How should electroplating specifications be called out on engineering drawings? Our job shop gets many jobs with notations such as zinc plate or bright nickel plate. In many cases we have to spend a lot of time determining exactly what the customer has in mind. I want to prepare a set of guidelines for our customers with suggestions on how to call out plating specifications. Any suggestions? S.J.
Good question! I continue to be surprised by the fact that electroplating specifications are rarely specified correctly or at all. The process is not difficult. The electroplating process is specified by referring to a standard procedure such as ASTM B 700-90, Electrodeposited Coatings of Silver for Engineering Use. The ASTM is a major source of standards. It can be contacted at 100 Barr Harbor Drive, West Conshohocken, PA 19428, 610-832-9500. A good listing of many of the standards that are used in the electroplating industry can be found in the Metal Finishing Guidebook and Directory, 2000 Edition, 914-333-2500. These standards list the items (thickness, test methods, etc.) that must be specified on purchase orders and engineering drawings.
I suggest that you obtain copies of the specifications that apply to the types of plating your shop performs. You can use these specifications to help with the writing of your customer guidelines.