Looking for someone who does nickel plating on small parts at a reasonable cost..... Or has steering gear covers already plated for sale..... thanks keith
Had two sets done this fall. Depends on what quality you want for reasonable cost.
$50 for each piece of the assembly is reasonable for good work IMO.
Try contacting local sources from a net search around your area.
In FL we have a few quality platers doing auto parts, most are large industrial ones, so getting little parts in low quantity is difficult.
If you have several parts to do and you want to try doing it yourself, I have had good luck with Caswell's home nickel plating kit.
Keith I have an extra one what is it for your coupe or tow truck
I have Caswell's home nickel plating kit, and I have done the windshield retaining inserts with it, and plan on trying to do the steering box. I think it will do the spark and throttle rods. I mostly use it for replating player piano parts and toy train pieces, the steering box will be the largest thing I've tried with it--I do heat the solutions first, it seems to work better that way.
Caswell's ? Source please ?
Home nickel plating sounds like a dream come true ! It took me many years to realize that most plating outfits are not geared to do what you want them to do. The process is expensive, OSHA and EPA regs have made it near impossible for small shops, and cheap labor is the name of the game. Make stuff shiny as quick as you can being the name of the game, back when bumpers were the lion's share of the business, many priceless antique car parts were literally buffed into oblivion or otherwise ruined by platers.
Long last I had a good relationship with an outfit that would just "dip" parts for me, I did the prep and the polishing, sometimes they would even put on the thickness of plating I required, as opposed to making things another sixteenth of an inch bigger !
Good chrome or nickel plating is a problem nowadays it seems. Not only expensive, but hard to find a plater to do small jobs I guess.
This is a bit off of the subject, but this thread reminds me of an "observation" I made the other day. Can't remember the title of the thread or what it was about, but recently, Burger posted a great picture of an old DeSoto that was so seriously rusted that it was not only completely covered with rust, but the body was full of holes. Except for the front bumper, and so help me, that bumper looked like a quick polishing and it would shine up like brand new! Amazing how durable a GOOD plating job is and how long it will survive. And as I understand it, a properly done chrome plating job is just like nickel plating except that the final step is the chrome. A good job was always, polish base metal, then copper plate, then polish, then nickel plate, then polish, then chrome last to protect the nickel.
I think nowadays, a couple of those steps are "skipped" as a lot of plating jobs do not last like back in the old days,.... FWIW,..... harold
Keith, call Hartford Chrome Plating in Hartford, CT. They do a great job. There is no such thing as great electroplating for a reasonable price, but they are competitive and close to you. They have done a bunch of stuff for me - Chrome for the hot rods, and Nickle for the T.
If two or more folks in a local club have parts they want to plate, it might be worthwhile for them to chip in and buy a kit together.
I had mine done by Christensen in L.A., about seven years ago. Hasn't gotten dull yet. I wipe it off sometimes with a soft cotton cloth.
I used Caswell's brass plating kit for my '13. It looked fine for about a month, and then started looking crappy. Maybe I didn't plate my rods long enough, but it sure seemed like it.
Yes, most modern plating is done with shortcuts--oftimes no copper, just the nickel--and it's put on really thin as the modern nickel process results in a shiny finish without polishing (grey nickel plating requires polishing to get the "shine"--I often have to polish the nickel I do with my brush plating kit as with all the variables there, I probably don't have one of them right!) then a thin coat of Chrome over it all to provide the anti-corrosion protection. Chrome isn't completely clear, it has a bluish tint to it, which is why chrome looks different than nickel. These short-cuts result in chrome that doesn't last as long as "the old way"--but then the cars aren't expected to last 10+ years!
Larry, don't tell anyone, but my brass plated pieces have an additional plate w/gold to cut down on tarnishing. At least that's what I was told!
BTW, I used my Caswell brush kit to copper-plate my oil can-it turned out great! Before that it was mostly "naked" tin.
Check with New England Chrome plating in East Hartford, they do nickel. I meant them at their both in Hershey and saw their work which was beautiful. newenglandchrome.com
David, I've always been interested to know the wherefore of the "black art" of plating, doubtless I have a lot of misinformation. What I thought I knew as correct was gleaned from visits with "wildcat" platers that popped up here and there locally through the years, so it may be wrong.
"Triple plating" - often you read a sales pitch that states an item is "triple plated". The process as referred to means a steel item was first plated with copper (and much depends whether it was the acid process or the cyanide process, as the first puts on a thin flash coat, the other a heavier deposit) then nickel, which was stated to be the protective layer against corrosion, then chromium for a shiny finish that doesn't require polishing to stay bright. Platers have told me that chromium is porous, and provides no protection against corrosion.
Recall the bumper inserts on '53 and '54 Chevrolets that turned black after a while ? The reason was that nickel was in extreme short supply during the Korean War, and manufacturers were forced to cut back. Those bumper inserts were copper plated, then chrome plated, then lacquered to avoid the inevitability that the copper would corrode owing to the porosity of the chrome layer.
It would be great if someone who has worked in the commercial plating trades could offer information that would be helpful as we go about repairing and restoring our Model Ts.
That's interesting, as it's (the chrome and nickel) is opposite of what I was told--but, it does make some sense too, as parts with a heavier nickel plating do seem to last much longer.
But then I think, if the nickel oxidizes, and the chromium is porous, wouldn't the nickel still oxidize?
I'm just very curious!
Me too!! We know there's a difference between hard chrome (like on hydraulic rams) and decorative chrome, likely there are different compositions? I've never seen nickel get very oxidized, but this dry climate is pretty kind to relics.