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Chrome plating uses the process of electroplating to seal an underlying metal with a thin layer of chromium. Although some use chrome plating for decorative purposes, it serves as a layer of protection for the metal underneath. Often chrome is applied to metal parts or areas that are susceptible to corrosion or damage.

The Process of Chrome Plating – Cleaning

A chrome plating service is a five-step process. In the first stage, it is important to pay attention to the metal receiving the treatment. Grease will be removed from the metal by way of chemicals, ensuring that the surface doesn’t have any residue or materials that would keep the chrome from taking. In addition, a thorough cleaning to remove any residue including dirt particles that might affect how the process holds up over time will follow the degreasing.

The Process of Chrome Plating – Treatment

In the third stage of the process, the chrome plating company will put the base metal through a series of treatments. Treating the metal will smooth the surface. This step is important because the metal must be as smooth as possible to improve the durability of the chrome. The goal is to make the chrome plating service as effective as possible to protect the metal and minimize re-application. Once the metal has been properly smoothed, it is placed in a vat for the application of the pretreatment solution. While in the vat, the metal can be slowly warmed up to the target temperature.

The Process of Chrome Plating – Final Stages

The final stage involves the actual plating of the metal. In essence, allowing the metal to sit in the vat with the chromium components does this. The components will etch their way into the metal. The desired thickness of the chrome plate will determine how long the metal should be left in the vat.

When done to industry standards, proper chrome plating will last for many years. They serve to enhance the aesthetics of a piece and prepare it to survive many years to come. Metal bumpers, sink faucets, and other chrome fixtures will look great and protect the metal for many years with only basic maintenance.

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Chrome-plated wheels have a level of sleekness that gives them the power to turn ordinary into hotrod. However, you should know that they require constant care in order to maintain their finish and quality.

Wash Your Chrome Plating Wheels Weekly
The main action that needs to be taken is the weekly washing of the wheels with water and a mild soap. This will keep acidic pollutants and abrasive dust particles from damaging the chrome finish. Your choice of soap, though, must be prudent, because ammonia-based and highly acidic cleaning solutions will do more damage to your wheels than the outdoor elements do. Observing how hot the wheels are is another precaution that you should take before cleaning, because high heat cleaning will cause soap spotting; since friction from braking results in a lot of heat, you should wait at least 30 minutes after driving to allow brake related heat.

Special Conditions for Washing Wheels
In some cases, it is imperative that you wash the wheels more often than usual. For instance, if you live near an ocean or sea, the air will be much higher in salt content—salt is one of the most degrading elements that chrome-plated wheels come into contact with, because it creates a pocking effect that will make the wheels raggedy—so you should take care to wash your wheels at least twice per week. Also, you should try not to drive in the snow with chrome-plated wheels, because snowy streets are usually laden with salt, but if you must, be certain to wash the wheels as soon as they are cool enough to be cleaned. Most warranties do not protect against salt pocking, so removing salt ASAP should be a priority if your wheels are constantly exposed to salty conditions.

Wax and Polish Your Chrome Plating Wheels
When you are finished cleaning the chrome plating wheels, you should wax the surface to protect against contaminants that might stick to the wheel.

Chrome-plated wheels should be thoroughly polished and cleaned periodically to maintain a fine luster; if you do not polish them frequently enough, you will have to exude more effort to bring them back to the original finish. Like soap and water washing, how often you need to polish your wheels will depend upon the local conditions of where the car is located.

If you are considering chrome plating motorcycle wheels or chrome plating wheels for some other sort of vehicle, you should contact the chrome wheel plating service nearest to you to ensure the best possible quality and durability for your chrome-plated wheels.

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– VTX Before and After

The following pics are from our customer Maria C. of Tamarac, FL.  She was kind enough to take before and after shots of her Honda VTX1800F.  Maria took advantage of the Classic Components chrome motorcycle wheel exchange program.  After the custom paint was completed, she called us for a set of VTX rims we had in stock.  This made the customization complete and hassle-free. The final result maintains the stock features of the bike but adds a completely customized look and feel.  Please call us – chances are we have what you need in stock today!