We specialize in electropolishing chemicals and engineering for the design of processing lines.
We are not a Job Shop
We are . . .
Suppliers of Chemicals & Equipment
for electropolishing stainless steels and other specialty metals. We proudly represent the Hydrite® line of electrolytes and auxiliary chemicals.
specializing in chemical and mechanical engineering for the design of innovative process equipment. More than twenty-five years of front line experience in solving complex problems in materials, manufacturing, mechanical preparation, fixturing, precleaning and post-treatment technologies have aided in the development of a scientific approach to the technology of electropolishing.
for start-up or established electropolishing businesses. Our seminars and consulting services are the industry standard for education and training. No other training course in the electropolishing industry is as comprehensive as ours.
If you are seeking solutions to any of the questions or difficulties below we have the answers.
Electropolishing produces a number of favorable changes in a metal part which are viewed as benefits to the buyer. All of these attributes translate into selling advantages depending upon the end use of the product. However, without the proper knowledge and understanding of the process of electropolishing the desired results may be difficult to achieve. Here are a few issues and questions common to the industry:
- What causes a white residue on parts after electropolishing?
- How can this white residue be removed from an electropolished part?
- Why are parts dull after 2 months of operation even though the chemicals
are new and the temperature is correct during polishing?
- Why are parts dull in the center but bright on the edges after polishing?
- Eliminate lines or streaks on the part surface that show after electropolishing.
- How do I know when to replace the bath?
- Learn how to achieve bright sufaces on and near welds.
- What is the proper way to set the voltage for any electropolishing job?
- Can a matte finish for medical implants be achieved?
- Can we electropolish cobalt-chrome alloys?
- Is it possible to electropolish nitinol?
- Can mild steel be electropolished?
- Will electropolishing save time and money if used to replace mechanical finishing?
- Can burrs on a knife blade be removed without destroying the cutting edge?
- How much metal is removed during electropolishing?
- What is the proper way to evaluate a finish?
- What are the safety and environmental concerns related to electropolishing?
When Electropolishing is done properly . . .
it produces the most spectacular results on 300 series stainless steels. The resulting finish often appears bright, shiny, and comparable to the mirror finishes of “bright chrome” automotive parts. On 400 series stainless steels, the cosmetic appearance of the parts is less spectacular, but deburring, cleaning, and passivation are comparable.
Solutions are available to electropolish most common metals. Notable exceptions include cast alloys of zinc, aluminum, brass, bronze, and carbon steel. Investment cast stainless steels may also be difficult to electropolish to a satisfactory finish unless parts are solution annealed after heat treating. In general, only the 200 and 300 series stainless steels, certain tool steels, copper, and some single phase brass alloys can be electropolished to mirror finishes. The principal effects on other types of metal are deburring, smoothing, improvement of surface finish, and increased adhesion of plated coatings.
Electropolishing produces a combination of properties which can be achieved by no other method of surface finishing. Mechanical grinding, belting, and buffing can produce beautiful mirror-like results on stainless steel, but the processes are labor intensive and leave the surface layer distorted, highly stressed, and contaminated with grinding media. The passivation methods commonly employed produce clean, corrosion resistant surfaces, but do not achieve the bright, lustrous appearance obtained by electropolishing. The corrosion resistance of electropolished stainless steel exceeds that of standard passivation processes.
Electroplating can produce extremely bright finishes, but the finish is a coating which can chip or wear off. Electroplated surfaces may also exhibit hydrogen embrittlement which must be stress-relieved in a separate step. Neither passivation nor electroplating can accomplish burr removal.
Processes are available for chemical deburring and brightening of steel and stainless steel, but these methods cannot match the surface improvement produced by electropolishing. The corrosion resistance produced by such processes is decidedly inferior to that produced by electropolishing.