Electroplating involves the use of diverse techniques and processes. Two of the most common are rack and barrel plating. While each has their supporters, little doubt remains that, with specific applications, the only method to use is rack plating.
When to Use
If the application requires the plating of complex, large or even fragile components, rack electroplating is the method of preference. It involves the employment of actual racks. These coated metal racks hold the piece fixed in place by spring fingers, screws or wires. The choice will depend upon the size of the workpiece as well as its actual weight and configuration. No rotation is involved. Throughout the plating process, the parts on the rack will remain completely stationary.
What Are the Advantages?
Rack plating offers several advantages. It is the reason why this method is selected over other possible means of electroplating. This type of plating:
* Provides protection of any fragile components from potential damage occurring during the plating process
* No matter how complex or intricate the contours, this method will evenly plate the workpiece
* Results in a high-quality finish
* Can be manipulated to do selective depositing or partial coating
* Is capable of electroplating large components
For this method, the most popular metals are chrome, nickel and nickel alloys. Such metals provide the desired result for components in the medical, aerospace, electronics, military, and automotive industries.
Electroplating components can involve any of several processes. Among the more common methods is rack electroplating. While it is not advisable or optimal for some parts, it is recommended in certain instances. Whenever the component for plating is large, complex and/or fragile, the preferred method is to utilize rack and not barrel plating. Using rack plating is the best and perhaps only way to produce the right finish for the workpiece.
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