Our Process


Restoration & Repair

Pot metal restoration is necessary when deterioration is beyond removal by our standard process. Pot metal is made up of several common metals such as zinc, lead, copper, tin, magnesium, iron, and cadmium all combined and formed into cast items such as emblems. Pitting is the most common in these pieces along with internal corrosion of the metal, which leads to the “flaking” of decorative chrome plating. For this reason the process of plating pot metal can be very time consuming just in the restoration process. Restoring the surface will require an acid copper layer to be applied along with a re-sanding process. Remaining imperfections are then identified such as pits, scratches, or low areas. Low areas are then silver soldered and then “cut down” to match the copper surface and re-plated again in an acid copper bath. This process can happen several times to achieve the required finish.

Stainless Trim Repair

Stainless trim and aluminum trim repair are performed by a metal artist with a hammer. He can work out bends, dents, and kinks that other people and shops can’t do.

 

 

Polishing

Stripping

Before any work can be done to your items, it must be striped of the old surface finish. We ask that all grease and oil be removed to the best of your ability in order to provide a consistent pricing model. Hot tanks are then used to remove paints and powders along with different media blasting to bring the metals back to the original surface.

Preparing the Surface

Plating only enhances the quality of the surface that is to be plated. It is important that in this process that straightening, grinding, sanding, detailing, and buffing are done correctly to ensure a quality finish. It is the ability of our polishers and the pride they take in providing our platers with a beautiful surface to plate on.

Restoring the Surface

Due to different levels of deterioration, belting or sanding cannot be done if it jeopardizes the substrate itself and a different process is required. Restoring the surface will require an acid copper layer to be applied along with a re-sanding process. Remaining imperfections are then identified such as pits, scratches, or low areas. Low areas are then silver soldered and then “cut down” to match the copper surface and re-plated again in an acid copper bath. Upon inspection the piece either passes to plating department to finish the triple plate process or goes back into the copper and reworked.

Chrome Plating

Understanding Chrome Plating

Due to different base metals the process can require more or less steps. We can electroplate copper, nickel, and chrome. The basic process in each tank is to dissolve a metal to be plated on a part with the application of an electrical current throughout the tank that pulls the dissolved metal ions out of the solution and onto the part that is to be plated. Our tanks are 4’x8’x4’ deep that holds about 900 gallons in each tank.

Surfaces we Plate

Pot Metal, Aluminum, Steel, Stainless Steel, Cast Iron, Brass, Copper

Types of Parts We Chrome

Here at Northwest Chrome we understand there are different requirements that range from show quality to driver quality. There are different budgets in place with each of our customers and strive to work with everyone that wants the appeal and shine of chrome.

Antique/Classic Car Parts, Hot Rod Parts, Truck Parts, Motorcycle Parts, Airplane Parts, Snowmobile Parts, Dirt Bike/Quad Parts, Farm Tractor Parts, Mining Machine Parts, Antique Bathroom Fixtures, Plaques, Antique Door Handles, Railings, Retirement Gifts, and anything that can fit in our tanks!