We have a bright nickel plating bath that seems to lose power sporadically which results in peeling problems. Do you have any suggestions on how we can locate the problem and fix it?
Q: We have a bright nickel plating bath that seems to lose power sporadically. We also see a low plating rate at various times. When this happens we end up with peeling problems. Do you have any suggestions on how we can locate the problem and fix it? M.L.
A: From the information that you have supplied me, it is clear that you have an electrical problem in your plating bath. The best way of solving this problem is to do a systematic check of the electrical system. The problem you are experiencing can be caused by such things as bad anode and rack contacts or intermittent connections in your electrical system.
If you do not already have one, purchase a voltage/ammeter clamp meter to check all of your anode, rack, and bus bar connections. You can find vendors of these meters by searching the web using the term “clamp meter”. They are inexpensive. Clean all of your connections and check them again with the clamp meter. If you have done a good job, the problem of intermittent current should disappear. To make sure that this problem does not occur again you should institute a preventive maintenance program and follow it religiously.
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