Surface Technology Plates Second Cycle of Brompton Bikes

The Nickel Edition, the most advanced finish used by Brompton to date, is electroless nickel plated by Surface Technology at its Leeds facility in England.


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Following an instant sell-out of its special 'Nickel Edition' bike last year, Brompton Bicycle has again partnered with UK specialist coatings supplier Surface Technology, part of Norman Hay plc, to produce another 1,300 bikes for 2017.  

The Nickel Edition, the most advanced finish used by Brompton to date, is electroless nickel plated by Surface Technology at its Leeds facility in England.

This year, the two companies have worked together to increase efficiencies in the manufacturing process, meaning the iconic British manufacturer has been able to extend the range, offering varying heights of handle bars for different riding styles.

To improve manufacturing efficiency, the technical teams at Surface Technology and Brompton worked collaboratively to identify ways to reduce the amount of masking time required, while ensuring the tolerances of the various component mounting points within the frame were maintained. As a result of this process analysis, Brompton ensured mounting point holes were machined larger in the fabrication process to allow correct assembly from the plated parts.

Also, to further enhance the quality of output the Brompton bikes were salt spray tested. The frames were placed in a secure chamber and sprayed in a climatic environment for more than 200 hours to accelerate the corrosion process. They were checked and photographed every day and at the end of the testing the frames were easily cleaned back to the original nickel coating with no sign of corrosion damage.

Mo Rahnama, design operations manager at Brompton, says, “Brompton had talked for some years about creating a specialist nickel version but came up against a number of technical challenges postponing the development. Surface Technology was the obvious partner for the project due to their extensive knowledge and understanding of industrial coatings and their ability to research and test a unique solution for our product.

“This year we have been able to enhance what we did last year, which has resulted in us growing our product portfolio. The technical team at Surface Technology has been excellent at working with us to constantly improve our process and output and we look forward to working together again in future.”

Andrew Courtney, group operations director at Surface Technology, adds, “Once again we are proud to align the Surface Technology name with this fantastic global brand which represents quality British manufacturing. The bikes are superb. It’s no wonder that some customers hang them as pieces of art on their walls.”

For more information on the Brompton Nickel Edition, visit: www.brompton.com/The-Bike/Special-Editions/Nickel-Edition

For more information on Surface Technology’s electroless nickel plating solution, visit: www.surfacetechnology.co.uk/plating/electroless-nickel-plating/