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zincate on aluminum

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  • zincate on aluminum

    This is my first try at plating aluminum with bright nickel (electro). Ordered Zincate solution and mixed according to the manual. Waterbreak showed fine. Question: Should the zincate solution dry completely before going into the nickel bath? Or should I rinse with distilled water before going in to rinse off the excess zincate?
    The part starts reacting immediately to the zincate so I left it in about 30 sec. This part was mirror polished when it went in and came out of the zincate a dull grey. Will I still get a bright finish when nickeled? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    After passing water break, go directly into zincate if it begins to fizz, leave it in for only about 10 to 15 sec after the fizzing starts. The uniform dull grey color is normal. Rinse well and go immediately into the strike bath (flash copper or nickle) and go into the bath with the power on at about .13amps/sqin for 30 sec to 60 sec and then drop the amps back to .06amps/sqin for rest of the strike cycle (about 10 min). The bath will dissolve the zincate and if you have brighteners (nickle) in the bath, it should come out shiny. If you plan on doing a lot of alum., you should consider using flash copper and buffing afterwards (and before), because over time, the zinc will contaminate your nickle bath. Hope this helps.


    • #3
      Darin, thanks a bunch for the info! I think I'm on the right track now. I was also wondering if the zinc would contaminate. Probably will order a small nickel kit just for aluminum. I'll post when I get results. Thanks!


      • #4
        Re: zincate on aluminum

        thanks, i needed that info, too. elizabeth