Nickel-Plated Anode Bars

Our chemical vendor has told us that it is a good idea to nickel plate the anode bars in our zinc chloride plating bath prior to commissioning the tank. Why?


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Q: We have recently installed a chloride zinc plating bath. Our chemical vendor has told us that it is a good idea to nickel plate the anode bars prior to commissioning the tank. Why? M.B.

 

A: Typically, the anode bars in a plating bath are made of copper. Since the chloride zinc plating bath is fairly corrosive, it tends to attack the copper. One of the results of this attack is when the bars are cleaned, copper will end up in the plating bath and copper can be a serious contaminant in the bath.

One way to reduce this problem is to plate the anode bars with a material that is more resistant to the chloride zinc plating solution. Nickel is such a material and is recommended for plating the anode bars.

One other comment regarding anode and cathode bars: They should not be cleaned directly over the plating tanks if possible. If they must be cleaned in this manner place material under the bars to catch the debris from the bars prior to cleaning. A sheet of plastic will work fine and should catch most of the material removed from the bars.
 

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