Tag Archive for electroless nickel plating

Rising Base Metals Rocketing to the Top?

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

 

Nickel Plating is Key

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

 

Information Regarding Nickel Plating

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

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

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

Electroless Nickel Plating and Diffused Nickel Plating

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

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

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

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

 

Why Tinplate is Great

tin-plating-company

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

Tin for Tin Plating

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

Where did Tin Plating come from?

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

What are the Advantages of Tin Plating?

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

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

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

 

Everything you need to know about Shot Blasting

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

The Process of Shot Blasting

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

Shot Blasting and Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

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

 

Shotblasting – The Abrasive Protection

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

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

Wheelblasting for the Shotblasting Process

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

Shotblasting and the Airblasting Process

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

Shotblasting at NiTEC UK

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

Contact Us Today at NiTEC UK

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

 

Is Copper Plating the New Solar Panel Platform?

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

Copper Plating and Taiwan

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

Increased Rating of Copper Plating

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

Why Choose Copper Plating?

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

NiTEC UK and You

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

Nickel Plating and the Heatsink Saving

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

Nickel Plating Information

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

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

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

Diffused Nickel Plating and Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Contact NiTEC UK Today

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

Nickel Plating takes precedence in new DIY Water Cooling Kit

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

DIY Water Cooling Kit in a Box

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

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

 

What does Nickel Plating do?

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

 

Contact NiTEC UK Today

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

 

Wheelie Fallen in Love with Copper Plating

copper-plating-process-nitec-uk

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

About Copper Plating

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

NiTEC UK – Copper Plating Suppliers

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

Boeing up in the World

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

Boeing and Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Contact NiTEC UK Today

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

Witches on a Silver Platter

witch-silver-plating

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

The Golden History of Silver

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

How Did Silver Plating Occur?

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

Silver Plating

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

The benefits of Silver plating are:

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

Who or which Industries reap the benefits of Silver plating?

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

NiTEC UK, Your Specialist Plating Company

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

Contact NiTEC UK today

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

 

 

Electroplating and Electroless Plating – Less is More!

less-is-more-electroless-nickel-plating

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

The Electroplating Process

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

The Electroless Plating Process

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

What does Plating help with?

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

Electroless Nickel Plating

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

 

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

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

Put a Coat on!

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

Automotive Parts and Protective Coatings

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

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

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

Contact NiTEC UK

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

 

Electroless Nickel Plating – The Accidental De-scovery

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

The Pros of Electroless Nickel Plating (ENP)

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

 

Suppliers of Electroless Nickel Plating

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

 

 

The Importance of…Electroless Nickel Plating and the Benefits

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

Process This

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

Anything Chrome Can Do, ENP Can Do Better

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Company, Derbyshire, UK

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

3 Reasons to Choose Electroless Nickel Plating Over Galvanisation

What is Galvanisation?

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

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

Electroless Nickel as an Alternative to Galvanisation

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

  1. Durability and Corrosion Resistance

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

  1. Uniform Coating

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

  1. Cost Effectivity

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

Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

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

How do Brake Calipers Work?

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

Corrosion and Wear Protection

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

Nickel Plating on Bumpers, Wheels and Grilles

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

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

4 Reasons to Choose Heat Treatment Solutions at NiTEC UK

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

Add Flexibility to your Coating

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

Maintain Corrosion Protection

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

Small Components can be Treated Economically

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

Carefully Monitored Heat Treatment

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

UK Heat Treatment Services

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

Top 5 Frequently Asked Questions about Electroless Nickel Plating

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

What are the Advantages of Electroless Nickel Plating?

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

In Which Applications can Electroless Nickel be Used?

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

In Which Industries is Electroless Nickel Plating Commonly Used?

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

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

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

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

Nickel Plating Company in Chesterfield, UK

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

UK Defence Spending Set to Rise

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

The 2015 Budget

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

Britain Defending Itself

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

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

Metal Plating Services

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

The Composition and Structure of Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

Heat Treatment and Electroless Nickel Plating

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

The Composition of Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

Medium Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

Low Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

Worldwide Electroless Nickel Plating Service

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

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

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

Metal Coatings for Marine Environments

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

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

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

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

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

Metal Plating Services Chesterfield

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

Top 5 Properties of Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

Uniform Thickness

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

Corrosion Resistance

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

Density

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

Adhesion

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

Hardness

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

Metal Plating Company in Derbyshire, UK

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

Latest Photos of New Electroless Nickel Plating Factory Building

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

Biggest Plating Line in Europe

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

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

Further Electroless Nickel Plating for Designer Thomas Heatherwick

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

Heatherwick’s Garden Bridge across the Thames

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

Nickel Plated Extruded Benches

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

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

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

UK Electroless Nickel Plating Service

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

Electroless Nickel Plating for Valve Components in Engineering Applications

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

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

Electroless Nickel Coatings for Fire-Flow Valves

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

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

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

Corrosion Resistant Oil and Gas Coatings

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

Electroless Nickel Plating for the Oil and Gas Industry

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

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

Electroless Nickel on Valves, Flow Control Devices and Ball Plugs

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

Applications of Electroless Nickel

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

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

Electroless Nickel Plating for Oil and Gas Applications

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

5 Reasons to Choose NiTEC as Your Nickel Plating Company

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

1. Worldwide Plating Services

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

2. Wide Range of Metal Plating Services

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

3. Onsite Laboratory

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

4. Highly Experienced Staff

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

5. Flexible Approach and Wide Range of Capabilities

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

Metal Plating Company in Chesterfield, UK

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

The Biggest Electroless Nickel Plating Line in Europe Well Under Way

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

Specialist Large Capacity Electroless Nickel Plating Line

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

Increasing Demand for Nickel Plating

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

Metal Finishing Services at NiTEC UK

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

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

NiTEC Electroless Nickel Plate Extruded Benches for Thomas Heatherwick

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

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

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

Extrusion and the Production of Contorted Shapes

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

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

Nickel Plating Aluminium Benches

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

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

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

NiTEC Sponsor Second African Water Well

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

Making a Difference in the Lives of Those Less Fortunate

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

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

Who are AquaAid and What Do They Do?

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

UK Metal Plating Services

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

Explaining the Process of Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

Pre-treatment Process

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

Activation of the Substrate

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

Corrosion Resistant Coating

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

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

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

Optimising the Performance of Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

UK Based Metal Finishing and Metal Hardening Company

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

New Ultra-Large Electroless Nickel Plating Line at NiTEC UK

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

World’s Largest Electroless Nickel Plating Tank

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

Expansion of Production Capacity

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

Metal Finishing Services at NiTEC UK

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

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

How to Choose the Perfect Electroless Nickel Coating for your Needs

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

 

What Will the Part Be Used For?

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

What Sort of Environment Will it Function In?

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

How Hard Does it Need to Be?

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

Types of Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Company

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

Top 3 Benefits of High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel

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

Hardness

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

Corrosion Resistance

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

Uniformity

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

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

Other advantages of high phosphorus electroless nickel are as follows:

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

Corrosion Resistant Metal Coating

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

7 Advantages of Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

1. Effective Barrier Coating

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

electroless nickel plating company uk2. Hardness

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

3. Wear Resistance

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

4. Uniform Deposit

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

5. Natural Lubricity

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

6. No Electricity Needed

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

7. Cost Effective

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

UK Based Electroless Nickel Plating Company

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

How to Get the Best Results from Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

Continuous Monitoring of the Plating Solution

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

Filtration of the Plating Bath

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

Correct Preparation of Parts

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

Plating Bath Temperature Control

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

Bath Water Purity

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

UK Electroless Nickel Plating Service

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

5 Reasons to Choose Electroless Nickel Over Stainless Steel

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

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

Superior Hardness and Corrosion Resistance

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

Nickel Plating is Cheaper than Stainless Steel

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

Meet Engineering Specifications

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

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

Top 3 Benefits of Applying Corrosion Resistant Coatings

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

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

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

Resistant to Harsh Chemicals and Extreme Temperatures

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

Extended Life Span of Components

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

Servicing Costs Reduced

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

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

Top 5 Industries Using Electroless Nickel Plating

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

The Oil and Gas Industry

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

Engineering

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

The Automotive Industry

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

The Textile Industry

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

The Chemical Industry

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

UK Based Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

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

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

Environmental Architecture

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

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

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

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

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

Specialist Electroless Nickel Coatings for the Automotive Industry

brake caliper nickel plating

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

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

Increase the Corrosion Resistance of Brake Calipers with Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

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

Anti-Corrosion Coatings for High Performance Brake Calipers

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

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

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

Electroless Plating Vs Electroplating: Which is Best?

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

Metal Coatings Applied Using the Electroplating Process

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

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

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

Metal Coatings Applied Using the Electroless Plating Process

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

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

Which is Best?

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

UK Electroless Nickel Plating Specialists

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

The History of Electroless Nickel Plating

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

An Historical Overview of Electroless Nickel Plating

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

An Alternative Process to Conventional Electroplating

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

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

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

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

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

Composite Coatings of Electroless Nickel

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

6 Reasons to Use Electroless Nickel Plating for Engineering Applications

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

nickel plating technical figure1. Uniform Deposition of Electroless Nickel

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

2. Strong, Chip Free Coating

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

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

3. The Ability to Plate Irregular Shapes

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

4. Heat Treatment to Increase Hardness

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

5. Corrosion and Erosion Barrier

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

6. Release Properties

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

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

UK’s Largest Electroless Nickel Plating Tanks at NiTEC UK

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

Pre-Treatment for Electroless Nickel Plating

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

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

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

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

 

Low Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Medium Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

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

High Phosphorus Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Service

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

Beat Friction and Wear with Slippery Nickel PTFE

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

Durable Dry Lubrication with Anti-galling Requirements

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

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

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

Applications of Electroless Nickel PTFE

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

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

Electroless Nickel with Polytetrafluoreothylene

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

Common Applications of Electroless Nickel Coatings

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

Aerospace Components

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

Oil & Gas Components

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

Automotive Components

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

Food Service Equipment

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

Electrical Equipment

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

Packaging and Handling Machinery

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

Chemical Manufacturing and Transport Equipment

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

Molds and Dies

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

Plastics Manufacturing Equipment

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

Printing Industry Equipment

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

Salvage

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

Support for Offshore Oil and Gas Industry with New Tax Reform

oil rig north sea uk

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

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

 Economic Benefits “For Years to Come”

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

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

Offshore Exploration in the North Sea

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

Reducing the Tax Burden on the Oil and Gas Industry

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

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

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

Metal Finishing Services for oil and Gas Applications

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

The History of Onshore Oil Extraction in the UK

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

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

Onshore Drilling and Hydraulic Fracturing

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

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

Onshore Oil Wells in the UK

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

Surface Technology for the Oil and Gas Industries

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

The Use of Electroless Nickel in Valves and Flow Control Devices

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

Electroless Nickel and Mild Steel Ball Valves

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

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

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

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

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

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

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

Enhancing Oil and Gas Base Materials with Electroless Nickel

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

The Three Areas in the Oil and Gas Industry

offshore oilrig

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

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

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

Surface Operations

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

Subsurface Operations or Downhole Operations

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

Offshore Operations

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

UK Based Electroless Nickel Plating Factory

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

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

Composite Coatings of Electroless Nickel Plating

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

electroless nickel composite coatingElectroless Nickel and PTFE Composite Coating

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

Nickel Boron Composite Coating

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

Nickel Diamond Composite Coating

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

Electroless Nickel Composite Plating Services

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

Funding Deal Boosts Expansion of Electroless Nickel Plating Services

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

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

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

Leading Electroless Nickel Plating Specialists

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

Funding From Yorkshire Bank

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

Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Boost for Aerospace Industry with £1m Training Centre

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

Red arrows pilot

Red Arrows ejector seats are made on the Isle of Man

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

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

Worldwide Civil and Defence Aerospace Project

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

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

Manufacturing Centre of Excellence

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Services

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

Latest News: New Services Available at NiTEC

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

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

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

Nickel Boron Plating Service

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

Nickel Diamond Plating Service

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

Tin Plating Service

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

Aqua Blasting

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

Metal Plating Service Chesterfield

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

5 Things You Need to Know about Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Auto-Catalytic Chemical Reaction

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

Can be Applied to Range of Substrates

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

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

Superior Corrosion and Wear Resistance

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

electroless nickel plated componentAccurate, Uniform Deposit

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

Applications for Electroless Nickel Plating

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

Electroless Nickel Plating Service

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

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.”

airbus A350UK 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, NiTEC are incredibly pleased that the sector is experiencing such a boom. It’s fantastic news for the future of the UK aerospace industry!

NiTEC Announce New Tin Plating Service

tin plating company

We are pleased to announce the latest of our new metal plating services available at NiTEC; 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 NiTEC UK 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 on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

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 galvanisationHot-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.

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

Engineering Coatings for the Oil and Gas Industries

As experienced suppliers of effective engineering coatings for the oil and gas industry, NiTEC 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 marine corrosion resistanceSeaTEC 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 NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

The Advantages of Corrosion Resistant Coatings

Corrosion and rust can have a catastrophic effect on the safety of a variety of equipment used in the automotive, oil and gas, and engineering industry. And it’s not just the safety of this equipment that’s a problem, corrosion and rust can also affect the reliability and efficiency of the equipment too.

What is Corrosion?

Corrosion occurs when a metal or alloy is attacked by agents in the surrounding atmosphere. This reaction causes the surface of the material to disintegrate into an oxide or sulphide, or even the dissolution of the material into the surrounding environment.

How Do Corrosion Resistant Coatings Work?

There are many things that can degrade metal components, such as exposure to chemicals, oxidation, moisture and salt spray. Corrosion resistant coatings protect the metal from this degradation by providing a barrier between the component and the corrosive material.

The advantages of using components that are resistant to corrosion are numerous.  They can increase the life of a component as they prevent the formation of rust on a part, in turn stopping the part from becoming a catalyst for rust formation on surrounding parts. This, therefore,  prevents part on part rusting and removing the risk of one part affecting the final assembly.

What are the Benefits of Corrosion Resistant Coatings?

Coatings which possess anti-corrosive properties such as electroless nickel plating and diffused nickel plating ensure that metal components have the longest possible life by inhibiting the effect of chemicals, moisture and salt spray etc.

Another benefit of an anti-corrosion coating is that they can tolerate extended periods in extreme conditions such as fluctuations in temperature, exposure to hostile elements and extreme moisture and damp. The use of corrosion resistant plating before the part is exposed to corrosion can reduce costs and delays due to replacement of parts.

Electroless Nickel Corrosion Resistant Coating

electroless nickel plated componentElectroless nickel is a uniform coating that is the perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items used in the defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries.

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. Therefore, it can reduce the cost of repair and replacement parts.

The process of electroless nickel plating is a great way to prevent corrosion from occurring on parts used in the automotive, oil and gas, and engineering industry. Contact NiTEC today on 0845 2243571 or email web@nitec-enp.co.uk

Nickel Plating for the Oil and Gas Division of Rolls-Royce

Along with smaller customers such as metal sculptors and car restorers, NiTEC have also had the pleasure of working with international companies with very specific requirements. For example, we were recently asked to nickel plate a component for Rolls-Royce’s oil and gas division.

Onshore and Offshore Oil and Gas Applications

Rolls-Royce is a world-leading provider of power systems and services for use on land, at sea and in the air and operate in four global market sectors: civil aerospacedefense aerospace, marine and energy. They supply gas turbines, compressors and diesel power units to customers in over 80 countries worldwide.

Rolls-Royce’s energy business supplies gas turbines, compressors and diesel power units to customers around the world and is a world leader in the supply of power for onshore and offshore oil and gas applications. Not only that, they have more than 65 million hours of operating experience in oil and gas applications, 1,700 systems worldwide and over 650 units sold for offshore platform service.

The gas turbines supplied by Rolls-Royce provide the power that enables oil platforms to operate in some of the most hostile and remote locations of the world. This could be in temperatures ranging from -50°C in Canada and Russia in the winter, to more than 50°C in areas such as Africa and the Middle East in the height of summer.

Rolls-Royce’s compressor technology transports oil and gas across continents, with over 900 pipeline compressors installed on 35 pipelines in 24 countries. They also have over 700 barrel-type centrifugal compressors operating in various natural gas and process applications.

 

Corrosion and Wear Resistance for Oil and Gas Applications

NiTEC’s involvement in electroless nickel plating an oil and gas application for Rolls-Royce is a great achievement for us as a company. The oil and gas division at Rolls Royce operate with industry leading efficiency, therefore it’s a fantastic project to be a part of.

For more information about the ways in which NiTEC can help your company with exceptional corrosion and wear resistance for oil and gas applications, call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

Nickel Plating as an Alternative to Chrome Plating for Classic Car Restoration

Chrome plating is often used in the restoration of classic cars. There are many forums online that talk about the use of chrome plating to restore old vehicles, but if you read carefully, it does have its pitfalls.

Chrome plating is a highly labour intensive and very expensive method of plating a classic car. If you go for an especially cheap price for the service, it most certainly will not last. It’s vital to have other layers under the chrome plating, such as nickel, as this protects the steel below the chrome from corrosion. The shiny layer of chromium is porous and, without a waterproof layer between it and the steel, it will only last a matter of months.

Electroless Nickel Plating

nickel plating classic car restorationQuality nickel plating can really make a classic car restoration project and it is a great alternative to chrome plating. Most brightwork on cars before the 1930s was nickel plated, as opposed to chromium plated.

The process of electroless nickel plating is much cheaper and easier than chrome plating. Good chrome platers would usually apply a layer of nickel under the chrome anyway, so it’s just as effective but only half the work. The car needs to stay in the nickel vat longer than it would if chrome plating was to be applied on top as it needs to be thick enough to last polishing for years to come!

Metal Plating for Classic Car and Motorcycle Parts

Here at NiTEC, we offer a reliable nickel plating service for all classic and vintage car and motorcycle parts. Nickel plating is very hard wearing and offers fantastic corrosion protection. To find out more about nickel plating services for your classic car restoration project, call NiTEC on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Top 5 Properties of Electroless Nickel

As experts in the process of nickel plating, the NiTEC staff are highly experienced and knowledgeable regarding the use of this innovative plating technique. There are many benefits to using nickel plating over other metal finishing techniques, many of which are outlined below.

nickel plating technical figure

1. Uniformity of Coating

The deposit formed by electroless nickel plating is based on a chemical reaction, causing the deposit to collect in equal thickness over all the part, regardless of its shape.

This completely uniform coating is a perfect solution for critical high-end engineering items including those used in the defence, healthcare, automotive and aerospace industries.

2. Ultimate Corrosion Resistance

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

3. Wear Resistance

Electroless nickel has excellent levels of wear resistance. As a barrier layer, it is used on oil field valves, drive shafts, electrical tools and industrial machinery. The life of any metal exposed to harsh environments can be extended using this type of plating, therefore reducing the cost of repair and replacement parts. It basically extends the life of everything it coats! And with the appropriate heat treatment, electroless nickel can be hardened up to 950vhn, which makes it ideal for areas exposed to friction and wear.

4. Excellent Adhesion

A high level of adhesion can be achieved on a wide range of substrates, including steel, copper, and aluminium. The typical bond strengths reported for electroless nickel on copper and iron alloys range from 50 to 60,000 psi. The bond strength on light metals such as aluminium tends to be lower, somewhere in the range of 15 to 35,000 psi.

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 occurs between the atoms of the coating and the substrate.

The surface preparation and activation of the electroless nickel plating is one of the most important factors for producing excellent adhesion.

5. Cost Effectiveness

Specialist electroless nickel plating is much cheaper than you would imagine. NiTEC now have 7 dedicated nickel plating lines and can offer reasonable quotations based on drawings or photos sent to us.

As you can see from the points made above, electroless nickel plating has many huge benefits that make it the plating method of choice for many industries. Call NiTEC on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Bikes, Nickel Plating and the Yorkshire Grand Depart, Tour de France 2014

As you are no doubt aware, the Tour de France will be sweeping into Yorkshire this July as it stages the Grand Depart. Here at NiTEC, we’re really excited about the region hosting such an iconic event and the interest and visitors it will bring to the area.

tour de france yorkshireThe Yorkshire roads will host the first stage of the tour, which starts in Leeds and finishes in Harrogate on 5 July. The second stage will leave from York and finish in Sheffield. After that, the riders race from Cambridge to London before the Tour moves on to the French stages.

Stage One of the Tour de France

The race will start on the Headrow in Leeds and then head out of the city north towards Harewood. It will also to visit Ilkley, Otley, Ripon, Skipton and Hawes before finishing Harrogate. This stage is a total 118 miles (190km).

Stage Two of the Tour de France

Stage two will start in York and go through Knaresborough, Keighley, and over Holme Moss into the Peak District National Park. It finishes after 124 miles (200km) at Sheffield Arena.

Electroless Nickel Plated Bike Frames

We’ve always been interested in the use of electroless nickel for plating bike frames a way of keeping it rust and scratch free. Road bikes and mountain bikes alike are exposed to a variety of conditions through general use including being exposed to mud, water and salt.

nickel plated bike frameHere at NiTEC, we often receive requests to nickel plate bike frames on behalf of our customers as the process ensures that the frame will be immune to rust, scratches and corrosion forever. We charge £185 to nickel plate a bike frame, and we can have it nickel plated and scratch and corrosion resistant in just 5 days of receiving it.

All you have to do is disassemble your bike, send us the handlebars and frame, and we’ll electroless nickel plate the parts and return them to you for reassembly. To find out more about having your bike frame electroless nickel plated, contact the team at Nitec today on (0)845 224 3571 or visit our website at for more information.

Nickel Plate Outdoor Metal Sculptures for Corrosion Resistance

As specialists in the electroless nickel plating process, we have previously worked with metal sculptor David Mach, and have nickel plated a few of his pieces. For example, we nickel plated his spaceman and gorilla sculptures which are both made from coat hangers.

nickel plated garden sculptureElectroless nickel can coat metal such as mild steel or stainless steel and make it last for years – that’s why the process of nickel plating is simply perfect for outdoor sculptures. Its corrosion resistance properties and its ability to withstand adverse weather conditions make it the perfect plating solution for metal garden sculptures, and any other sculpture that will be displayed outside.

Large Capacity Electroless Nickel Plating Tanks

The process of electroless nickel plating deposits a uniform coating on to whatever it is plating, and compared to stainless steel, it is also relatively cheap. Our huge nickel plating tanks that are big enough to accommodate very large pieces of sculpture, such as garden sculptures and bespoke pieces such as those plated for David Mach.

The main reason Mach decided on electroless nickel plating to plate his pieces was due to its excellent corrosion resistance and the assurance that gave him that the piece would look stunning for years to come, no matter where it was located. In fact, the corrosion resistance offered by electroless nickel plating is actually better than stainless steel!

A Great Alternative to Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is very resistant to corrosion, and can therefore be used when the levels of hardness of the metal are important. But using electroless nickel plating as an alternative to stainless steel has many advantages. Mild steel or cast iron with an electroless nickel coating is a much more cost effective way of achieving high levels of hardness and corrosion resistance.

The process of electroless nickel plating is a great way to prevent corrosion from occurring on outdoor sculptures made from metal. If you are interested in the process as a cheaper alternative to stainless steel, contact NiTEC on 0845 2243571 or email web@nitec-enp.co.uk and we’ll show you how much you can save.

Decorative Aluminium Bathroom Sink Nickel Plated for Protection

Most people think of the plating activities we carry out at NiTEC as being purely for engineering applications, but as you may have seen from our last few blog posts, we do plate a lot of items for sculptors and artists too. We occasionally receive enquiries to plate more unusual domestic pieces, such as balustrades, staircases, furniture, and this metal basin.

nickel plated basin sink

Aluminium basin nickel plated for corrosion protection

The sink itself was originally cast out of aluminium and featured a large round inset for the basin itself. The bottom of the sink was a rugged texture that looked a lot like the texture of the surface of a jagged rock. As you can see from the picture, it’s a really impressive piece, and will undoubtedly look fantastic in the bathroom of its new home!

Protection for Prolonged Exposure to Water

Due to the amount of running water and handling that the sink would receive when it was used, the aluminium it was cast from was not really appropriate for a sink. Aluminium is very prone to corrosion and can tarnish and discolour easily. Although it doesn’t rust, the surface of the aluminium could become encrusted with calcium and hard water stains, which would leave it looking dull and possibly even stained.

We plated the aluminium sink with an electroless nickel coating to ensure that the surface of the basin remained bright and shiny, and to ensure that the prolonged exposure to water wouldn’t cause any staining or discolouration of the basin. Electroless nickel plating also ensures that the metal coating it deposits grows at a uniform speed all over the part and covers any crevices and rugged areas evenly and thoroughly.

Total Uniform Coverage with Electroless Nickel Plating

The uniform coverage of an electroless nickel coating doesn’t just benefit decorative items such as this sink, it’s also perfect for ensuring uniform coverage for engineering components too. Electroless nickel deposits do not build up on the edges or ends of components, and leave a uniform deposit both inside and out. This means that components can be plated to tight tolerances, meaning that there is no need to machine the part afterwards. This accurate coverage saves both time and money. It’s also a great alternative to stainless steel, too.

If you would like to find out more about the benefits of using electroless nickel plating for corrosion protection and the uniform, even coverage of parts, call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

Nickel Plated Aluminium for Great Looking Garden Furniture

Garden furniture is a lovely addition to any garden. It’s a pleasure to have somewhere to sit and enjoy the sunshine, and it is fabulous for outdoor BBQ’s and summer gatherings. Keeping your garden furniture in top condition, however, can be a bit of a struggle. If you’re like the many people that leave their garden furniture out overnight and throughout the warmer months, it may be subject to the elements. This can result in fading from the sun, damp and mold from rain, and tarnishing.

Metal garden furniture can easily tarnish through exposure to the weather, and it’s hard to keep it looking good after a few seasons use. But there is a way to keep your garden furniture looking fantastic all year round, whatever weather condition it is exposed to!

Electroless Nickel Plated Aluminium Garden Chairs

These pictures illustrate a recent nickel plating job undertaken here at NiTEC, which involved electroless nickel plating unusually shaped chairs for use outdoors as garden furniture. The manufacturers wanted the chairs to be fully protected from the elements to minimise the problem of tarnishing and staining, and electroless nickel is the perfect metal coating to achieve this.

As you can see from the pictures, the chairs are a very unusual shape with a deep recess at the front which formed a cylindrical shape at the base of the chair in order to hold it up. Electroless nickel plating is a great choice for complex shapes such as this as it can be deposited evenly onto the surface of the aluminium and on all parts of the object or component it is covering.

Corrosion Resistant Metal Coating

Electroless nickel was also a great choice as it is extremely corrosion resistant and can withstand the elements for years without discolouring or tarnishing. Due to its unique ability to prevent the formation of rust, it can substantially extend the life of garden furniture. Another advantage is that electroless nickel coatings won’t chip, flake, peel or rub off like some paint or lacquer type top coats.

If you are looking for a way of keeping your garden furniture looking great all year round, electroless nickel plating has outstanding levels of wear and corrosion resistance. Call NiTEC on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Electroless Nickel Plating a Mild Steel Phoenix Sculpture

Here at NiTEC, we are regularly approached by artists and metal sculptors who want a cost effective, corrosion resistant method of plating their work. As you can imagine, sculptures made of any material are susceptible to wear, corrosion, and weather damage as a result of the elements. That’s why using a coating such as electroless nickel plating is perfect for metal sculptures that are to be displayed outside; the nickel coating is incredibly corrosion resistant and can protect the piece for tens of years to come.

Electroless Nickel Plating for Sculptures

This particular sculpture was commissioned for use at the entrance to an industrial park in Castleford in West Yorkshire. Fabricated using mild steel, the sculpture took the shape of a phoenix with its wings spread, rising from what appeared to be an abstract representation of flames. It really was a truly stunning piece of sculpture; there was something very majestic and impressive about its large open wings and long bowed head.

The staff at NiTEC built a special plating tank in order to accommodate the phoenix sculpture, one that would be big enough to comfortably house the piece and ensure that the nickel plating process would achieve the best and most accurate results. The sculpture itself was a very delicate and complicated shape; the wings alone were made up of a number of intricate metal feathers which had many recesses and sharp angles that needed to be covered fully with the electroless nickel coating.

Corrosion Resistance and Protection from the Elements

Electroless nickel plating is the perfect metal plating solution for projects with unusual and complex shapes such as this sculpture because the electroless nickel can be deposited evenly on its surface. It will also ensure that the sculpture is protected against the formation of rust, and will not flake or chip like a painted surface can do.

If you are an artist or metal sculptor and you would like more information about the advantages of using electroless nickel plating to prevent corrosion and wear on sculptures, contact NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email: info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Behind the Scenes at NiTEC: Nickel Plating David Mach’s Gorilla Sculpture

In addition to nickel plating ‘The Spaceman’ sculpture by David Mach, we have also been involved in the plating of a similarly constructed sculpture by the same artist, this time of a gorilla. Whilst looking through our extensive archive of photos, the staff at NiTEC came across these great before and after images of the gorilla sculpture that we just have to share with our blog readers!

gorilla sculpture before nickel plating process

Gorilla sculpture before the electroless nickel plating process

David Mach is a British sculptor and installation artist who specialises in creating unique sculpture from mass-produced objects such as coat hangers. Following several shows, public installations and much success, Mach was nominated for the Turner Prize back in 1988 and joined the Royal Academy of Arts as a Professor of Sculpture in 200.

Coat Hanger Sculptures

Mach once said “I like to work in as many different materials as possible. It’s no understatement to say I am a materials junkie – jumping from highly-painted realistic cast fibreglass pieces to sculpture with coat hangers, to a thatched barn roof laced with fibre-optics to designs for camera obscures (or at least the buildings to house them) and layouts for parks.”

 

Electroless Nickel Plating the Sculpture

gorilla sculpture after nickel plating

Gorilla sculpture after the electroless nickel plating process

The gorilla sculpture featured here consists of hundreds of wire coat hangers which have been bent and twisted and then welded together to keep the shape.

Mach decided that the best way of plating the sculpture was to have it have it professionally electroless nickel plated in order to create an aesthetically pleasing finish and provide a high level of corrosion and wear protection.

 

Electroless nickel was the perfect choice of plating for this piece as it ensures that all the recesses of the metal are fully plated.

Here at NiTEC, we have plenty of experience handling large parts such as sculptures, and the equipment and man power needed to do so. If you would like to find out more about the process of electroless nickel plating call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Effectively Degrease Components with our Solvent Decreasing Plant

Here at NiTEC UK, we are always looking for new ways to improve our services. As experts in metal finishing, metal plating and electroless nickel plating, we spend a great deal of time looking for the most effective way to get the very best results for our customers. With this in mind, we have recently purchased a large trichloroethylene plant in order to degrease metal parts and components before they are plated.

Why is Degreasing a Component so Important?

Degreasing is often the first step of the metal plating process and one of the most important, because insufficient degreasing and incorrect preparation of the surface to be plated is the biggest cause of rejection of a component. The degreasing and cleaning of parts is essential to metal plating projects, as molecular layers of oil and other particles can prevent the adhesion of the coating.

Parts Cleaning and Degreasing Using Solvents

Trichloroethylene solvent degreaser

Trichloroethylene

The solvent degreasing plant that we have onsite at NiTEC contains trichloroethylene, a chemical compound commonly used as an industrial solvent and classed as a category 2 carcinogen.

Various organic solvents can be used for degreasing, including trichloroethylene, and many are harmful to health if inhaled. Because it is a dangerous substance, there are many laws governing its use.

Our solvent degreasing plant is closed topped with a secure lid which ensures that the NiTEC UK workforce never come into contact with the solvent, or are exposed to it in any way. The equipment works by degreasing the required parts using vapour from the solvent. After the trichloroethylene has been used, it can be recondensed so that it can be saved and reused.

Vapour Degreasing Service

This machine is an incredibly effective replacement for other degreasers on the market which are simply not as effective. There are many alternatives to trichloroethylene, but none achieve results of such a high standard. That’s why we are so pleased to be able to offer this service to our customers!

If you would like to find out more about the benefits of effective degreasing of components with our in-house solvent decreasing plant, call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Significant Growth in the Aerospace and Automotive Sectors

In the last 5 years, the aerospace and automotive industries have reported significant growth, despite the manufacturing sector in the UK’s having declined dramatically over the past 30 years.

The Financial Times has reported that “Britain’s manufacturers are using cutting edge technology and gadgets to improve products and processes as the sector accelerates it recovery.”

Revival in Manufacturing

British companies have contributed to the growth in the aerospace and car making industries, leading many to believe that the future of UK manufacturing is in the hands of those that use innovative technology, or so called “advanced manufacturing.”

The Financial Times’ recent analysis of the Office for National Statistics’ has found that the British aerospace industry’s output is up by 60% and the automotive industry up by 40% compared to 5 years ago.

Coatings for the Aerospace and Automotive Industries

Here at NiTEC, we regularly operate in the aerospace and automotive sectors, providing a range of surface technology options which include electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating and other metal plating and surface treatments.

car illustrating growth in automotive industry

Electroless nickel plating can be used for a wide variety of functional applications and includes many advantages. Electroless nickel coatings are have excellent levels of hardness, lubricity and corrosion resistance. The coating is also able to cover components with complex geometrics and cover internal and external surfaces evenly.

We recently became approved suppliers for the aerospace company HS Marston Aerospace Limited. Our staff are fully committed to developing our services for use in the aerospace sector and are understandably delighted that our services are compliant with HS Marston’s quality standards and requirements.

If you would like to find out more about our metal plating and coatings for use in the automotive and aerospace industries, call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

No Need For Liquid Lubricants With Nickel PTFE Coatings

Here at NiTEC, our experience in the metal finishing and surface technology fields allow us to work with a variety of customers from a wide range of industries. One of the specialist services we offer is nickel PTFE plating, a unique plating solution that combines the hardness of electroless nickel with the lubricity of Polytetrafloureothylene, otherwise known as PTFE.

Lubricious and Hard Metal Coating

nickel ptfe plated component

The PTFE coating is perfect for those customers that require a lubricious, hard, uniform coating that can be accurately deposited across the surface of the component. Our electroless nickel/PTFE composite is a fantastic coating that properties of PTFE with those of electroless nickel.

PTFE is self lubricating, has excellent low friction and release properties. Combined with the wear resistance, corrosion resistance and hardness of electroless nickel, Ni-PTFE is the perfect surface treatment. Its self lubricating properties also make it ideal for components that are unsuitable for conventional lubricants.

What are the Key Properties of Nickel PTFE?

Nickel PTFE has many fantastic properties including the following:

  • Corrosion resistance
  • Wear resistance
  • Low friction
  • Uniform deposit
  • Lubrications

Where Can Nickel PTFE Coatings be used?

Our nickel PTFE coating provides low friction wear and self lubrication, which makes it an excellent choice for sliding wear applications and other instances where conventional lubricants would be harmful to the components. The Ni-PTFE plating process has been used extensively in the following industries:

  • Automotive
  • Machinery
  • Engineering
  • Mold and Die

If you would like more information about Nickel PTFE and the benefits it can have for your metal plating requirements, feel free to call the friendly team at NiTEC on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk. Alternatively, visit the NiTEC website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk

Facebook To Buy Titan Aerospace for $60 Million

Here at NiTEC, we like to keep up to date with all things going on in the aerospace industry. This week’s big news is that Facebook, backer of Internet.org, is set to buy Titan Aerospace.

Internet.org is a project which aims to make internet access affordable across the globe. According to recent figures, there are some 5 billion people without access to the World Wide Web, that’s a third of the globe’s population, and this project is set to change that. Facebook has partnered with Samsung, Ericsson, MediaTek, Nokia, Opera and Qualcomm to create data-compression technologies and cheaper smartphones to make browsing the internet cheaper.

Orbital Solar-Powered Drones 

Titan Aerospace Solara 50 Drone

Source:Titan Aerospace

Titan Aerospace makes orbital, solar-powered drones which are able to fly for five years without landing. TechCrunch have reported that Facebook are looking at buying the company for a whopping figure of 60 million dollars.

Facebook then plans to use these drones to provide parts of the world without access to the internet, such as Africa, with reliable internet access.

The first step is to build 11,000 unarmed aerial vehicles to blanket these parts of the world.

The models that are reported to be used are the Solara 50 and 60, which are launched from internal battery packs. They are able to rise to 20 Kilometres above sea level and can remain there with enough energy for 5 years. Capabilities like this make them perfect for regional internet systems. According to TechCrunch, all of Titan Aerospace’s production would then be for the Internet.org project.

As specialists in electroless nickel plating and the use of surface technology in the aerospace industry, it’s very exciting to see the changes and growth within the aerospace sector. If you would like to find out more about the use of electroless nickel or diffused nickel, contact NiTEC

Electroless Nickel – Every Engineer’s Dream!

Here at NiTEC, we are extremely proud of our high quality electroless nickel plating services. We routinely nickel plate items for a wide and wonderful variety of applications and industries. This method of plating has so many advantages – which is why we like to call it every engineers dream!

What’s so Great About Electroless Nickel?

Electroless nickel coatings are comprised of a mixture of nickel alloy and phosphorus. This superb combination offers high levels of corrosion protection that are particularly useful in extreme conditions.

Electroless nickel is the perfect metal coating for working to close tolerances, meaning that post-plate grinding is rarely needed. It can be applied to a variety of base materials including stainless steel, iron, steel, brass and copper.

electroless nickel plating large parts

The Advantages of Using Electroless Nickel on Large Parts

Electroless nickel plating large components is a highly efficient method of plating, and can be extremely cost effective too.

NiTEC are one of the only electroless nickel plating companies that have the capacity to process large parts. In fact, we have never been approached with a project that we couldn’t fulfil because of its size!

Our staff have even been known to construct bespoke specialist plating tanks to accommodate larger items of unusual dimensions, such as sculptures. Of course, plating large components isn’t all about the size of the plating tank; there are lots of other practical issues to consider as well.

The mass of the part is a factor that needs to be considered. The larger and heavier the part is, the more consideration needs to be taken when moving the part in and out of the plating solutions and around the shop floor. Therefore, care must be taken when thinking about the selection of cranes and fixtures needed to lift the component.

Luckily, here at NiTEC, we have plenty of experience handling large parts, and the equipment and man power we need to do so. If you would like to find out more about the process of electroless nickel plating call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

NiTEC Are Now Approved Suppliers for HS Marston Aerospace Ltd

We are pleased to announce that we are now approved suppliers for HS Marston Aerospace Limited. HS Marston is a great company and we are delighted to have been approved as their suppliers.

Commitment to the Aerospace Sector

Quality Director Paul Allen said: “I am particularly proud of this approval as Marsden are a very well respected aerospace company. This approval demonstrates NiTEC’s commitment to the aerospace sector.”

HS Marston Aerospace Limited has been providing products for use in the aerospace industry for more than 90 years. Today, they supply a range of heat transfer and fluids management products for commercial and military markets. HS Marsden’s products are used within airframes and engines and on fixed wing aircraft and helicopters.

Approval certificate for HS Marsden

Full Compliance with HS Marston Aerospace

The scope of our approval is as follows: ‘This approval requires full compliance with HS Marston Aerospace Limited, Purchase Orders, Quality Standards and Requirements for Suppliers and Subcontractors defined in Company Standard ME1019.’

Here at NiTEC, we operate in a variety of sectors and endeavour to provide the right service for each industry.

Whether it is electroless nickel plating, diffused nickel plating, shot blasting or heat treatment, we will work with your requirements to make sure that you get the highest quality service at a cost to suit your business.

For more information about our services,  call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

 

Pickling Stainless Steel Components for Aerospace Group Meggitt

As experts in electroless nickel plating, NiTEC UK have taken on some great projects over the years, as well as working with some really fantastic companies. In the past we have been lucky enough to do some work for Meggitt, a global engineering group specialising in components for extreme environments and smart sub-systems for aerospace, defence and energy markets.

Removing Scale from Stainless Steel

Meggitt are a FTSE 100 supplier of aircraft parts, and they supply flight displays and wheels to both Boeing and Airbus. Our job was to pickle a stainless steel component for a project located in offshore Brazil.

We were lucky enough to be involved in the project due to our experience working with hydofluoric acid, which requires safety procedures that we are familiar with. Using this type of acid was integral to the process we carried out for Meggitt, therefore we were an obvious choice to help with it.

pickled stainless steel for meggitHydofluoric and nitric acid was used to remove the discoloured scale from the stainless steel component, and as you can see from the pictures, the process makes a huge difference to the surface of the steel.The component on the right in this image shows what the steel looked like before the process of pickling, and the component on the left shows the finished result.

If you would like more information about NiTEC’s experience working with substances such as hydofluoric acid and stainless steel, please don’t hesitate to call us on 0845 224 3571 or email us at web@nitec-enp.co.uk. Alternatively, you can click here to visit the Nitec website.

Boom for UK Aerospace Orders after 2013 Record Year

According to The Manufacturer, the industry’s leading publication of manufacturing news, articles and insights, last year was a record year for the aerospace industry in the UK.

The trade organisation ADS, who work to advance the UK Aerospace, Defence, Security and Space industries,  have reported that UK orders of commercial aircraft have increased by 28% in the last year. This makes 2013 a record year for the aerospace industry, with orders rising more than a quarter compared to 2012.

According to the ADS, there is also now a backlog of orders for commercial aircraft, including 20,000 engines and 11,000 aircraft. This backlog of orders is set to keep the UK aerospace industry, and its employees, busy for approximately 9 years!

“Growth in the aerospace industry”

UK aerospace boom for manufacturing industry“These figures highlight the opportunity for growth in the aerospace industry and the potential rewards that British businesses could reap,” said Business Secretary Vince Cable.

He also suggested that by working together, the UK government and industry can make sure that the opportunities are optimised.

Mr Cable said: “Together we have committed £2 billion over the next 7 years to create an Aerospace Technology Institute to help us win work on developing and building the planes and helicopters of the future, here in the UK. The Aerospace Industrial Strategy, which the Government has developed jointly with industry, is giving businesses the confidence to invest in the UK, creating more high-skilled, long-term jobs.”

Paul Everett, CEO of ADS said, “Global demand for new aircraft and engines is generating new demand and opportunity for the UK aerospace industry. The Aerospace Growth Partnership and the government’s long-term commitment to the sector’s growth is making a difference and we must continue to maximise the value of this unique collaboration between industry and government.”

UK specialise in aircraft manufacture

ADS has predicted that by 2032, there will be demand for the following:

  • 29,000 large civil airliners
  • 24,000 business jets
  • 5,800 regional aircraft
  • 40,000 helicopters

It’s great news, as the UK specialise in the development and manufacture of some of the most complicated and high tech parts of modern aircraft.  ADS predict that this means a potential market share of around $600bn for the UK.

Here at NiTEC electroless nickel plating specialists, we are thrilled that UK manufacturing is thriving. The aerospace industry is a growing sector and there is so much talent in the industry in this country. Our electroless nickel plating services can be used for a wide variety of industries including oil and gas, aviation and aerospace, so it’s fantastic news for us too.

If you would like more information about our electroless nickel plating services call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Long Lasting Components with Increased Performance

The process of electroplating is very cheap and very popular. But many customers come to realise that nickel electroplating, chrome electroplating and stainless steel do not last as long as they had hoped. Their original goal with electroplating or using stainless steel may have been to reduce costs and ensure that the part stayed in good condition for the entirety of its life, but sadly this is not always the case.

Electroless nickel plated componentThe importance of plating components

Plating components is really important to ensure their longevity because it provides a barrier between the component and the atmospheric working conditions. If plating isn’t applied to end products, corrosion and wear will cause the functionality of the part to deteriorate very early on its life.

This often has a knock on effect to the unit it was assembled into as well, causing it to be much less effective and eventually unusable. But keeping your parts from failing doesn’t have to mean that you have to settle for expensive metal alloys, stainless steel, or an electroplated finish. You can use electroless nickel plating instead.

Why should I choose electroless nickel plating instead of electroplating or stainless steel?

The electroless nickel plating service from NiTEC UK is of an exceptionally high quality and meets the required engineering specifications. This means that you will have the peace of mind that your plated components will last indefinitely, effectively protected from corrosion and wear for years to come.

For more information about the process of electroless nickel plating and the benefits that it will have on the longevity of your components, call the NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

African Well Sponsored by NiTEC Up and Running

NiTEC sponsor water wellWe are pleased to announce that our water well has been built in is in full working order out in Africa!

Last year we sponsored a well for AquAid, the company who supply the NiTEC offices with water coolers.

We recently received confirmation that our well has been built and is up and running making a real difference to people’s lives.

We are very proud to be associated with such an amazing project, and delighted to be able to make such a difference in the lives of those less fortunate.

Aquaid and the Africa Trust

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

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

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

For more information about NiTEC and our services, including electroless nickel platingdiffused nickel plating, and copper plating. Our AquAid badge of support can also be viewed on the homepage of the NiTEC website.

Clean, Strengthen and Polish Metal with Chilled Iron Shot-Blasting

shot blasting services

What is shotblasting used for?

Shotblasting is a method which is used to clean, strengthen or polish metal.

This method is used in a variety of industries, including aerospace, automotive, construction, shipbuilding and foundry. Basically, it can be used in any industry that uses metal!

Airblasting

Airblasting is a form of shotblasting that is carried out using a blastroom or blast cabinet. The blast media, for example iron, is pneumatically accelerated by compressed air and projected by nozzles onto the compartment.

The shotblasting media itself can be mixed with water, which is called wet blasting. In wet blasting and air blasting, the nozzles can be installed in fixed positions or they can be operated manually. They can also be operated using an automatic nozzle manipulators or even robots.

Shotblasting facilities at NiTEC

At NiTEC we pride ourselves on using the most technically advanced equipment to achieve the highest quality finish on all our projects. Our shotblasting capabilities include the following.

  • The ability to shot blast components of up to 20 tonnes in weight.
  • The capacity to shot-blast up to a 216m³ components.

If a finer surface finish is required then it is also possible to blast the component with Aluminium Oxide 180-220 grit.

The shot blast booth at NiTEC, used for shotblasting and heat treatment, has a capacity of 216m3 and is made from stainless steel which minimises the particles that settle on the work. We also pride ourselves on our excellent customer service, our fast turnaround times, quality workmanship and competitive rates.

To find out more about about shotblasting and abrasive blast cleaning processes available at NiTEC, please visit the NiTEC website, call us on 0845 224 3571, or email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Common Applications of Electroless Nickel Plating

nickel-coating-for-aerospace-industry

Electroless nickel coatings can be used in a wide variety of common applications. The superior corrosion resistance, hardness levels and wear resistance make it a very versatile coating.

Aerospace

Electroless nickel coatings have the perfect properties for use in the aerospace industry, for example, they can be used in the protection of hydraulic control systems.

Nickel coatings can also be used for the refurbishment and the recovery of worn machined parts. They can also be used to correct incorrectly machined parts enabling the component to be used.

Electrical and Electronics

Nickel coatings are used for electrical and electronic applications due to their ability to protect the components successfully. For example, electroless nickel coatings may be used for electrical connectors and hard drive computer components in order to impart corrosion protection and wear resistance. They are also useful for providing solderability and a non-porous barrier layer, and to otherwise enhance the performance or useful life of a particular component.

Automotive

The automotive industry has specified electroless nickel plating on brake, transmission and steering assembly components, in addition to other parts. Electroless components enhance performance, and with longer lasting parts, they can help automakers to extend their product warranties.

The energy industry

Electroless nickel coatings can be used for chemical and wear resistance to equipment in the oil and gas industry. It is also useful for coalfield cutting tools, as it provides a wear resistant coating that doesn’t carry the risk of sparking.

General engineering

Electroless nickel plating can be used in a wide variety of applications within general engineering. For example, it can be used for wear resistance in plastics and textile handling equipment, corrosion resistance in chemical handling plants, appearance, and wear resistance in automotive applications.

If you are looking for a metal coating that is suitable for a variety of applications and industries, electroless nickel is the perfect solution. Call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

 

Corrosion and Chemical Resistant Coatings

Here at NiTEC, we spend our days electroless nickel plating components for a variety of applications including aerospace, electrical/electronics, the energy industry, and general engineering.

Properties of electroless nickel coatings

Hardness

Electroless nickel coatings produce very tough, abrasion and corrosion resistant surfaces, which can be further hardened with heat treatment. The hardness of the plated surface can also be increased by decreasing the phosphorus content of the coating, usually to around 2%.

Corrosion resistance

They also have a good natural corrosion and chemical resistance. These properties can also be maximised by increasing the phosphorus content of the coating, usually to 10% or above.

Electroless nickel and phosphorous levels

The chemistry of electroless nickel plating solutions can be altered to give the plated coating different properties, for example, a medium phosphorus coating, a low phosphorous coating and a high phosphorus coating.

Medium Phosphorous electroless nickel coating

Electroless nickel coatings with medium phosphorous content are the most commonly used and applied electroless nickel coatings. They generally have a phosphorous content of 6-9% and a VPN of roughly 500. However, this can be increased further with heat treatment. The coating tends to be bright, with a normal plating thickness range of 3-50 microns. Medium phosphorous electroless nickel coatings are very stable and reliable with fast plating rates.

Low phosphorous electroless nickel coating

Low phosphorous electroless nickel coatings contain less than 3% phosphorous and are very hard. With the appropriate heat treatment, a low phosphorus coating can be in the region of 1000 Vpn. The normal plating thickness of this type of coating is in the region of 10-25 microns and is grey/silver in colour.

High phosphorous electroless nickel coating

Electroless nickel coatings with high phosphorous contents typically have very high levels of corrosion and chemical resistance. High phosphorous coatings are non-magnetic, silver/grey in colour and have a normal thickness range of 25-75 microns. Plating rates are typically slow and the plating solution tends to have a short life.

If you would like to find out more about our electroless nickel plating services call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Factory Extension and New Plating Line To Create 5 New Jobs at NiTEC UK

After an eventful 2013, this year is set to be equally as exciting here at NiTEC. We are pleased to have received planning permission to have an extension built onto our metal finishing factory, which will create an extra 3,000 square foot of space.

This extension will allow us to be able to install a 7th electroless nickel plating line, meaning that we will be able to respond even more quickly to our customers’ plating needs.

Specialist electroless nickel plating line

This specialist electroless nickel plating line will create 5 new jobs at NiTEC, and will be in full operation in February 2014. We will also have a state of the art crane installed over the plating line which will allow us to handle components of up to 20 tonnes.

Commercial Director Marcus Hill said: “The market is growing rapidly and our new plating line means that we can accommodate more work in response to this growth. We are really pleased to be able to respond even more quickly to our customers’ plating needs.”

Experts in the metal finishing process

NiTEC 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 platingdiffused nickel platingcopper platingshot blasting and heat treatment. For more information, please call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Happy New Year From NiTEC UK!

As 2013 draws to a close, we are looking back on what has been a very busy year for NiTEC in the metal plating industry. From our nomination for the Excellence in Manufacturing Award at The Sheffield Business Awards, to our new testing laboratory, 2013 has been a great year for all of us here at NiTEC UK.

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 NiTEC 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 platingdiffused nickel platingcopper platingshot blasting and heat treatment. For more information, please call us on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Electroless Nickel Coatings Can Increase the Lifespan of Steam Turbines

 

Here at NiTEC UK, 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 NiTEC UK by visiting our website, speak to a member of our specialist team on 0845 224 357, or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk

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 NiTEC, 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 NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

Electroless Nickel Plating a Vacuum Chamber

Here at NiTEC, 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 NiTEC 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.

If you would like to find out more about our electroless nickel plating services call us on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

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 NiTEC’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, NiTEC 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 NiTEC 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 NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

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:

Electroless nickel hard driveElectrical 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 NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

The Advantages of Electroless Deposition of Nickel

electroless nickel deposit on componentsElectroless 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 on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

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.

electroless nickel plated motorcycle frame

Here at NiTEC, 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 NiTEC, 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 on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

NiTEC 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 2013 Sheffield Business Awards.

sheffield business awardsThe 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. NiTEC 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.”

NiTEC 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 NiTEC on 0845 224 3571 or email info@nitec-enp.co.uk. Alternatively, visit the NiTEC website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk

15 Reasons To Choose Electroless Nickel for your Metal Plating Needs

electroless nickel plated componentWhen considering a plating method, there are lots of options you can consider. Here at NiTEC, 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 NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

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.

electroless nickel plated componentsThe 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 on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

 

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 on 0845 224 3571, email us at info@nitec-enp.co.uk or visit the contact page on our website to make an enquiry.

Spoon Covered Gorilla for Uri Geller’s Garden

Electroless nickel plating company NiTEC 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.

Uri Geller orders a spoon covered gorilla for his 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!

Electroless nickel plated gorilla by David MachDavid 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 NiTEC UK on 0845 224 3571 or email: info@nitec-enp.co.uk

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.

Component plated with high phosphorus electroless nickelElectroless 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 NiTEC team on 0845 224 3571, email info@nitec-enp.co.uk or get in touch via our contact page.

NiTEC sponsor Tupton RUFC

We’ve got a great team here at NiTEC. 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.

NiTEC electroless nickel plating sponsor Tupton RUFC

 

NiTEC 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 NiTEC on 0845 224 3571 or email: info@nitec-enp.co.uk

Aerospace Metals and The Hubble Space Telescope

As experts in the process of electroless nickel plating and diffused nickel plating, the staff at NiTEC 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 NiTEC website at http://www.electroless-nickel-plating.co.uk