Archive for Christophe

Rising Base Metals Rocketing to the Top?

Base 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 2019, 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.

Bronze, Silver, Gold

America, 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 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.

Heat Treatment and Homogenising

When 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.

 

Aluminium and Copper – Which and Why?

They 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.

Why Tinplate is Great

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

Spring in to Action in Birmingham with Heat Treatment Services

April 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

For businesses such as Wallwork Group, 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.

The Copper Plating Story

We 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.

Everything you need to know about Shot Blasting

Shot 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 us to undertake your shot blasting and electroless nickel plating solutions, you know that the standards met will be the highest every time.  At us, 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.

Shotblasting – The Abrasive Protection

Shotblasting is a technological process which enables impurities of metal parts to be removed from a wide variety of surfaces, through the medium of abrasion.  Shotblasting 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 us

Shotblasting at us 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 us

If you or your business are interested in the shotblasting process or electroless nickel plating, then why not get in touch with us?  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 our phone number 

 

Copper Plating and the Use of Copper Balls

Copper 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 us Today

If you or your business are interested in copper plating, or other plating methods, such as electroless nickel plating or diffused nickel plating, heat treatment or have a special project which requires specialist assistance, then why not contact us?  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.   

 

Is Copper Plating the New Solar Panel Platform?

It 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.

us 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 us 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. 

Why Choose Electroplating?

Electroplating 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 us

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 us?  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. 

Nickel Plating and the Heatsink Saving

Technical 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 us 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 us?  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. 

First Class Copper Plating

For 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.

us 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 us?  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 our phone number 

 

 

Nickel Plating takes precedence in new DIY Water Cooling Kit

Closed-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 us 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 requires specialist assistance, then why not contact us?  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.   

Whisky Sipping in Space Thanks to Plating

Due 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.

us and You

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 requiring specialist assistance, then why not contact us 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.   

What to Consider before you Electroplate

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.

 

us and You

 

us 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 our phone number, alternatively you can click here to be taken directly to our website and view the services we offer for yourself.

 

Electroplating from the Start

Electroplating 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:

  • Gold
  • Silver
  • Copper
  • Electroless Nickel

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.

Happy New Year From us!

As 2019 draws to a close, we are looking back on what has been a very busy year for us in the metal plating industry. From our nomination for the Excellence in Manufacturing Award at The Sheffield Business Awards, to our new testing laboratory, 2019 has been a great year for all of us here at us.

New facilities to monitor phosphorus levels

Our new laboratory means that our lead times have been cut dramatically; we are now able to turn around standard plating jobs within 24 hours. Our new state of the art, in house facilities mean that we no longer have to outsource testing. We can now monitor phosphorus levels, perform micro-sections and hardness tests on site.

Excellence in Manufacturing Award

In November we were thrilled to discover that us had been shortlisted for The Wake Smith Excellence in Manufacturing Award at The Sheffield Business Awards. The ceremony took place in December and although we didn’t win, we were very pleased to have been nominated for such a prestigious award.

We have more than 30 years of experience specialising in the electroless nickel plating process, and a comprehensive range of metal finishing processes and techniques. We also offer a variety of surface treatments including electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, copper plating, shot blasting and heat treatment. For more information, please call us or email 

UK’s Largest Electroless Nickel Plating Tanks at us

As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating, us 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.

The 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 our phone number or to talk through your electroless nickel plating requirements and see how us can provide high quality processes at a cost to suit your business.

Wheelie Fallen in Love with Copper Plating

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.

Electroless Nickel Coatings Can Increase the Lifespan of Steam Turbines

 

Here at us, we have a wealth of experience electroless nickel plating components for large multinational companies and a wide variety of industries and applications.

As a leading provider of worldwide metal plating services, we have recently worked with Elliott Turbo-Steam Turbines. Elliot steam turbines are specially built to be able to perform for years, and they have an excellent reputation as being the best in the industry.

Elliot steam turbines are very reliable and hard wearing, and by adding an electroless nickel coating, their life span can be further increased. As the addition of an electroless nickel coating is very hard, it can reduce the wear of the part when friction is an issue.

Elliot steam turbines are used in power generation and food processing,  chemical and petrochemical, pulp and paper, and the oil and gas industry.

For more information on how electroless nickel coatings can be used to increase the lifespan of components and reduce wear through friction, contact us by visiting our website, speak to a member of our specialist team on 0845 224 357, or email 

Replace Stainless Steel with Electroless Nickel for Large Components

Stainless steel can be very expensive, especially when it is used on very large components. It can also be hard to find a source to cast large stainless steel components. A cost effective alternative to stainless steel is electroless nickel, therefore it is often used as a replacement on large parts. It is much more cost effective and time saving to make large components out of cast iron and then electroless nickel plate them to provide extra corrosion resistance.

Alternative to stainless steel

Electroless nickel is perfect for plating large machined parts that need to be resistant to corrosion. With electroless nickel, once the component has been plated, no more needs to be done to it.

But with conventional electro-deposit such as hard chrome or electrolytic nickel, they need to be machined after plating to hold dimensional accuracy. This re-machining on large, electroplated parts can cost hundreds to thousands of pounds.

Electroless nickel properties and characteristics often give it a significant advantage over conventional materials and methods. Here at us, the equipment and methods we use mean that even the most difficult large part can be plated correctly and consistently.

Hardness and corrosion resistance

When designing large parts, electroless nickel should be considered if hardness, corrosion resistance and wear are a concern. As leading specialists in the electroless nickel plating field, we have the facilities to plate large components, unlike small firms.

If you would like to find out how you can save money by using electroless nickel plating instead of stainless steel for large parts call the us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.

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

Backed 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 us, 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 us or email

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

Ni-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 us , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an inquiry.

The Future’s Bright, The Future’s us

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.

Electroless Nickel Plating a Vacuum Chamber

Here at us, we are often approached by companies with specific plating needs for bespoke applications. We were approached by Rutherford Appleton Laboratories, who had manufactured a large vacuum chamber that they wanted plating with a thin layer of electroless nickel.

Without plating, the iron from the walls of the chamber would compromise and possible affect the results of the tests carried out inside it. Lasers used during testing would also cause damage to the chamber walls without a layer of electroless nickel.

The facilities at Rutherford Appleton Laboratories are used by scientists and engineers in order to advance their research into materials and structures, light sources, astronomy and particle physics. Every year about 10,000 scientists and engineers use the Laboratory’s facilities to advance their research. Many are academics and post-graduate students working on projects funded by the Science and Technology Facilities Council.

Electroless nickel plated layer for protection

Rutherford Appleton Laboratories had manufactured the large vacuum chamber for tests that involved lasers travelling down the centre of the chamber. This area needed to be plated with a layer of electroless nickel so that the layers did not burn through the paint during testing.

The vacuum chamber came in a number of large sections, some which weighed more than 20 tonnes. The team at us manufactured tanks to fit each part of the chamber that needed to be plated. The main body of the chamber weighed 150 tonnes and was built like a small room, containing many windows, portals and doors.

Blanking plates were manufactured for each of the chamber components, and the chamber was then sheeted over and manually and internally shot blasted. Originally, the chamber was going to be used as the plating tank and filled with electroless nickel plating solution. But the portals and windows contained recesses which were identified as gas traps and to overcome this and ensure complete coverage of the electroless nickel plating, all of the blanking plates were fitted with small air pipes. These fed up the outside of the chamber and back into the top, removing gas and solution and ensuring complete coverage.

Electroless Nickel Plating for an Oil Rig Vortoil Pipe for Marine Corrosion Resistance

Electroless nickel plating is perfect for applications in the oil and gas industries due to its excellent corrosion resistance properties. When used as a barrier layer, electroless nickel provides the highest levels of corrosion and wear resistance, and the thickness of the coating can be adjusted to suit the application.

Corrosion and wear protection

A recent project of us’s involved the nickel plating of a vortoil pipe for use on an oil rig. Vortoil pipes are used for separating crude oil from seawater, and are therefore exposed to harsh marine environments and susceptible to corrosion and wear due to their surroundings.

The tolerance of the vortoil pipe had to be less than 3 microns over the length of the component, with an overall deposit thickness of 100 microns.

Electroless nickel is an excellent plating method to ensure uniform levels of thickness over a deposit, but when the competent is a large as a vortoil pipe, there may be slight variations in the thickness of the deposit due to localised changes in temperature and activity.

Because of the size of the component, us manufactured a jig with a motor which was attached to either end of the pipe. The pipe was then electroless nickel plated horizontally, while it was turned very slowly to make sure all of the surface area was covered by the electroless nickel deposit.

Accurate deposit thickness of the nickel coating

The pipe was approximately 4m in length, and needed to be electroless nickel plated internally and externally, including all the attached pipes, holes and fins. The staff at us were able to work to the tight distribution tolerances using our monitoring system, which enabled us to ensure the accurate deposit thickness of the nickel coating onto the component.

If you are looking for a metal coating that provides high levels of corrosion resistance for use in the oil or gas industries, call the us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.

Common Applications of Electroless Nickel Coatings

Here at us, 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

Electroless 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

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 us, 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 us or email

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 , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an inquiry.

Boeing up in the World

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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 us, the leading suppliers of electroless nickel plating.

Contact us Today

us 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 our phone number, 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

They 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 us 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 us 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

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.

During 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 2019, 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, us offer a full range of services including electroless nickel plating and diffused nickel plating. For more information about corrosion resistant coatings, please call us or email

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

These 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 us or email

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

us 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 us 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 our phone number or alternatively you can email our staff at us at   We look forward to hearing from you!

Common Applications of Electroless Nickel Coatings

Electroless nickel plating can be applied to a variety of components. Its fantastic properties make it the perfect plating solution for a variety of applications, including the following:

Electrical equipment

Electroless nickel coatings are perfect for electrical equipment due to their solderability and conductivity properties.

Applications include heat sinks, computer drive mechanisms, memory disks and drums, terminals and lead wires, chassis, connectors, diode and transistor cans, interlocks, junction fittings and printed circuit boards.

Packaging and handling machinery

Packaging and handling machinery can benefit from an electroless nickel coating due to its properties of wear resistance, cleanliness and the attractive finish it provides.

Chemical equipment

Nickel coatings have excellent chemical resistance, making them perfect for applications in the chemical and petroleum industries. This includes ball, gate and plug valves, chokes and control valves, oil field tools, oil well tubing and pumps, drilling mud pumps and blowout preventors.

Molds and dies

Electroless nickel coatings are used for molds and dies due to the lubricity of nickel that minimises erosion and abrasion. This coating is commonly used on zinc die cast dies, glass molds, plastic injection molds, and plastic extrusion dies.

Food service equipment

Electroless nickel is commonly used to plate food service equipment due to its superior corrosion and wear resistance, its an attractive finish and high degree of cleanliness.

Salvage

Electroless nickel coatings can be used for restoring parts to their original dimensions, for example, molds, shafts, landing gear and gears. They can also be used to repair mis-matched parts as they are a cost effective alternative to hard chrome and often eliminate subsequent machining or grinding operations.

If you are looking for a metal coating that provides high levels of corrosion resistance, lubricity and wear resistance, call the us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.

The Advantages of Electroless Deposition of Nickel

Electroless solutions have the advantage of producing coatings which have a very high degree of uniformity. This means that electroless nickel is ideal for plating complex shapes and can be used effectively to salvage parts that have been mis-machined. It also allows worn components to be recycled.

Electroless nickel deposits vs electrolytically-applied coatings

Electroless nickel deposits are chemically applied using an autocatalytic immersion process which does not use an electrical current.

This is much different from electroplating, which depends on an external source of direct electrical current to produce a deposit on the substrate material. Because the electrical current cannot be evenly distributed throughout the component itself, it is hard to obtain a uniform deposit with electrolytically-applied coatings.

Electroless nickel is often chosen above electrolytically applied coatings because of its ability to coat irregularly shaped, highly detailed parts with complex geometries. The completely uniform deposit thickness is perfect for achieving close dimensional tolerance capabilities.

If you would like to find out more about using electroless plating as an alternative to electroplating, call us , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

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

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 us, 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 us, electroless nickel plating, and our ability to plate equipments and components for use in the oil and gas industry, contact us today or email

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.

MP 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, us 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 us, 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 us or email

Plating Motorcycle Parts With Electroless Nickel

As much as you’d like them to, motorcycles don’t stay looking shiny and new forever. There may come a point where the elements have taken their toll, and your motorcycle starts to look a little worse for wear.

Here at us, electroless nickel plating specialists in Derbyshire, we can offer a plating service that will make your motorcycle look like new again.

We have plating tanks large enough to accommodate the entire bare frame, and we can also plate specific parts on request.

Restore old motorcycle parts

Electroless nickel plating is a great alternative to chrome plating for motorcycle frames and parts. Nickel plating is typically used on pistons, oil industry parts and in the aerospace industry due its good corrosion resistance and wear properties.

Large electroless nickel plating tanks

At us, we have large capacity electroless nickel plating tanks which are up to 10 metres in length, and we can lift items of up to 20 metric tonnes. Our tanks are, in fact the largest in the country, as our competitors only offer solutions of up to 3 metres in length. This means that we can plate components of all sizes, including small pins, motorcycle parts and even oil pipelines.

If you would like to find out more about our motorcycle parts electroless nickel plating service call us , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

us Shortlisted for Excellence in Manufacturing Award at Sheffield Business Awards

We are pleased to announce that we have been shortlisted for The Wake Smith Excellence in Manufacturing Award at the 2019 Sheffield Business Awards.

The Wake Smith Excellence in Manufacturing Award is presented to the company that is able to demonstrate the following:

  • A modern, efficient and innovative approach to manufacturing.
  • Exhibits best practice to build a sustainable operation either by the development of new manufacturing techniques, new products or capital investments.
  • A track record for training and passing on skills to future generations and the desire to promote the region as a center for manufacturing excellence.

Commercial Director Marcus Hill said, “We are delighted to have been nominated for such a prestigious award. us have had a very successful year and achieved a lot. It’s great to be recognised for our innovative approach to manufacturing and we are very much looking forward to the big night.”

us have over 30 years specialising in the process of electroless nickel plating. Over the years we have developed a range of metal finishing and metal plating processes and techniques. In addition to electroless nickel plating, we also offer the services of diffused nickel plating, copper plating, shot blasting and heat treatment.

Worldwide metal plating service

Our plating and delivery service is worldwide, available throughout Europe and the rest of the world including the UK, France, Holland, Brazil and Germany. If you would like more information about our services, feel free to call the friendly team at us or email . Alternatively, visit the us website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk

15 Reasons To Choose Electroless Nickel for your Metal Plating Needs

When considering a plating method, there are lots of options you can consider. Here at us, we are experts in electroless nickel plating and consider the process superior to many other coatings on the market.

There are many advantages to electroless nickel plating that in our opinion make it a cut above the rest.

For example, electroless nickel:

  • Allows the deposit to coat a variety of surfaces, many of which would be difficult if not impossible to plate using the process of electroplating.
  • Is a very cost effective solution to coating metals such as mild or stainless steel.
  • Can substantially extend the life of a component.
  • Produces a metal layer with a very even thickness over all surfaces of the component, regardless of its shape or dimensions. This means that there is little or no excess deposit at high points on the component.
  • Deposits of electroless nickel have excellent physical and chemical properties, including hardness, wear resistance and lubricity.
  • Creates a uniform coating that makes it ideal for critical high-end engineering items, especially those used in the defense, automotive, healthcare and aerospace industries.
  • Has a high level of corrosion resistance making it perfect for extending the life of anything that it coats. This makes it the perfect solution for parts that are exposed to harsh environments such as the marine, oil, gas and defense industries.
  • Because of its ability to extend the life of components due to its high levels of corrosion resistance, electroless nickel coatings can reduce the cost of repair and replacement parts.
  • Prevents the formation of rust on a component, therefore preventing the parts around it from rusting too.
  • Tight manufacturing tolerances can be achieved with an electroless nickel coating because of its ability to deposit nickel evenly on the surface of a component
  • Can be used to improve the surface of a component so that it is back within the specified tolerances.
  • Provides the surface of the component with a surface layer that allows post finishes to be carried out effectively.
  • Has self lubricating properties which reduce the wear of a component through friction, creating minimal coating weight loss.
  • The use of electroless nickel on a component creates a coating that will not flake or chip off like some paints and lacquers will.
  • Can be hardened up to 950vhn with the appropriate heat treatment.

Choose electroless nickel for your metal plating needs by calling the us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.

Nickel PTFE Coatings Prevent Seizure in Pistons

What is a piston?

A piston is a component of a reciprocating engine, and is comprised of a disk or cylindrical part that slides to and fro in a hollow cylinder.

In an internal-combustion engine the piston is forced to move by the expanding gases in the cylinder head, and is attached by a pivoted connecting rod to a crankshaft or flywheel.

These components therefore convert the reciprocating motion into rotation.

Electroless nickel PTFE coatings on pistons

Nickel PTFE combines the lubricity of polytetrafluoroethylene with the hardness and corrosion resistance of electroless nickel.

Electroless nickel PTFE coatings are perfect for use on pistons due to its properties of low friction wear and self lubrication. This type of coating also increases the life of the component because of its wear resistance and high levels of corrosion protection.

Nickel PTFE coatings also provides long life dry lubrication which prevents sticking and galling on the component, making it perfect for improving the efficiency of pistons.

Coating a piston with electroless nickel PTFE will reduce the friction and wear on the surface of the component, and reduce the operating temperature of the part. An electroless nickel PTFE coating can also do the following:

  • Increase horse power and torque
  • Reduce or eliminate detonation
  • Allow higher compression ratios to be utilised
  • Allow tighter piston to wall clearances for a better ring seal

If you are looking for a metal coating that will extend the life and efficiency of pistons, Nickel PTFE is the perfect solution. Call us , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Witches on a Silver Platter

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

us, Your Specialist Plating Company

us 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.

Electroless Nickel – Corrosion and Wear Protection

The corrosion protection provided by electroless nickel plating can extend the life of a component. This is due to its ability to block the formation of rust on a component, which in turn stops it from becoming a catalyst for part on part rusting. This has massive advantages in all industries because it is not necessary to worry about one bad part contaminating the rest, or it jeopardizing the final assembly of the product.

Electroless nickel also improves the quality of components because it allows for tight manufacturing tolerances. This is because electroless nickel creates a uniform build-up of nickel on all surfaces, regardless of their shape and dimensions. It can also be used to build parts that may have been out of specification back into tolerance. By using an electroless nickel coating on worn parts, they will be reusable in the capacity of post machining and other post finishes.

The advanced properties of corrosion protection that electroless nickel can offer means that components can be manufactured from a less expensive metal and coated using nickel. By not having to make the part out of a more expensive metal, profit margins can therefore be increased.

The wear protection provided by electroless nickel can also extend the life of a component. An electroless nickel coating will reduce wear of a part due its self lubricating properties and high levels of hardness.

This means that there is minimal weight loss on the coating from part on part friction. Electroless nickel also provides outstanding release properties and anti stick surfaces.

Electroless nickel coatings won’t chip off, flake, peel or rub off like some paint or lacquer type top coats which have been applied without pre-surface treatments. So there’s also no need to worry about the strength of the coating.

If you are looking for a metal coating that has outstanding levels of wear and corrosion resistance, electroless nickel is the perfect solution. Call us , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

 

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.

us, the Specialist Plating Company

us 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 us 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 our phone number, you can go directly on to our website by clicking here.

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 us, we provide a number of electroless nickel composite coatings including nickel diamond plating, nickel PTFE and nickel boron.

Electroless 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 us, contact us on our phone number or email us at . Our staff will formulate the right solution for your application, providing advanced nickel composite plating services to meet your needs.

Electroplating and Electroless Plating – Less is More!

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

us 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 our phone number, 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 alloys – Heat 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 help 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 us

us 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 our phone number or .  Alternatively, you can click here and go directly to our website to find out more about us and our processes.

 

Nickel PTFE Self Lubricating Corrosion Resistant Coating

Nickel PTFE has natural self lubricating properties, which eliminate the need for liquid lubricants on components. The coating is not only slippery; it also has low sliding wear.

Nickel PTFE – Lubricity and Wear Resistance

Lubricity plays an important part in optimising wear resistance because it inhibits contact between the mating surfaces, reducing friction between them and therefore reducing heat which may be generated.

This self lubrication reduces the wear of nickel plated components through friction, therefore creating minimal coating weight loss. Due to nickel’s self lubrication, friction between parts is significantly reduced.

We have customers in the automotive, aerospace and oil and gas industries that all use Nickel PTFE as their choice of durable, dry lubrication and anti-galling coating.

Reduce friction between components

Reduced friction between nickel plated components reduces heat generation and reduces the formation of wear particles. Reduced friction also improves efficiency.

Protect against wear with dry lubrication

The self lubricating properties of a nickel PTFE coating also prevents wear because the moving parts are kept apart.

What can nickel PTFE be used on?

  • Valve seats and pump bearings
  • Connectors
  • Fasteners
  • Circuit breakers
  • Mould tools
  • Machine tools
  • Spindles
  • Clutches and splines
  • Cylinder liners
  • Medical moulds

If you are looking for a nickel coating that is self lubricating, corrosion resistant and wear resistant, Ni-PTFE is the perfect solution. Call us , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Funding Deal Boosts Expansion of Electroless Nickel Plating Services

We’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 us 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 us 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 or email 

The 3 P’s – Plating, Process and Products

After only a couple of decades, the metal finishing world has been transformed.  Electroplating 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-Electroplating

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

us 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 our phone number.  Alternatively, you could get in touch with our friendly and professional staff via email at or click here to go directly to our website to extensively discover our services.

 

What are the Benefits of Tin Plating?

Here at us, 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 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 or email

Spoon Covered Gorilla for Uri Geller’s Garden

Electroless nickel plating company us were once approached by the British artist and sculptor David Mach to nickel plate a gorilla made from twisted wire coat hangers.

It seems that Uri Geller has a similar affection for gorilla shaped sculptures, as BBC news recently reported that the famous psychic and illusionist has ordered a gorilla made of spoons for his garden!

Geller has commissioned the sculpture from the British Ironwork Centre in Oswestry, and plans to put the 12ft gorilla in his Berkshire garden.

The British Ironwork Centre is hoping that the public will help with donations of spoons, as a massive 5,000 are needed to complete the piece.

The entertainer, who already has a Cadillac covered in spoons in his garden, told BBC News “I plan to fly it to my house in a large cage hanging from a helicopter.”

Geller opens his garden to charity 5 times a year, and says that he chose the gorilla sculpture because he already owns paintings by a chimpanzee!

David Mach choose to have his gorilla sculpture electroless nickel plated to guarantee that all the recesses formed by the coat hangers were thoroughly accessed and covered with electroless nickel.

For more information about the advantages of using electroless nickel plating to prevent corrosion and wear on sculptures, contact us on our phone number or email: 

Coatings for Sub-Sea and Pipeline Applications

As specialists in the electroless nickel plating process, us have worked tirelessly on developing the latest technology in marine coatings.

Oil and gas components are inevitably exposed to harsh environments, both under the sea and underground. This exposure to such extreme levels of temperature, moisture and pressure can have a detrimental effect on these components in a short space of time.

That is why SeaTEC 100, us’s very own development in the industry, is the perfect solution for corrosion protection and corrosion prevention in sub-sea environments. SeaTEC effectively coats valves, pumps and pipe fittings to ensure that they remain intact and in operation for an unprecedented amount of time in the industry.

Diffused Nickel Plating

The simple process of diffused nickel plating is the most effective nickel coating to ensure the highest levels of corrosion resistance via the total encapsulation method of plating. Diffused nickel plating is proven to be more corrosion resistant than even the highest grade stainless steel, and much cheaper.

Diffused nickel plating is so resistant to corrosion, particularly in marine environments, that our customers give mild steel plated in this way 30 year sub-sea guarantees.The diffused nickel plating process has been extensively used in the end-fittings for flexible pipe lines and top-side equipment. When independent salt spray testing was carried out on diffused nickel plated components, the experiment was abandoned after 2000 hours because no corrosion could be detected.

If you are looking for a solution to marine corrosion, and would like to find out more about SeaTEC 100, the ultimate in marine corrosion prevention, our phone number or email: 

High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Coatings

High phosphorus electroless nickel provides the highest levels of corrosion resistance. It is often used in industries that require high levels of resistance to strongly acidic corrosive environments, for example, coal mining and oil drilling.

Electroless nickel containing high levels of phosphorus has a low degree of solderability, and will only be solderable for a limited time after plating. This makes it perfect for electronic parts such as connector housings and semiconductor packaging.

The microhardness levels of high phosphorus electroless nickel coatings range up about 600 VPN. This type of nickel coating makes for low levels of surface porosity, and is not prone to staining.

Also, when the phosphorus content is greater than 11.2%, deposits are non-magnetic.

Features of high phosphorus electroless nickel:

  • Corrosion resistant
  • Fast deposition rate throughout life
  • Consistent deposition rate throughout life
  • Very stable and robust

If you are looking for a metal coating that provides high levels of corrosion resistance, high phosphorus electroless nickel is a great solution. Call the us team , email or get in touch via our contact page.

us sponsor Tupton RUFC

We’ve got a great team here at us. As well as working hard electroless nickel plating and all the other types of metal finishing services we carry out, we’ve also got 6 members staff on a local rugby team, Tupton RUFC.

us electroless nickel plating sponsor Tupton RUFC

 

us sponsor the team with hats and training tops, and obviously, we also provide them with loads of support whether they win or lose!

If you are looking for a quality, reliable metal plating company, who are also dab hands on the rugby pitch, contact us or email: 

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 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 2019 but the Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre will be officially opened on 15th October 2019 by Tim Crookall MHK, Minister for Education and Children.

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

Here at us, 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 us or email

Features of Electroless Nickel PTFE Coatings

Nickel-PTFE combines the engineering properties of nickel with the lubricity of polytetrafluoroethylene.

Just like standard electroless nickel, the Nickel PTFE deposit occurs as a result of an autocatalytic chemical reaction which allows a reliable, repeatable coating of uniform thickness. This coating makes it possible to coat parts with sharp edges, seams, threads, deep recesses and complex shapes.

During the plating process, the PTFE particles become embedded throughout the deposit of nickel. The unique composite of Nickel PTFE allows for renewed polytetrafluoroethylene at the surface of the component, even as the coating wears. The chemical process involved in the production of Ni-PTFE coatings means that the PTFE is uniformly dispersed throughout the nickel deposit in order to ensure optimum performance in high friction and non-lubricated applications.

Features of Nickel PTFE Coatings

  • Long life lubrication
  • Dry lubrication, reducing sticking and galling
  • Good mold release, eliminating spray releases
  • Hydrophobic
  • Uniform coverage, particularly good for complex shapes
  • Can be heat treated for increased hardness
  • Good for hign friction applications
  • Natural lubricity eliminating the need for standard lubrication
  • Moving parts such as slides and bearings work with improved efficiency and quieter operation

If you are looking for a nickel coating that combines the lubricity of polytetrafluoroethylene with the hardness and corrosion resistance of electroless nickel, us can help. Call us , email us at  or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

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.

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 us, 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 us

To find out more about our salt spray testing and Kesternich testing services, please contact us or email . Please note that the Kesternich testing service from us 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 us 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 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 us 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 us 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 or email

Lubrication and Corrosion Resistance for Sliding Wear Applications

us’s unique plating solution, Ni-PTFE, is the latest technology in self lubricating coatings, combining the hardness of electroless nickel with the natural lubricating properties of Polytetrafluoreothylene (PTFE).

Ni-PTFE is a nickel coating with a slippery, low friction surface, with low sliding wear.

This highly advanced plating process is commonly used in a variety of industries where its properties are particularly useful and valuable.

 

Ni-PTFE is often used in the following industries:

  • Automotive
  • Machinery
  • Engineering
  • Mold and Die

Ni-PTFE is a great choice for sliding wear applications because of its self lubricating properties. Ni-PTFE is perfect in instances where conventional lubricants would be harmful for the components involved. For example, it can be used for components in electronic equipment, and other types of equipment where a conventional lubricant would be harmful.

Benefits of Ni-PTFE

  • Low friction and wear due to its self lubricating properties.
  • Hard surface with high load-carrying capacity.
  • Allows for even coverage of a component with better control of the thickness levels of the coating.
  • Better anti-galling and anti-seizure.
  • Smoother, more attractive surface.

If you are in need of a metal coating that combines hardness with lubricity, Ni-PTFE is the perfect solution. Call the friendly team at us or email  for more information. Alternatively, visit the us website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk/products-and-services/ni-ptfe-corrosion-prevention.php

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 permanently
  • 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 alloys.  Heat 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, us

us, 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 us

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 our phone number, you can send us an email at 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 2019 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 vacuum 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 us

us 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.  uss 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.

us Heat Treatments, Sheffield

Here at us 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 our phone number, email us at info@us-enp.co.uk or alternatively, you can get in touch with us via our contact page.

 

us Announce New Nickel Diamond Plating Service

us 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 plating, copper 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 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

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 metal 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

us 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 , send us an email at 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.

 

 

5 Things You Need to Know about Electroless Nickel Plating

As specialists in electroless nickel plating, us 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.

Accurate, 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.

Diffused Nickel Plating for Pipeline End Fittings

The 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, us 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

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, without 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 us, 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 us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.

New Nickel Boron Plating Service Available at us

As part of our recent expansion at us, 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

  • 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.

Aerospace Metals and The Hubble Space Telescope

As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating and diffused nickel plating, the staff at us like to keep up to date on the various uses of nickel around the globe. As nickel electroforming was used as the plating service of choice on parts of the Hubble Space Telescope, we thought it only right to feature it in a blog post!

The Hubble Space Telescope was carried into orbit in 1990 by a space shuttle and remains there today taking pictures of space. The HST provides scientists and astronomers with exceptional images from space that has contributed a great deal to improving our understanding of the universe.

Named after the astronomer Edwin Hubble, the HST has led to many breakthroughs in the field of astrophysics. Built by NASA, with contributions from the European Space Agency, the HST is operated by the Space Telescope Science Institute.

Perhaps the most memorable outcome of the images taken from the Hubble Space Telescope was the ability to accurately determine the rate of expansion of the universe.

Nickel electroforming has had an important role in the manufacturing of parts for the HST due to the ability of the process to meet very exact dimensional specifications. The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) consists of a slit wheel that is made up of segments. These were produced by nickel electroforming, and then vacuum-laminated to stainless steel wheel segments.

Obviously a procedure such as this requires high levels of precision and accuracy. Multilayer electroforms with a minute tolerance were required, and were achieved using this process. The application of nickel electroforming has made a big contribution to the success of the Hubble Space Telescope and the high precision obtained by nickel electroforming has made it possible to produce enhanced coronographic HST images.

For more information about the ways in which nickel can be used, and corrosion protection aerospace metals, vvisit the us website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk

Nickel Use in Rocket Engines and Aerospace

Nickel coatings are often used in the aerospace and aircraft industry because they are an effective corrosion resistant coating at high temperatures.

This means that they are capable of protecting airfoil components from abrasion and erosion by providing a surface coating that will allow high nickel/chromium alloy parts to be joined by brazing or welding, to produce nickel or nickel alloy components for space applications and to repair worn or damaged components.

By repairing parts rather than replacing them, they can continue to be used rather that scrapped.

Nickel and alloys of nickel are often used for space applications.

Electroless nickel coatings are used in the Aerospace industry for space applications:

  • Docking
  • Cargo bays
  • Rudder mechanisms of the NASA Space Shuttle

Nickel electroforming has also been used in the space program. It has been used to produce lightweight precision parts for rocket engines, such as:

  • Waveguides
  • Antennae
  • Bellows
  • Heat shields
  • Thrust chambers

High precision electroformed nickel bellows are widely used in the aerospace industry, as electroforming is often the only practical and most economical method. These parts are used for:

  • Flexible electromagnetic interference shielding
  • Metallic hermetic seals
  • Volume compensators
  • Temperature and pressure sensors
  • Flexible couplings

Whether it is electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, or copper plating, the staff at us will ensure that you receive the right service for your industry. To make an inquiry or request more information, please visit our contact page at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk/enquire-electroless-nickel-plating-corrosion-resistance-copper-plating.php

What are the Advantages of Aqua Blasting / Vapour Blasting?

Here at us, 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.

The 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

Restore Your Garden Furniture in One Easy Step

When you bought your metal garden furniture it looked fantastic, right? You couldn’t wait to sit out in your garden, lounge around on your new chairs, or lay your gorgeous new table ready for a BBQ.

But after a couple of years exposed to the elements, it’s not looking so good anymore. You can’t sit on the chairs without getting rust marks on your clothes, and you’re using it less and less as a result.

Well you’re in luck, because us have come up with the perfect way to restore garden furniture to its former glory, without having to buy a whole new set for a small fortune!

The process of chilled iron shotblasting is the perfect way to clean up your garden furniture, remove all the rust, and make it look brand new again.

Chilled Iron Shotblasting Metal Cleaning & Finishing

We have used chilled iron shot blasting for all sorts of restoration projects, from car restoration and repair, garden furniture restoration and steel window frame restoration. It’s also a great way to restore any metal component that has deteriorated over time.

Chilled Iron Shotblasting is the perfect process to clean all types of metal as it will effectively remove paint adhesive, plastic/rubber insets, grease and rust, leaving the component ready to be restored as required.

If you have a set of metal garden furniture that you’d love to be able to use for the remainder of the summer, or you’d like to get looking great ready for next spring/summer, contact metal cleaning experts us on our phone number or email: 

 

Record Orders for Britain’s Aerospace Industry

Britian’s aerospace order book has reached a record high after the success of Farnborough airshow. According to The Daily Telegraph, orders for British made commercial aircraft and engines have reached the highest they’ve ever been thanks to a boost in orders generated at the airshow.

ADS, the trade organisation for the Aerospace, Defence, Security and Space Industries have revealed that the total orders that UK manufacturers have on their books stands at over 12,000 aircraft and more than 21,000 engines. This is estimated to be a combined value of between £135bn and £155bn.

9 Years of Work for the Aerospace Sector

It has been estimated that these orders equal approximately 9 years worth of work for companies in the aerospace sector. Chief Executive of ADS Paul Everitt said: “As an important event for the global aerospace industry, we expected to see a peak in orders during the Farnborough airshow. However, the volume of firm orders placed throughout July was unprecedented; adding almost 650 aircraft and 1,100 engines an already robust order book.”

The Aerospace Growth Partnership

According to the chief economist at ADS Jeegar Kakkad, these impressive figures are proof that the government’s industrial strategy to champion aerospace has been a success. “Countries around the world are sitting up and taking notice of what is going on in the UK aerospace industry with the Aerospace Growth Partnership (AGP) and thinking, ‘We can use the UK as a base to launch into’,” he said. “Countries are too, with Germany wondering how we have taken market share from them and the US looking at how we set up the AGP.”

UK Aerospace Industry Facts

  • Annual turnover of the UK aerospace industry – £27.8bn
  • UK share of global aerospace market – 17%
  • Number of people either directly employed or jobs supported by the aerospace industry – 229,100
  • Backlog of aircraft orders – 12,096
  • Backlog of engine orders – 21,094
  • Year’s worth of work at current levels – 9

Increased Sales of Aircraft Engines

A spokesman for Airbus said: “The Farnborough airshow was excellent as Airbus won 345.4bn billion worth of business for a total of 496 aircraft. This is particularly good news for the UK where the wings for our aircraft are designed and manufactured.

“Airbus sustains work for more than 100,000 people through an extended supply chain of more than 1,000 companies located across the UK, around 45 per cent of which are SMEs. The continuing strong order book helps to maintain the UK’s position as a European and global leader in aerospace.”

Metal Finishing and Metal Plating Services

As experts in a range of metal finishing techniques that can be used in the aerospace industry, such as electroless nickel plating, us are incredibly pleased that the sector is experiencing such a boom. It’s fantastic news for the future of the UK aerospace industry!

How Are Nickel Coatings Used in Aircraft?

Nickel coatings are often used on various parts of aircraft due to its fantastic properties of corrosion resistance and hardness. Needless to say, the Aircraft industry has an ongoing need for nickel plating.

Electroless nickel plating is used in the Aircraft industry to provide:

  • Corrosion resistance at high temperatures to protect airfoil components from erosion and abrasion.
  • Provides a coating that will allow high nickel/chromium alloy parts to be joined by brazing or welding.
  • To repair worn or damaged components so that they can continue to be used rather than scrapped.

Electroless nickel coatings have been used on the following aircraft parts:

  • Bearing journals
  • Servo valves
  • Compressor blades
  • Turbine blades
  • Pistons
  • Engine shafts
  • Engine mounts
  • Landing gear
  • Hydraulic and manifold systems
  • Gyroscope components and optics

For more information about the use of electroless nickel plating in the Aircraft industry, please contact the staff at us or email: 

How to Stop Rust and Corrosion on Road Bikes and Mountain Bikes

So you’ve just invested in a great new bike and you’re looking forward to getting out there and seeing what it’s made of. Top notch road and mountain bikes don’t come cheap, so no doubt you’re keen to keep your bike in fantastic condition.

Protect your bike from the elements!

But getting out there on your bike means getting it dirty! You cycle through muddy puddles, squeeze past a prickly hedge or two on your off road adventure, and splash the frame with dirt and pebbles as you go.

What if there was a way to guarantee that your bike stayed scratch and rust free?

Here at us, we have found the answer! Having your bike frame electroless nickel plated is the perfect way to keep it rust, scratch and corrosion free, for a really affordable price. For just £185, you can have your steel or aluminium bike frame electroless nickel plated.

Not only does this look great, electroless nickel coatings are incredibly corrosion resistant and resistant to scratches, making them ideal for keeping your bike in fantastic condition for years to come.

Electroless nickel plated bike frames

To protect your road or mountain bike from rust, corrosion and scratches, all you have to do is send it to us. Simply dissemble it, leaving just the handlebars and frame, send it to us, and we will have it nickel plated for you in just 5 days.

To find out more about keeping your bike rust and scratch free for years to come, contact us today or

us Announce New Tin Plating Service

We are pleased to announce the latest of our new metal plating services available at us; tin plating!

With extensive experience in the processes of electroless nickel plating, copper plating and metal finishing, tin plating is a natural extension of our high quality range of services and we are delighted to be able to our it to our customers.

What is Tin Plating?


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.

Useful Properties of Tin Plating

  • Transformable without any cracking
  • Added performance and durability
  • 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

How is Tin Plating Used?

The application of tin plating is suitable for a number of base metals; including ironcopper and nickel. The conductive properties that the process helps to add ensure that it is commonly used within the electrical and electro-mechanical industries. It is equally useful within a number of other industries; including power distribution and transmission, telecommunications, medical, marine and aerospace. Tin plating is also widely implemented in the food packaging trade thanks to its non-toxic and corrosion resistant properties.

Contact us for 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 or email

Aqua Blasting Now Available at us

As experts in the field of electroless nickel plating, corrosion resistance and surface technology; we are delighted to be able to add Aqua Blasting to our repertoire of fantastic services. Also known as vapour blasting; this wet-blasting process is perfect for the gently eradicating surface dirt and grime from metal components.

Aqua Blasting 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.This new process that we are now offering 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.

No Alteration of Critical Dimensions

That is possible thanks to the flow of a water-borne abrasive. Aqua Blasting cleans by the flow of water and not by impact; with the water acting as a lubricant between media and component. 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. Unlike with 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. It also used in the removal of carbon deposits, paint and rust in engineering industries; as well as in surface preparation prior to bonding, re-painting and re-coating.

Aqua Blasting Suitable for a Range of Industries

Examples of industries where the process is commonly utilised include automotive, aerospace, reconditioning and maintenance. The process is particularly ideal for the degreasing and surface finishing of a number of bike and car components; including cylinder heads, motorcycle wheel hubs and side covers. Aqua Blasting can also help to reduce porosity in castings and is very easy to keep clean.

It can be applied to almost all metals; and degreases and cleans the surface of them in tandem. To find out more about our new treatment process – as well as a range of our other metal plating and metal finishing surfaces – you can call us or email .

Everything You Need to Know About Vapour Blasting

Aqua 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 us 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 us or email .

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.

Hot-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 us on our phone number or email: 

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

Brake 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 us Facebook page or follow @nickelplating on Twitter for regular news, pictures and case studies. Alternatively, please call the us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.

4 Reasons to Choose Heat Treatment Solutions at us

As 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 us 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 us 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 us, 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 us or email

The Ultimate Corrosion Protection

Here at us, we are experts in the fields of corrosion protection and corrosion resistance. We have spent years developing extremely sophisticated metal finishing techniques in order to establish ourselves as market leaders.

Our metal plating tanks are up to 10 meters in length, making them the largest in the UK. We have even been known to construct bespoke plating tanks in house to cater for customer’s specific needs. We can plate parts of all sizes, from small components the size of pins, to large applications such as oil pipelines and castings weighing up to 25 tonnes.

us’s onsite laboratory

The corrosion protection and corrosion resistance offered by the metal finishing services at us is closely monitored to ensure that we offer our customers the very highest standards.

We have a laboratory onsite which carries out all of the necessary tests to ensure that the thickness and hardness of the coatings we provide is measured accurately. We are also committed to investing in the very latest instrumentation to continually maintain the highest levels of quality for our plating services.

If you would like to find out more about our range of metal plating and metal finishing services that are the ultimate in corrosion prevention, contact us our phone number or email

us’s Marine Coating Technology

us’s very own marine corrosion prevention technology, SeaTEC 100, is the ultimate solution to increasing the life of components used in subsea conditions.

SeaTEC 100’s superior marine corrosion resistance means that mild steel is protected from salt spray corrosion and marine corrosion for extensive periods of time, making it perfect for use on offshore platforms such as oil rigs.

Marine Corrosion Protection

SeaTEC 100 is an extremely cost effective coating.

Because it extends the life of materials in marine environments, such as mild steel, the downtime that would usually be caused by repair or replacement of corroded parts is reduced, or even avoided altogether.

This makes SeaTEC 100 an ideal plating for oil rigs and pipes used to transport oil and gas.

Features of SeaTEC 100

  • Effectively plates metal components, valves and connectors, making SeaTEC 100 a cost-effective way of extending the life of mild-steel operating in marine environments, the ultimate in marine corrosion prevention.
  • Effectively increases the strength of items such as pipeline connectors, where the material is at it’s weakest level.
  • SeaTEC 100 has been independently tested to withstand salt spray conditions and protect against marine corrosion for over 25,000 hours, a period of time that is unprecedented within the metal plating industry.
  • It is available in a range of colours.

If you are looking for a solution to marine corrosion, and would like to find out more about SeaTEC 100, the ultimate in marine corrosion prevention, our phone number or email: 

The Smart Metal that Remembers its Shape!

As a leading plating and metal finishing company, us have always been fascinated by the many uses of nickel. Nickel really is a very useful metal and it is used in all sorts of everyday items that you wouldn’t expect.

Nickel-titanium shape memory alloy is what is known as a ‘smart metal’. If it is deformed in any way or heated up, it naturally returns to its original shape, or ‘remembers’ it!

Nickel-titanium alloy

This alloy is commonly used for the frames for glasses, the kind that spring back into shape even if you sit on them. Nitinol is the generic name for the family of nickel-titanium alloys.

Nitinol stands for Nickel Titanium Naval Ordnance Laboratory, and in 1961 a researcher at an American Laboratory discovered that this particular alloy has ‘shape memory’.

Although it was a fantastic discovery which has gone on to change the way glasses are made, it was actually come across by accident. During a laboratory management meeting, a badly bent strip of Nitinol was presented to the attendees. An attendee of the meeting picked up the piece of Nitinol and heated it up with his pipe lighter. To the amazement of the people in the room, the strip stretched back to its original shape.

So, whichever way you bend, stretch and pull your frames, they will always return to their original shape!

For more information about us as a plating company, or the uses of nickel in the aerospace and automotive industries, please visit the us website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk

Nickel Plating Services in the Automotive Industry

Electroformed, electroplated and electroless nickel is commonly used in the automotive industry.

One of the biggest and most obvious uses of nickel is the use on bumpers, wheels and grilles. 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 and Industry Warranties

Nickel plating is a great way of metal hardening and can protect components for decades, which is obviously great news for the automotive industry because it means that manufacturers can offer industry warranties.  High quality plated components can be produced in bulk, with consistency and reliability.

The automotive industry is the biggest user of nickel for plating applications. Steel bumpers are very popular as they look great, and they are also very durable. Substrate materials include steel, aluminium and plastic. The benefit of using nickel plating on substrates such as these is that they are relatively cheap, and with a layer of nickel plating they can be made extremely durable.

Environmental Benefits of Nickel

Nickel plating lightweight materials such as aluminium and plastic is also beneficial because lightweight parts on a vehicle improve fuel efficiency. It’s also better for the environment for parts to have a longer life as it reduces scrap. Also, plated components can be recycled, which is good for the European auto industry as their objective is to produce vehicles that are completely recyclable.

If you would like to find out more about metal hardening and metal corrosion protection, or the use of nickel plating in the automotive industry , why not ‘Like’ the us Facebook page or follow @nickelplating on Twitter for regular news, pictures and case studies.

 

Nickel and Computer Hard Disks

It’s truly amazing how far the IT industry has advanced over the past few decades. Laptops, computers and tablets continue to reduce in size, but despite shrinking, they can actually hold more data than ever before.

IBM invented the very first computer disc storage way back in 1956. The disks were about 150cm in diameter, which is roughly twice the size of an old vinyl record, and they could store 100 kilobytes of data. The computer hard disks we use today can be as small as 1cm wide and hold more than 400 gigabytes!

Hard disk drives work by using a magnetic head to move to a location where information is stored. As experts in electroless nickel plating, us have a wealth of knowledge about the use of nickel and the benefits of using nickel in everyday items such as hard drives.

Nickel really is a critical part of the technology involved in hard drives and is used in the film heads. It is applied to the magnetic heads using a plating process that uses heat, not electricity, to deposit the nickel layer.

This film head technology means that the storage density of hard drives has increased by 10 every 8 years since 1979! It also means that hard disk drives can now be used in mobile phones, video games consoles and iPods.

If you would like to find out more about us’s plating services and metal finishing services, call us or email: 

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 us.

What are the Advantages of Electroless Nickel Plating?

In 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 us, 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 us 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.

us 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 us, 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 us team , email  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 2019 Budget

In 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 us on our phone number or email us at 

Top 5 Properties of Copper Plating

Here at us, we offer a copper plating service that is suitable for both functional and decorative applications. As experts in the process, we’ve put together the top 5 properties of copper plating that make it one of our most popular metal plating services.

Thermal and Conductive Properties

Copper is often used in electrical wiring because it is an excellent conductor of electricity. This makes copper electroplating a great choice on metal surfaces where a high level of conductivity is required. As a result it widely used in the electrical and electronics industries.

Adhesiveness

Copper is perfect for providing an underplate for tin and nickel plating because of its high levels of adhesion. Some industries use copper to provide metallization of non-metallic materials such as plastics.  Also, because of its adhesiveness, it won’t separate from the material even when the object is bent.

Flexibility

Copper is a highly flexible, soft, malleable metal, which makes it perfect for plating surfaces and objects in which some flexibility is required. And because of coppers excellent adhesiveness, it won’t come away from the object even in conditions where it is bent.

Highly Decorative

As well as its functional purposes, bright copper plating can be used decoratively, giving a highly polished copper-pink appearance. A thick layer of copper plating will also cover surface irregularities and generally improve aesthetics.

Naturally Kills Bacteria

Copper plate naturally kills bacteria, therefore, is frequently used to plate laboratory and medical equipment. It has actually been proven to inhibit the growth of many different micro organisms, and is used as an effective antimicrobial agent in a variety of settings such as food production, processing plants, agriculture and hospitals. It can, in fact, slow or stop the growth of bacteria, fungi, algae and yeast.

Copper Plating Service

If you are interested in the process of copper plating for either a functional or decorative application, us can help. To make an enquiry or simply to have a chat with one of our friendly team about your requirements, call us or email

Why Use Electroless Nickel as an Alternative to Galvanisation?

The process of galvanisation

The process of galvanisation applies a protective coating of zinc onto the metal. This type of coating is commonly used on steel or iron in order to prevent rusting. Galvanisation prevents a ferrous item from rusting, as the corrosion resistance of zinc is much higher than that of steel or iron. Advantages of galvanisation are that it is relatively cheap and easily applied. It also has a very long life and needs little maintenance.

Hot dip galvanisation

Hot dip galvanisation is the most common method of galvanisation. The steel part is submerged in a bath of molten zinc, coating the component with a layer of zinc. Hot-dip galvanisation produces a grey, matte coating to the surface of the metal, which is very thick and durable.

Electroplated galvanisation

Galvanisation can also be achieved using electrochemical and electrodeposition processes. Electroplated coatings are generally less durable and not really appropriate for outdoor applications because the deposit is very thin. This can be helped by painting the surface of the component, which slows down zinc consumption, delays the corrosion and extending its durability.

The advantage of electroplating is that it is much cheaper than hot dip galvanising. It is used for many different outdoor applications but despite looking good when it is new, it isn’t very durable and won’t withstand the elements very well.

An alternative to galvanising

Although galvanisation is cheaper, the final finish isn’t as attractive or durable as some other types of metal finishing. Electroless nickel plating can be used as an alternative to galvanisation as it is durable and aesthetically pleasing.

Electroless nickel plating can also be used in harsh environments because of its high corrosion resistance. The uniform coating created by this process can be a perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items such as those used in the defense, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries.

Considering the extent of its durability and the attractive finish it creates, electroless nickel plating is cheaper than you might think. It is also the ideal plating for a surface exposed to friction and wear, which can also be increased by using heat treatments.

If you would like to find out more about using electroless nickel plating as an alternative to galvanisation, contact us or email 

Nickel Plating – The Cheaper Alternative to Stainless Steel

Electroless nickel plating can be a great alternative to stainless steel. It’s much more cost effective and it still offers amazing corrosion resistance. Stainless steel is very expensive and it’s often hard to find a source to cast very large components made of stainless steel.

Making large parts out of cast iron and then electroless nickel plating them is a cheaper and quicker solution.

Hardness and Wear Resistance

It’s also perfect for plating large machined parts that need to be resistant to corrosion. Electroless nickel plating is also a great alternative to stainless steel because of its hardness and wear resistance.

Here at us, we’re experts in the process of electroless nickel plating and our equipment means that we can plate even the most difficult large parts accurately and consistently.

If you would like to find out more about reducing costs by using electroless nickel plating as an alternative to stainless steel, contact us on  our phone number or email

The Composition and Structure of Electroless Nickel Plating

The 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.

Electroless Nickel Plating Vs 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, we’ve put together a bit of information comparing the processes so that you can make an informed decision.

Protecting Metal Using 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. Galvanisation is an effective way of preventing the ferrous item from rusting, as the corrosion resistance of zinc is much higher than iron or steel. It is also a cheap process, easily applied and has a long, maintenance free service life.

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.

Hot-dip galvanisation produces a grey, matte coating to the surface of the metal, which is very thick and durable. Electroplated coatings are less durable and unsuitable for outdoor applications because of the thinness of the deposit. This can be overcome to some extent, however, by painting the surface which slows down zinc consumption, therefore delaying the corrosion and extending its durability.

Electroless Nickel as an Alternative to Galvanisation

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. 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.

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.

Engineering Coatings for the Oil and Gas Industries

As experienced suppliers of effective engineering coatings for the oil and gas industry, us have a wealth of knowledge regarding wear resistant, anti-corrosion coatings suitable for harsh and demanding environments. We specialise in a range of engineering coatings including the following:

Electroless Nickel Coatings

Electroless nickel is ideal for precision parts that are in need of anti-fretting and corrosion protection, for example, on parts such as splines, couplings, gasket faces and fibre optic connectors. It is very resistant to corrosion and will, therefore, extend the life of everything it coats.  This makes it ideal for coating parts exposed to harsh environments such as those operating in the marine, oil and gas and defence industries.

Ni-PTFE Self Lubricating Corrosion Resistant Coating

Ni-PTFE plating is a unique self lubricating 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.

It can effectively increase the life span of components due to its properties of corrosion prevention and wear resistance, and provides long life lubrication for inaccessible parts as it dramatically reduces the levels of friction between components.

SeaTEC 100 Marine Corrosion Protection

SeaTEC 100 is the perfect coating to increase the longevity of components used in subsea conditions. This revolutionary product protects mild steel from salt spray corrosion and provides marine corrosion resistance for an extensive period of time, making it perfect for use in sub-sea conditions.

For more information about our range of high quality engineering coatings specially designed for the oil and gas industry, call the us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.

us Sponsor Well in Africa for AquAid

Here at electroless nickel plating specialists us, we are pleased to be able to make a difference to people’s lives in Africa by getting our water coolers from AquAid.

We have recently been asked to sponsor a water well on behalf of this great charity, and of course we jumped at the chance to do our bit!

Aquaid saves the lives of children in Africa by raising funds to build fresh drinking water wells in areas of Africa where it is needed the most, like in schools and villages.

For every water cooler and bottle of water that we get from Aquaid, a donation is made on us’s behalf to The Africa Trust.

As a way of spreading the word about the great work that AquAid do, we have put a badge of support on to the us website to show our commitment to helping AquAid’s recent project installing Elephant Pumps in Africa.

One of the many installed water pumps will be inscribed with us, and in time we look forward to receiving a certificate and letter of thanks from the villagers/pupils.

“I’m absolutely delighted that we can help to support such a worthwhile and needy cause,” said us Commercial Director Marcus Hill. “It’s fantastic to be involved in supporting AquAid and The Africa Trust, everyone at us is thrilled to be involved and doing their bit to help.”

The Africa Trust  was founded by AquAid in order to bring sustainable solutions to poverty in Africa. This amazing charity works tirelessly to establish sustainable supplies of clean productive water and decent sanitation. Income generating projects are also used to pay school fees, improve clinics and generate the funds needed to run orphanages.

For more information about us and our services, including electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, and copper plating, please visit our website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk. Our AquAid badge of support can also be viewed on the homepage of the us website.

 

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

As specialists in electroless nickel plating, us 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 us.

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 us offer such as electroless nickel plating, copper plating, shot 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

Electroless 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 us, 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 us team , email  or get in touch via our contact page.