Author Topic: Which is better nickel or chrome plating?  (Read 904 times)


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Which is better nickel or chrome plating?
« on: January 13, 2024, 09:05:32 »
I got my 280SL with a bit of very small particles of rust on the chrome, so I would like advice which is better nickel or chrome plating or shall I purchase new chromes.


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Re: Which is better nickel or chrome plating?
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2024, 12:32:15 »

Nickel has a somewhat smoke color , and it is used as a baselayer to make an  item non permeable.

Because a singlelayer of chrome easy lets very small waterparticles through , allowing the forming of rust.

So youre save with just a nickelcoating , but if its not brite enough you can do a second chromelayer



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Re: Which is better nickel or chrome plating?
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2024, 13:22:18 »
Truly proper chrome plating will have the base metal properly cleaned and prepared. It will then get a first plate, or “strike”, of copper. Then, it will get either one or two strikes of nickel (dull and bright) followed by the final strike of chromium before finishing with hand polishing.

Nickel alone was a final finish that was popular on vehicle bright work in the early 20th century. The "Nickel Era," generally considered to last from the late 1910s into the early '30s, received its name because most of the "chrome" on the cars was actually nickel. It was preceded by the brass era.

I don’t believe any bright work on a Pagoda would be considered correct with just nickel plate.
Michael Salemi
Davidson, North Carolina (Charlotte Area) USA
1969 280SL (USA-Spec)
Signal Red 568G w/Black Leather (Restored)
2023 Ford Maverick Lariat Hybrid "Area 51"
2022 Ford Escape Hybrid
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Re: Which is better nickel or chrome plating?
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2024, 17:54:41 »
I agree with Michael, only chrome should be used for Pagoda bright work. The perfect chrome process is to brass plate first then chrome.
Robert Hyatt
Williamsburg, VA.

W113, 1970 280SL, Red leather 242 on Silver Gray Met. 180, 4-speed stick, Euro spec, restored
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