Can You Bright Dip Stainless Steel?
In the April Plating Clinic, I responded to a question regarding bright dipping of stainless steel. One of our readers e-mailed me and pointed out a much easier solution to the problem than that which was given in my answer. The original question and my response are given below, followed by the additional information. Thank you for writing.
Q. Our company manufactures medical devices from stainless steel wire and tubing. In this process, the parts are ground, cleaned and electropolished. Suitable rinsing is used between each of these steps. We would like to replace the electropolishing step with a non-electrolytic step. Can this be done? V.I.
A. There are a number of bright dips and chemical polishing solutions for stainless steel. In my experience, none of these solutions will give the same quality results you obtain from electropolishing.If you want to pursue this, you might try the solution given here.
This solution must be used at 155–165°F. The stainless parts must be dipped in hot, 5% sulfuric acid before dipping in the polishing solution. The water content of the bright dip must be monitored very carefully.
Why bother with a home-brew formulation? Formulated bright dips for stainless are commercially available. You can find vendors by searching the PF Supplier Database.
Masking is employed in most any metal finishing operation where only a specifically defined area of the surface of a part must be exposed to a process. Conversely, masking may be employed on a surface where treatment is either not required or must be avoided. This article covers the many aspects of masking for metal finishing, including applications, methods and the various types of masking employed.
Why is it important for you to know this?
Getting the properties you paid for...