In many industries and operations, electroplating is an important aspect of preparing a component for its performance. It is a means of improving the initial condition of the base metal while reducing the potential costs of using a pure substance throughout. However, the traditional means – tank immersion, may not be required in several instances. This is particularly valid for situations where the desire is not to plate or re-plate the entire item. When it comes to “touching up” or plating only a particular section of the item, the method usually employed is called “selective plating.”
Understanding Selective Plating
Selective plating, as noted above, involves only “touching up” a specific section or a component or item. Because it addresses only a certain spot, it is often called “spot plating.” Another term for the method is brush plating. All refer to the reduction of the larger tank process of electroplating. The method involves an intensification of the chemicals but in smaller amounts as well as the use of a wand/brush for application.
During the process, the work piece receives a negative charge form the rectifier while the hand held wand or “brush” receives a positive charge. The anode, which resides at the end of the wand, is coated with some type of absorbent material. It is this material which retains the plating solution. The operator may dip the anode into the plating solution. This is true for smaller jobs. In the case of larger components, the solution is constantly pumped up.
In either situation, the anode is applied to the specific area requiring plating. The process results in the entire section being plated evenly and thoroughly. Selective plating occurs where the anode makes contact with the work piece.
What Metals Are Used in Selective Plating?
The metals used for the process of selective plating tend to be no different than those used in tank or conventional electroplating. Among the ones most commonly utilized are:
They are employed to refurbish, repair and even augment the component or specific piece. Furthermore, many electronic companies request the electroplating of certain parts to modify it to meet the necessary standards and/or specifications required by the company, the associations or government.
Advantages of Selective Plating
There are several advantages to choosing selective plating. These are obvious in certain categories including:
* Costs: Lower initial costs
* Portability: In many instances, it is easy and feasible to take the equipment to the site
* Operation: Easy to perform
* Size matters: It can plate components that are too large to fit in the tanks
* Masking: Reduces the amount necessary
* Waste Disposal: Reduction in amount
While there are several different means of electroplating, some companies, specialize in this method. While it is not for all purposes, it does have its uses. Its portability, ease of use and excellent results ensure that selective plating will continue to be popular.
If your company or business requires Selective Plating, contact the professionals at Professional Plating. We really are the experts in the field. Our innovative approaches in medical devices has earned us the respect of our colleagues. To learn more about who we are and what services we can offer, make an online visit to Proplate.com.
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