The high conductivity properties of silver make it a useful metal industrial plating. It’s versatile, and it is used to plate bronze, copper, stainless steel and aluminum alloys. Silver is the preferred metal for plating when soldering is required on any metal surface, and because silver holds up well to soldering it’s heavily used in the electronics industry. At high temperatures it holds on its lubrication property which allows for its popular use as gear coatings and engine components.
Corrosion and Tarnish Solutions
Classified as a noble metal, silver is resistant to corrosion, but when exposed to air in its pure form it does tarnish. The high demand for silver in the electronics and aerospace industry make it necessary to find processes to protect silver and increase its lifespan. At ProPlate, we use a nickel undercoat to prolong life, and prevent corrosion. To prevent tarnish, a powder coating or painting is used depending on the finish and use of the final product.
At ProPlate we recommend the use of nickel undercoating on some metals and alloys when silver plating a product. Nickel under plating allows for the continuous use of a product, without the undercoating the product shouldn’t be used with copper or copper alloys for services over 300 degrees Fahrenheit. The bonding of the silver with copper is adversely affected without the nickel undercoating. Best practices at ProPlate call for the nickel undercoating on a variety of base metals, including:
- Zinc Alloys
- Copper Alloys
There are two types of plating grades in use at ProPlate. For a higher quality we offer a special tarnish-resistant treatment to help protect your finished product, and to enhance its lifespan. It also ensures better safety, and durability. Of course plating is also available without the special tarnish resistant treatment, but depending on the product we recommend the higher quality grade of plating.
The best uses for silver plating come with electronics for its high conductive properties, and in any engineered product that requires a good soldering surface. Its high temperature resistance makes it ideal for use in turbines in the aerospace industry. It isn’t as rare as alternative metals, so it helps keep costs down, and silver plating is often the best solution to produce the highest quality product in certain industries.