You know what electroplating is. You know your component can be (brush) selective plated or tank plated. But why choose brush plating over tank, or vice versa? In the chart below we discuss the characteristics that are associated with each method.

Characteristics SIFCO Process® Tank Plating
Precision Build-up Excellent Fair to Good
Deposit Density Very dense. (25% less porous than tank, 70% less porous than flame spray) Moderately dense
Deposition Rate Many SIFCO ASC’s solutions can be deposited at rate as high as 0.015” thickness per hour. Tank plating has a slower deposition rate of .001” thickness per hour.
Bond Quality Excellent (see our blog on bonds) Good
Risk of Hydrogen Embrittlement SIFCO ASC offers low hydrogen embrittlement cadmium and zinc-nickel for high strength steel. These deposits do not require a bake after plating. High strength steel plated with Cadmium or Zinc-Nickel will require baking after plating.
Post Machining Usually not required Usually required
Lead Time The SIFCO Process® has shorter lead times than tank plating due to faster deposition rates, less masking, and in-situ processing. Tank plating requires disassembly and shipping and handling. Extensive masking may also be required.
Portability Water based solutions that are mild acids or alkalines pose minimal risk to the operator. Typically limited to the shop.
Safety The SIFCO Process® uses small quantities of plating solutions which reduces hazardous waste and requires less Personal Protective Equipment or ventilation. Tank baths require large quantities of solution that need to be maintained and ventilated. Tanks also generate large amounts of hazardous waste when disposed of.

For questions about what method is right for you, contact us at or 800-765-4131.