What does Chrome Plating mean : chrome plating is a metal coating method used to create a thin layer of chromium on the surface of a material. Chrome plating uses a technology known as electroplating to create chromium layers that can be less than 0.001 inch (0.025 mm).
This plating can be used to make different chromium alloy coatings with a variety of deposition thicknesses for corrosion and wear resistance.
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Corrosionpedia explains Chrome Plating
There are two main types of Cr plating:
Decorative chrome plating. This type employs a layer of nickel and a layer of chromium. The nickel gives the surface of the object its shine and its polished look. Once the nickel layer has been deposited, a chromium layer is added on top of it. The chromium layer helps increase the corrosion resistance of the material and also improve the resistance to scratching and wear. Decorative Cr plating usually has a total thickness under 0.001 inch.
Hard chrome plating. This type is typically used in industrial settings where aesthetic appeal is not the primary concern. Hard chrome plating, while it can improve the corrosion resistance of the material to which it is applied, is primarily used to increase the wear resistance of certain components. Hard Cr plating is commonly applied to various types of steel and is almost always thicker than decorative chrome plating.
What Is Chrome?
Chrome, which is the colloquial term for chromium, is a naturally occurring element. A metal, it is useful for plating rather than as a solid substance. A thin layer of it is applied over a different surface material such as steel, brass, aluminum, plastic, copper or stainless steel.
Some people refer to all shiny finishes as chrome when they do not actually contain chromium. These other surfaces might include highly polished aluminum, vacuum-metalized mylar, painted wheels and nickel-plated objects. Chrome plating is brighter, bluer and has a deeper reflection than other finishes do.