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Everything You Need to Know About Vapour Blasting

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

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

How Does Vapour Blasting Work?

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

What are the Advantages of Aqua Blasting?

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

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

Key Advantages of Aqua Blasting:

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

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

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

3 Reasons to Choose Electroless Nickel Plating Over Galvanisation

What is Galvanisation?

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

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

Electroless Nickel as an Alternative to Galvanisation

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

  1. Durability and Corrosion Resistance

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

  1. Uniform Coating

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

  1. Cost Effectivity

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

Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

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

How do Brake Calipers Work?

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

Corrosion and Wear Protection

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

Nickel Plating on Bumpers, Wheels and Grilles

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

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

4 Reasons to Choose Heat Treatment Solutions at NiTEC UK

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

Add Flexibility to your Coating

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

Maintain Corrosion Protection

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

Small Components can be Treated Economically

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

Carefully Monitored Heat Treatment

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

UK Heat Treatment Services

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

Top 5 Frequently Asked Questions about Electroless Nickel Plating

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

What are the Advantages of Electroless Nickel Plating?

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

In Which Applications can Electroless Nickel be Used?

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

In Which Industries is Electroless Nickel Plating Commonly Used?

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

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

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

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

Nickel Plating Company in Chesterfield, UK

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

UK Defence Spending Set to Rise

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

The 2015 Budget

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

Britain Defending Itself

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

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

Metal Plating Services

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