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Plating Manual??

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  • Plating Manual??

    I read the following at the bottom of the plating manual webpage,

    "The cost of the manual is refundable when you purchase most plating kits."


    How come it isn't included with the kits then? I bought the complete plug n plate $115 kit. If that's not one of the "most kits" reffered too, then which kits are?

    All I got for instructions or manual was a 2 page print out, not hardly what I would call complete instructions for plating.

    What about the "1 x Instruction Booklet" it says in the parts list along with the other items?

    I can figure things out when I have too, like out of 3 different types of 6 wands which go to which solutions, but I shouldn't have to FIGURE it out.
    Not a clue about the other three parts, though I am sure they are pens.
    I don't know why I would want variable power settings from the instructions that came with the kit. Also no biggie, but my transformer reads 4.5v on the 3.v settting.

    I'm happy with the results of the kit so far. Only plated a couple small things but they turned out nice.
    Now I am building a box to inclose the transformer in. Although it seems to work fine, you have to admit it doesn't look like an expensive or proffesional setup to take out to a job.

    I'll be using an old chrome toaster cover for front cover, a few leds, a test meter gauge, and a pot switch. Install the transformer from a junk printer and I have a nice profesional expensive looking unit for people to look at while I gold plate thier auto emblems

    Of course I will be adding gold plated trim and a "Custom Built For Me" plaque.


  • #2
    The manual is included in all our larger kits, but not the Plug N Plate kits. What's included in each kit is detailed on the web site page, and was also detailed on the old web site.

    Most people who buy Plug N Plate kits don't want to read through 200+ pages of instructions, when only a small section applies to them. The insructions included in the Plug N Plate kits are complete with all the information you require to use them successfully. If we included the manual, the price would have to go up. If you want the manual, I suggest you get the online version. It's $15.00.

    If you have specific questions, I suggest you ask in our support section.

    If you want to spend $500 on a "professional looking" plating system that has blinking lights and makes beeping noises, and contains about $10 worth of electonics, and $20 worth of plating solutions, there's plenty of places that sell them. We prefer to sell products that work at a sensible price.

    As you say in your post, the kit works great, so consider yourself a smart consumer.
    Mike Caswell
    Caswell Inc
    Need Support? Visit our online support section at


    • #3
      I found the larger kits right after posting that message.

      Also I hope I didn't offend any by that post, after re-reading it myself it does not really sound the way I meant it, polite.

      I can see not having the entire manual in the single plug n plate kits. But for the 6 solution kit, I still think at least better more detailed instructions of what it can be used for and how to do it would be a good thing. Even if not the whole 200 page manual. You have great service and support and forum from what I see so far, but that doesn't help out in the yard, or away from home when we can't get to it.

      For instance, I don't think I saw anything in the included instructions about silver plating. I have silver solution, so now if I am out somewhere and someone says silver plate this for me, how do I do that? Just silver plate it, or do I need a copper base first? Do I need the nickle in between like for gold or chrome plate? Same with the brass. And I think I have the flash copper solution and just found a link on the site about using that to plate pewter and maybe even lead. I do cast lead free pewter items and plan to plate many of them.
      See what I meant.

      I do flea markets and other locations alot for various things. Easy to do the plating there on demand, but no way to access anything other than printed instructions when I have a question about something. So if I don't know what base to use under a silver palte, the sale is lost before I can look it up online.

      I'll probably buy the manual or get it with the larger kits, I plan to buy one fairly soon.

      I like the kit, and it got me started, no complaints with that. As for the more expensive looking, what I meant is in my area at least, is people look at the equipent doing the work as much as the finished job.
      If I showed up with a AA battery and 2 pieces of wire and do a great job
      people don't seem to feel it worth $50, but if I do the exact same job with something that looks like I paid $1000 for it then they feel as if they got a bargain at $75 for the exact same job and results. People are funny that way, I have had that experience in other areas and I am sure it will be the same with plating.

      As an example, a guy I knew paid a ton of money to have hail dents removed from his new car, the shop used alot of expensive tools. He was happy paying out all that money to them, but there were a couple they could not get to to "pop out". I did them for him for him for $50 using a heat gun, piece of ice, and a suction cup. My repair was just as good as the shops, was faster, and used cheap tools. He grumbled about paying me the $50. Go figure people.

      As far as the home built unit I am making, it is just for looks. Your right, I am too smart to pay $500 for someone elses kits. That's why I bought yours
      I totaled the cost of all the solutions and included parts in the kit if purchased seperately. Was not much more for the kit with transformer than buying individually piece by piece without a transformer.

      Most likey what I am building is basically just gonna be a large fancy case to put your transformer in and hold the parts like wands and some cups.
      Didn't mean anything wrong with your kit, just want it to look fancy for people to look at.



      • #4
        Plating Manual??

        I completely agree about the directions that came with the kit. I have been trying to use it for a couple months now, with no luck! I have no idea what some of the parts are, or if I have it set up correctly. When I try to use it, it just sits there, nothing at all happens. Should I ask for my money back?


        • #5
          You should request product support!!!

          The kit works. You're probably doing something wrong that is very simple to solve. Have you posted a problem in our support section? Have you called us?

          We're here to help you.
          Mike Caswell
          Caswell Inc

          Need Support? Visit our online support section at


          • #6
            No I would not request my money back, the kit works well and is alot of fun too. I cast pewter and have plated some items copper then nickle then gold. 24k gold plated eagles look real nice on my jet black computer case! Trying to get the mold right for a knecklace for the kid.

            If you ask for help they have good support. I only called once, but was given help right away and he spent a bit of time on the phone with me. Of course I am sure they are busy, so I try not to waist their time if I can find the answers on my own. Prefferably do the online support probably, but in that case when I called I was having a problem I needed fixed right then!

            You shouldn't have to do this, but if you search through the website looking at various solutions and kits you can find some answers. Like if you want to gold plate something. OK you have a gold solution, but what does that go over? I don't think it said in the paper I got in the kit, but online you can find that it has to go over nickle I think. So look for the nickle solution you have, what does that go onto? Look at the nickle plating kits.

            As for the Wands, off hand I think most of the solutions used the stainless wands, copper for copper, and I forget what the other was, haven't needed it yet. Nothing about that was mentioned in the paper either, but if you look at the page with the kits listed see what is included with each individual kit if your not sure which to use. If the brass kit comes with a brass wand, then you know thats the one you use for that

            I bought the online manual, I plan to do alot more than brush plating. Although I haven't had time to really read through it in detail, I think there is alot of useful information about larger setups and other things. I don't really recall seeing much more in that about brush plating than what came in the kit or what you can find online searchng the sales pages.

            Like caswell replied to one of my posts about the full plating manual, most people don't want to wade through 220 pages or so for just what is coverd about brush plating. I see his point now that I bought the online manual!
            Although it looks good, I don't think their is enough about brush plating.

            For me (planning to build larger setup in an old trailer house) I found lots of information I can use. If I were only going to brush plate, then I'm not sure if I would want the full manual. Of course I have not had time to read all of it yet so I may have missed some things?

            The kits do work! Unless you somehow got a bad transformer or something unusual, you should be able to get some really nice brush plating done with these kits, don't give up!

            If you are trying to do small tank plating, I haven't done much of that yet.
            I did set up some yogurt cups for small tanks and try that for a couple things. It worked.
            It takes alot longer I think to tank plate than it does to just rub around with a wand for brush plating. Also takes more power, the whole part is in contact with the solution compared to just the brush. Although both work, I would preffer the brush.



            • #7
              Plating Manual??

              Thanks, Chromo, for your thoughtful reply, but in a way it makes me only more frustrated with this thing -- why does it work for some and not for others

              The following comments are directed more to Caswell than to Chromo: I would rather have clear instructions provided with the kit than to rely on on-line faqs and product support. I work long hours, and when I finally get a chance for my hobbies, things must work! I don't have time for all this fooling around searching out clues on the website. If I have the kit stuff spread out all over my kitchen and I'm trying to replate a little piece of old jewelry, I cannot stop in the middle, log on to my computer and the Caswell site, then wait hours for an answer. I need directions to refer to! Also consider that a hobbyist will be using the kit during non-business hours, because we hobbyists have to work for a living, so phoning is not an option. I am an experienced do-it-your-selfer but this kit has me really frustrated.


              • #8
                Plating Manual??

                P.S. As to the on-line product support, I can't even log in to get Casell's answers to my inquiry. Had this problem yesterday so I set up a new account. Now this new account does not work, either. JEESSSHHHH.....


                • #9
                  We've improved our instructions for these kits, based on customers feedback. If you e-mail me at [email protected] I will send them to you.

                  To access Technical Support, you first enter the generic login name and password found on your invoice. If you don't have this, e-mail me and I will provide it for you.

                  We do this to prevent people who haven't purchased from us from using our Tech Support area.
                  Mike Caswell
                  Caswell Inc
                  Need Support? Visit our online support section at


                  • #10
                    Glad to know people listen to us custermers sometimes.

                    The kits work good, one of the main things is knowing what base metal to put which solution over. Plus other useful info that should be included.

                    I'll e-mail for them too. I plan to buy kits for some people out of state from me. They don't have computers or net, so besides wanting the instructions for me I need to see what they'll get.

                    My dad's pretty smart at figuring stuff out, but a couple of the people are lucky to know how to start their hotrods, let alone plate them
                    Shouldn't say that, they are nice people and good friends, but truely not real smart.



                    • #11

                      The manual has a Metals Chart that comes in handy.You just find the type of metal your working with on the left side and the chart tells you all the steps,solutions and amount of time to dip it.Its in version 5 of the manual but I don't remember seeing it in the version 4 manual.
                      1966 Impala (hers)
                      1966 Impala SS 427 (his)
                      See them at
                      The Watering Hole


                      • #12
                        Recived my new order but missing 2 parts??

                        I did not get The Caswell Plating Manual with my order?
                        I bought the Copy Cad? AND Zinc plating in one kit
                        Were or How do I get one of theses manuals?
                        Also it said their was a part on back order I think the missing part is the 300W Ceramic Heaters

                        2 x 2 Gal Plating Tanks & Lids
                        2 x 4" x 8" Zinc Anodes
                        1 Quart Copy Cad? /Zinc Solution (Makes 1.5 Gals)
                        Zinc Brightener
                        1 Pack Degreaser (Makes 2 Gals)
                        2 x 300W Ceramic Heaters
                        1 x Thermostat
                        Abrasive Nylon Wheel
                        The Caswell Plating Manual <--------------??
                        Free Technical Support


                        • #13
                          Re: Plating Manual??

                          Have you called or emailed tech support at Caswell? They have always handled problems for me very well.


                          • #14
                            Re: Plating Manual??

                            I guess I will have to call them and email them.
                            I was hoping to get a manual online and just down load it


                            • #15
                              Re: Plating Manual??

                              We've resolved this for you, correct?

                              You deducted the manual from the online order and received $22 off the kit price.

                              We offer this so that customers who already have the manual can request not to get a 2nd copy, and save the $22.00.

                              The heaters will be shipping Monday.
                              Mike Caswell
                              Caswell Inc
                              Need Support? Visit our online support section at