PLATING BATH TITRATIONS

We have now installed a small on-site laboratory and have a technician determine concentrations and “add” for our plating baths and some of our cleaners. The problem we now have is this: He does not have enough time to complete the titrations and calculate the “adds” in a timely fashion. Do you have any suggestions on how we can improve this process and reduce the time requirements?


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Q. We are a small plating shop that has until recently depended on an outside lab to test our plating baths. We have now installed a small on-site laboratory and have a technician determine concentrations and “add” for our plating baths and some of our cleaners. The problem we now have is this: He does not have enough time to complete the titrations and calculate the “adds” in a timely fashion. Do you have any suggestions on how we can improve this process and reduce the time requirements? K.K.

 

A. First of all, I am pleased that you have brought your testing and plating bath control in-house. This is an important step and allows you to have a much better understanding and control of your baths. You did not mention in your e-mail how many tanks you are now testing, but from what you say, I gather your technician is titrating for one component at a time.

There is a more efficient way of doing this without “breaking the bank.” Go to www.pfonline.com/plate/index.html. Search the Vendor Database under “Analytical Equipment, automatic solution titration” and you will find a number of companies that sell automatic titration equipment. Contact them to discuss your needs.

The second part of your question regarding calculation of “adds” that have to be made can be handled in one of three ways. Your e-mail implies that you are currently doing this using paper and pencil. This is slow, and if you are not entering the resulting adds into a notebook you will not have a history to fall back on when you have problems with a particular tank. The second method is to set up an Excel spreadsheet to do your calculations. The third method, which probably is the easiest, is to purchase software to do the calculations and generate add slips. You can find vendors of such software using PFONLINE and searching under Software. 

 

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