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Gold Plating - Decorative

Description: Decorative Gold Plating:

Gold plating for decorative purposes is available in a range of alternative 'colours' or types. At A Class we currently offer two alternatives. Each is 22ct equivalent 'hard' gold. One is coloured to provide for matching to brass fittings and is known as "antique" gold. The other is a richer, more traditional yellow coloured gold.
Most decorative items are copper then nickel plated prior to the gold finish.  The layer of nickel  plating provides surface strength and protection of the substrate whilst also providing depth and brightness to the final gold plated finish.
Gold plating is applied in very fine thicknesses known as 'microns'. Gold is a 'soft' metal in its natural form and is therefore more prone to wear.  A Class uses gold plating processes which have properties that result in a harder wearing, longer lasting surface. In some cases a protective finish of clear E-coat can help to limit the effects of wear on gold plated items.

Benefits of Decorative Gold Plating:

Gold plating offers the advantages of the same lustre, appearance and colour without a 'solid gold' price. For those who are not sure – yes – the resulting surface coating is real gold.  Our processes are 22 carat gold.

Colour & Aesthetics of Gold Plating:

A Class offers two alternative 'colours' as discussed above. One is a rich gold colour (we call it 'old gold'), the other contains elements that make it appear less yellow and as such it is a good for matching to polished brass components,  We refer to the latter as Antique gold (some call it antique brass). Gold plate is of high appeal for products which require an elegant or 'classy' finish.

Applications for Gold Plating:

Examples of items we typically gold plate are:  Tapware; Door handles, plates and hinges; Jewellery; Architectural Fittings, Furniture trim, Light Fittings, Church and Temple items; Trophies, medals and Badges; as well as many other items.

Substrates suited to Gold Plating:

Gold can be applied over most metal substrates including brass, steel, stainless steel and aluminium* and can also be plated over pre-treated 'ABS' *plastic. (*Note that not all plating firms can plate over aluminium or plastic - A Class DOES offer both these additional processes)

Product Design Cautions for Gold Plating:

As decorative gold plating is an electrolytic process it is necessary to use jigging, racking or wiring to provide for good electrical current conductivity. Good jig or rack contact is essential to ensure plating transfers to all the required surfaces of the item as evenly as possible.  Some product shapes and designs lend themselves more readily to successful plating than others or may need to be adapted. Gold is a precious metal so we must be careful not to waste it by overplating some surface areas in order to achieve the desired coating outcomes.  Where metal items are concerned there will usually be a need to pre-treat and polish the item carefully before electroplating to ensure a good quality outcome. Please consult your electroplating adviser (for example, one of the friendly A Class plating experts!) prior to finalising design of your products if you intend using this particular finishing process in your product manufacture.

See also Gold Plating - Functional

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Copyright © 2009, A Class Metal Finishers Pty Ltd. 6 Waddikee Rd, Lonsdale, South Australia, 5160. Telephone (+ 61 8 8384 4331) Email:
Specialising in Copper, Nickel & Chrome Plating, Gold Plating, Silver Plating, Tin Plating, Electroless Nickel, Plating on Plastic (ABS) and Metal Polishing

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