then why not get in touch with NiTEC UK today?  We are leading specialists in the plating industry based in Derbyshire, England, and offer an array of developed techniques which are both high-end and cost effective.  We work in the aerospace, automotive and medical industries to name but a few and we offer our services to the UK, France, Holland, Brazil and Germany.  So if you need plating done to perfection, call us today on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

The Gold Plated Apple

Apple watch for gold plating

Apple watches which have been gold plated tend to cost a minimum of $10,000 if you buy directly from Apple, for the 18 carat gold edition.  So instead there is now the option to purchase a DIY kit for $100 which also entails a step by step guide to this cheap solution to gold plating yourself with 24 carat gold.  This is a much more cost effective option than sending your Apple watch back to Apple to do it for you which costs at least $400.  There are also other benefits from the DIY set – for example, you can touch up gold plated areas once they begin to fade or show signs or wear and this can be done at your convenience, too.

Plating

If you are wanting a product plated then there are lots of different options for you to mull over.  These include electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, copper plating, tin plating, nickel boron plating and nickel diamond plating to name but a few.

The Pros of Plating

  • Improves the quality of your components
  • Improve the surface
  • Protects the component from wear
  • Increases the levels of hardness
  • Induces self-lubrication
  • Reduces the wear of a friction in a component
  • No chipping or flaking like with other top coats like paints of lacquers
  • Lower porosity
  • Non-magnetic
  • Less prone to staining
  • Pit-free deposits
  • Hard deposits
  • Very uniform thickness
  • Excellent corrosion protection
  • Doesn’t have to be extortionately expensive
  • Marine corrosion resistant (DNP)
  • Sub-sea protection (DNP)
  • Salt spray resistant (DNP)
  • Protects ferrous and non-ferrous surfaces (TP)
  • Increases performance (TP)
  • Increases durability (TP)
  • Non-toxic (TP)
  • Resistant to fretting (NBP)
  • Resistant to galling (NBP)
  • Resistant to abrasion (NBP)
  • Ductile (NBP)
  • Solderability (NBP)
  • Performs well at high temperatures (NBP)
  • Increased thermal transfer (NDP)
  • Conformity to complex geometry (NDP)
  • Can be applied to all common metals and alloys (NDP)
  • Can cover entire surfaces of specific targeted areas (NDP)
  • Are used by a number of industries, such as power, telecommunications, medical, marine, army, aerospace, motor, etc.

Plating Specialists

NiTEC UK are leading specialists in the plating industry.  Based in Derbyshire, England, we specialise in electroless nickel plating but offer a wide range of other techniques too.  Our aim is to provide a high-end but cost effective service for you.  We have extensive experience working in a great number of sectors including the automotive, aerospace and military industries and are proud that we can offer our services to the entirety of the UK, France, Holland, Brazil and Germany.

Contact NiTEC UK Today

If you are interest in finding out more about electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, copper plating, tin plating, nickel boron plating or nickel diamond plating, then why not call us today  on 0845 224 3571 or alternatively you can email our staff at NiTEC UK at info@nitec-enp.co.uk  We look forward to hearing from you!

Witches on a Silver Platter

witch-silver-plating

Products that have been silver plated have the highest conductivity of all metals.  Their best attributes are that they can be used for soldering, are corrosion resistant, are durable, are wear resistant and can be used by an array of consumers for many different reasons, such as electronics, jewellery and in the automotive industry.

The Golden History of Silver

Silver Plating was historically used in ancient civilisation where the noble metals where seen as objects of great beauty.  They were believed to contain the mystic qualities of distant heavenly bodied.  Gold was seen symbolically as the sun and silver as the moon and the Ancient Egyptians called silver “white gold”.  The most famous mythical attributes of silver are its powers against enchantment and it is thought to contain powers against witches and vampires in other cultures, too.

How Did Silver Plating Occur?

Silver plating was originally used because it was a cheaper equivalent to the use of solid gold, usually in the home, for decorative objects, such as cutlery and candlesticks.  The earliest type of Silver plating was Old Sheffield Plate but in the 19th Century new methods were introduced, such as electroplating.

Silver Plating

Silver plating occurs when Silver cyanide is used in the electrolyte, as opposed to other compounds of Silver such as Silver Nitrate because the cyanide ion reacts with the Silver ion, forming a complex ion, limiting the supply of free Silver nitrate ions in the solution.  This enables them to deposit themselves on to the cathode creating a shiny and adherent silver plating available and great for use in many industries.

The benefits of Silver plating are:

  • That it is very soft
  • Has very low shear strength
  • Acts as a solid lubricant
  • Has low friction (it’s lowest when it is dry)
  • That is doesn’t oxidise particularly at temperature (good for exhausts)
  • Doesn’t need lubricant
  • Can be made in to a paste to perform as a lubricant, known as ‘silver-doped paste’ (for industrial usage)
  • Used for soldering
  • Corrosion resistant
  • Durable
  • Wear resistant

Who or which Industries reap the benefits of Silver plating?

  • Electronic
  • Costume Jewellery
  • Industrial
  • Telecoms
  • Automotive
  • Fasteners
  • Decoratively

NiTEC UK, Your Specialist Plating Company

NiTEC UK are leading specialists in the plating industry and specialise in electroless nickel plating based in Derbyshire, England. We have a wide range of developed techniques available to provide high-end, cost effective services for you.  We have considerable experience working with companies in the automotive, aerospace and military industries and offer our services to the UK, France, Holland, Brazil and Germany.

Contact NiTEC UK today

If you are interested in finding out more about our alternatives to Silver plating, such as electroless nickel plating, Copper plating or Tin plating, then why not get in touch with our friendly and professional team today?  Contact us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or alternatively click here to go directly to our website to explore for yourself.

 

 

ABCD – Aluminium, Boron, Coating, Diamonds

Over the last decade, the demand for aluminium moulds has increased dramatically but consistently and apparently this shows no sign of slowing down, changing or ceasing all together.  Metal coatings are provided for a range of fabricated metal components, but the largest business currently is mould coating and plating.  Specifically the demand for aluminium itself is increasing.  This is because companies have begun to discover that that aluminium moulds can last longer, much longer, than what they were predicted.  The extra longevity of the aluminium moulds can be enhanced further if buyers opt for the mould to be plated with electroless nickel.  This is a cost effective way to extend the life of aluminium tooling and has become extremely popular with automotive suppliers.  Alternatives to aluminium coating or plating can be nickel boron plating and nickel diamond plating which are also popular but aluminium remains the optimum and is only set to continue growing in demand.

Nickel Boron Plating

Nickel boron is a surface deposit coating that can be applied to many different metals including stainless steel, aluminium and titanium.  It acts as a great alternative to chrome plating and has many benefits, which include extending wear and corrosion resistance.  The nodular structure of nickel boron reduces drag in aerodynamic and fluids in circumstances such as ship propellers, down-hole oil crude oil pumping equipment, automotive and truck transmissions and greaseless guns.

Nickel Diamond Plating

Nickel Diamond Plating is where electroless nickel deposits are combined with particles of diamonds.  Many substrates can be coated using this method such as carbon, aluminium, stainless steel and alloys.  Substrates, once coated in this, become extremely highly corrosion and wear resistant and therefore have a much increased lifespan.  Part maintenance and replacement costs are reduced dramatically, as are the costs for such.  This is a popular technique in industries such as textile industry, wood working tools, computer parts, paper handling equipment, automotive water pumps, chemical process pumps and gage blocks.nickel-diamond-plating-nitec

NiTEC UK, the Specialist Plating Company

NiTEC UK are leading specialist in the plating industry, specialising in electroless nickel plating and are based in Derbyshire, England.  We have a wide range of developed techniques available to provide high-end and cost effective services for you.  We have a great deal of experience working with companies in the automotive, aerospace and military industries and offer our services to the whole of the UK, France Holland, Brazil and Germany.

Call NiTEC UK today

If you are interested in finding out more about electroless nickel plating, nickel boron plating or nickel diamond plating, then why not get in touch without friendly and professional staff team today?  Call us today on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or you can go directly on to our website by clicking here.

Electroplating and Electroless Plating – Less is More!

less-is-more-electroless-nickel-plating

The success of many products, which a lot of us are probably unaware of, are dependent on the application of surface engineering.  Such a huge amount of products, both commercial and industrial, are needy of it.  These include aeroplanes, computers, cars, trains, buildings, medical implants, mobile phones, and electronic devices – what would you do for a week without having just the products that have been listed?

The Electroplating Process

Electroplating is a process of surface engineering.   This is where metal coating is applied to a metallic or other conducting surface by and electrochemical process.  This process uses electric current in order to form a coherent coating on an electrode.  Electroplatings number one use is to change the surface properties of an object, such as the wear resistance, lubricity, corrosion protection and abrasion, for example.  It also builds up the thickness on objects, too.

The Electroless Plating Process

Electroless plating is a high quality, cost effective and eco-friendly solution to coating metals like stainless steel, as it can dramatically enhance the life expectancy.   The main difference between electroplating and electroless plating (yes, is in the name!) is that no electricity is used in the process of electroLESS plating.  Electroplating baths are used and are closely monitored as the parts must have a constant power supply directly provided to them in order for the ion attraction to be initiated in the bath contained solution on to the metallic surface of the submerged object.  This is when the chemical reaction occurs as the ions are being reduced and oxidised.

What does Plating help with?

  • Creates adhesion
  • Creates even coverage
  • Can add thickness to plated object
  • Weep holes can be added for drainage
  • Plating can carried out on many types of metal including electroless nickel plating
  • Conductor
  • Has low friction
  • Adds strength
  • Corrosion resistant
  • Makes objects hard wearing

Electroless Nickel Plating

NiTEC are experts in Electroless Nickel Plating, also known as ENP.  We are leading suppliers in Derbyshire who perform the electroless nickel plating process as well as many other processes to the highest of specifications to suit your needs.  We undertake diffused nickel plating, copper plating, nickel diamond plating, tin plating and many other processes.  If you are interested in these processes and want to ask us to perform these processes for your company or wish to find out more information then why not contact us today.  Call our highly respected staff on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or you can go directly to our website by clicking here to find out more about whichever process you desire.

 

Choose the Right Coating to Maximise Product Optimisation in the Automotive World

The idea of a specialised coating is for the surface of metals to be permanently enhanced by them.  This can be used on other substrates as well and on many components and equipment, too.  These specialised coatings, in effect, act as a deterrent and solve wear, corrosion, lubricant and release problems.   But to choose the best coating for you, the most important things which must be taken in to consideration is the operating environment.

Put a Coat on!

Surface coating usage has grown enormously in the automotive industry over the last fifty years.  Initially, the internal combustion engine was usually manufactured from cast iron, forged steels and die-cast aluminium alloysHeat treatment provided the wear surface for these elements along with white metal or bronze bearings.  They were oiled and lubricated to allowance clearance between moving surfaces.  Half a century later, this method is still used today, though we need and expect more out of our cars.  We expect them to last longer, drive considerably more substantial distances and we need them to abide by our emissions regulations now, too – no mean feat!  In case that wasn’t enough, we expect our cars to do all of this with less fuel and lighter engines which have a lower tolerance to engineering and lower friction between their moving parts.  Due to this, a wider range of materials and coating variety have been required by us all, so that the wear, corrosion and friction problems and expectations could be overcome.

Automotive Parts and Protective Coatings

Piston rings, skirts and pins are coated frequently by hard-wearing, low friction coatings.  This is to hengine-block-nitecelp the initial running-in and advocates long-life performance.  It also helps with lower oil lubrication levels which are commonly associated with cold engine starts and reduces the amount of lubricant allowed to enter the combustion chamber.  Ceramic coatings provide the thermal insulation of piston crowns, usually in diesel engines, where increased and high temperature thermal spray or vacuum use methods are often practiced.

Mating cylinder linings can be coated with electrolytic or electroless plated composite finished which incorporate hard particles of silicon carbide, diamond or boron nitride.  The engines design and performance influence are what enable the design engineer to make the coating choice.

Bio fuels have caused a large amount of corrosive issues with the fuel input systems, fuel storage and fuel delivery systems.  There are a great array of thin coatings which can be applied to these areas in order to prevent corrosion from occurring such as electroless nickel plating which is often enhanced with the use of powder coating or e-coat top coats.

Contact NiTEC UK

NiTEC UK are leading suppliers who are experts in electroless nickel plating.  We are a Derbyshire based company who undertake many processes to the highest spec for you.  These include diffused nickel plating, shot blasting, nickel boron plating, nickel diamond plating and so much more.  So, if you are interested in finding out more about these processes then give our friendly and professional staff a call on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk.  Alternatively, you can click here and go directly to our website to find out more about us and our processes.

 

The 3 P’s – Plating, Process and Products

After only a couple of decades, the metal finishing world has been transformedElectroplating is the most modern form of metal finishing which is used in a wide array of industries such as aerospace, automotive, healthcare and military defence, to name but a few.  During this electrochemical process the metal ions in solution are bonded to a metal substrate via the process of electrodeposition.

Pre-Electroplatingletter-p

Before electroplating was a front runner in the metal finishing world, parts had to be properly cleaned before entering a series of chemical baths to prepare and activate in order to prepare and activate the metal to create strong adhesion created during the process of electrodeposition.

The Plating Process

Electroplating baths involve multiple variables and components which must be closely monitored constantly.  The parts have a constant power supply provided directly to them which initiates the ion attraction in the solution towards to metallic surface.  Every time a mole of electrons is transferred to the part in question, one mole of metallic ions in solution adhere directly to the part as well.  Whilst this happens a chemical reaction also occurs on the surface of the part which includes ions being reduced and oxidised.

What do you need to consider before electing to use Electroplating?

  • Because electrical and chemical reactions are both involved in the electroplating process, exposure is critical to the finished product. The nesting of parts will create a lack of adhesion and lack of coverage which should be avoided.
  • Plating thickness should be kept in mind when dimension tolerance is designated and the extra room for electroplating should be left so that parts fit together after the process has occurred.
  • What environment are the parts going to be exposed to? This will help you to decide what level of thickness you will require in order for your part to be made corrosion proof.
  • The geometry of the part in relation to the current distribution aka current density, across the surface of a part. Plating builds up on sharp corners, bends and threads for example.
  • Do you need to think about the drainage of plating solutions the addition of a weep hole may need to be added during its design phase in order for it to be successful.
  • Think about the type of metal you should be using in relating to the job you want it to do for you! What characteristics do you need the surface to have for the job in question?  Does it need to be a conductor, have low friction, be strong, corrosion resistant, hard wearing etc?  This should make you therefore lead you in to thinking about the types of plating which would be effective – Gold plating, Silver plating, Nickel plating or Copper plating

Electroplating Suppliers at Your Convenience

NiTEC UK are a Derbyshire based company, who are experts in the Electroless Nickel Plating process or ENP.  If you are interested in finding out about Electroless Nickel Plating or other process we supply, such as Diffused Nickel plating, Shot blasting or Heat Treatment, then why not give us a call on 0845 224 3571.  Alternatively, you could get in touch with our friendly and professional staff via email at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or click here to go directly to our website to extensively discover our services.

 

To Be Or Not To Be? That Is The Automotive Question

Before you decide what coating you need to enhance the surface of any metal, you should first think about your operating environment and the impact the coating in question could have, what it could be and what it definitely should not be.

Specialised coatings are used to:

  • Enhance metal surfaces permanentlyMINIandClassicMini
  • Solve wear
  • Prevent corrosion
  • Increase lubrication
  • Decrease release problems

The Automotive Industry

In this industry, surface coating usage has grown hugely over the last fifty years.  It was then that the internal combustion engine was usually manufactured out of cast iron, forged steel and die-cast aluminium alloysHeat treatment was combined with white metal or bronze bearings in order to provide wear surfaces.  These were lubricated by the oil films pumped through large expanses created between moving surfaces. Though they operate in the same way, cars and their engines today must last greater distances, adhere to emissions regulation and aim for  reduced consumption of fuel in order for lighter engines, lower engine tolerance and lower friction between moving parts.  This has meant that a wider array of coatings has become necessary to overcome certain common problems, such as wear, corrosion and friction and aid the long-life performance that our modern cars need.

Automotives Bare All

  • Piston crowns are often coated with thermal insulated ceramic coatings, usually in diesel engines.
  • Mating cylinder linings can be coated with electrolytic or electroless plated composite finishes Silicon carbide, diamond or boron nitride.
  • Fuel storage and delivery systems need electroless nickel plating (especially in bio fuel consuming cars), frequently enhanced by powder coatings or e-coat top coats.
  • Brakes require hard anodising, enhanced by applying paint or powder coating top coats.
  • Brake systems, fluid delivery pipework and air suspension systems use ductile zinc nickel plating.
  • Motors contain neodymium, iron, boron magnets which need TriCem coating and heat treatment, to enhance magnetic performance but to leave the alloys unaffected.

Specialist Plating Company, NiTEC UK

NiTEC UK, Derbyshire, are leading specialists in the plating industry, specialising in electroless nickel plating.  We have developed a wide range of techniques and are able to provide high-end, cost-effective services for you.  We have great experience working with many companies in the automotive industry, as well as the aerospace and military industries, too.  We service the whole of the UK, France, Holland, Brazil and Germany, offering many services, such as nickel diamond plating, diffused nickel plating, copper plating, shot blasting and heat treatment.

Contact Us at NiTEC UK

If you or your business are interested in finding out more about any of our specialist treatments then please give our friendly and professional team a call today on 0845 224 3571, you can send us an email at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or alternatively you can visit our website by clicking here.

 

The Treat of Heat

The Wallwork Group are set to celebrate the next phase of their programme of great expansion which is enabling them to offer a more extensive service of heat treatments and development services.  To celebrate this, they are going to be exhibiting at the Advanced Engineering Show 2015 at Birmingham NEC from the 4th-5th November this year.

Vacuum Packed Britain

Wallwork Group service clients in a variety of industries including that of the aerospace, motorsport, medical nuclear and engineering services, providing a nationwide  service from their three sites – Manchester, Birmingham and Cambridge.

A £2 million investment programme has driven the expansion of Wallwork Group in its three locations across Britain.  As part of this expansion they have built on their already well established expertise in vacuum brazing, doubling the company’s capacity at the Cambridge site.  They have also added a new state-of-the-art vacuuComputerised_Heat_Treatment_Furnancem brazing workshop to the Manchester site in order for them to expand their national coverage.  Each establishment has an array of vacuum furnaces which enable components to be efficiently processed and offer bespoke development to full scale volume processing.  The Cambridge site is looking to be extended further as a greater capacity is still apparently needed.

Feeling Hot Hot Hot

The process of nitride is offered in multiple ways by the Wallwork Group, embracing thermal treatments like salt baths and computer controlled furnace treatment.

The Manchester branch specialises in the treatment of aluminium and magnesium alloy treatments which now have the accreditation of the international aerospace Nadcap standard.  Birmingham has become the company’s centre of excellence for engineering components of large size, as it has one of the largest, most advanced Seco Warwick vacuum furnaces across the UK.

Heat Treatment Solutions From NiTEC

NiTEC offer heat treatments which can be used for stress relieving and de-embrittlement purposes and can be used as both a pre-plate and post-plate treatment.  High temperature heat treatments solutions are also offered which last for substantial lengths of time.  These diffuse an electroless nickel layer in the steel, giving flexibility to the coating, whilst keeping the deposits corrosion protection levels high.  NiTECs heat treatment furnaces range from 0 to 700 °C and staff use chart recording equipment in order for temperature changes to be monitored and recorded of the furnace itself and the work, too.  Through this, staff are enabled to create heat treatment profiles to work out shotblasting solutions.

NiTEC Heat Treatments, Sheffield

Here at NiTEC UK, we are experts in heat treatment solutions.  If you would like to find out more about heat treatment or any of the other metal plating services that we offer, such as electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, copper plating and shotblasting, please call our friendly and professional team on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@NiTEC-enp.co.uk or alternatively, you can get in touch with us via our contact page.

 

Electroless Nickel Plating – The Accidental De-scovery

During analysis of something else entirely, Brenner and Riddell actually resulted in discovering electroless nickel plating purely by mistake.  It was in 1946 that they noted the additive NaH2PO2 actually caused cathode efficiencies of 100% and more, in a nickel plating bath, leading them directly to the conclusion that a chemical reduction was indeed taking place.  Initially, they named this process electrodeless plating, but when the name autocatalytic was adopted the –de was discarded, creating the word electroless which we still use today.  Nearly 70 years later, electroless nickel plating has developed massively in to one of the most substantial sectors of the NaH2PO2metal finishing industry, with the coatings being readily available to both engineers and
designers for over half a century.

The Pros of Electroless Nickel Plating (ENP)

  • ENP is a high quality, cost effective solution to coat metals like stainless steel.
  • ENP can dramatically elongate a components longevity.
  • ENP deposits a metal layer of equal thickness all over the surface of a component, despite its shape or size.
  • The uniformity of the coating is favoured by engineers working in the industries of defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace.
  • ENP is highly corrosion resistant, so is ideal in harsh environments like the marine, oil, gas and defence industries.
  • ENP prevents rust formation from occurring.
  • Due to ENP’s corrosion resistance, it reduces the cost and frequency of repairs and replacements needed on stainless steel parts (for example).
  • The quality of components coated with ENP noticeably improves.
  • ENP acts as a protective layer from wear because it is self-lubricating and therefore reduces the friction of the component in question.
  • When a component is EN plated, it is guaranteed not to chip or flake, unlike other substances used as top coats, such as paint or lacquer.
  • ENP can be hardened up to 950vhn through the use of heat treatment if substantial friction and wear are issues.
  • Pit-free deposits are created using ENP.
  • ENP acts as an excellent adhesive to other substrates like aluminium and copper.
  • ENP causes components to have a lower percentage of porosity.
  • Components are non-magnetic after being EN plated.
  • Staining is much less likely to occur once ENP has taken place.

 

Suppliers of Electroless Nickel Plating

NiTEC UK are a Derbyshire, UK, company, who are experts in the process of electroless nickel plating or ENP for short.  If this process is something you or your business would like to find out more about, then please give our friendly and professional team a call on 0845 224 3571, send us an email at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or alternatively you can  get in touch with us through our contact page.  Visit our website to find out more about other metal plating services, too, such as diffused nickel plating, copper plating, shotblasting and aqua blasting.

 

 

The Importance of…Electroless Nickel Plating and the Benefits

You may be aware of Electroless Nickel (EN) plating, but do you know all about the process of EN and how it could help you in your industry?  This article informs you about the concentration ranges, the environmental legislation by which EN complies and flags up specific industries which it is now prevalent in.  Could Electroless Nickel plating help you?

Process This

The process of Electroless Nickel plating is autocatalytic – A controlled reaction between a nickel-phosphorous alloy and a metal or plastic substrate, electroless-nickel-plating-company-chesterfieldwithout the use of electric current or other external electrical power supply.  The metal being used in submerged in an aqueous solution called a bath, during this chemical reaction.  An agent within the bath, normally sodium hypophosphite, acts as a reducing agent, releases hydrogen, which reacts with the metals ions producing a negative surface charge.  This creates nickel alloy as a deposition on to the metal or plastic substrate.  This method is a reliable, repeatable typical thickness layer which is known to prevent the need for post-plate grinding.  Electroless Nickel plating is often thought highly of due to its mechanical properties, stabilities and brightness which the plating obtains.  This process also provides superior corrosion protection, solderability, lubrication and wear resistance.  Due to these reasons, it has been widely used in the Automotive, Aerospace, printed circuit board industry and Military fields and can be applied to a wide range of base materials such as aluminium, titanium, stainless steel, copper brass and die-cast zinc.  This shows the usage flexibility of Electroless Nickel plating, thanks to its three phosphorus concentration ranges: low (2-5%), mid (6-9%) and high (10-13%).  It is beneficial to these industries because it helps them comply with specific environmental legislations, such as End of Life Vehicle (ELV), Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA), to name but a few.

Anything Chrome Can Do, ENP Can Do Better

Electroless Nickel plating is now a good alternative for industries, such as Automotive, Aerospace, printed circuit board and Military, rather than chrome technology – It is more energy efficient, falls inside the engineering requirements and reduces the amount of hazardous waste matter introduced into the environment in comparison to chrome technology.

Electroless Nickel Plating Company, Derbyshire, UK

Here at NiTEC UK, we are experts in the process of Electroless Nickel plating. To find out more about our Electroless Nickel plating and other metal plating services, please call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

Everything You Need to Know About Vapour Blasting

aqua blastingAqua blasting, or vapour blasting as it is sometimes called, is commonly used for fine surface preparation, de-burring, finishing and polishing.

The aqua blasting service here at NiTEC UK will degrease, blast and finish components all at the same time, providing a complete vapour blasting service for a variety of components. Other uses for the process include the removal of carbon deposits, the removal of paint, rust, and similar deposits in the engineering industry, and surface preparation prior to bonding, re-painting or re-coating.

How Does Vapour Blasting Work?

The process of vapour blasting is completely dust free, and uses a mixture of a media and water to form a slurry. This slurry is then pumped through a vapour blasting nozzle under considerable pressure whilst at the time being mixed with a high pressure air supply. The pressurised slurry then flows over and around the part, component or surface that is being blasted, producing a clean, smooth finish.

What are the Advantages of Aqua Blasting?

Vapour blasting has a lot of advantages over conventional sandblasting or bead blasting. Unlike shot blasting (and other blasting methods which actually move the surface material from the components), the process is non-intrusive; and it is perfect for delicate parts and soft metal. Aqua blasting is commonly used when a fine finish is required for aluminium, alloys, steel and many other metals; including bronze, magnesium, titanium, brass and copper.

With the water acting as a protective buffer; and the emulsion gently eradicating any grime – the underlying surface is crucially left intact. Vitally, there will be no alteration of critical dimensions. The creation of any dust is also avoided; as there no break-up of any media during the aqua blasting process.

Key Advantages of Aqua Blasting:

  • Can be applied to almost all metals
  • Surfaces are degreased and cleaned in tandem
  • Cleaning process relies on water flow and not impact
  • Makes surfaces more stain resistant
  • Singular part or batch process
  • No dust from the process

Aqua Blasting, Wet Blasting and Vapour Blasting Service Chesterfield, Derbyshire

To find out more about our aqua blasting service, as well as a range of our other metal plating and metal finishing services, call NiTEC UK on 08452243571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk.

3 Reasons to Choose Electroless Nickel Plating Over Galvanisation

What is Galvanisation?

When a metal is galvanised, a protective zinc coating is applied to it. This zinc coating is applied to steel or iron in order to prevent the surface of the metal from rusting. Hot-dip galvanisation is the most common method of galvanisation. During this process, the steel parts are submerged in a bath of molten zinc. This process is also achievable through electrochemical and electro deposition processes but there are some differences between them.

galvanised metalHot-dip galvanisation produces a grey, matte coating to the surface of the metal, which is very thick and durable.

Electroless Nickel as an Alternative to Galvanisation

Electroless nickel plating and galvanisation are both effective metal finishing techniques for the prevention of corrosion and rust on the surface of metal. If you’re trying to decide which would be a better coating for your application, here are 3 reasons why you should choose electroless nickel plating as an alternative to galvanisation.

  1. Durability and Corrosion Resistance

The electroless nickel plating process is a high quality, cost effective solution to coating metals such as mild or stainless steel and can substantially extend the life of a component. It is an excellent alternative to galvanisation as it is both durable and aesthetically pleasing.

  1. Uniform Coating

Not only does electroless nickel plating provide enough corrosion resistance to be used in harsh environments, the uniform coating it creates can be a perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries.

  1. Cost Effectivity

Electroless nickel plating is also much cheaper than you would imagine, considering the extent of its durability, and the wear resistance of the surface can be increased by using heat treatments. This makes it an ideal specialist plating where friction and wear may be problematic with regard to the use of the component.

Electroless Nickel Plating

To find out more about electroless nickel plating and how it can be used as an alternative to galvanisation, contact the experts at NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email: info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Nickel Plating: The Perfect Metal Coating to Protect Brake Calipers from Corrosion and Wear

nickel plated brake caliperBrake calipers are one of the most important parts of the breaking system of a car. They are a necessity in the process that allows your car to stop, therefore it is essential for them to be hardwearing and long lasting. As vital parts of a car’s breaking system, calipers squeeze the brake pads against the surface of the brake rotor in order to slow or stop the vehicle.

How do Brake Calipers Work?

In a disc-braking system the car’s wheels are attached to metal discs, or rotors, that spin along with the wheels. The brake caliper’s job is to slow down the wheels of the car by creating friction with the rotors. The brake caliper itself fits over the rotor like a clamp, and inside it is a pair of metal plates which have been bonded with friction material called brake pads.

Corrosion and Wear Protection

Nickel plated coatings are excellent at protecting steel from corrosion and wear. Electroless nickel plating is used in a variety of applications to extend the life of components, therefore, it is the perfect metal plating technique for brake calipers. Brake calipers are also exposed to a variety of difficult environments, for example heat, cold, summer, winter, snow and salt. Therefore, a corrosion resistant coating on brake calipers is very important to ensure the longevity of the cars braking system.

Nickel Plating on Bumpers, Wheels and Grilles

Electroless nickel can also be used on the bumpers, wheels and grilles of a car. The use of nickel plating on parts such as these is partly due to the fact that it looks good with its shine and bright finish. But nickel also provides excellent corrosion resistance, durability and wear resistance, as is often demanded by makers of vehicles.

Nickel plating is the perfect solution to creating hard wearing, corrosion resistant brake calipers as a nickel coating is a very effective way of coating and protecting steel. If you would like to find out more about our electroless nickel plating and other metal plating services, why not ‘Like’ the NiTEC Facebook page or follow @nickelplating on Twitter for regular news, pictures and case studies. Alternatively, please call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

4 Reasons to Choose Heat Treatment Solutions at NiTEC UK

heat treatment solutions for metalAs experts in metal plating and metal finishing, we also offer high temperature heat treatment solutions. Our heat treatment services expose metal coatings to high temperatures for sustained periods, diffusing the electroless nickel layer onto the steel. These treatments optimise the mechanical and physical properties of a coating for a given application.

Add Flexibility to your Coating

Exposing metal coatings to heat treatment solutions gives them a degree of flexibility. It’s a common misconception that heat treatment is a process for hardening metal, as many heat treatments are applied to soften metal in order to allow metal working operations such as deep drawing, cold forging and machining. The heat treatments at NiTEC can be used for stress relieving and de-embrittlement as both pre-plate and post-plate treatments.

Maintain Corrosion Protection

Luckily, the heat treatment process does not affect the increased corrosion protection offered by an electroless nickel deposit.

Small Components can be Treated Economically

Even the smallest of components can be heat treated. We load them onto shelves to maximise the heat treatment capacity and minimise the cost of the treatment for our customers.

Carefully Monitored Heat Treatment

The staff at NiTEC use chart recording equipment to monitor the temperature changes of both the furnace and the work. This enables us to create heat treatment profiles which determine shot blasting solutions for many different requirements. Our monitoring also ensures the material achieves the required temperature for the required time, in turn eliminating heat sinks on larger components or mixed loads.

UK Heat Treatment Services

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services, including the heat treatment of metals. Our high quality electroless nickel plating service is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries. For more information, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Top 5 Frequently Asked Questions about Electroless Nickel Plating

As experts in electroless nickel plating, we have put together a blog post of the top 5 most frequently asked questions about the process at NiTEC.

What are the Advantages of Electroless Nickel Plating?

electroless nickel plated componentsIn our opinion, the biggest advantage of an electroless nickel coating is that it will significantly extend the life of the component that it coats. Electroless nickel coatings deposit an even thickness over all surfaces, provide excellent wear and corrosion resistance, as well as hardness and lubricity. Electroless nickel deposits are very hard, and have hardness values in the range of 450 – 750 VHN, depending on the phosphorus content in the deposit. Generally, the higher the phosphorus content, the lower the as deposited hardness.

In Which Applications can Electroless Nickel be Used?

Electroless nickel plating can be used in a variety of applications. Whether you are looking to increase the strength of a pipe at its weakest level, protect the exterior of a material in a marine environment or you are looking for a new alternative to stainless steel, electroless nickel plating is a service that should be considered.

In Which Industries is Electroless Nickel Plating Commonly Used?

Electroless nickel plating can be used in a variety of industries including marine, oil and gas, automotive, aerospace, engineering, unique art, architecture, chemical equipment, railroad, molds, military, textiles, electronics and material handling.

How Can I Be Sure that Electroless Nickel Plating is a Quality Service?

At NiTEC, quality and service are of vital importance. We are committed to following our Quality Assurance Programme which is outlined in our Quality Manual, in accordance with the requirements of BS EN ISO 9001:2008. All employees at NiTEC are responsible for implementing the recommendations outlined in the Quality Manual. These standards of quality are applicable to all of their activities and they are responsible for achieving the specified quality levels at all stages of work.

NiTEC is comprehensively equipped for all aspects of quality control and product testing. We also have the ability to carry out non-destructive testing for thickness and hardness, in order to ensure the highest levels of quality and accuracy at all times.

Nickel Plating Company in Chesterfield, UK

Here at NiTEC UK, we are experts in the process of electroless nickel plating. To find out more about our electroless nickel plating and other metal plating services, please call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

UK Defence Spending Set to Rise

The Chancellor George Osbourne plans to reverse the future defence cuts he proposed, planning to spend more on UK defence. Osborne suggested that the armed forces use the promised increase in defence spending so that the country can “deal with whatever the world throws at us.”

The 2015 Budget

tornado jetIn the recent budget, the Chancellor announced that defence spending would increase and be protected, despite his refusal to make such a pledge before the election. Part of the reason for the decision appears to be down to those in high levels of British government wishing to become militarily involved in Syria and Libya.

Britain Defending Itself

George Osborne said:“I am a great believer in Britain defending itself, defending its values, projecting itself and its values overseas. I’m a great believer that it is not credible to talk about those things unless you pay for it. We have got to make sure this money is well spent, that we work with our armed forces to give Britain the very best capability to deal with whatever the world throw at us.”

But Osborne stated: “We don’t seek conflict but we are certainly ready for every eventuality,” when asked whether the additional money would be used for front line combat.

Metal Plating Services

For more information about metal plating and how the electroless nickel plating process can be used in a variety of industries including defence, automotive, oil and gas etc, please contact NiTEC on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

The Composition and Structure of Electroless Nickel Plating

Component plated with high phosphorus electroless nickelThe structure of electroless nickel is responsible for the unique properties it possesses, making it such a useful metal coating. Electrodeposited nickel typically has a crystalline structure, whereas an electroless nickel deposit is normally described as having an amorphous structure or one consisting of ultra-fine crystallites. The amorphous nature of electroless nickel deposits become more dominant as the phosphorus content increases, and phosphorus contents above 10.5% are typically considered truly amorphous.

The absence of a well-defined crystal structure eliminates the possibility of inter-granular corrosion that can be a problem with crystalline deposits, such as electrolytic nickel. Electroless nickel, therefore, provides a barrier that is more effective at protecting a substrate from corrosion.

Heat Treatment and Electroless Nickel Plating

Heat treatment can also be used to change the properties and structure of nickel phosphorus deposits. High temperature heat treatment solutions for sustained periods can be used to diffuse the electroless nickel layer into the steel, giving a degree of flexibility to the coating. This process does not affect the increased corrosion protection offered by this type of deposit.

The Composition of Electroless Nickel Coatings

The phosphorus content of an electroless nickel coating has a great effect on the properties of the deposit, and can be varied over a wide range.

High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Coatings

For example, high phosphorus electroless nickel typically contains a phosphorus content of between 10-12%, making it ideal for applications where a uniform, hard and highly corrosion resistant coating is required. Other advantages include low porosity, pit-free deposits and a very stable and robust coating.

Medium Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Coatings

Medium phosphorus solutions contain between 6 and 10% phosphorus and produce a coating which effectively combines intermediate hardness with good corrosion resistance. Medium phosphorus coatings deposit rapidly and produce a bright or semi-bright coating.

Low Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Coatings

A low phosphorus electroless nickel coating typically contains 2.5% phosphorus. This produces a very uniform porous free coating which uniformly covers the complete surface of the component, including inside recesses. It has excellent corrosion resistance in alkaline conditions, but the coating is relatively soft, below 235VPN, and is therefore not particularly wear resistant.

Worldwide Electroless Nickel Plating Service

Contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk to talk through your electroless nickel plating requirements.

Extending the Service Life of Mild Steel with Nickel Plated Metal Coatings

Nickel coatings can be used to extend the service life of mild steel components in a variety of hostile and highly corrosive environments. From deep in the ocean to the wildest of deserts, our cutting edge metal finishing solution can provide a protective, corrosion resistant coating that can significantly increase the life of components. These metal coatings can be applied to a variety of surfaces in order to protect them from these types of conditions, meaning that there is less downtime for the repair and replacement of components, and, in turn, increased efficiency.

Metal Coatings for Marine Environments

offshore oilrigAs specialists in electroless nickel plating, NiTEC have developed a number of cutting edge treatments and techniques in the field of metal plating. Because SeaTEC 100 is a metal finishing process that can sustain harsh marine environments for thousands of hours, it is the perfect solution to the problem of marine corrosion. Marine conditions can significantly increase the rate of corrosion on parts, and SeaTEC 100 can eliminate this corrosion at a level of performance that cannot be beaten in the industry.

Our SeaTEC 100 coating can extend the life of mild steel operating in marine environments and has the advantage of being extremely cost effective. This product has been tested extensively and expertly developed by the team at NiTEC.

Metal Plating for use on Oil Rigs and Offshore Oil and Gas

SeaTEC 100 is able to protect mild steel from corrosion for many hours, so is ideal for use in sub-sea conditions. It can effectively increase the strength of items when they are at their weakest level, and is, therefore, perfect for components such as pipeline connectors. Our metal finishing experts have tested this process to ensure that the coating can withstand salt spray conditions for over 25,000 hours, making it an industry leader.

By plating metal components, valves and connectors using this process, the life of the material can be extended substantially even when used in a marine environment. Using SeaTEC is far more cost effective than other methods as the parts do not need to be replaced or repaired as often, and the finish is also available in a variety of colours.

Metal Plating Services Chesterfield

If you would like further information about this process, or more information about the other services that NiTEC offer such as electroless nickel platingcopper platingshot blasting or heat treatment, please visit our website.

Top 5 Properties of Electroless Nickel Coatings

No other metal coating has the combination of properties offered by electroless nickel, which is why it is such a popular coating for a number of industries. As specialists in the process, we’ve put together the top 5 properties of electroless nickel plating.

Uniform Thickness

nickel plating technical figureElectroless nickel coatings can be applied in a variety of coating thicknesses. Electroless nickel can be deposited uniformly, with minimum variation from point to point. Regardless of the size and shape of the part, including recesses, holes, and complex dimensions, the uniformity of the coating can still be maintained. The range of thicknesses for electroless nickel coatings in commercial applications is 0.1 to 5 mils, however deposits as thick as 40 mils can be achieved.

Corrosion Resistance

One of the main reasons why electroless nickel plating is such a popular coating is the fact that it provides incredible corrosion resistance and corrosion protection. This property makes components coated with electroless nickel commonplace in functional applications. It is able to effectively withstand the combination of abrasion and corrosive chemicals, even in the most corrosive environments such as those encountered in drilling and producing oil wells.

Density

The density of electroless nickel coatings decline with increasing phosphorous content. That means that the higher the phosphorous content, the lower the density of the electroless nickel coating.

Adhesion

The surface preparation and activation of the electroless nickel plating is one of the most important factors for producing excellent adhesion. Electroless nickel deposits provide excellent adhesion to other substrates, for example steel, aluminium, copper and copper alloys. Heat treatment at a low temperature is commonly used to improve the adhesion of electroless nickel on all metals, especially on light metals such as aluminium or titanium. During this heat treatment, diffusion can occur between the atoms of the coating and the substrate.

Hardness

The hardness of electroless nickel coatings depends on the phosphorus content, and can be increased by heat treatment which will in turn increase wear resistance. Generally, low phosphorous electroless nickel coatings have a high hardness of 700-750 VPN and medium phosphorus electroless nickel has a hardness of 500-550 VPN. High phosphorous coatings are not usually heat-treated, but left as-plated for their superior corrosion protection.

Metal Plating Company in Derbyshire, UK

Here at NiTEC UK, we are experts in the process of electroless nickel plating. To find out more about our electroless nickel plating and other metal plating services, please call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

Latest Photos of New Electroless Nickel Plating Factory Building

As you can see from the latest photos, the structure for the new factory extension is well on the way. As readers of our blog will know, it’s all part of a massive expansion phase for NiTEC UK, which will create 4 new plating electroless nickel plating lines and room for plenty more heat treatment processes.

Biggest Plating Line in Europe

The new factory extension will create an extra 3,000 square foot of space and will allow us to handle components of up to 30 tonnes. We think that this will make NiTEC the proud owners of the biggest plating line in Europe, making us industry leaders in the process.

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

We have more than 30 years of experience specialising in the electroless nickel plating process and we also offer a variety of surface treatments including diffused nickel plating, copper platingnickel PTFE, nickel diamond, tin plating and nickel boron. For more information, please call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Further Electroless Nickel Plating for Designer Thomas Heatherwick

nickel plated extruded benchesAs readers of our blog will know, NiTEC UK had the pleasure of electroless nickel plating a number of extruded benches on behalf of the English designer Thomas Heatherwick. Heatherwick’s recent projects have included the Olympic Cauldron for the London Olympics and the Garden Bridge across the River Thames. These projects, and several others, have meant that Heatherwick’s popularity and exposure has increased dramatically over the past few months, boosting his profile as an incredibly well respected and admired designer.

Heatherwick’s Garden Bridge across the Thames

The Garden Bridge followed Transport for London’s tender for proposals to improve pedestrian links across the Thames. Thomas Heatherwick and British actor and campaigner Joanna Lumley developed an idea for a pedestrian ‘Garden Bridge’ across the river. The bridge would connect the North and South of the city with a garden, adding to London’s diverse horticultural heritage.

Nickel Plated Extruded Benches

Since the rise in Heatherwick’s profile, many pieces of work created by the designer have become very desirable. This includes his famous benches, which involve manufacturing aluminium components through an industrial process called extrusion.

The process involves squeezing heated metal through a shaped hole which is known as die. The heated metal produces straight aluminium lengths with a precisely shaped cross section. Extrusion often produces contorted shapes when the metal initially squeezes through the die because the metal is inclined to snag warp as it struggles to fit through the gap. The form eventually straightens out and usually during this process; the contorted end is chopped off and melted back down.

We are, of course, delighted to be electroless nickel plating further benches on behalf of Thomas Heatherwick, and also excited about the future of his design career. His recent projects have all been notable, and received positive feedback from many, so it’s great to be involved in another of his projects.

UK Electroless Nickel Plating Service

Contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk to talk through your electroless nickel plating requirements and see how NiTEC can provide high quality processes at a cost to suit your business.

Top 3 Reasons to Use Aqua Blasting as Your Metal Cleaning Method of Choice

Aqua BlastingAs experts in metal finishing and metal plating, NiTEC UK have recently expanded our services to include aqua blasting, or vapour blasting, as it is sometimes called. This wet blasting process has many great advantages, including the ability to effectively and gently eradicate surface dirt and grime from metal components. Here are 3 reasons to choose aqua blasting as your metal cleaning method of choice.

Aqua Blasting Leaves the Underlying Surface Smooth

The process permits non-aggressive surface cleaning in order to produce a satin finish on a wide range of metals. Aqua blasting cleans by the flow of water and not impact, and the water acts a lubricant between the media and the component. It involves the use of a non-ferrous media; which is subsequently mixed with water to result in an extra-smooth finish once the process has been carried out. That is possible thanks to the flow of a water-borne abrasive.

Unlike shot blasting, and other blasting methods which actually move the surface material from the components, the process of aqua blasting is non-intrusive. It is, therefore, suitable for delicate parts and soft metal. Aqua Blasting is commonly used when a fine finish is required for aluminium, alloys, steel and many other metals; including bronze, magnesium, titanium, brass and copper.

Critical Dimensions of the Part are Not Affected

Another benefit to aqua blasting is that the water used in the process acts like a protective buffer. This means that the emulsion is able to effectively lift off any grime, all the while leaving the underlying surface intact. That means that there will be no alteration to the dimensions of the treated part, eradicating the need for post treatment plating etc.

Aqua Blasting is Useful for a Variety of Needs

In addition to its gentle cleaning properties, aqua blasting is a process that can also be used for the removal of carbon deposits, and the removal of paint, rust, carbon, and similar deposits in engineering industries. It can also be used as a method of surface preparation prior to bonding, re-painting or re-coating.

Aqua Blasting and Vapour Blasting Service Chesterfield, Derbyshire

To find out more about our aqua blasting service, as well as a range of our other metal plating and metal finishing services, call NiTEC UK on 08452243571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk.

5 Reasons to Choose a Composite Diamond Coating for your Nickel Plating Needs

composite diamond coatingNickel diamond coatings are a popular composite diamond coating which combine an electroless nickel deposit with fine particles of diamonds. This type of coating provides a practical and affordable solution to using the fantastic properties of diamond on the surface of components. As experts in the process of nickel diamond plating, we’ve put together our top 5 reasons to use a composite diamond coating for your nickel plating needs.

Can be used to Coat a Variety of Substrates

Nickel diamond plating can be used to coat a variety of substrates including metals such as carbon and tool steels, aluminium, alloys, copper, brass, bronze, stainless steel and titanium.

Increases the Lifespan of Coated Machinery Parts

Nickel diamond plating provides a highly corrosion and wear resistant coating. By providing maximum protection to the surface of the substrate, coated machinery parts have an increased lifespan. This helps to keep maintenance and related downtime due to the replacement of high wear parts to a minimum, reducing costs.

Uniformity of Coating

Due to the electroless chemical method of deposition, nickel diamond plating is able to cover surfaces with perfect uniformity. Therefore, regardless of the geometry of the component, the nickel diamond coating creates a uniform deposition on all areas of the part, even on recesses and holes.

Can be used for a Variety of Applications

Nickel diamond can be used for a huge range of applications across a variety of industries. Common applications include high speed machinery parts for the textile industry, wood working tools, computer parts, paper handling equipment, mechanical shaft shields for automotive water pumps and chemical process pumps and gage blocks.

Nickel Diamond Plating and Composite Diamond Coating Services

If you are interested in the process of nickel diamond plating, NiTEC can help. To make an enquiry or simply to have a chat with one of our friendly team about your requirements, call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

 

Electroless Nickel Plating for Valve Components in Engineering Applications

We recently published a blog post regarding the use of electroless nickel for valves and flow control devices in the oil and gas industry. Although electroless nickel has been used successfully on ball valves in the oil and gas industry, it has been equally successful on valve components in other engineering applications too.

It is essential that valves can be opened and closed easily and reliably whenever necessary, even though no movement from a set position may have occurred over a long period of time. Protection of the stems from corrosion and abrasion can be achieved by coating with electroless nickel.

Electroless Nickel Coatings for Fire-Flow Valves

Butterfly valveElectroless nickel coatings have also been beneficial in the manufacture and performance of fire-flow valves due to their corrosion resistance, hardness, surface finish and lubricity. Fire-flow valves are required to provide a tight seal during normal operations and to act as shut off valves after inadvertent exposure to 650C.

Electroless nickel is also used on some critical safety valve applications. For example, blowout preventers are safety valves used to shut down oil and gas wells in emergency situations. A unit consists of a hydraulically operated ram, capable of cutting through the tubing carrying the oil and gas to seal the flow.

After testing, a unit is only required to operate once in an emergency but to ensure satisfactory performance, it is mandatory that no corrosion or physical damage occurs on the ram or sealing surfaces. Electroless nickel coatings are frequently used to provide the hardness and corrosion resistance required.

Corrosion Resistant Oil and Gas Coatings

NiTEC UK provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services for both onshore and offshore oil and gas applications. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Electroless Nickel Plating for the Oil and Gas Industry

Electroless nickel plating has been a popular coating choice in the oil and gas industry for a number of years. It is used in a wide variety of applications within the industry mainly due to its uniform, thick deposit and superior corrosion resistance.

Many base materials that are typically used in the oil and gas industry are greatly enhanced by the application of electroless nickel, resulting in lower fabrication costs and extended service life. Shutdowns and delays in the oil and gas industry are very common because of the need to replace components, but as electroless nickel substantial extends the life of parts and components, a huge amount of money can be saved.

Electroless Nickel on Valves, Flow Control Devices and Ball Plugs

electroless nickel plated valve ballsElectroless nickel coatings are often used on valves and flow control devices due to their uniform thickness, wear resistance and corrosion resistance. These parts are critical components in the operation of a well where good performance and long life are major economic factors. The coating also provides an excellent surface condition for ball plugs and improves the sealing at the seat areas. It’s now very common for mild steel ball valves to be coated with a layer of electroless nickel.

Applications of Electroless Nickel

There are lots of areas within the oil and gas industry where the application of electroless nickel has been successful. For example, in crude oil production at a plant in the Middle East where the gas contains 55% hydrogen sulphide and is processed at 80C, mild steel ball valves had a maximum life of three months, with failure occurring as a result of corrosion, surface cracking and erosion. However, by electroless nickel plating the valve components, their lives were extended and no surface deterioration was evident after two years of continuous service.

Similar benefits have been noted on ball valves at plants using the sea water injection system, which involves pumping sea water under high pressure in order to force the oil to the surface. At the Ghawar oil field in Saudi Arabia, 75 microns of electroless nickel on the valves had satisfactorily withstood the operating conditions to such an extent that no degradation of the coating was detectable after four years of operation.

Electroless Nickel Plating for Oil and Gas Applications

NiTEC UK provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services for both onshore and offshore oil and gas applications. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

5 Reasons to Choose NiTEC as Your Nickel Plating Company

electroless nickel plating companyHere at NiTEC, we are leading specialists in the electroless nickel plating process. As a specialist plating company we have developed a wide range of techniques and we are able to provide a high-end, cost-effective service. Here are 5 reasons why you should choose NiTEC as your nickel plating company.

1. Worldwide Plating Services

Our metal plating services are not just limited to the UK, we are also able to service Europe and the rest of the world. Our worldwide plating and delivery service can provide customers with accurate quotes based on drawings that have been emailed to us, making the process hassle free and convenient for customers all over the world.

2. Wide Range of Metal Plating Services

Our Chesterfield based metal plating factory carries out a wide range of metal plating and metal finishing services. We can offer our customers a comprehensive range of surface treatments including electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, copper plating, nickel boron plating, nickel diamond plating, tin plating, aqua blasting, heat treatment and shot blasting. Our equipment and experience enable us to process all ferrous substrates, including plating stainless steel, copper and its alloys, and aluminium alloys.

3. Onsite Laboratory

Here at NiTEC UK, we have a laboratory on site that allows us to ensure that all our processes are very closely controlled. We specialise in the testing, validation and certification of specific customer requirements associated with the plating industry. Services available in our lab include salt spray testing, kesternich testing, hardness testing, phosphorus content testing and micro section testing.

4. Highly Experienced Staff

We have more than 30 years’ experience in the plating industry, and have, therefore, developed a wide range of techniques.  All our line staff are time served in their own disciplines, meaning that every job is managed by personnel with a knowledge and understanding of the specialist process of electroless nickel plating.

5. Flexible Approach and Wide Range of Capabilities

NiTEC have a very flexible approach to customer requirements. We are able to take on jobs of all sizes; no job is too large or too small for us as a plating company. We regularly electroless nickel plate components from small pins and connectors to large castings weighing up to 25 tonnes. The shape and volume of our processing can also be changed to accommodate our customer needs.

Metal Plating Company in Chesterfield, UK

To find out more about our metal plating services, please call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

UK Industrial Output Increased by Rise in Oil and Gas Extraction

 

The UK’s industrial sector has received a significant boost thanks to an increased output of oil, gas and manufacturing. The Yorkshire Post has reported that industrial output grew at its fastest rate in six months in March, after an unexpected bounce in oil and gas extraction.

offshore oilrigOfficial data from the Office for National Statistics has showed that industrial output rose 0.5% in March, after creeping up by only 0.1% in February. This is the strongest growth since September, and has exceeded leading economists’ forecast of that it would remain the same.

Oil and Gas Extraction

Oil and gas extraction rose to 4.9%, which was its fastest rate since February 2014. Falling oil prices and rising production costs as North Sea oil gets scarcer had previously contributed to a general downward trend.

Britain’s economy grew by 2.8% in 2014, the fastest growth rate of any big advanced economy. It did lose pace in the first quarter of 2015 when total output rose by just 0.3%. However, recent data shows that manufacturing output rose by 0.4% after upwardly revised growth of 0.5% in February, which was slightly faster than expected.

Marine Corrosion Protection for the Oil and Gas Industry

Here at NiTEC UK, we carry out a significant amount of metal plating work for parts and components to be used in the oil and gas industries. A common requirement for plated components used in these industries is their ability to resist corrosion for a substantial amount of time, especially in subsea conditions.

Our commitment to research and development allowed us to create SeaTEC100, a metal coating that protects mild steel from salt spray corrosion and marine corrosion for an extensive period of time. SeaTEC 100 has been independently tested to withstand salt spray conditions for over 25,000 hours, a period of time that is unprecedented within the engineering industry.

Metal Plating for Oil and Gas Applications

We provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services for both onshore and offshore oil and gas applications. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

The Biggest Electroless Nickel Plating Line in Europe Well Under Way

largest electroless nickel plating line in EuropeHere is the latest photograph of the new factory extension which is soon to be completed at NiTEC UK. After lots of hard work and extensive building work, the new factory extension will create an extra 3,000 square foot of space, and create another electroless nickel plating line. In fact, we have a suspicion that it will be the biggest plating line in Europe, making us industry leaders in the process.

Specialist Large Capacity Electroless Nickel Plating Line

The specialist electroless nickel plating line should be fully operational in the next few weeks and will include the installation of a state of the art crane, allowing us to handle components of up to 20 tonnes. Marcus Hill, the Commercial Director at NiTEC UK said: “The market is growing rapidly and our new plating line means that we can accommodate more work in response to this growth. We are really pleased to be able to respond even more quickly to our customers’ plating needs.”

Increasing Demand for Nickel Plating

“Due to the increasing demand for a nickel plating line that can take very large components, we have met the needs of our customers with exactly that. The new nickel plating line will adhere to our usual high standards of quality and safety, and will mean that size will never be a limit for plated parts. We believe that we now have the largest electroless nickel plating tank in Europe, with the capacity to plate items 12 metres in length.”

Metal Finishing Services at NiTEC UK

Here at NiTEC UK, we have more than 30 years of experience specialising in the electroless nickel plating process and we also offer a variety of other surface treatments. Just last year, we expanded our services to include nickel PTFE plating,nickel diamond platingtin plating and nickel boron plating, in addition to our already well established services of diffused nickel platingcopper plating and electroless nickel plating.

All our line staff are time served in their own disciplines, meaning that every job is managed by personnel with a knowledge and understanding of the specialist process of electroless nickel plating. For more information, please call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Copper Plated Benches and Patinated Copper Archways for the Chelsea Flower Show

The 2015 Chelsea Flower Show is now in full swing, and this year’s entries are as strong as ever! The show is held for 5 days in May by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea in London. As the most famous and celebrated flower show in the UK, it attracts garden designers and visitors from all over the world.

Copper Plating for the Brewin Dolphin Garden

brewin dolphin gardenLast year, we were lucky enough to be involved in copper plating benches and patinated copper archways for The Brewin Dolphin Garden at The Chelsea Flower Show. The garden won a Silver-gilt medal and featured fresh, lush planting, copper plated features and generous paths and sculpture.

Gold Medal for the Brewin Dolphin Garden 2015

This year, The Brewin Dolphin Garden was designed by Darren Hawkes Landscapes and built by Bowles and Wyer with Wheelbarrow. The garden features over 40,000 pieces of hand-cut slate that form the surface of the suspended platforms. There is also an underground stream that is glimpsed through well openings, one of which is illuminated by sunlight shining through a hole in the platform above. It was announced this morning that this year’s garden beat it’s Silver-gilt medal from last year with an impressive Gold!

Professional Copper Plating Services in Chesterfield, UK

As you can see, bright copper plating can be used decoratively, giving a highly polished copper-pink appearance. Our metal plating experts also have a range of lacquers available for copper plating solutions which prevent tarnishing of the copper plating, if it is intended for a decorative purpose.

Here at NiTEC UK, we’ve been asked to carry out some great copper plating jobs for a variety of clients. For more information about the copper plating services available at NiTEC UK, copper platers in Chesterfield, contact us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Slippery Nickel: Electroless Nickel PTFE Plating

connector nickel teflonElectroless nickel PTFE, otherwise known as slippery nickel, is a composite nickel/PTFE coating that offers a huge range of benefits to a variety of industries. The main reason that nickel PTFE is so popular is due to its properties of low friction and self lubrication, making it a great choice for sliding wear applications and other instances where conventional lubricants cannot be used.

The Co-Deposition of Electroless Nickel PTFE

During the co-deposition process of nickel PTFE, Teflon particles are plated along with the electroless nickel and become part of the plated coating itself. This technique ensures that the plated coating has high lubricity throughout the life of the plated part, because as the coating wears, PTFE particles are exposed continuously. That means that the Teflon particles are present throughout the entire thickness of the coating.

Release Properties and Uniform Coverage

Nickel PTFE improves the “release” or anti stick properties of molds and dies due to its self lubricating properties. It also increases the efficiency of, and reduces the sound made by slides, bearings and cylinder or piston assemblies. This property also facilitates the reliable operation of moving parts when they are continuously exposed to solvents or are working in cryogenic temperatures. Nickel PTFE provides an exceptionally uniform coverage, including corners, threads and bores. There’s also no need for post-plating finishing.

Common Applications of Nickel PTFE

A comprehensive list of the common applications of nickel PTFE is published below.

  • Rubber and plastic molds
  • Transmission components
  • Core pins
  • Couplings
  • Slides
  • Frozen food molds
  • Camera shutters
  • Valve stems
  • Rotating cores
  • Fiber and yarn guides
  • Gears
  • Hydraulic cylinders
  • Fuel system components
  • Clutch components
  • Tablet punches
  • Pistons
  • Pump rotors
  • Bearings
  • Spray nozzles
  • Air caps
  • Security bolts
  • Pneumatic equipment
  • Hydraulic equipment
  • Shafts

What Substrates can Nickel PTFE be Applied to?

Nickel PTFE can be applied to a variety of substrates including copper alloys, titanium, aluminium, mild steel and stainless steel.

If you are looking for a metal coating that is self lubricating, corrosion resistant and wear resistant, Ni-PTFE is the perfect solution. Call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an inquiry.

Underwater Corrosion Protection for the Oil and Gas Industry

As experts in coatings that provide high levels of underwater corrosion resistance, our services are used for a variety of applications in the oil and gas industry. Components and parts used in such industries are exposed to extremely harsh and demanding environments. As such, corrosion problems occur related to sea water, aggressive chemicals, galling and seizure of threads and wear protection.

Industry Leaders in Metal Coatings for Oil and Gas

Here at NiTEC UK, we are industry leaders in metal coatings that provide underwater corrosion protection for the oil and gas industry. We have extensive expertise in characterising and understanding the process of wear and corrosion, so that we can work with our customers to ensure that the most effective metal coating solution is identified and carried out.

salt spray testing lab chesterfieldSalt Spray Testing

We also have our very own laboratory on site that specialises in salt spray testing, which can effectively assess the reliability of a product by simulating these environments, therefore ensuring that the coating will survive in the environment it is intended for. The standard salt spray test method is used to check the corrosion resistance of coated samples, substrates, and components which may be prone to suffering from degradation as a result of salt corrosion. We have the facilities to carry out salt spray testing to the specification of ASTM B117.

Marine Corrosion Protection Coating

Our product SeaTEC 100 is an industry leading product that protects mild steel from salt spray corrosion and marine corrosion for an extensive period of time. The coating is ideal for use in sub-sea conditions and can be used to increase the longevity of components used in subsea conditions. SeaTEC 100 effectively increases the strength of items such as pipeline connectors, where the material is at its weakest level, and has been independently tested to withstand salt spray conditions for over 25,000 hours, a period of time that is unprecedented within this industry. It effectively plates metal components, valves and connectors, making SeaTEC100 a cost-effective way of extending the life of mild-steel operating in marine environments.

SeaTEC 100 Marine Corrosion Protection

For more information about underwater corrosion resistance SeaTEC 100 and its ability to extend the life of parts exposed to subsea conditions, please contact the expert team at NiTEC by calling 0845 224 3571 or email us at web@nitec-enp.co.uk.

NiTEC Electroless Nickel Plate Extruded Benches for Thomas Heatherwick

nickel plated extruded benchesNiTEC UK have been lucky enough to be involved in the nickel plating of a number of extruded benches for English designer Thomas Heatherwick.

Known for his innovative designs and creative use of engineering and materials to produce public monuments and sculptures, Heatherwick works across the disciplines of architecture, art and design.

These amazing extruded benches began life in Heatherwick’s design and architecture studio when working on a project that involved manufacturing aluminium components through an industrial process called extrusion.

Extrusion and the Production of Contorted Shapes

The process of extrusion involves squeezing heated metal through a shaped hole which is known as die. The heated metal produces straight aluminium lengths with a precisely shaped cross section. Extrusion often produces contorted shapes when the metal initially squeezes through the die because the metal is inclined to snag warp as it struggles to fit through the gap. The form eventually straightens out and usually during this process; the contorted end is chopped off and melted back down.

But Heatherwick considered the mutated sections to be more interesting than the straight parts, and decided to produce more warped lengths of extruded aluminium on a much larger scale! The designer then wondered if it would be possible to use the extrusion process to create seating, much of which was needed at the time to furnish new airports and stations being built around the world. Heatherwick saw it as a simple but effective alternative to ordinary furniture that needed to be  made up of several components and materials. These extruded seats could be made all in one go, with the legs and back of the seat formed all at once.

Nickel Plating Aluminium Benches

So, the Heatherwick studio hunted for a machine capable of making this dream a reality for more than 16 years, until they finally came across a new extrusion machine that had been built in the Far East. The machine was designed for use in the aerospace industry and had the capability of exerting ten thousand tonnes of pressure. The factory it came from could not actually guarantee the outcome of the experiment because the machine had never been used to its full capacity.

Using this specialised die, Heatherwick and his studio staff made a series of aluminium benches with straight, extruded lengths, and contrasting raw, contorted ends. We were asked to carry out the electroless nickel plating of the benches in order to provide a high quality surface that would be very resistant to wear.

For more information about our recent case studies and details of other great projects that we’ve been lucky enough to be a part of, check out the metal plating case studies page on the NiTEC website.

Budget Reveals Increased Support for the Oil and Gas Sector

offshore oilrigMarch 18th saw the Chancellor of the Exchequer give his Budget to Parliament. As the final budget before the general election, it showed a significant improvement in many important areas, including those that will affect the oil and gas sector. As experts in metal finishing for the oil and gas sector, including corrosion resistant coatings, NiTEC know that the sector provides a large number of highly skilled jobs, energy security and makes a massive contribution to the economy of the UK.

Bold and Immediate Reforms to Oil and Gas

The Chancellor has announced ‘bold and immediate’ reforms to oil and gas tax, with the intention of easing the tax burden on oil and gas companies operating on the UK Continental Shelf. The measures will save the industry approximately £1.3 billion over the next 5 years, while boosting production by 15%.

Encouraging Investment in the North Sea

In order to encourage investment in the North Sea, the UK government will be introducing a new Investment Allowance and reducing the supplementary tax charge on oil and gas companies from 30% to 20%, backdated from January 2015. These changes are expected to increase oil production by around 15% by 2019, and drive £4 billion of new investment over the next five years. The rate of Petroleum Revenue Tax paid on older oil and gas fields will also be reduced from 50% to 35% from next year.

In the Budget document, the government said that its changes would “send a strong signal that the UK is open for business and ensure the [UKCS] remains competitive as the basin matures” and “extend the life of key infrastructure”. Mr Osborne announced that the Government would also fund  to assess the potential in “under-explored areas” of the UK North Sea.

Metal Finishing Services for Oil and Gas Applications

We provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services for both onshore and offshore oil and gas applications. Our revolutionary metal coating SeaTEC100 is a solution to increase the longevity of components used in subsea conditions that protects mild steel from salt spray corrosion and marine corrosion for an extensive period of time. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

5 Great Properties of Electroless Nickel Plating

electroless nickel plated componentsNo other metal coating has the combination of properties offered by electroless nickel, which is why so many industries use the coating and reap the benefits of it. As specialists in electroless nickel plating, NiTEC know that the properties of nickel plating are incredibly useful to our clients, enabling parts coated to have the highest levels of corrosion protection and hardness. Here are the top 5 great properties of electroless nickel, and why they are so important.

Uniform Thickness

The metal layer deposited by the electroless nickel plating process has an even thickness over all surfaces of the component, virtually regardless of its shape. This uniform coating is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries.

Electroless nickel can be deposited to produce a wide range of coating thicknesses. Even when plating large and small parts and on components that are fairly complex with recessed areas, the uniformity can be can still be maintained. The range of thicknesses for electroless nickel in commercial applications is 0.1 to 5 mils, although it is possible to create deposits as thick as 40 mils.

Corrosion Resistance

Electroless nickel coatings are often used in functional applications because of its excellent corrosion resistance. Electroless nickel coatings are able to withstand the combination of abrasion and corrosive chemicals, even in the very corrosive conditions encountered in drilling and producing oil wells.

Adhesion

Excellent adhesion of electroless nickel deposits can be achieved on a wide range of substrates, including steel, aluminium, copper and copper alloys. Heat treatment at a low temperature is commonly used to improve the adhesion of electroless nickel on all metals, especially on light metals such as aluminium or titanium. During this heat treatment, diffusion can occur between the atoms of the coating and the substrate. The surface preparation and activation of the electroless nickel plating is one of the most important factors for producing excellent adhesion.

Tight Manufacturing Tolerances

Tight manufacturing tolerances can be achieved as the electroless nickel is deposited evenly on the surface of the part. It can be also used to improve the surface of a component so that it is back within the specified tolerances, and provides a surface that allows post finishes to be carried out effectively.

Chip Free Coating

When using electroless nickel to plate a component, the coating provided is guaranteed not to chip or flake like other top coats such as paints or lacquers.

Electroless Nickel Plating Service

Contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk to talk to us about your electroless nickel plating requirements.

Fast Turnaround Metal Plating Services

As one of Europe’s largest electroless nickel plating specialists, NiTEC UK are proud to be able to offer a 24 hour turnaround on our metal plating services. Up until recently, we outsourced testing to an external company with a lead time of up to 2 weeks, but our new on-site laboratory means that we have access to in-house testing facilities including phosphorus levels, micro-section testing and hardness tests.

micro section testers chesterfieldOur laboratory specialises in the testing, validation and certification of specific customer requirements associated with various aspects of the plating industry. We decided to set it up in order to fill the gap in response in lead time processes, certification and verification.

  • Phosphorus testing
  • Kesternich testing
  • Hardness testing
  • Salt spray testing
  • Micro-section testing

Quality Director Paul Allen said, “The lab is a fantastic step for NiTEC. Not only can we reduce offsite costs for testing, we can offer our customers a much faster service. Completed plating jobs would often have to wait to be dispatched until the required test results and paperwork had been completed by a third party laboratory. Now that we do the necessary testing in-house, our service is so much quicker. So far, our customers are very happy!”

The BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

Since the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry, the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, there has been a considerable refocusing in the oil industry on the verification and traceability in subcontractor processes. The metal testing services available at NiTEC UK will ensure that your metal plated parts and components are safe, reliable, and fully certifiable to meet regulatory standards.

Accurate, Certifiable Testing

The specialist metal testing laboratory available at NiTEC UK has facilities ensure that all our testing methods are closely controlled. In addition, our ongoing investment in instrumentation means that thickness, micro-hardness and phosphorous analysis measurements can be obtained using non destructive testing methods, ensuring that we maintain a high level of quality.

Worldwide Metal Testing Services

The metal testing services at NiTEC UK are available throughout Europe and the rest of the world including the UK, France, Holland, Brazil and Germany. Once we receive your samples, we can turn around most tests in just 72 hours, with the exception of salt spray and sulphur dioxide (Kesternich) testing, which by definition will take a number of days. Once the tests are complete, you will receive your results in the format you have requested, including photographic evidence should you require it.

To find out more about our metal testing services, please call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

 

NiTEC Sponsor Second African Water Well

NiTEC sponsor water wellAs experts in metal finishing services including electroless nickel plating and diffused nickel plating, we carry out metal plating for a variety of industries all over the world. Last year, we shared the news that the water well we sponsored for AquAid had been built and was in full working order out in Africa.

Making a Difference in the Lives of Those Less Fortunate

Our relationship with AquAid remains the same; they do an excellent job of supplying the NiTEC offices with water coolers, so we decided to go ahead and sponsor another well. We were really pleased to learn that our last well made a huge difference to people’s lives in that village, so we decided to continue with the good work. Obviously, we are very proud to be associated with such an amazing project, and delighted to be able to make such a difference in the lives of those less fortunate.

You may have noticed that we have a badge of support on our website, to let people know about this great cause, and show our commitment to helping Aquaid’s recent project installing the elephant pumps in parts of Africa.

Who are AquaAid and What Do They Do?

Aquaid raises funds to build fresh drinking water wells in areas of Africa where it is needed the most, such as schools and villages. And for every water bottle that we get from Aquaid for the NiTEC offices, a donation is made to the The Africa Trust.

UK Metal Plating Services

For more information about NiTEC and the metal plating services that we offer, including electroless nickel platingdiffused nickel plating, and copper plating, please call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry. Our AquAid badge of support can also be viewed on the homepage of the NiTEC website.

Types of Electroless Nickel Plating and the Different Benefits of Each

As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating, we offer a range of metal plating services which all have different properties. Here’s a guide to our main services, including the benefits of each.

electroless nickel plated componentLow Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

A low phosphorus electroless nickel coating typically contains 2.5% phosphorus. This produces a very uniform porous free coating which uniformly covers the complete surface of the component, including inside recesses. It has excellent corrosion resistance in alkaline conditions, but the coating is relatively soft, below 235VPN, and is therefore not particularly wear resistant.

Medium Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

Medium phosphorus solutions contain between 6 and 10% phosphorus and produce a coating which effectively combines intermediate hardness with good corrosion resistance. Medium phosphorus coatings deposit rapidly and produce a bright or semi-bright coating.

High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

High phosphorus electroless nickel typically contains a phosphorus content of between 10-12%, making it ideal for applications where a uniform, hard and highly corrosion resistant coating is required. Other advantages include low porosity, pit-free deposits and a very stable and robust coating.

nickel ptfe plated componentNickel PTFE Plating

Nickel PTFE plating is a unique plating solution that combines the hardness of electroless nickel with the lubricity of Polytetrafluoreothylene (PTFE). Its properties of low friction wear and self lubrication make it an excellent choice for sliding wear applications, and instances where conventional lubricants would be harmful to components.

Nickel Boron Plating


Nickel boron
is a surface deposit coating that can be applied to a wide range of metals including steel, stainless steel, nickel alloys, aluminium, cobalt alloys, copper alloys, and titanium. It is a great alternative to chrome plating and has many benefits, including excellent wear and corrosion resistance. It is also resistant to fretting and galling, resistant to abrasion, ductile, solderable and has excellent rigidity.

Nickel Diamond Plating

nickel diamond platingThe features of nickel diamond plating enable it to provide a highly corrosion and wear resistant coating. Due to the electroless chemical method of deposition, nickel diamond plating is able to cover surfaces with perfect uniformity. Therefore, regardless of the geometry of the component, the nickel diamond coating creates a uniform deposition on all areas of the part, even on recesses and holes. Nickel diamond plating has many other benefits which make it a superior choice of coating, including hardness and increased thermal transfer.

Electroless Nickel Plating Service

Contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk to talk through your electroless nickel plating requirements. We are able to talk you through the different services that we offer, and provide more details on the benefits of each one.

Explaining the Process of Electroless Nickel Plating

electroless nickel plated componentsHere at NiTEC UK, our metal finishing experts regularly carry out the process of electroless nickel plating. As professional electroless nickel platers, we have put together a step by step guide that will explain the process of electroless nickel plating and how it works.

Unlike electroplating, there is no need to pass an electric current through the bath of chemical solution to initiate the plating process. The metal surface instead goes through a series of cleaning and auto-catalytic reactions, described below.

Pre-treatment Process

Before the process of electroless nickel plating can begin, the surface of the substrate goes through a pre-treatment process. During this process it is cleaned with a series of chemicals which remove oils and other corrosive elements from the surface of the metal.

Activation of the Substrate

Once the substrate has been cleaned sufficiently, it can be activated with an acid etch or proprietary solution which prepares the surface for a deposit of the plating material.

Corrosion Resistant Coating

Once the plating process has been carried out, the electroless nickel coating has the result of making the component highly corrosion resistant. A coating of this type will provide superior corrosion protection in a number of environments where corrosion resistance is necessary for the longevity of the part and protection of the component. Electroless nickel acts as a barrier coating that protects the substrate underneath by providing a pore free barrier coating against the corrosive environment.

Choosing an EN Coating Based on the Nature of the Corrosive Environment

When selecting a type of electroless nickel coating for optimum performance, it’s important to consider the nature of the corrosive environment and the deposit’s resistance to corrosion through environmental factors.

Optimising the Performance of Electroless Nickel Coatings

In order for the performance of electroless nickel coatings to be optimised for maximum corrosion protection, the coating must provide a number of properties. For example, the electroless nickel coating must be continuous and free of any microporosity, roughness, nodules and irregularities within the microstructure.

UK Based Metal Finishing and Metal Hardening Company

For more information about electroless nickel plating and how it can be used to provide superior corrosion resistance, please visit the Nitec website, call our friendly staff for advice on +44 (0)845 224 3571 or email web@nitec-enp.co.uk

New Ultra-Large Electroless Nickel Plating Line at NiTEC UK

roller for packaging industryWe are pleased to announce the installation of a new, ultra-large plating line at our metal finishing and plating factory in Chesterfield, Derbyshire. This will be our 6th nickel line and has been designed to accommodate very large pieces of up to 12 metres long and 3 metres high.

World’s Largest Electroless Nickel Plating Tank

Commercial Director of NiTEC UK, Marcus Hill said: “Due to the increasing demand for a nickel plating line that can take very large components, we have met the needs of our customers with exactly that. The new nickel plating line will adhere to our usual high standards of quality and safety, and will mean that size will never be a limit for plated parts. We believe that we now have the largest electroless nickel plating tank in the world, with the capacity to plate items 12 metres in length.”

Expansion of Production Capacity

2014 was a busy year for NiTEC UK when we closed the deal on a funding boost that allowed us to expand our nickel plating services. As leaders in the market place for providers of electroless nickel plating services, we were really pleased to be able to expand our capabilities and production capacity. And this new, large nickel plating line will expand our services even further!

Metal Finishing Services at NiTEC UK

Here at NiTEC UK, we have more than 30 years of experience specialising in the electroless nickel plating process and we also offer a variety of other surface treatments. Just last year, we expanded our services to include nickel PTFE plating, nickel diamond plating, tin plating and nickel boron plating, in addition to our already well established services of diffused nickel plating, copper plating and electroless nickel plating.

All our line staff are time served in their own disciplines, meaning that every job is managed by personnel with a knowledge and understanding of the specialist process of electroless nickel plating. For more information, please call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

How to Choose the Perfect Electroless Nickel Coating for your Needs

electroless nickel composite coatingThere are a variety of considerations to be addresses before you can decide which type of electroless nickel plating will best suit the specifications of your metal plating requirements.

 

What Will the Part Be Used For?

One of the first considerations when choosing a plating method is the industrial application of the part. By determining what it will be used for, a list of requirements or traits that are needed from the metal coating can be established. For example, does the part require conductivity, or good adhesion properties?

What Sort of Environment Will it Function In?

The characteristics of the environment that the component will be used in should be considered before a decision is made on the type of metal coating that would be most appropriate. Corrosion resistance will be an important factor here, and determining the quantity of atmospheric testing that is needed for the required function is imperative.

How Hard Does it Need to Be?

The required hardness of the coating needs to be quantified in order to establish which type of electroless nickel coating would be most appropriate. Our hardness testing facilities use the Vickers hardness test to ensure that parts meet the required specifications.

Types of Electroless Nickel Coatings

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of electroless nickel coating types to suit a variety of applications including the following:

  • High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating
  • Medium Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating
  • Low Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating
  • Electroless Nickel PTFE Plating
  • Nickel Boron Plating
  • Nickel Diamond Plating

Electroless Nickel Plating Company

As experts in the process of elecrtroless nickel plating, the experienced professionals at NiTEC will be able to talk you through a series of questions in order to determine which one would best suit your needs. Call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

Top 3 Benefits of High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel

The phosphorus content in an electroless nickel coating is a key component in the determination of the properties of that coating. There are varying levels of phosphorus content, and each provides unique properties. High phosphorus electroless nickel typically contains a phosphorus content of between 10-12%, making it ideal for applications where a uniform, hard and highly corrosion resistant coating is required. Here are the top 3 benefits of a high phosphorus electroless nickel coating.

Hardness

Electroless nickel coatings with a high phosphorus content offers high levels of hardness and a lack of porosity, which makes it an ideal barrier coating for components, especially those that are used in hostile environments or are subject to aggressive use. The as-plated hardness of electroless nickel is approximately 48-52 Rc, but it can be heat treated to 68-70 Rc for a more wear resistant finish.

Corrosion Resistance

High phosphorus electroless nickel coatings are recommended where the maximum level of corrosion protection is needed. This makes it ideal for industry standards requiring protection from highly corrosive acidic environments such as oil drilling and coal mining.

Uniformity

nickel plating technical figureThe process of high phosphorus electroless nickel plating involves a chemical reaction, rather than electricity which is used in electroplating. Electroplating often produces a number of unwanted effects such as edge build up, uneven thickness, no plating in corners and recesses etc.

But electroless nickel plating, on the other hand, guarantees full coverage that is so uniform that the surface finish is normally duplicated. This also eliminates the need for post plate grinding or polishing. Even complex shapes such as threads keep their original geometry after plating.

Other advantages of high phosphorus electroless nickel are as follows:

  • Low porosity
  • Non-magnetic
  • Less prone to staining
  • Pit-free deposits
  • Fast deposition rate throughout life
  • Consistent deposition rate throughout life
  • Very stable and robust

Corrosion Resistant Metal Coating

If you are looking for a highly effective corrosion resistant metal coating, high phosphorus electroless nickel is a great solution. Call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

7 Advantages of Electroless Nickel Coatings

For engineers looking to protect parts from wear, friction and corrosion, electroless nickel plating offers a range of advantages.

1. Effective Barrier Coating

Electroless nickel coatings are often less porous than electroplated nickel and hard chrome, providing an effective barrier of corrosion protection to steel. It can also be applied with none or little compressive stress, therefore making it gentle in application.

electroless nickel plating company uk2. Hardness

Electroless nickel coatings can reach up to 1000 VHN with the appropriate heat treatment and provide an excellent hard coating for light metals.

3. Wear Resistance

This type of coating has excellent wear resistance properties, and can, therefore, extend the life of a part or component. As parts can be used for longer, plating components with electroless nickel means that money can be saved on repairs and replacements, and the impact on the environment can be reduced.

4. Uniform Deposit

The process of electroless nickel plating provides flexibility of thickness and volume of the plating on metal surfaces. It can also be used to easily fill recesses or pits in the metal surface, resulting in a uniform deposit and surface finish. This means that a wide variety of industrial parts can be plated, including oil field valves, pumps, drive shafts, electrical and mechanical tools, and engineering equipment etc. The uniformity of electroless nickel coatings also means that close tolerances can be adhered to.

5. Natural Lubricity

Electroless nickel plating has natural lubricity, and has excellent release and anti-galling properties.

6. No Electricity Needed

Electroless nickel plating does not need any electricity; therefore the process can be completed in a more controlled environment with less equipment than traditional electroplating.

7. Cost Effective

Electroless nickel plating is a much more cost effective way of plating metal, requiring fewer coats to produce a strong, high quality coating. Also, the reduction in equipment and time needed for the process in comparison to electroplating makes it an efficient, cost effective process. Electroless nickel plated mild steel is also an excellent replacement for more expensive materials.

UK Based Electroless Nickel Plating Company

For more information about electroless nickel plating and how it can be used to benefit your business, visit the Nitec website, call our friendly staff for advice on +44 (0)845 224 3571 or email web@nitec-enp.co.uk

UK Aircraft Engine Blade Casting Facility Opened by Rolls-Royce

aircraft blade engine crafting facilityAs experts in metal finishes and plating techniques used in the aerospace industry, we were delighted to read the news about the new £110 million advanced blade casting facility which has been opened nearby in Rotherham. Rolls-Royce have opened the 50,000ft² facility, which is expected to produce more than 100,000 single crystal turbine blades a year, including high pressure (HP) and intermediate pressure (IP) single crystal blades.

New Technology and Modern Manufacturing Processes

Rolls-Royce plan to open the facility in 2017, and it is estimated to bring 150 new jobs into the region. Matthew Hancock, who is the UK Minister of State at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said: “This new facility will house the most advanced blade casting facility in the world, and is a truly remarkable feat of engineering. Our aerospace growth partnership has put in place a long-term industrial strategy for the whole aerospace industry, and this investment by Rolls-Royce in new technology and modern manufacturing processes is testament to the ongoing strength of this sector.”

The facility will make use of the manufacturing methods that have already been developed within Rolls-Royce and at the Coventry based Manufacturing Centre. The facility will include automated manufacturing techniques, including integrated wax fabrication lines, 3D structured light inspection and computed tomography (CT).

Turbine Blades for Trent, Rolls-Royce and Airbus

The new plant will produce turbine blades which will be used in various Trent aero engines, Rolls-Royce Trent XWB, which will power Airbus A350 XWB. Each Trent XWB engine requires 182 HP and IP turbine blades, which are 10cm in height and 300g in weight, and undergo 200 processes before being installed. The blades operate at temperatures of up to 200°, and are placed in a disc that rotates at over 12,000rpm. The turbine extracts energy from the engine’s combustor hot gas stream, and uses it to drive the fan and compressors.

UK Based Metal Plating Services

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services. Our high quality electroless nickel plating service is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive andaerospace industries. For more information, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

How to Get the Best Results from Electroless Nickel Plating

Electroless nickel plating specialistsElectroless nickel plating is a cost effective and high quality solution to protecting metals from corrosion and increasing their life span. Nickel coatings have a variety of fantastic properties from wear resistance to hardness, making it a popular choice of metal plating for the defence, automotive, aerospace and healthcare industries.

However, electroless nickel plating is quite a complicated process that involves precision and careful execution. As experts in the process, we’ve put together a few top tips that will ensure that the best results are achieved during the process of nickel plating.

Continuous Monitoring of the Plating Solution

For the electroless nickel plating process to be effective, the chemicals in the plating bath need to be of a precise balance. This requires continuous monitoring of the plating solution to ensure that the chemicals a replenished sufficiently.

Filtration of the Plating Bath

In order to remove insoluble materials that can cause substrate roughness, the plating bath needs to be filtered continuously.

Correct Preparation of Parts

Components should be chemically pre-treated and rinsed thoroughly before the plating process to ensure that any surface contaminants are removed. There are other mechanical finishing techniques that can also be used to prepare the surface of the part for electroless nickel plating and improve the condition of the service, for example shot blasting.

Plating Bath Temperature Control

The temperature of the nickel plating bath needs to be monitored closely throughout the plating process. If the temperature is too low, it will have the effect of lengthening the plating process and in extreme cases may prevent the metal coating from depositing properly. If the temperature is too high on the other hand, the speed of the deposition will be speeded up beyond a level that is optimum for quality, and may result in the substrate blistering.

Bath Water Purity

Any impurities in the water used for the EN bath can result in unacceptable plating results. The water should be free of metal ions, particulates or other foreign matter.

UK Electroless Nickel Plating Service

Contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk to talk through your electroless nickel plating requirements and see how NiTEC can provide high quality processes at a cost to suit your business.

Corrosion Resistant Coatings for Marine Environments

Rusty mining equipment

Mining equipment suffering from rust and corrosion

Corrosion can be a big problem for parts and machinery operating in marine environments. Mild steel is commonly used for marine applications due to its strength, ease of fabrication and relatively cheap price.

The only problem is, it corrodes very easily when exposed to seawater. So when mild steel isn’t protected by a corrosion resistant layer or barrier, it quickly loses its strength and can, therefore, result in failure of parts.

What is Corrosion?

Corrosion is the gradual destruction of materials by chemical reaction with their environment. It is the oxidisation of the metal at the interface between the metal and the environment, and the reaction results in the degradation of the mechanical properties of the metal. Corrosion is dependent on many factors, including oxygen concentration, pH, water temperature and the presence of dissolved salts such as chloride, sulphate and sulphites.

Pitting Corrosion

Pitting corrosion is a type of corrosion that occurs on mild steel in a localised fashion. The steel penetration can be very deep in relation to the area under attack, and it is therefore one of the most dangerous types of corrosion.

Bacterial Corrosion

Bacterial corrosion can also be referred to as micro-biological corrosion or anaerobic (without oxygen) corrosion. This type of corrosion is likely to happen if the environment that the metal is exposed to supports bacterial activity. For bacterial corrosion to occur, there must be stagnant water, a hydrocarbon food source e.g. oil or coatings, the presence of sulphates, an operating temperature of between 20 – 40C, and the presence of bacteria.

Corrosion Prevention Using Metal Coatings

The prevention of corrosion requires the elimination or suppression of the chemical reaction between the environment and the metal. One way of preventing this reaction is by applying a metal coating to the surface of the substrate, and the effectiveness of the coating depends on factors including the type of coating used, the operating environment and the coating type.

SeaTEC 100 Marine Corrosion Protection

Here at NiTEC, we have developed a corrosion resistant metal coating that effectively protects mild steel from salt spray corrosion and marine corrosion for an extensive period of time. For more information about SeaTEC 100 and its ability to extend the life of parts exposed to subsea conditions, please contact the expert team at NiTEC by calling 0845 224 3571 or email us at web@nitec-enp.co.uk.

5 Reasons to Use Nickel Boron Plating as an Alternative to Chrome Plating

Nickel boron plating

 

Nickel boron plating is a great alternative to chrome plating for a variety of reasons. As experts in the process of electroless nickel boron plating, we’ve put together a list of the top 5 reasons to use nickel boron instead of chrome plating.

1. Can be Applied to a Variety of Metals

Nickel boron coating can be applied to a variety of metals including steel, aluminium, stainless steel and nickel alloys, copper alloys cobalt alloys and titanium.

2. Nickel Boron is Resistant to Fretting and Galling

One of the biggest advantages of nickel boron is its superior resistance to fretting and galling. Galling is a form of wear that is caused by the adhesion between two sliding surfaces, and fretting refers to wear and corrosion damage at the asperities of contact surfaces.

3. No Electric Current Required

The process of electroless nickel boron plating does not need an electrical current; therefore the coating deposition rates are fully controllable and produce incredibly accurate and consistent tolerances. So even on sharp corners, edges, flat surfaces, as well as blind holes, threads, channels, recesses and internal areas of all shapes and sizes, the result is exactly the same.

4. No Need for Post Plate Grinding

Nickel boron coatings mirror the surface profile of the substrate, therefore little or no post-plate grinding or burnishing is needed.

5. Nodular Surface Structure

The surface of nickel boron is typically nodular; therefore the structure allows it to dissipate heat efficiently due to the greater surface area. The nodular structure of nickel boron also reduces drag in aerodynamics and fluids when applied to components such as ship propellers, down-hole crude oil pumping equipment, bushings, thrust washers,  automotive and truck transmissions, guide plates for paper handling equipment and greaseless guns.

UK Nickel Boron Plating Specialists

To find out more about our nickel boron plating service as well as a range of our other metal plating and metal finishing services, call NiTEC on 08452243571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk.

 

5 Reasons to Choose Electroless Nickel Over Stainless Steel

electroless nickel plated componentDespite its name, stainless steel is not really fully stain proof. It doesn’t corrode, rust or stain easily with water as ordinary steel would do. But under conditions where there are low levels of oxygen, high levels of salt or poor circulation, stainless steel will stain and even corrode.

As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating, we have put together a list of 5 reasons why we feel that nickel plating components is a better choice than manufacturing them from stainless steel.

Superior Hardness and Corrosion Resistance

Stainless steel can be used in environments where corrosion resistance is important and where the levels of hardness of the metal are also important. However, electroless nickel plating mild steel can achieve the same effect, with properties of hardness and corrosion resistance actually exceeding the benefits offered by stainless steel.

Nickel Plating is Cheaper than Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is a lot more expensive than mild steel or cast iron that has been electroless nickel plated. It is far more cost effective to electroless nickel plate parts made of mild steel or cast iron for the ultimate levels of corrosion resistance.

Meet Engineering Specifications

Electroless nickel plating can be carried out to exceptionally high levels of quality so that it meets required engineering specifications. This means that you will have the peace of mind that your plated components will last indefinitely, effectively protected from corrosion and wear for years to come.

For more information about how we can fulfill your nickel plating requirements, or for advice on using electroless nickel plating an as alternative to stainless steel, please visit the Nitec website, or call our friendly team of staff on 0845 224 3571

NiTEC Complete Undercoat for 24-Carat Gold Plated Men’s Racing Bike

Here at NiTEC UK, we’ve had our fair share of exciting plating projects. But this recent job was particularly unusual, not to mention absolutely beautiful. We recently worked in conjunction with a London based gold-plating and customization brand called Goldgenie, undercoating a men’s racing bike with a layer of nickel before the final 24 carat gold coat was applied. Electroless nickel plating provided the perfect anti-rusting and anti-corrosion properties to support the gold exterior, of which almost every inch of the bicycle is now plated, including its chain, handlebars and spokes!

As you can see from the photos, the result is just amazing. As a metal plating company we have had the pleasure of nickel plating a great many components and objects, including bikes, sculptures and garden ornaments. But this was something else; the finished effect was just stunning and we were delighted to have been involved in such a unique project.

£250,000 Price Tag

The men’s racing bicycle has been coated in a layer of 24 carat gold, and will set you back a huge £250,000. “Striking to look at, the bike is even more beautiful when in fluid motion, as the spinning spokes catch the sunlight and ripples along the golden frame,” Goldgenie say on their website.

An Amazing Piece of Moveable Sculpture

Frank Fernando, director of Goldgenie, told the Daily Mail: ‘It’s the most amazing piece of movable sculpture in the world. This particular bike comes in at just under £250,000 but we as a company embellish and diamond encrust, which is what my intentions are with this bike to the requirements of any potential customer.”

About Goldgenie

Since being founded in 1995, Goldgenie have established themselves as the go-to customization service for a number of organisations which include Lexus, Honda, Toyota and Nokia. They now have a reputation as being a global leader in the support of ethical mining. Goldgenie’s range of luxury gifts also include gold-plated iPhones, Beats by Dre headphones studded with Swarovski crystals and a 24-carat gold replica of James Bond’s signature Walther PPK handgun!

Corrosion Resistant Undercoat

For more information about using nickel plating as a corrosion resistant undercoat, call our friendly team on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk for more information.

Top 3 Benefits of Applying Corrosion Resistant Coatings

Corrosion resistant coatings are incredibly useful in a variety of industries; from aerospace and defence to engineering and automotive. They are able to effectively protect metal parts and components against corrosion, which may include degradation due to moisture, oxidation, salt spray and exposure to a range of industrial or environmental chemicals.

electroless nickel plated componentOur metal plating experts at NiTEC UK use a variety of different anti-corrosion coatings depending on the specification and requirements of the customer. This allows for the added protection of metal surfaces and has the advantage of acting as a barrier that will inhibit the contact between the chemical compound of the component and the corrosive material that it is exposed to.

Of course, many of the coatings we offer are not exclusively corrosion resistant; many also offer the qualities of abrasion resistance, chemical protection and non-stick performance.

Resistant to Harsh Chemicals and Extreme Temperatures

Corrosion resistant coatings such as electroless nickel plating and nickel PTFE are resistant to environmental and industrial chemicals, as well as extreme temperatures.

Extended Life Span of Components

One of the major benefits of corrosion resistant coatings is their ability to extend the lifespan of components, ensuring that parts have the longest service time possible.

Servicing Costs Reduced

As parts last longer, the costs of servicing components can be reduced significantly. Downtime as a result of corroded parts is severely reduced or avoided altogether. The use of a corrosion resistant coating means that the costs of repairing, replacing or maintaining parts can be dramatically reduced or avoided altogether.

If you are looking for metal coatings that have outstanding levels of  corrosion resistance, electroless NiTEC UK have the perfect solution. Call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Benefits of Corrosion Resistant Marine Coatings for Sub-Sea Components

As experts in a variety of corrosion resistant coatings, NiTEC UK have extensive experience in the oil and gas industry. Our metal finishing specialists understand the hostile environments and challenges that are presented by this industry, which is why we have taken the time and effort to develop a coating solution that has been specifically designed to address corrosion problems that arise in this area.

Increase the Lifespan of Sub-Sea Components

Corrosion resistant coatings are a great way of increasing the lifespan of subsea components within the oil and gas sector. Our metal coatings and metal finishing services have been designed and developed to address the wear, abrasion and deep sea corrosion issues that critical components are exposed to during their lifespan.

SeaTEC100 Marine Coating for Corrosion Resistance

seatec marine corrosion resistant metal coatingNiTEC UK’s SeaTEC100 can extend the life of mild steel operating in marine environments, and it is a very cost effective way of doing so.

Developed and tested by our specialist team, this product is able to protect mild steel from salt spray corrosion for an unprecedented length of time. Perfect for use in sub-sea conditions, SeaTEC100 increases the strength of items such as pipeline connectors, where the material is at its weakest level.

Protecting Mild Steel in Marine Environments

SeaTEC100 can effectively plate metal components, valves and connectors, making it the ideal plating for oil rigs and pipes used to transport oil and gas. This coating has also been tested to withstand salt spray conditions for over 25,000 hours, longer than any other coating has been tested for within the industry with positive results.

For more information about using our metal plating services and SeaTEC 100 to extend the life of parts exposed to subsea conditions, please contact the expert team at NiTEC by calling 0845 224 3571 or email us at web@nitec-enp.co.uk. Alternatively, you can visit the Nitec website for more information.

Top 5 Industries Using Electroless Nickel Plating

offshore oilrigElectroless nickel is an incredibly useful plating technique. Its advantages include corrosion resistance, uniformity of coating, and wear resistance, which are desirable attributes to a number of industries and applications. Here at NiTEC, we’ve put together a selection of the top 5 industries using electroless nickel plating as a coating, including application examples.

The Oil and Gas Industry

Components used in the oil and gas industry, especially those that are exposed to off shore environments, demand a very high level of protection and corrosion resistance. Electroless nickel plated components for pipelines and valves within this field have been used successfully for years. Electroless nickel plating on steel has excellent resistance in marine environments.

Engineering

Electroless nickel deposits are great for protecting components made of steel, aluminium, brass and alloys from abrasive and corrosive wear. As long as the plating solution can circulate freely in order to come into contact with all surfaces, it’s possible to achieve a specified thickness and even coating on the even the most complicated shaped components.

The Automotive Industry

Applications for electroless nickel plating are in abundance within the automotive industry due to electroless nickel plating’s good corrosion and abrasion resistance. For example, the plates of a viscous clutch can be coated, the parts for ABS systems can be nickel plated, as well as fuel injection pumps and carburettors.

The Textile Industry

Electroless nickel plated components are frequently used in the textile industry. Electroless nickel plating is very hard and has a high level of abrasion resistance. Therefore, heat treated deposits of electroless nickel and the use of composite coatings are perfect for extending the working life of parts that are in contact with fast moving textile products.

The Chemical Industry

Electroless nickel coatings are suitable for many applications in the chemical industry. This is because the coating is resistant to a wide variety of chemicals. It is often possible to use electroless nickel plating as a substitute for stainless steel. For example, it can be used for stirrers, valves, reaction tanks and covers.

UK Based Electroless Nickel Plating

Our high quality electroless nickel plating service is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the engineering, automotive and oil and gas industries. For more information, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Electroless Nickel Plated Steel for The Darwin Centre at The Natural History Museum

Although this isn’t a recent project for our electroless nickel plating specialists at NiTEC UK, it’s definitely worth talking about on our blog! We were involved in a very exciting project in conjunction with The Natural History Museum and the development of their new extension, The Darwin Centre.

the natural history museumThis building consists of a glass structure attached to the famous London museum, and stores vast collections and housing new laboratories for scientists with ‘behind the scenes’ access for visitors. Our expertise was required to electroless nickel plate a series of steel ‘spiders’ which would hold the panels of glass together that the extension is constructed from.

Environmental Architecture

Phase I of the project was designed by the architectural firm HOK and completed in September 2002. It includes storage for the Museum’s collection of 22 million zoological specimens stored in spirit, and is a great example of a new wave of environmental architecture.

The 120,000 square feet/ 11,150 square metre building is faced by a large glass solar wall, held together with the electroless nickel plated ‘steel spiders’, and is designed to reduce heat in summer and heat loss in winter. It has a ‘caterpillar’ roof made of recyclable materials, which lets in lots of natural light, and reduces the need for electricity.

HOK used zoomorphic brackets in the solar wall of The Darwin Centre. These are sun-tracking metal louvers which move and change the appearance of the building. The centre also has a triple-skin, caterpillar like inflated roof. HOK used these techniques to reflect the centre’s work and ideals.

The environmental features of The Darwin Centre follow the designer’s wish to re-create ‘architecture parlante’. This is when the external appearance of a building reflects what happens inside, an idea which Alfred Waterhouse practised on the exterior of the main building with his use of animal sculptures. The designers also wanted to provide a visual connection to the main museum building by Waterhouse. It therefore incorporates terracotta, and the steel frame echoes the blue terracotta of the Victorian building.

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

As experts in electroless nickel plating and various other metal plating techniques, we have carried out a number of special projects in the fields of architecture, sculpture and engineering. For more information about our services, please visit our metal finishing website, call us on 0845 224 3571 or Email: info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Specialist Electroless Nickel Coatings for the Automotive Industry

brake caliper nickel plating

As experts in corrosion resistant coatings, NiTEC UK have developed a range of metal plating techniques and finishes that enhance the performance and aesthetics of parts used in the automotive industry.

Our advanced metal coatings have lead to us being trusted by worldwide automotive manufacturers, and we regularly plate components used by leading makers of cars.

Increase the Corrosion Resistance of Brake Calipers with Electroless Nickel Plating

As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating, NiTEC UK regularly plate arguably the most important part of a cars’ brake part; the brake calipers. High performance brake calipers are a key part of a modern car, and nickel is excellent for protecting steel, so is the perfect coating for applications of this sort.

As brake calipers are a necessity to allow your vehicle to stop, it is essential for them to be hard wearing and long lasting. Brake calipers are a vital part of your vehicle’s breaking system as they squeeze the brake pads against the surface of the brake rotor to slow or stop the vehicle.

Most cars on the road today have disk brakes. In a disc-braking system the car’s wheels are attached to metal discs, or rotors, that spin along with the wheels. The job of the brake calipers is to slow down the wheels of the car by creating friction with the rotors. It fits over the rotor like a clamp, and inside it is a pair of metal plates which have been bonded with friction material called brake pads.

Anti-Corrosion Coatings for High Performance Brake Calipers

nickel plated brake caliperNickel plating is the perfect solution to creating hard wearing, corrosion resistant brake calipers, and is a very effective way of coating and protecting steel.

Brake calipers are also exposed to difficult environments, for example heat, cold, summer, winter, snow and salt. Therefore, a corrosion resistant coating on these parts is very important to ensure the longevity of the cars braking system.

For more information about the variety of coating that we provide, including electroless nickel plating and nickel PTFE plating for the automotive industry, please contact us on

Electroless Plating Vs Electroplating: Which is Best?

As experts in the metal plating process, the staff at NiTEC regularly carry out the process using a variety of metals, namely nickel. We use electroless plating methods, but electroplating is also an option when it comes to plating metals. Here is a comprehensive explanation of both processes, so that you can make an informed decision on the right technique for you and your requirements.

Metal Coatings Applied Using the Electroplating Process

copper electroplatingThe process of electroplating uses an electric current to reduce dissolved metal cations so that they form a metal coating on an electrode. When current is applied to the component, it shifts the chemical composition and delivers the coating to the surface, depositing a thin layer of metal onto a metal object or component.

Multiple applications are sometimes necessary to create plating of a specific thickness. This layer can be used to provide corrosion or wear resistance, to build up worn or undersized parts, or for decorative purposes. Electroplating involves potentially dangerous equipment in order to work, and also requires clean conditions and careful procedures.

A common system involves a chemical solution with the ionic form of the metal, a positively charged anode, which may consist of the metal being plated (a soluble anode) or an insoluble anode (usually carbon, platinum, titanium, lead, or steel), and finally, a negatively charged cathode where electrons are supplied to produce a film of non-ionic metal.

Metal Coatings Applied Using the Electroless Plating Process

Electroless plating, which is also known as chemical or auto-catalytic plating, is a non-galvanic plating method that involves several simultaneous reactions in an aqueous solution. They key difference between electroless plating and electroplating is that electroless plating occurs without the use of external electrical power.

The reaction that takes place during the electroless plating process happens when hydrogen is released by a reducing agent, normally sodium hypophosphite, and oxidised, therefore providing a negative charge on the surface of the part. The component is treated with chemicals to remove oils and other corrosive elements first, and is then activated with an acid etch or proprietary solution. The application of anti-oxidation chemicals completes the process, leaving the component with high levels of resistance to corrosion and friction.

Which is Best?

For the process of electroplating to be carried out successfully, it requires complex filtration equipment and possibly dangerous battery applications. Electroless plating, on the other hand, uses no extra equipment. The chemicals can be replenished automatically, and the engineers exercise more control over the deposition process which results in a smooth, even application of the nickel plating. It is also possible to vary the thickness and volume of the plating to exact standards and specifications.

UK Electroless Nickel Plating Specialists

If you are looking for a quality company specialising in the process of electroless nickel plating, look no further than NiTEC. Talk to a member of our friendly team on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk for more information.

The History of Electroless Nickel Plating

The process of plating metal, including nickel plating, has been used to strengthen metal against corrosion and wear for hundreds of years. It has also been used to enhance the appearance of metal, which otherwise may be quite dull and not so pleasing on the eye. There are various methods of plating that have been used over the years, and still are today, including electric and chemical methods of dispersing the layer of metal coating onto a substrate.

An Historical Overview of Electroless Nickel Plating

The electroless nickel plating of metallic nickel from an aqueous solution in the presence of hypophosphite first occurred as a chemical accident by Wurtz in 1844. Progress in the field of electroless nickel plating didn’t progress much until after World War Two, when in 1946, Brenner and Riddell developed a process for plating the inner walls of tubes with nickel-tungsten alloy, which was derived from the citrate based bath using an insoluble anode, bringing out the unusual reducing properties of hypophosphite.

An Alternative Process to Conventional Electroplating

early electro platingDuring the 1954-59 period, Gutzeit at GATC (General American Transportation Corporation) worked on full scale development of electroless plating by chemical reduction alone, as an alternate process to conventional electroplating.

A study was then conducted in 1966, in which the co-deposition of particles was carried out for electrodepositing Ni-Cr by Odekerken. The study revealed that an intermediate layer consisting of finely powdered particles such as aluminium oxide and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) resin were distributed within a metallic matrix.

This meant that a layer in the electroless coating was composite, but that other parts of it were not. The first commercial application of their work occurred in 1981, when they used the electroless Ni-SiC coatings on the wankel internal combustion engine and another commercial composite incorporating polytetrafluoroethylene (Ni-P-PTFE).

The Co-Deposition of Diamond and PTFE Particles in Electroless Nickel Plating

The co-deposition of diamond and PTFE particles was proven to be more difficult, and The feasibility to incorporate the fine second phase particles, in submicron to nano size, within a metal/alloy matrix has initiated a new generation of composite coatings.

Composite Coatings of Electroless Nickel

Here at NiTEC UK, we provide a number of electroless nickel composite coatings including nickel diamond plating, nickel PTFE and nickel boron. For more information about the composite nickel coatings offered by NiTEC UK, contact us on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk. Our staff will formulate the right solution for your application, providing advanced nickel composite plating services to meet your needs.

6 Reasons to Use Electroless Nickel Plating for Engineering Applications

Electroless nickel plating is an incredibly functional finish that can offer massive advantages in the field of engineering. As experts in the process, we’ve put together our top 4 advantages of electroless nickel plating, which we feel prove that this method is superior over conventional plating processes.

nickel plating technical figure1. Uniform Deposition of Electroless Nickel

Electroless nickel coatings provide a uniform deposition on the surface of the component.

2. Strong, Chip Free Coating

With electroless nickel plating, there is no need to worry about the strength of the coating.

Electroless nickel coatings do not chip, peel, flake or rub off like some coatings do, such as paints and lacquers. It can also be applied on its own without any other pre-surface treatments.

3. The Ability to Plate Irregular Shapes

In addition to the uniform deposit of electroless nickel, it is also able to plate irregular shapes uniformly. This means that should a part have recesses and crevices, the coating will be deposited on these parts evenly, regardless of the shape.

4. Heat Treatment to Increase Hardness

Another advantage of electroless nickel coatings is that they can be treated with heat in order to further increase the level of hardness of the deposit.

5. Corrosion and Erosion Barrier

Electroless nickel provides a barrier against corrosion and erosion in especially demanding applications in the marine and offshore industry, and the petroleum industry.

6. Release Properties

Electroless nickel coatings also provide exceptional release properties due to its anti-stick surface. This self lubrication also reduces the wear of a component, which means that there is very little coating weight loss from friction between parts.

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services. Our high quality electroless nickel plating service is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries. For more information, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

UK’s Largest Electroless Nickel Plating Tanks at NiTEC UK

As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating, NiTEC UK have the largest electroless nickel plating tanks in the UK.

Pre-Treatment for Electroless Nickel Plating

Before a component can be electroless nickel plated, it must be suitably prepared for the process. Firstly, the part is cleaned in a series of pre-treatment tanks and rinsed in water. It then enters the coating tank which is heated to a critical temperature above 90C and contains the plating solution made up of the nickel-phosphorus alloy and a reducing agent.

electroless nickel plating lineThe thickness of the coating that is deposited is dependent on the immersion time, and the phosphorus content of the solution governs its hardness and corrosion resistance.

In order to achieve the maximum thickness achievable, the part needs to be in the plating tank for approximately 9-10 hours, during which time the solution is agitated and continuously re-circulated to prevent debris being incorporated into the coating. The total contents of the tank will be filtered and re-circulated within 10 minutes.

There are three levels of phosphorus in solution that are typically used, each of them having different benefits and attributes.

 

Low Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

A low phosphorus electroless nickel coating typically contains 2.5% phosphorus. This produces a very uniform porous free coating which uniformly covers the complete surface of the component, including inside recesses. It has excellent corrosion resistance in alkaline conditions, but the coating is relatively soft, below 235VPN, and is therefore not particularly wear resistant.

Medium Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

Medium phosphorus solutions contain between 6 and 10% phosphorus and produce a coating which effectively combines intermediate hardness with good corrosion resistance. Medium phosphorus coatings deposit rapidly and produce a bright or semi-bright coating.

High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

High phosphorus coatings contain between 11-14% phosphorus and produce hard coatings of up to 600VPN. This level of hardness is ideal for wear resistant applications in harsh acid environments typical of the conditions experienced in oil and gas drilling or mining applications. The high phosphorus level also renders them non-ferromagnetic and hence suitable for coating, for example, austenitic stainless steels, for applications where ferro-magnetism cannot be toleration such as MRI scanners. Such hard coatings are also used on stainless steel to improve its galling resistance in wear situations.

Electroless Nickel Plating Service

Contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk to talk through your electroless nickel plating requirements and see how NiTEC can provide high quality processes at a cost to suit your business.

New Aerospace Project Could Revolutionise the Design and Manufacture of Aircraft Wings

A group of 13 partners have been chosen to take part in a new £30 million research programme which could revolutionise the design and manufacture of aircraft wings.

Aerospace Technology Institute Backing

aeroplane-wingBacked by the UK’s Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), the VIEWS (Validation and Integration of Manufacturing Enablers for Future Wing Structures) programme will develop wing design, manufacture and assembly technologies so that they are near to being ready for use in the aerospace market.

In addition, they will select some other novel technologies that may be suitable for further development in the future.

Partners of the VIEWS Programme

Partners of the VIEWS programme include the Universities of Nottingham, Bath, Bristol and Sheffield Hallam; as well as five of the UK’s high value manufacturing catapult centres: the National Composites Centre, the Manufacturing Technology Centre, the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (the University of Sheffield),the Warwick Manufacturing Group (the University of Warwick) and the Advanced Forming Research Centre (the University of Strathclyde). The four industrial partners involved are as follows: GKN Aerospace, Bombardier Aerospace, Spirit AeroSystems, and GE Aviation.

Aircraft Wing Architecture

The programme will be based on technologies emerged from the structures technology maturity (STeM) research programme and will indentify tools and other manufacturing requirements to produce wing architectures and improve the process design and flow of production. It will also study inspection and repair tools and progress various composite and metallic manufacturing and assembly processes.

GKN Aerospace technical director Rich Oldfield said: “STeM saw us make valuable progress and VIEWS will work from that base, taking us nearer to market readiness with a new generation of automated processes and technologies that will extend what we in the UK are able to manufacture, at the same time as increasing the quality, consistency and speed of production.”

Metal Finishing Services for the Aerospace Industry

Here at NiTEC UK, our metal plating services are widely used in the aerospace industry for everything from aircraft engine mounts to aircraft control systems. For more information, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Beat Friction and Wear with Slippery Nickel PTFE

The problems of friction and wear on metal components can inhibit their efficiency and reduce their lifespan. Conventional lubricants can be harmful to some components, so unfortunately they are not always an option. However, the composite coating of electroless nickel PTFE can solve this problem, as the coating is actually slicker than the best self lubricating materials!

Durable Dry Lubrication with Anti-galling Requirements

nickel ptfe plated componentNi-PTFE has fantastic qualities of low friction wear and self lubrication, which make it the perfect choice for sliding wear applications where friction and wear on parts can be a problem.

The hardness of electroless nickel coupled with the low friction release properties of PTFE make it an ideal composite coating for components and assemblies where conventional lubricants are a problem.

The coating of electroless nickel PTFE is created by adding sub micron particles of PTFE to the plating solution, which are then co-deposited with the electroless nickel. This method ensures that an even distribution of the PTFE particles are deposited throughout the plated layer, and can be varied in the solution to give the performance characteristics required depending on what the final plated component will be used for.

Applications of Electroless Nickel PTFE

Electroless nickel PTFE can be used for a wide variety of applications in a range of industries. The coating is often used in the automotive industry, for example, where components including piston rings, valves, injection nozzles, carburetors, and oil pumps benefit from it. When treated with electroless nickel PTFE coatings, these parts contribute to increased fuel management for vehicles, and also demonstrate corrosion resistance, wear resistance, and tribological properties.

Electroless nickel PTFE is often used to coat pistons in the hydraulics industry, as its properties of corrosion and wear resistance are incredibly useful. It is also commonly used in the aerospace industry to coat connectors, again, improving their corrosion resistance and wear properties. When coated with electroless nickel PTFE, cutting tools and guides used in the textile industry show reduced noise and a longer lifespan.

Electroless Nickel with Polytetrafluoreothylene

If you want to beat friction and wear on metal components, electroless nickel PTFE is the perfect solution. Call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an inquiry.

Common Applications of Electroless Nickel Coatings

Here at NiTEC UK, we have an impressive total of 7 nickel plating lines, making us one of the largest nickel plating providers in Europe. As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating, we’ve put an article together describing the common applications of this unique metal plating service, illustrating its versatility and wide reaching advantages.

Aerospace Components

Electroless nickel plating is commonly used for aerospace components due to its excellent wear resistance, corrosion protection, chemical resistivity and lubricity. These fantastic qualities are perfect for use on valves, pistons, engine shafts, engine mounts, compressor blades and other flight-critical components.

Oil & Gas Components

Nickel plating is used primarily for corrosion protection in the oil and gas industry. It is incredibly effective at protecting parts used in harsh undersea and underground environments, for example on parts such as valves, pumps, and pipe fittings.

Automotive Components

brake caliper nickel platingElectroless nickel plating is commonly used for the purpose of wear protection and corrosion resistance on components such as pistons, cylinders, gears, differential pinon ball shafts, fuel injectors, ball studs, transmission thrust washers, knuckle pins, hose couplings, heat sinks and others.

Food Service Equipment

With its superior corrosion and wear resistance, attractive finish and cleanliness, electroless nickel coatings are perfect for food service equipment.

Electrical Equipment

Electroless nickel is often used for electrical equipment due to its solderability and conductivity properties.

Packaging and Handling Machinery

Electroless nickel is commonly used to plate components used in the packaging and handling machinery due to wear resistance, cleanliness and attractive finish.

Chemical Manufacturing and Transport Equipment

The chemical resistance of electroless nickel coatings makes them ideal for chemical manufacturing and transport equipment.

Molds and Dies

Electroless nickel coatings provide corrosion protection on molds and dies, and also help to minimise erosion and abrasion. Also, their low coefficient of friction improves release.

Plastics Manufacturing Equipment

Nickel plating is a common choice of plating of plastics manufacturing equipment due to its durability and release properties on injection molds and extrusion dies.

Printing Industry Equipment

It is often used for plating components and equipment used in the printing industry due to its excellent abrasion resistance on conveyance and chemical resistance on printer cylinders.

Salvage

Electroless nickel plating is commonly used to salvage old parts. It naturally deposits a very even layer of electroless nickel, therefore is often used to restore parts to their original dimensions, or bring mis-machined parts into tolerance.

Support for Offshore Oil and Gas Industry with New Tax Reform

oil rig north sea uk

The offshore oil and gas industry is facing a radical reform with regard to the way that the industry is taxed.

The UK government plan to move away from their previous focus of maximising revenue for the Treasury, admitting that the new burden of maximising extraction will mean a lower tax burden.

 Economic Benefits “For Years to Come”

The treasury minister announced on Thursday 4th December that this new support for the industry will provide economic benefits for years to come.

These radical reforms will mean that the tax burden on the oil and gas industry will be lower, encouraging investment in the North Sea, and providing significant economic benefits for the UK for the future. The reforms include the implementation of a basin-wide investment allowance, designed to reduce the tax rate for companies investing in the future of the UK Continental Shelf.

Offshore Exploration in the North Sea

This will be in addition to tax concessions announced in the chancellor’s Autumn Statement, which included an immediate cut in the supplementary charge element of offshore tax, from 32% to 30%. There will also be more flexibility in tax allowances for companies that haven’t yet seen an income from their investments. Furthermore, the government has committed to boosting offshore exploration through supporting seismic surveys in under-explored areas of the North Sea.

Reducing the Tax Burden on the Oil and Gas Industry

“The government is demonstrating its long term commitment to supporting the North Sea oil and gas industry with a package of measures expected to drive around £7bn of additional investment,” said MP, Priti Patel. “These measures will reduce the tax burden on the industry, driving investment in the North Sea that will provide economic benefits to the UK for many years to come.”

The changes to the tax regime follow the recent review of the sector by Sir Ian Wood. The review recommended a new regulator, and a requirement that the industry, government and that regulator should be co-operating more closely.

Chief executive of industry body Oil and Gas UK, Malcolm Webb, said: “We are encouraged to note that fiscal policy will now be framed in the context of the sector’s wider economic benefits and will also take account of the global competitiveness of the industry in terms of commodity prices and costs.”

Metal Finishing Services for oil and Gas Applications

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services for both onshore and offshore oil and gas applications. Our revolutionary metal coating SeaTEC100 is a solution to increase the longevity of components used in subsea conditions that protects mild steel from salt spray corrosion and marine corrosion for an extensive period of time. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Friction Free, Self Lubricating Electroless Nickel PTFE Coatings

nickel ptfe plated component

The PTFE composite coating of electroless nickel is known for its self lubricating properties and exceptional resistance to friction.

By combining the high wear resistant hardness, uniform coating and excellent adhesion of electroless nickel with the self lubricating properties of PTFE, it is a perfect surface treatment for components and assemblies that cannot use conventional lubricants.

Prevent Calcium Scale Build Up with PTFE

PTFE plating provides a great release from calcium that is often found in hard water areas. In addition to the corrosion resistance of the plated layer, the common problems of the build up of scale on a component can be avoided. This is especially useful when an electroless nickel PTFE coating is used on food processing equipment, heating elements and spray nozzles, as it prevents the build up of this calcium deposit which could hinder the effectiveness of the equipment.

The Process of Electroless Nickel PTFE Plating

During the process of electroless nickel PTFE plating, a coating is applied that consists of an autocatalytically applied nickel/phosphorus matrix containing submicronic particles of polytetraflouroethylene. PTFE is actually fairly soft in its natural form, but when suspended in nickel, it is very durable.

This means that components with PTFE coatings are hard enough to resist corrosion and abrasion, and also have friction resistance from the PTFE, which ensures that parts have a long working life. This coating also has the benefit of producing a uniform coating which covers all surfaces of the part, even those with especially intricate geometries.

Key Properties for Electroless Nickel PTFE

  • Low Friction
  • Self Lubrication
  • Corrosion Resistance
  • Wear Resistance
  • Uniform Deposit

Typical Applications Electroless Nickel PTFE

  • Food processing equipment
  • Sorting equipment
  • Injection Molds
  • Pump rotors
  • Titanium bearings
  • Heating elements

If you are looking for a metal coating that is self lubricating, corrosion resistant and wear resistant, Ni-PTFE is the perfect solution. Call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an inquiry.

The History of Onshore Oil Extraction in the UK

The History of onshore oil and gas extraction in the UK dates back to the 1850’s. Before the First World War in 1914, the UK got most of its oil and gas from abroad. Oil was first discovered in Scotland in 1851. During the construction of Heathfield rail station in Sussex in 1896, gas was discovered when natural water wells were being dug, which then went on to power the lights for the station.

onshore oil extraction techniqueDuring both the First and Second World Wars, Britain needed to produce its own oil to help the war effort, rather than rely on imports. It was of huge importance to the Government for the UK to be able to do this; therefore legislation was introduced to enable companies to explore for hydrocarbons more easily.

Onshore Drilling and Hydraulic Fracturing

1973 saw Wytch Farm Oilfield in Eastern Dorset opeing, which is now the largest oilfield in western Europe. It is thought that the first hydraulic fracture in the UK was performed at around this time. After the 1979 oil crisis, onshore oil and gas activity rose again to meet the price increase, making production even more important.

In June 2013, The British Geological Survey (BGS) in association with The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) estimated that the area between Wrexham and Blackpool in the west and Nottingham and Scarborough in the east contained 1,329 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of shale gas compared to the annual consumption of natural gas in the UK of just over 3 tcf.

Onshore Oil Wells in the UK

Around 2,000 wells have now been drilled onshore in the UK with about 10% of them having been hydraulically fractured. There are currently around 120 producing sites with c.300 operating wells producing in excess of 20,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day or about 1% of the UK’s consumption.

Surface Technology for the Oil and Gas Industries

As specialists in metal finishing and surface technology for the oil and gas industries, NiTEC offer a full range of services including electroless nickel plating and diffused nickel plating. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

The Use of Electroless Nickel in Valves and Flow Control Devices

Electroless nickel is an excellent choice of surface technology for the oil and gas industry. As discussed in previous blog posts, the properties of elctroless nickel coatings are highly sought after in the industry, including corrosion resistance, uniformity of deposits and abrasion resistance.

Electroless Nickel and Mild Steel Ball Valves

electroless nickel plated valve ballsThese properties have resulted in the widespread use of electroless nickel coatings in valves and flow control devices, which are critical components in the operation of a well where good performance and long life are major economic factors.

The application of electroless nickel to mild steel ball valves is now typical in the oil and gas industry, replacing hard chromium as a corrosion resistant, smooth and uniform coating.

Successful applications of electroless nickel have been observed in all areas of the oil and gas industry. In crude oil production, mild steel ball valves have a maximum life of no more than three months, and fail due to corrosion, surface cracking and erosion. But valve components plated with electroless nickel last for years with no surface deterioration.

Similar benefits have also been observed on ball valves at plants using the sea water injection system which involves pumping sea water under high pressure to force oil to the surface. With a coating of electroless nickel, the valves withstand the conditions and no degradation is detectable after years of operation.

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

For more information about electroless nickel plating and its use in the oil and gas industry, or to make an enquiry about using electroless nickel for this type of application, call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Electroless Nickel Plating and It’s Use in the Oil and Gas Industry

Electroless nickel coatings can be used in a wide range of industries, including oil and gas. The properties of most value to the oil and gas industries are generally the uniformity of the thickness of the deposit, the excellent corrosion resistance that it provides, and its properties of abrasion and erosion resistance.

Enhancing Oil and Gas Base Materials with Electroless Nickel

The base materials that are traditionally used in the oil and gas industry have been enhanced by the application of electroless nickel coatings. Not only does electroless nickel lower the fabrication costs of many parts, it also extends the surface life of components. Extending the service of parts used in this industry is incredibly valuable, as the cost of shutdowns can be very expensive and time consuming.

The Three Areas in the Oil and Gas Industry

offshore oilrig

Operations in the oil and gas industry can be divided into 3 main areas; surface operations, subsurface operations or downhole operations, and offshore operations. Equipment is often exposed to severe environmental conditions including chlorides, carbon dioxide, brines, hydrogen sulphide, sea water and reef water, which can contain high levels of sulphur compounds.

In addition to this type of exposure, equipment may be exposed to abrasion problems associated with the ingestion of sand, mud, and very high temperatures.

Typical components whose performance has been enhanced by electroless nickel include the following:

Surface Operations

  • Blowout preventors
  • brake assemblies
  • chokes
  • compressors
  • gas turbines
  • pump housings
  • pumps
  • connection manifolds
  • valves

Subsurface Operations or Downhole Operations

  • Couplings
  • logging tools
  • plungers
  • packers
  • pumps
  • safety valve units
  • tubing

Offshore Operations

  • blowout preventors
  • gas turbines/compressors
  • heat exchangers
  • pumps
  • riser connectors
  • valves

UK Based Electroless Nickel Plating Factory

Here at NiTEC UK, we are experts in the process of electroless nickel plating. Our Chesterfield, UK based electroless nickel plating factory has a total of 7 nickel plating lines, making us one of the largest in Europe with the capacity to plate items of all sizes, no matter how small or large.

To find out more about NiTEC UK, electroless nickel plating, and our ability to plate equipments and components for use in the oil and gas industry, contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

UK’s First National Onshore Oil and Gas College to be Developed in Blackpool

New plans to develop the UK’s first national onshore college for oil and gas were revealed in a speech yesterday by Matthew Hancock, minister for business and enterprise. As we know, the economic opportunities in shale and gas are plentiful, and this new centre of excellence aims to train a generation of onshore oil and gas specialists.

The National College for Onshore Oil and Gas

The new centre will be called the National College for Onshore Oil and Gas and will be based in Blackpool. The centre will also have working relationships with Chester, Redcar, Cleveland, Glasgow and Portsmouth.

onshore oil wellMP Matthew Hancock considers the move to be a once-in-a-generation economic opportunity for the UK, and says that families, towns and villages across the UK will benefit from the new industry and its supply chain, creating 64,500 jobs.

Shale gas is an enormous opportunity for the UK and one that we simply can’t afford to miss out on,” said Hancock.

As the North Sea production continues to decline, the UK is becoming more and more reliant on importing gas from abroad to meet its needs. The government have estimated that by 2025, 70% of the gas consumed by the UK will be imported. Therefore, making the most of domestic oil and gas resources will help the UK to become more self-sufficient in the future.

£750,000 Government Funding

The college’s development is being funded by £750,000 of government money, and this amount is set to be matched by education providers and industry bodies. More money will be made available from the National College initiative to support the college on an industry-matched investment basis.

The bid to set up the college was led by the United Kingdom Onshore Oil and Gas (UKOOG), and it will be overseen by the oil and gas industry to make sure that the colleges meet the needs of the industry by delivering high level specialist training. The aim is to keep the UK at the forefront of drilling, hydraulic fracturing, site development and environmental management.

As experts in metal finishing and surface technology specialising in the oil and gas industry, NiTEC UK are delighted that such a fantastic investment is being made into the future of the industry. Any attempts that the UK can make to ensure the future security of our fuel is a great move!

Protecting Mild Steel from Salt Spray Corrosion

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services for both onshore and offshore applications. SeaTEC100 is a solution to increase the longevity of components used in subsea conditions. This product protects mild steel from salt spray corrosion and marine corrosion for an extensive period of time, making it perfect for use in sub-sea conditions. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Composite Coatings of Electroless Nickel Plating

The chemical makeup of electroless nickel can be specially tailored to obtain the maximum coating performance for the requirements of particular applications. Composite electroless nickels incorporate distinct properties into the deposit in order to impart a specific property onto the component, and are used in a variety of industries. Here at NiTEC UK, we provide a number of electroless nickel composite coatings including nickel diamond plating, nickel PTFE and nickel boron.

electroless nickel composite coatingElectroless Nickel and PTFE Composite Coating

A Ni-PTFE composite coating combines the properties of electroless nickel with Polytetrafluoreothylene (PTFE). Electroless nickel coatings are typically very hard, and PTFE is good for its lubricity, therefore combining the two produces a very useful coating for several industries including automotive, machinery, and engineering. Nickel PTFE has properties of low friction wear and self lubrication which make it an excellent choice for sliding wear applications, and instances where conventional lubricants would be harmful to components.

Nickel Boron Composite Coating

Electroless nickel can also be combined with boron as an alternative to chrome plating, producing a coating that is excellent wear and corrosion resistance properties. A composite coating of electroless nickel and boron will reduce the drag and friction of surfaces that slide up against each other. Also, its nodular surface allows it to dissipate heat efficiently.

Nickel Diamond Composite Coating

As the name suggests, nickel diamond coatings combine an electroless nickel deposit with fine particles of diamond. Using diamond particles in this way is a really cost effective method of utilising the benefits of diamond on the surface of a component, providing a highly corrosion and wear resistant coating.

Electroless Nickel Composite Plating Services

For more information about the composite nickel coatings offered by NiTEC UK, contact us on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk. Our staff will formulate the right solution for your application, providing advanced nickel composite plating services to meet your needs.

Funding Deal Boosts Expansion of Electroless Nickel Plating Services

roller for packaging industryWe’re very pleased to have been featured in the Derbyshire Times this week! The paper published an article about our recent factory expansion and our funding deal from Yorkshire bank that made it possible.

Our Commercial Director Marcus Hill told the Derbyshire Times: “We’re pleased to be expanding to meet the growing demand for our expertise and products.

The support from Yorkshire Bank and commitment of the NiTEC team has been instrumental in establishing our reputation and place in the marketplace.”

Leading Electroless Nickel Plating Specialists

The electroless nickel plating facility here at NiTEC is one of the largest in the world, and we are really pleased to be able to expand our production capacity. As readers of our blog and our customers will know, we provide a variety of services including pipe strengthening and exterior protection to a variety of different industries including oil, aerospace, architecture and art.

Funding From Yorkshire Bank

Our funding support was provided by Yorkshire Bank via Steve Wicks at the Bank’s South Yorkshire Business and Private Banking Centre in Sheffield. Kevin Elliot, head of the South Yorkshire Business and Private Banking Centre, said: “We are proud to be supporting a highly regarded business that combines technological expertise with an impressive entrepreneurial flair. Yorkshire Bank remains committed to investing in business growth ambitions.”

Electroless Nickel Plating

We have more than 30 years of experience specialising in the electroless nickel plating process and we also offer a variety of surface treatments including diffused nickel plating, copper plating, nickel PTFE, nickel diamond, tin plating and nickel boron. For more information, please call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

What are the Benefits of Tin Plating?

Here at NiTEC, we offer a wide variety of plating techniques that have many different advantages and that can be used in a variety of industries.  As experts in the metal plating industry, our latest service of tin plating meets most specifications required by the military, automotive, aerospace and electrical industries. So what are the benefits of using tin plating?

Benefits of Tin Plating

  • Tin is malleable and very soft. That means that it can be transformed without it cracking.
  • Excellent corrosion resistance
  • Highly tarnish resistant
  • Good electrical conductor
  • Non toxic
  • Good solderability

What is Tin Plating Used For?

Tin plating is equally useful within a number of other industries too; including power distribution and transmission, telecommunications, medical, marine and aerospace.

tin plated canTin in the Food Processing Industry

Tin is a useful metal for the food processing industry because it is non-toxic, corrosion resistant and ductile.

It be used to plate parts made from steel or iron in order to prevent rust and make them safe for food handling and storage, for example, tin cans.

Tin is very soft and ductile, so parts that are plated with tin can be stamped, bent, and formed into various shapes without damaging the layer of tin. Also, the tin often acts as a lubricant during these operations.

Tin the Electronics Industry

Tin is often used in the electronics industry because of its ability to protect the base metal from oxidation. This, therefore, preserves its solderability.

UK Based Tin Plating Services

If you are interested in the process of tin plating, we can help. To make an enquiry or simply to have a chat with one of our friendly team about your requirements, call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Boost for Aerospace Industry with £1m Training Centre

The Aerospace industry is set for a boost with a £1m centre of excellence opening on the Isle of Man this month. The new centre is a joint project between the Manx government and the The Isle of Man Aerospace Cluster (IOMAC).

Red arrows pilot

Red Arrows ejector seats are made on the Isle of Man

BBC news reports that according to government figures, the high-tech sector contributes 4% of the island’s economy.

More than 1,000 people are employed to manufacture a range of high-tech aerospace items, such as the ejector seats used by the red arrows.

Worldwide Civil and Defence Aerospace Project

A spokesman said the new training facility would support the “growing need for highly-skilled engineers in the thriving industry”. The IOMAC is established as an integral part of the UK aerospace supply chain and member firms support every current major civil and defence aerospace project worldwide. Made up of 22 firms on the island including RLC Ronaldsway, Swagelok and Triumph Actuation Systems, the IOMAC produces precision-engineered parts for use of the island.

IOMAC’s Chris Allen said: “Everything from landing gear, ejector seats and optic lenses are made here and have travelled as far as Mars. The age of the skilled engineers is high and this centre is very important for the future.”

Manufacturing Centre of Excellence

The cluster of aerospace firms has had enormous involvement in setting up the training centre and helping to create and deliver a three year training course. Courses began in 2013 but the Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre will be officially opened on 15th October 2014 by Tim Crookall MHK, Minister for Education and Children.

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

Here at NiTEC, we provide a range of metal finishing and metal plating services. Our high quality electroless nickel plating service is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries. For more information, please call NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

The Importance of Salt Spray Testing to Ensure Corrosion Resistance

Coatings such as diffused nickel plating provide superior corrosion resistance to components. Choosing the right material and protective coating is essential when a component will be used in an extreme environment. But it’s absolutely crucial to assess the reliability of a product in order to make sure that it will survive in its working environment – that’s where salt spray testing is useful.

Rusty mining equipment

Mining equipment suffering from rust and corrosion

Ensure Component Reliability with Salt Spray Testing

The assurance of product reliability is of the utmost importance if you want to keep your customers happy. Without proper testing, you run the risk of components failing, which is not only annoying, it is expensive and potentially dangerous too. Product failure could also potentially damage the company’s reputation and may compromise its position in the market place.

Accelerated Corrosion Testing

Here at NiTEC, we use salt spray testing as a standard test method to check the corrosion resistance of coated samples which may be prone to suffering from degradation as a result of salt corrosion.

The salt spray test is an accelerated corrosion test that produces a corrosive environment for the coated samples in order to predict its suitability in use as a protective finish. It creates a saturated water vapour atmosphere containing sulphur dioxide, enabling us to determine the resistance of the sample, ensuring its longevity and reliability.

Checking the Corrosion Resistance of Diffused Nickel Plated Samples

As the test provides conditions that accelerate the process of corrosion, it means that instead of testing a product in real time, which will take an enormous amount of time, the same effect can be recreated in a relatively short space of time.

Salt Spray and Kesternich Testing Services at NiTEC UK

To find out more about our salt spray testing and Kesternich testing services, please contact us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk. Please note that the Kesternich testing service from NiTEC is available to customers worldwide, as samples can be delivered to our metal plating factory in Chesterfield from abroad by DHL.

New Corrosion Test Cabinets: Worldwide Kesternich Testing Services Now Available

As part of our long standing commitment to ensuring that the services we offer at NiTEC are of the highest quality, as well as consistently meeting the ever expanding needs of our customers, we are now offering specialist Kesternich testing at our metal finishing factory in Chesterfield.

kesternich testing cabinet

Kesternich testing cabinet for measuring corrosion resistance

Kesternich testing for diffused nickel plating was previously required only twice a year, but now has to be carried out every month. Our new Kesternich testing cabinet will help our customers to meet the standards required of their products with regard to corrosion testing, providing a guarantee that measurements of corrosion resistance are carried out thoroughly.

Corrosion Testing Technology

The Kesternich test chamber at NiTEC is made by VLM, who for many years have been the undisputed technology leader in corrosion testing technology. In addition to providing laboratory technology services, their chambers meet the highest safety standards and create the perfect conditions to carry out accurate and controlled Kesternich testing.

Sulphur Dioxide Testing

Kesternich testing, or sulphur dioxide testing, is commonly used for industrial objects, especially metal objects which are subject to corrosion. Resistance to corrosion is measured in Kesternich cycling, and this method of accelerated corrosion testing is an approved method to perform corrosion tests on metallic components.

To perform a Kesternich test, 2 litres of sulphur dioxide is introduced into a 300 litre test chamber. The dosing of the SO2 gas is controlled during the test, simulating exposure to chemicals that may compromise the surface of a component resulting in corrosion.

The Impact of SO2 in the Atmosphere on Corrosion

Kesternich testing simulates acid rain or industrial chemical exposure to evaluate the relative corrosion resistance of the coating, substrate, or part itself.  Parts or panels are placed inside a specially designed chamber and are exposed to SO2 and humidity before being evaluated for resistance to corrosion.

Worldwide Kesternich Testing  Services

The Kesternich testing service from NiTEC is available to customers worldwide, as samples can be delivered to us from abroad by DHL. To find out more about our Kesternich testing services, please contact us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Latest News: New Services Available at NiTEC

electroless nickel plating logoAs experts in a variety of metal finishing processes and techniques, including electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating and copper plating, NiTEC have recently added a few new services to our already comprehensive range.

The processes of nickel boron plating, nickel diamond plating and tin plating are now also available, as well as an aqua blasting service.

As readers of our blog will know, we posted an update in January informing the public of our new factory extension, creating 3,000 square foot of space and 5 new jobs at NiTEC. The extension has allowed us to install a 7th electroless nickel plating line and offer the new services listed above to expand our repertoire and provide customers with a wide variety of metal plating and metal finishing techniques.

Nickel Boron Plating Service

Nickel boron plating can be applied to variety of different metals and is a great alternative to chrome plating. Among its many benefits are excellent wear and corrosion resistance.

Nickel Diamond Plating Service

Nickel diamond plating combines an electroless nickel deposit with fine particles of diamonds. The use of diamond particles contained within an electroless nickel coating offers a practical and affordable way to utilise the properties of diamond on the surface of components.

Tin Plating Service

Tin plating is an industrial process which involves the coating of metal objects with a thin layer of tin. It can be used for the protection of both ferrous and non-ferrous surfaces and can increase the performance and durability of any object it is added to, improving its corrosion resistance at the same time.

Aqua Blasting

Also known as vapour blasting; this wet-blasting process is perfect for gently eradicating surface dirt and grime from metal components. It permits the non-aggressive cleaning of a surface to produce a satin finish on a number of metal materials – which resultantly won’t pick up marks after treatment.

Metal Plating Service Chesterfield

Here at NiTEC, we have more than 30 years of experience specialising in a wide range of metal plating techniques. For more information about our new services including tin plating, nickel boron plating, aqua blasting and nickel diamond plating, please call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

NiTEC Announce New Nickel Diamond Plating Service

NiTEC are pleased to announce the latest of our new metal plating services available; nickel diamond plating!

We’ve got a wealth of experience in the processes of electroless nickel platingcopper plating and metal finishing, so nickel diamond plating is a natural extension of our quality range of services.

What is Nickel Diamond Plating?

nickel diamond plating

Nickel diamond plating combines an electroless nickel deposit with fine particles of diamonds.

A variety of substrates can be coated using nickel diamond, including metals such as carbon and tool steels,  aluminium, alloys, copper, brass, bronze, stainless steel, and titanium.

The use of diamond particles contained within an electroless nickel coating offers a practical and affordable way to utilise the properties of diamond on the surface of components.

Common Applications of Nickel Diamond

Nickel diamond can be used for a huge range of applications across a variety of industries. Common applications include the following:

  • Machinery parts for the textile industry
  • Wood working tools
  • Computer parts
  • Paper handling equipment
  • Mechanical shaft shields for automotive water pumps and chemical process pumps
  • Gage blocks

What are the Features of a Nickel Diamond Coating?

Nickel diamond coatings provides a highly corrosion and wear resistant coating. By providing maximum protection to the surface of the substrate, coated machinery parts will have an increased lifespan. This helps to keep maintenance and related downtime due to the replacement of high wear parts to a minimum, reducing costs.

Due to the electroless chemical method of deposition, nickel diamond plating is able to cover surfaces with perfect uniformity. Therefore, regardless of the geometry of the component, the nickel diamond coating creates a uniform deposition on all areas of the part, even on recesses and holes.

Key Benefits of Electroless Nickel Diamond Plating

Nickel diamond plating has many benefits which make it a superior choice of coating, including the following:

  • Excellent wear resistance
  • Excellent hardness
  • Enhanced corrosion resistance
  • Increased thermal transfer
  • Conformity to complex geometries
  • Can be applied to all common metals and alloys
  • Can be used to cover entire surfaces or selected areas

Contact NiTEC UK for Nickel Diamond Plating Services

If you are interested in the process of nickel diamond plating, NiTEC can help. To make an enquiry or simply to have a chat with one of our friendly team about your requirements, call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

5 Things You Need to Know about Electroless Nickel Plating

As specialists in electroless nickel plating, NiTEC UK have put together 5 things we think you need to know about the process!

Auto-Catalytic Chemical Reaction

Electroless nickel plating is an auto-catalytic chemical reaction used to deposit nickel onto a wide range of substrates. It uses a solution containing nickel phosphorous alloy, which can be specially tailored to suit the application it is being used for.

Can be Applied to Range of Substrates

Electroless nickel can be applied to wide range of substrates, including the following:

  • Aluminium and aluminium alloys
  • Copper and copper alloys
  • Ferrous and stainless metals
  • Beryllium copper
  • Zinc
  • Titanium

Superior Corrosion and Wear Resistance

Electroless nickel plating has many key properties that make it an excellent choice for any metal plating project. For example, electroless nickel coatings are incredibly corrosion and wear resistant, as well as being very hard.

electroless nickel plated componentAccurate, Uniform Deposit

Electroless nickel plating provides a highly accurate and uniform deposit onto the surface of a component, regardless of the complexity of the part. It can easily plate sharp angles and curves, deep holes and recesses, making it a fantastic choice of plating for unusually complex parts.

Applications for Electroless Nickel Plating

Typical applications for electroless nickel plating include valves, pumps, mould tools, gears, sprockets and splined shafts, and electronic components. The process has been widely used throughout most engineering disciplines; especially automotive, offshore, defence, aerospace, petrochemical, electronics, plastics and nuclear. It is highly recommended for offshore applications as it offers the very best levels of protection.

Electroless Nickel Plating Service

Contact us today on 0845 224 3571 or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk to talk through your electroless nickel plating requirements and see how NiTEC can provide high quality processes at a cost to suit your business.

Diffused Nickel Plating for Pipeline End Fittings

diffused nickel pipeline end fittingThe use of diffused nickel plating on pipeline end fittings is a fantastic option for protecting them against corrosion.

This simple plating technique is proven to be more corrosion resistant than the highest grade stainless steel, and far cheaper, which is why it is often used on subsea projects and on and offshore applications.

Superior Corrosion Resistance

As experts in metal plating and finishing, NiTEC UK have tested the corrosion resistance of diffused nickel plated components through independent salt spray testing. During the experiment, no corrosion at all was detected, meaning that it was abandoned. In fact, diffused nickel plating is so resistant to corrosion, especially in marine environments, that our customers have given mild steel plated with diffused nickel plating 30 year sub-sea guarantees.

What are the Benefits of Diffused Electroless Nickel Plating?

  • Huge cost saving implications compared to other plating techniques or stainless steel
  • Greatly enhanced performance when compared to even the highest grade stainless steel
  • Superior corrosion resistance for subsea and offshore applications

UK Based Diffused Electroless Nickel Plating Service

For more information about the process of diffused nickel plating as a cheaper alternative to stainless steel,  contact NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

New Nickel Boron Plating Service Available at NiTEC

As part of our recent expansion at NiTEC UK, we have added a variety of new metal plating and metal finishing services to the business. We are pleased to announce that we now have the facilities to carry out nickel boron plating.

Nickel boron plating can be applied to variety of different metals and is a great alternative to chrome plating. Among its many benefits are excellent wear and corrosion resistance.

Key Advantages of Nickel Boron Plating

boron

  • Excellent corrosion resistance
  • Excellent wear resistance
  • Ductile
  • Solderability
  • High-temperature performance
  • Lubricity
  • Accepts dry film lubricant
  • Uniformity of coating
  • Excellent rigidity
  • Resistant to fretting
  • Resistant to galling
  • Resistant to abrasion

Electroless Nickel Boron Plating

Nickel boron coatings mirror the surface profile of the substrate it is applied to, therefore little or no post-plate grinding or burnishing is needed after plating. The process of electroless nickel boron plating does not need an electrical current; therefore the coating deposition rates are fully controllable and produce incredibly accurate and consistent tolerances. So even on sharp corners, edges, flat surfaces, as well as blind holes, threads, channels, recesses and internal areas of all shapes and sizes, the result is exactly the same.

The nature of an electroless nickel boron coating reduces the surface to surface contact of surfaces that slide up against each other, thus reducing drag and friction. The surface of nickel boron is typically nodular; therefore the structure allows it to dissipate heat efficiently due to the greater surface area. These characteristics are especially effective when used on saw blades, for example.

Nickel Boron Plating Service Chesterfield, Derbyshire

To find out more about our nickel boron plating service as well as a range of our other metal plating and metal finishing services, call NiTEC on 08452243571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk.

What are the Advantages of Aqua Blasting / Vapour Blasting?

Here at NiTEC, we have recently added an aqua blasting service to our comprehensive range of metal plating and metal finishing services. This non aggressive technique effectively removes the dirt and corrosion from the surface of the material, but it does not damage the surface in any way, as can be the case with some other ‘blasting’ techniques.

aqua blastingThe Benefits of Aqua Blasting

The primary benefit of aqua blasting is that all the critical dimensions of the component stay the same, making the process safe to use on precision engineering items, molds and automotive engine components.

It cleans by utilising the flow of water to remove dirt, not by impact; therefore it doesn’t change the dimensions of the part. In addition to cleaning the surface, it also de-greases it simultaneously.

Aqua blasting is far gentler than grit blasting and bead blasting, but just as effective. During grit and bead blasting, the media is ricocheted off the surface of the component in an aggressive manner.

But the water involved in aqua blasting reduces the ricochet of media due its cushioning effect; therefore the angle of the media is changed to produce a lapping effect which travels across the surface to give an even satin/polished finish.

Typical Applications of Aqua Blasting

• Degreasing and surface finishing of components in the automotive, reconditioning & maintenance industries
• Removal of paint, rust, scale, carbon & similar deposits in engineering industries
• Surface preparation prior to bonding, re-painting or re-coating
• Satin finishing of stainless steels & other special materials
• Cleaning of PCB’s & electrical connectors
• Removal of small burrs from manufactured components
• Cleaning of dies & molds

Aqua Blasting Service Chesterfield, Derbyshire

To find out more about our aqua blasting service, as well as a range of our other metal plating and metal finishing services, call NiTEC on 08452243571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk.