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Bronze plating: processes and applications

Bronze plating of surfaces, be they metal or another material, is an electroplating treatment similar to bluing and is obtained through black colouring with copper nitrate.

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Bronze plating: electroplating treatment for metals and other materials

Bronze plating is a treatment used for multiple functions. It covers surfaces with a particular dark, blackish coating (the colour is due to the formation of copper oxide) and is able to resist corrosion, wear and moderately hot temperatures.

The most classic immersion mixture used for bronze plating consists of copper nitrate in a 1:3 ratio with water. In some cases, the addition of a small percentage of silver nitrate is also required. Let’s learn about the methods used in bronze plating.

How bronze plating works

To plate an object with bronze, certain steps are performed to colour the surface of an object uniformly.

The preliminary phase consists of pickling in sulfuric or hydrochloric acid to prepare the surface for treatment.

Following this, bronze plating is carried out by means of dipping or brushing, respectively, depending on whether it is a small or a large object.

When working with immersion, the temperature of the solution must be brought to around 50°C. Once dry, the surface takes on a grey colour, which turns black following slow, uniform heating in special ovens.

Bronze plating is therefore a simple, low-cost process with a high yield that makes surfaces more resistant to wear.

However, fluoropolymer coatings, Teflon PTFE and PFA coatings and, in general, coatings using Impreglon’s TempCoat® and Halar® systems create surface properties equivalent to bronze plating (in terms of wear resistance and corrosion protection), while also guaranteeing non-stick and sliding properties.

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