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Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive
(Hard Chrome Plating)

by Larry Zitko, ChromeTech, Inc.
January, 2002

Hard Chrome Plating Education and Training

Q. Mr. Zitko, I would like to know all I can about hard chrome plating. I do chrome plating in the roll shop where I work. We use a HEEF solution and plate rolls for rolling steel. I would like to understand the importance of and reason for things such as baume, sulfate/titration test, the temperature of the bath, etch amps, plating amps, and just about anything that could help me in being the best I can be at my job. Any web sites or literature that you can recommend would be great. Any and all of your comments or advice would also help. I'm completely new to this field but find it very interesting and plan on it being my career. Thank you.

A. I congratulate you for wanting to learn all that you can about hard chromium plating. Although some people think it's a witches' brew, I believe it to be more about chemistry and physics than witchcraft. I would suggest that you learn the basics, and continue by studying the causes and cures for the multitude of defects possible in the chromium deposit. Above all, learn as much as you can about the hazards and health risks associated with this discipline, and always operate the equipment in a safe manner.

Hard Chrome Plating Consultants Inc. has a good, hands-on, practical training manual for hard chrome plating. I have used his book many times down through the years.

Here are some of my favorite hardbound textbooks in my library:

- "Metals Handbook, Ninth Edition, Volume 5: Surface Cleaning, Finishing and Coating", published by American Society for Metals, 1982. Hyman Chessin wrote the excellent chapter on Hard Chromium Plating.

- "Electroplating - Fundamentals of Surface Finishing", Frederick A. Lowenheim, McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1978.

- "Nickel and Chromium Plating, Second Edition", J.K. Dennis and T.E. Such, Butterworth & Company (Great Britain), 1986.

- "Electroplating and Related Processes", J.B. Mohler, Chemical Publishing Company, 1969.

- "The Handbook of Hard Chromium Plating", Robert K. Guffie, Gardner Publications, Inc., 1986.

- "Heavy Deposition", J.D. Greenwood, Robert Draper Ltd. (Great Britain), 1970.

There must be over a hundred good articles that have appeared in Plating & Surface Finishing magazine, Metal Finishing magazine and Products Finishing magazine.

I have personally trained over a hundred operators, both novice and experienced persons, in the science of hard chromium plating. This service is performed on a consulting basis at the customer's facility, using a combination of tankside and classroom techniques.

Good luck with your new vocation.



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