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Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive
(Hard Chrome Plating)

by Randy Taylor, Advanced Tooling Corporation
January, 2008

Electropolishing of Chromed Stainless Steel

Q. Is it possible to electropolish stainless steel after an hard chromium plating? If yes, what is the solution i need to use?

A. I'm not an expert on the process, but I think my answer would be "NO." Electro-polishing is a wet process which uses a specially formulated chemical acid bath and direct current to scrub or dissolve away small amounts of metal from the part surface resulting in a smooth shiny finish. If chromium was present on the surface, I believe it would mask the affects of the electro-polishing on the substrate. In addition, it would inhibit your ability to perform pre-treatment steps to the base metal prior to electro-polishing such as de-scaling and electro cleaning?

If parts don't meet after chrome finish requirements, remove the chromium, electro-polish the base material to the desired micro and re-chrome as desired. Does this help?


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