I just want to share this instruction video on nickel plating by mr. Pete (Tubalcain) . He is a guy with a lot of god videos on shop work on Youtube. From time to time there is questions on how to do nickel plating. this is a good tutorial I think.
This makes me want to spend some serious money on their kit. I might have to give it a try. Thanks Rolf ! P.S. The wife isn't happy about this.
I re-plated my windshield pivot wing nuts and some schrader valve dust covers with the Caswell kit, they turned out great.
The main ingredient in a good plating job is the prep of the part to be plated. Making something shiny puts every flaw on display. The real effort is in the polishing and once you have done that you tend to want to pay an expert to do the plating so as not to have wasted all of your effort Still I do think it all can be a real rewarding project.
Looks like I may be doing a nickle car after all . . .
being on dial-up, I can't watch the video, but one of my T friends has the full Caswell kit, probably has way over $800 invested, and turns out some incredible nickel plating--he's also extremely detail-oriented, so I think it's all done right. In fact the Dodge Brothers headlight rims he's done (which first requires repairing all the age cracks they are prone to) are actually finished better than the factory. The originals have some slight curves to the flat surfaced, but he's "fixed" that, so the parts actually look better than a NOS one if you put them side-by-side. Also, he puts a very thick nickel plate on, so they should last far beyond our lifetimes.
I have the brush plating kit, and do small train parts and player piano parts with it, with pretty good results. I haven't tried to do a steering wheel case yet, but have done spark and throttle rods with fair results. One trick I found with the brush plating kit is to heat up the plating solution; it seems to function better then.
Check out this guy's technique on the Talking Machine Forum. Super simple and super cheap. As John points out, the real work is in the prep!