Zinc is a very common element and is well known for its excellent resistance to corrosion. Nickel has some fine properties too. It is malleable, ductile and conducts electricity. When you combine the two metals into a zinc nickel alloy plating, you get a material with a durable coating which is highly resistant to corrosion. Let’s take a look at the plating method, and explore the many benefits you can receive.
The Plating Process
One of the most effective ways to coat metal with a nickel and zinc alloy involves the use of electricity. This is known as electrocoating or e-coating. The electrocoating process is much more effective than dipping metals in molten solutions or applying paint to the surfaces.
What is Electrocoating?
Suppose you have two pieces of metal. One is composed on a nickel zinc alloy and the other is iron or steel. You want the steel to possess the corrosion resistance of the alloy. To accomplish this you can place both pieces of metal in water (which has been de-ionized) and resins and introduce direct electric current through them. The water acts as the main conductor for the current.
While electricity passes through the metals, oxygen and hydrogen are released from the water and this helps to destabilize and release atoms of nickel and zinc, which are transferred to the iron. The thickness of the coating can be controlled by raising or lower the DC voltage. The iron coating is then allowed to harden. This is known as zinc nickel alloy plating with electrocoating. It is an oversimplified explanation of what actually occurs, but gives you the main idea of the process.
Why Zinc Nickel Electroplating?
E-coat provides exceptional coverage of the item to be coated. Even when current levels are high during the process, the coatings come out bright and free of burns and blisters. This allows for outstanding adhesion. After the plating process, materials can be bent without affecting the integrity of the metal coating.
Uses in Industry Today
* Electric power transmissions – you will see zinc nickel alloy plating in cables, anchors and bolts associated with high voltage power lines.
* Marine applications – a high degree of resistance to salt water makes it excellent for many marine applications.
* Fasteners – many bolts, nuts and nails are plated with a nickel alloy to replace cadmium (due to its known toxicity).
* Stainless steel and aluminum bearings
* Automotive parts and frames
* Military applications
Dekalb Metal Finishing has been in business for more than 70 years and we offer exceptional zinc nickel alloy plating services. Join us on the World Wide Web today to at http://www.dekalbmetal.com/ to see what we can do for your business.
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