Corrosion Protection Benefits of Electroless Nickel Plating

By Matt Lindstedt, Technical Sales Manager

Electroless Nickel Plating: Superior Corrosion Protection

Electroless Nickel Corrosion Protection

Raw metals other than precious metals can easily oxidize and corrode over time when exposed to various environmental conditions and corrosive applications.  The proper design of any component must begin with a surface engineering evaluation to ensure that the product will function reliably over the intended service life.  Even in relatively mild service applications, corrosion can result in functional issues and shortfalls.  Electroless nickel plating can provide a robust solution to corrosive attack across a range of corrosive mechanisms including galvanic corrosion, chemical attack and erosion. Electroless nickel plating (EN) can be applied to a wide range of basis metals including steel, copper, brass and aluminum alloys. Electroless Nickel plating is currently utilized to promote corrosion protection performance across a diverse range of industries including heavy equipment, oil & gas, power transmission & distribution, automotive, marine and railway to name a few. Continue reading

Plating Methods & Tooling Design Considerations Part One: Rack Plating

By James Lindstedt, Manufacturing & Process Engineer

Rack Plating Introduction – A Metal Finishing Job Shop

Advanced Plating Technologies is a metal finishing job shop. What does that mean? A metal finishing job shop encounters the metal finishing demands of any industry that has a need for metal finishing. Metal finishing is a highly diverse industry serves the needs  of  a myriad of other industries. Although there is always common ground, every industry has its own unique set of needs and criteria for metal finishing. The conscientious metal finisher must be able to recognize these unique requirements, and reconcile them with the nuances of the plating methods and processes.

Rack Plating & Tooling

When quoting at a prospective job, some of the key factors to consider are:

Rack Plating Gold

  • Part geometry
  • End use
  • Base material
  • Part volume (EAU)
  • Throughput
  • Type Of Process (Electroless, Electrolytic, Immersion Only, etc)

Continue reading

Critical Details Often Overlooked When Specifying a Plating Process

By R. Savija
All specifications for electroplating, whether military, federal, ISO, ASTM or SAE-AMS specifications, have an initial section that contains essential information to be supplied by the purchaser to the electroplater. More times than not, much of this information is omitted from part prints and purchasing documents which opens the door to potential miscommunication and finishing shortfalls. This blog details some of the more common omissions that are discovered by Advanced Plating Technologies’ engineering staff during quoting or contract review of specifying a plating process.

Specification of the plating thickness and tolerance requirements:

Geometric TolerancesOften a minimum/maximum thickness tolerance without a defined checkpoint cannot be realistically obtained with a traditional electroplating process. For example, a plating specification that lists a minimum plating thickness of 0.0003” and a maximum plating thickness of 0.0005” for all surfaces of an electroplated part would not be achievable on most part geometries due to the inherent variations in electrolytic plating distribution. Continue reading

Educational Resources for Metal Surface Finishing Professionals

image004Are you new to the metal finishing industry? Perhaps you’ve recently been promoted to a buyer of electroplated material/services within your organization’s supply chain department…a new supplier quality engineer overseeing metal finishing applications…a design engineer who has to address surface engineering as a key component of product design…or a student contemplating a career in metal surface finishing.

No matter what your informational needs are, the following online resources are a great starting point, each providing a wealth of technical and training information and links related to metal surface finishing technology, environmental impact and regulatory compliance. Continue reading

Application Considerations For Gold and Silver Wire Bonding Finishes

By E Probasco

GB3_2040_100dpi6x4Wire bonding is a method in which connections are made between components and/or the leads of a lead frame with extremely fine wires. The wires are typically aluminum or gold, but also include copper and silver. There are three common types of bonding, thermocompression, thermosonic, and ultrasonic. wirebond1Thermocompression uses force, time, and heat to join metals together, while thermosonic uses force, times, heat, and sonics, and ultrasonic bonding uses force, time, and sonics. In any of these instances the most important aspect of bonding is to form a good metallurgical bond with the wire and the metal substrate. Continue reading

APT’s Role of US Military Subcontractor Featured in Fifty Caliber Shooters Association Article

US Military Subcontractor ArticleAdvance Plating Technologies continues its role as trusted technical adviser to a number of diverse market sectors.

In our latest profile, The Fifty Caliber Shooters Association’s quarterly publication Very High Power discusses APT’s  role as a subcontractor to the US military, providing specialty plating of a new line of DDI ammunition.  Engineered finishes aiding positive  identification of ammunition types, and withstanding multiple load and unload cycles are key DDI design requirements achieved by Advanced Plating Technologies.

The article further discusses other APT engineered surface treatments used for corrosion prevention and metal on metal lubrication within the ammunition component industry. Read more…

Gold Plating of Micro Components Requires Specialized Techniques to Ensure Consistent Deposition and Part Cleanliness

By M. Lindstedt

Gold Plating - Interconnect Crimp Tubes

Gold Plated Interconnect Crimp Tubes

Gold plating of micro-components such as those used within the medical and interconnect industries presents unique plating challenges. Many micro-component surface treatments, whether being gold plated, silver plated or even passivated corrosion-resistant alloys require specialized process tooling and processing techniques to ensure plating finishes are uniform across all functional surfaces. The cleaning, processing, rinsing and drying processes must all be engineered around the characteristics of the micro component.

Prior to developing micro-compatible processes, plating techniques were limited to significantly larger components on a more macro-scale. Opportunities to expand services within the medical and interconnect industries was the business driver that pushed Advanced Plating Technologies (APT) to focus on process development for substantially smaller micro-components. Continue reading

Plating on Aluminum Substrates for Power Transmission/Distribution Applications

By M. Lindstedt

Copper as a Design Material in the Power Market

Plating of Aluminum is Key to the Power Market

Plating of Aluminum is Key to the Power Market

The power transmission and distribution industry has long utilized copper as the material of choice for designing and manufacturing critical grid components. Copper has excellent thermal and electrical properties that are desirable when transferring and switching very high power loads. In addition, various alloys of copper available provide the machinability and physical/mechanical properties required for most design applications. Copper not only offers outstanding conductivity but its mechanical properties can be enhanced with a range of alloying metals and heat treatments. Grades such as C101 (oxygen free), C110, C145 (tellurium) and C147 (sulfur bearing), C182 (chromium) and C172 (beryllium) are all cuprous alloys that have been utilized within the power transmission and distribution market for decades. All of these grades are readily plated with conductive metals including silver, tin and nickel to enhance the surface conductivity, reduce the formation of insulating oxides and offer enhanced joinability with methods such as brazing and soldering. Continue reading

Passivation of Stainless Steel for Critical Applications

By S Patel

passivated metal springsPassivation is a critical processing step in the manufacturing of stainless steel components to enhance the corrosion resistance and make stainless steel parts truly “stain-less.” Proper passivation of stainless steel components can make the difference between satisfactory field performance and premature corrosion failures.  If performed improperly, the passivation process can actually attack and etch the stainless surface or induce corrosion. Passivation is often misunderstood to be a scale removal or bright dipping process when in fact it is fully removed from either of these processes.  The information within the blog serves to detail some of the key principles of passivation of stainless steel offered by Advanced Plating Technologies. Continue reading