Peninsula Metal Finishing's Operational PrinciplesThe Process:
Metal finishing encompasses a variety of processes that can treat the base metal, such as passivation of stainless steels, or apply one or more coatings on the surface to perform a sacrificial function when exposed to the environment, to meet an engineering requirement, to perform a cosmetic function, or a combination of some or all of these. Additionally, pre-treatments for painting are also within the domain of metal finishing.
Most metals when left in their original condition will react with oxygen and other components of the environment and form oxides such as common rust on steels and white corrosion on aluminum. Additionally, metals generally do not possess the desired properties for the end product, from either an engineering or cosmetic perspective.
THE TYPICAL ELECTROPLATING PROCESS INCLUDES:
- Plating includes electro-plating, electroless plating, immersion coatings, conversion coatings, and mechanically applied finishes.
- Anodizing is unique in that a controlled oxide is formed at the surface of the aluminum.
- Painting and powder coating are non-metallic coatings.
- Removing oils and other contaminants from the surface of the part.
- Removing oxides from the surface of the metal.
- Plating the desired metal such as nickel or zinc utilizing direct current, or an electroless method, to deposit metal on the surface, or an immersion method to deposit a coating such as chemical film or phosphate.
- Baking for hydrogen embrittlement relief if required.
- Applying a supplementary coating to the plating.