We must electro-strip the part to bare metal

using sulfuric acid.

After electro-stripping, we will also glass
bead blast the parts, front and back, for a
clean starting surface.

When dealing with pot metal, the first issue to

address is pitting.

The polisher does so by using a small grinder
on the surface to remove as much pitting and
dead metal as possible.

Once the surface had been ground as far

as safely possible

the visible areas of the part were DA
sanded to a smoother finish.

After all of the sanding was completed, any remaining pits were

drilled to remove dead metal

In some instances the spots were completely drilled out, while
they were simply dimpled out in others.

Before any repairs are made to the pits, the part is

ran cyanide copper

to seal up the pot metal. This thin deposit not
only seals up the part, it also promotes
adhesion for repairs.

Now that the pot metal has been successfully

sealed up in cyanide

copper the polisher uses solder to fill
any of the pits that were drilled or dimpled out.

The next step involves DA sanding the solder to

the same plane as

the parts surface. Once that is completed, the
part is ready for acid copper, which is a higher
build process.

The parts were hand racked, cleaned in a caustic bath, and placed in the acid copper tank for the appropriate time. Now the copper is used to

smooth out the part and remove any minor imperfections.

DA sanding is now performed to level out the surface in

preparation for nickel

and chrome. If any small imperfections remain, the parts will be ran acid copper again.

If the part is DA sanded out without any imperfections remaining, the part

is polished to a mirror finish

for nickel and chrome plating.

After the polished part is racked and cleaned again; then it's placed in the nickel tank for the required

amount of plating.

Once finished, if no imperfections were found,
the part was ready for chrome.

Before the part could be placed in the chrome tank, the part is

outfitted with an anode

to help throw chrome plating in to the deep areas of the part.
This is done to avoid any nickel shading.

Removed from the chrome (anode removed), the part

is thoroughly rinsed

and cleaned to make sure the plating is flawless.
If the part passes QC, it is ready to ship.

It's easy to see that pitting is no longer an issue with these pot metal parts.

The finished product is better

than it was when new.


First we must electro-strip the parts

to bare metal

After electro-stripping, we will also
glass bead blast the parts, front and
back, for a clean starting surface.

The part is checked for any damage, dents, or dings. The polisher will then

straighten & remove damage

as best possible.

With high spots knocked down and low spots

hammered out

a light grind is applied to the surfaces to
level out the material, and to see what
additional straightening is required.

The same principles exercised in the previous step are used on a smaller

scale to straighten/repair

the smaller surfaces areas of the part.

Any damage or imperfections that are not fully removable with hammering and grinding are

filled with solder.

An air file is used to level off the surface and make sure it is as

flat and straight as possible.

Now that the repairs and straightening have been made, the grille is DA sanded, followed by being

polished to a sisal finish.

The grille is hand racked, cleaned in a caustic bath, and

plated in acid copper

for the appropriate amount of time.

Surfaces of the grille are hard blocked to

remove any waves

or ripples that may be present. This will also
reveal any areas that need additional attention.

Additional copper plating may or may not be needed, but once

the optimal level of repair

is achieved, the part is DA sanded to level out any sanding marks
from hard blocking.

Since the grille is ready for final plating, the DA sanded

surfaces are polished

out to a mirror finish. This mirror finish also allows the polisher to inspect the part one last time before plating.

Just like when the part was copper plated, the part is hand racked and cleaned in a caustic bath, prior to plating. This time the part is plated

nickel prior to chrome.

Since the part has spent the appropriate amount of time in the nickel tank it is taken directly to the

hexavalent chrome

tank and chrome plated.

Once the part has been final chrome plated, it is inspected by quality control.

The finished product looks

better than it did when new.


Most trim was originally anodized, but age does not allow for re-polishing and anodizing, as it will not yield

an optimal finish.

Our solution is to chrome plate this trim.

As with any part we process, the trim is stripped to raw aluminum. In this case, all that we needed to strip was the old anodizing, which is removed

in a caustic solution.

The polisher looks for any major dents or dings to remove using tools that fit the contour of the part.

A solid steel backer

is used during hammering for stability.

After initial straightening and dent removal, the polisher will hard block the recessed faces of the trim to reveal any additional low spots. Since the trim has multiple steps, each level has to be

hard blocked separately.

Once the recessed surfaces are blocked flat, the

top surfaces receive

the same treatment. Aluminum is so soft, that
hard blocking removes most waves and ripples.

Now that the trim has been hard blocked, the polisher takes an

angle grinder and makes

sure that the steps, peaks, and edges are well defined.

The trim is approached and worked from

multiple angles

to ensure that all sides of the steps in the
trim are defined and straight.

With the edges redefined

the trim is DA sanded with a fine grit to create a consistent
surface finish for the plating to adhere to.

Since a DA will not fit inside of the thin

recessed faces,

the polisher uses fine grit sand paper
and a hard block, to make these
surfaces consistent too.

The aluminum trim is sanded

with a fine grit and ready for plating. The trim will now be racked up and plated the appropriate amount for rework.

Although the trim is copper plated, it was actually plated nickel first and then jumped to acid copper.

Done for adhesion,

the nickel is a stopping point for the polisher
when he sands the copper.

Just like when raw, the polisher hard blocks the surfaces

followed by DA sanding.

If the polisher does not see any issues or does not sand
through to nickel, the trim is ready for polishing.

With no additional issues discovered, the polisher

will buff the trim to

a mirror finish and send to the plating line for
nickel and chrome finishing.

No longer does this trim look dingy and faded because of anodizing.

Now it is a brilliant chrome

finish that will provide a nice accent to the car it is attached to.


Bumpers are electro-stripped raw to their

base material and glass bead blasted for a clean
base first. The bumper is then straightened on the press to remove any unnatural bends or dents.

Before the polisher begins any additional dent removal,

a coarse grit grinder

is ran across the surface of the bumper to make any
issues easily visible.

You can see here that the polisher has marked on the backside of the bumper where he needs to

hammer up the

metal to help level out the surface.

An air file is used to sand

down the surface. This air file will help remove any minor
high spots, as well as, any waves and ripples.

Once the bumper has been air filed the proper amount,

a finer grit DA is used

to create a smoother consistent finish for plating.

Initial plating is applied by racking the part and submerging it in the

copper tank for the proper

amount of time. This time can vary depending on how wavy the
bumper may be.

Nobody wants a bumper with jagged, sharp, or uneven edges. Each time after copper plating, the polisher will

sand down the rear

edges for a smooth finish.

A majority of the plating will be sanded off to make the surface

flat and smooth. An air file

with a hard backer is used again for this process.

The bumper has made a couple of trips through copper and the polisher is happy with the finish, he will

DA sand the bumper

in preparation for polishing.

Any areas that may be tough to polish out on the wheel are done with a

hand held polishing wheel.

All areas easy to polish on the wheel are buffed out bright.

Like with any part being chrome plated, it must first be

nickel plated for the

appropriate amount of time. Once the nickel is level and the surface is covered, it is moved to chrome.

A few minutes in the chrome

tank and the bumper is pulled out, thoroughly rinsed, and quality control inspected. If no imperfections are detected, the bumper is ready
for the customer.

After many hours of straightening, hammering, air filing, sanding, plating, and repeating, the bumper is

finished and reflects like a mirror.

The closer you look, the better you can see how deep and

reflective the finish is on
this restored bumper.