Brass Plating Bath Gone South

We are considering replacing the bath with a bath from a new vendor. Do you have any guidelines for doing so?


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Q. We have used a proprietary brass plating bath for many years without any problems. In the last month or so, the bath has started to perform erratically and to the point that we are considering replacing the bath with a bath from a new vendor. Do you have any guidelines for doing so? S. B.

 

A. From your e-mail, it sounds like you have used the bath successfully for a number of years. This means you have a lot of experience with this particular bath. So, before you throw the “baby out with the bath water” here are a few points you should consider:

Have you discussed your problems with the supplier of the bath? If the answer is yes, has he/she had enough time to correct the problems? If your vendor is not responsive or is unable to solve the problem than it is time to consider a new
supplier.

How do you go about selecting a new vendor? The same way you go about buying any major item. Ask questions! Does the vendor have a technical support function? Does the local rep seem knowledgeable about his company’s chemistry? Does the local rep seem knowledgeable about plating and metal finishing. Does the vendor “hold your hand” when you initially start up the bath? Does the company have good references, i.e., are other plating shops using the chemistry successfully? If you get satisfactory answers to these questions, you should be ready to make an informed decision. 

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