Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Why not do your own web searching for platers in your tri-state area straight off!

I just did it.  There are a few that look very good in each state you mention and they do automotive classics, antique and motor cycle etc.

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Chrome plating, even terrible chrome plating, has become more expensive than you would believe. If you haven't had chrome done in a few years you are in for a shock. Whatever shop you choose, get references from people who have had chrome done there! Go look at the cars if you can. I can't stress this enough. Also ask how long of a wait they were quoted and how long it took. You could wind up with a mess, a much lighter wallet, and end up spending the money all over again.... if your parts are even salvageable. I know someone who just googled some shops in his state and picked one. The quality was terrible, sanding marks everywhere and the chrome was already peeling when he unwrapped it after bringing it home. He then went to another shop, who did a brilliant professional job, but delivered about a year late. All these places have a long line, even the lousy ones. Three months just to get your stuff in the door is typical.

 

That said, if you want really nice work I can vouch for this shop in PA: https://www.carchrome.com/

 

Expensive? Yes. but they all are. Did brilliant high-quality work and delivered about a week earlier than promised. Sorry, but I am not familiar with any options closer to you.

 

.

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Graves Plating in Florence AL gets most of my chrome work.  First project- 1965 Chris Craft (all chrome, mostly over brass or bronze, some pot-metal stuff they made look unbelievably good), second project, watch cleaning machine (small nickel plate parts) 3rd project coming back any day now, 1931 Buick 8-66S rad cap, crank hole cover, hood latch hooks and plunger rods, parking brake handle and small parts, shift lever and bell, front bumper guards, rear bumper trim caps, 2 screw on hubcaps, 2 rumble lid steps.  Rear bumper trim caps, radiator cap and hubcaps were farmed out by Rod Graves for metal repair before plating.   Excellent quality work, reasonable price, pretty quick turnaround.  They have been in business for many years and have a large experienced crew.  Very friendly, informative family folks.

 

Fini-Finish, Warren MI first experience is front bumper bars for the Buick 8-66S, one bar required repair.  A little more expensive and slower but they have a reputation for quality work.  I found Fini-Finish thru referral from Selfridge Plating whom Larry Schramm recommended as a local plater for the Bumpers I did not want to ship.  Selfridge   now strictly caters to commercial business.

 

These parts will be topic of a future posting on my "Me and My Buick" thread "My 1931 Buick project- the saga begins..."

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Assume it will cost $30 to $50 more in shipping out of your desired area and weigh that cost to the reliability you can get from a known plater with good forum references.  I'd start with a referral everytime and narrow it down from there.

 

I'll throw R&D from NE TN out as I have had excellent work from them.  They also advertise in Hemings.  Call Rick or Nate at 423.543.1722

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, kgreen said:

Assume it will cost $30 to $50 more in shipping out of your desired area and weigh that cost to the reliability you can get from a known plater with good forum references.  I'd start with a referral everytime and narrow it down from there.

 

I'll throw R&D from NE TN out as I have had excellent work from them.  They also advertise in Hemings.  Call Rick or Nate at 423.543.1722

I actually spent 90bucks to send  a very heavy duty Yamaha hifi receiver shipping box from Michigan to Alabama to Graves because when I took it to UPS I insisted on $2K in insurance.  That box basically contained the car project.  Lose that box or destroy it's contents and the project would have come to an abrupt end, that stuff is near irreplaceable.    Rod Graves said he has used UPS exclusively and in 30yrs had one shipment get lost or destroyed.  Today with what has happened to USPS I would not ship valuable parts with them.  In most cases stuff sent via USPS eventually gets where it is going but I've had shipments fall off their tracking systems and go MIA for weeks.  Latest was a Christmas package that was supposed to go 25 miles down the road to my kids that fell off the radar 1 day after the local post office sent it to the distribution center, then after 10 days showed up as received in Iowa.  My UPS shipment was signed for by Graves 2 days after I sent it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've heard great things about Custom Chrome Plating in Grafton Ohio.  Mostly things like, "expensive, but worth it."  To me, that translates to good value, but have no experience with them. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's a tip for those new to chrome plating work. Most companies will guarantee their work but they don't usually guarantee fit after plating. If anyone needs parts plated that fit together or into another part like a housing, make sure to send those parts along, so the plater can fit them Also, make sure that you explain exactly what you want done and the quality of the finish you expect. This can save a lot of disappointment later.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

R&D, mentioned above, does great work on saving detail on things such as fancy door handles.  I had some done by them and they came out perfect, they enhance the detail before plating so that subsequent plating and buffing doesn’t erase it.  Highly recommend for pot metal and other detail work....

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

My story   I bought a Avanti that came from California. The owner worked for Boeing Air Craft. He must have a lot of pull he had backing plates chromed nuts bolts clamps fuel pump carburetor  lines hinges about anything he could carry in the plant   Did you ever try to start fittings with chrome on them there about .002 to large .  Engine / transmission separation plate would not let the starter slide in place as the chrome Made the hole to small carburetor  parts the same way check valves in the fuel pump were planted as would not seal.  But not front or rear bumpers

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

So I'm getting all my chromed small parts back from Grave's Plating tomorrow and there are a lot of threaded parts.  I cautioned Grave's to be careful of threads and after doing this stuff for as long as they have I suspect most of my cautionary notes were academic.  I will post results soon.

Link to post
Share on other sites

And so the box arrived yesterday.  I am systematically and carefully starting the process of reinstalling the parts.  So far I have the 2 re-chromed front hubcaps back on the car.  One was apparently bent slightly out of round leading to some anxious moments getting the threads started but all's well that ends well.  I got it started and with a few careful light taps with a rawhide mallet it is now formed well enough to be screwed on and off with no damage whatever to the chrome finish.  

 

I'm also almost ready to install the Buick Winged 8 radiator cap, the chrome on it is breathtaking.  The holdup to the installation is because the cam cup that screws to the bottom of the cap and engages the radiator neck that came with the Bob's Automobilia repair kit is useless, no way does it allow the cap to be safely turned onto the radiator, way too tight.  I was fortunately wary enough of the fragility of the wing feature on these caps to prevent adding it to my collection of broken caps.  One of those caps had an original cam cup trapped under a hopelessly seized screw that I dispatched with a Dremel moto tool and my drill press this morning.  A test fitting of the original cam cup with new seal and the brass seal spring produced favorable results, the cap installs tight with the new seals but it now does install properly with acceptable force required to twist it on.  I took it apart again to derust the cup and paint it and I painted the figure 8 on the front of the cap.   I will post pictures of the cap tomorrow after I  reassemble the cap.

 

Some of the most challenging parts I sent to Graves for plating were the rear bumper trim caps.  They were in awful condition when I bought them requiring a ton of polishing, straightening, dent removal, fabrication of new weld brackets to attach new carriage bolts, followed by a major screw up when I tried to remove the caps from a test fitting on the car.  The stainless fasteners galled on one of the caps and I had to remove the bumper bars and cap as a unit, cut the bolts off with a die grinder, drill out the spot welds on the weld brackets, make new weld brackets and spot weld them back on with new bolts.  There was no excuse for that charade other than my ignorance of the fact that stainless bolts in combination with stainless nuts are prone to galling unless you use an anti-sieze compound.  Today I put 2 beautifully plated bumper caps back on the car and used Fel-Pro hi-temp C5-A anti-sieze lubricant on the fastener threads.  The only other effort was I chased the threads on the bolts as even though Graves went to great lengths to prevent plating the threads, there was some copper embedded in the threads.

 

More pictures coming tomorrow.

 

Dave

 

These were the best hubcaps I had that needed plating, the one on the left had a dent, repair of which probably

resulted in the deformity that made the cap hard to install the first time.

Graves 015.jpg

 

Graves 016.jpg

 

Graves 018.jpg

 

These bumper trim caps looked a hundred percent better than they did when I got them

but they were still challenging parts for plating and were sent to a sub contractor for repair.

Graves 002.jpg

 

Graves 019.jpg

 

Graves 020.jpg

 

Graves 021.jpg

 

This anti-seize compound would have prevented the stainless fasteners on the right bumper trim from galling and

seizing which resulted in an unnecessary major last minute repair to the trim cap before it could be sent to Grave's

Graves 022.jpg

Edited by Str8-8-Dave
Add pictures and descriptions. (see edit history)
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/5/2021 at 2:37 PM, Str8-8-Dave said:

Graves Plating in Florence AL gets most of my chrome work. 


They are about 4 hours from me, looks like I will be taking a trip up there with my 57 Chevy side window frames.  Thank you for a review of them, I was looking for some place close. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

GREAT TOPIC and thread. Thanks to all of you who are taking the time to explain what you had to do, where to go, what to expect ( cost as well as time). It will indeed help a lot of people buy making them aware of what they may have to avoid to keep their parts useable. There isn't anything worse restoration wise then seeing a part for your car that was restorable be destroyed and then you have to find a donor to replace it.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Today I finished assembling my radiator cap and installed it on the car.  I'm saving the car pictures for a chrome plating update to my restoration thread but here are some bench pictures.  The only flaw with the radiator cap is at least partly my fault.  The cap casting is an original Ternstedt Detroit casting and the trademark and patent info is cast into the bottom of the cap.  Looking at the picture of the bottom of the cap you can see the original cam cup I salvaged from a broken cap but you also see the plating on the underside of the cap is rough.  I should have asked Graves to take care to preserve the finish on the bottom of the cap casting.  You can still read the text cast on the bottom of the cap but the rough chrome around it does nothing for the aesthetics.  The surfaces that are visible when the cap is on the car are flawless.  I painted the "8" black which I believe is correct.  The last picture is of parts from a bob's Automobilia radiator cap repair kit that I had trouble with.  The cam cup just barely can be made to engage the radiator neck but won't allow the cap to be rotated at all, much less into the correct orientation with the 8 straight forward.

 

 

Graves 023.jpg

 

Graves 024.jpg

 

Graves 025.jpg

 

Graves 026.jpg

 

Graves 027.jpg

Edited by Str8-8-Dave
Edit pictures (see edit history)
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Sent my 1971 Triumph TR6 front bumper to Librandi's in Harrisburg. Said it would take about 8 to 12 weeks and the cost was estimated to be $600.  Shipping was $90 from Florida to them. I'll be sending them my rear 3 piece bumper and some other parts, but don't want to send them all at one time in case they are lost in the shipping or process. Didn't think that was that bad a price for chroming the bumper.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

When ( this was 30+ years ago) I had a local plater here on log island in Mineola, NY that did my plating, I saved myself a few $ by having the part stripped of the old plating to the bare metal , then took the part home and sanded and got all the pits in the metal as smooth as possible and then returned for the final plating after they had their chance to bring the "raw" piece to the level they needed to see fit to plate. There was a guy that worked there named Cliff  that you dealt with as he looked at what you wanted plated and talked to you. After a few times when I walked in the exchange was "pick up you parts on - he gave me a day - and then you will have them back finished by - gave me a date". It saved me $ but also gave him more time to deal with parts from customers who couldn't do the prep work or he didn't trust to even consider them having to do that.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm located in northern New Jersey I have 2 Avanti headlight besles to be replated. Can anyone recommend a shop in this area ? Also can anybody tell me Cadillac Flathead exhaust manifolds that were porcelain if they were green or gray. A few years since I got rid of my LaSalle and I forgot what color they were. I do remember getting burnt every time I went near them. I am going to add some ceramic coatings and I thought maybe this color would be nice. if you can post the picture I would appreciate it

Link to post
Share on other sites

Chrome plating is expensive enough that the location of the shop doesn't matter.  These days, the shop doesn't want you to visit them anyway.  The important thing is the right shop.  You can put a lot of stuff in a medium or large USPS flat rate box and send it anywhere in the country for less than $25 and it will be there in a couple of days.  Even a large radiator grille doesn't cost that much to ship.  A bumper, meh! So, Librandi's in Harrisburg, PA, or D&S Plating in Holyoke, MA will do a good job at a fair price, especially for a pair of headlight bezels.  There must be many more shops that qualify for consideration, see all the comments above. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I see a lot of good chrome shops listed. What are their guarantees on the chrome. I checked with a company at one of the large car parts meet and they said 3 years.  This can get expensive.  What have you heard and have you taken any back to be redone after a couple years due to peeling or bubbles?  If so, what was there response.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just sent some more parts to Librandi's plating near Harrisburg. A Amco bumper guard for the TR6 as well as a flip top gas cap. Bumper guard had previous owner drill holes in the bar to install driving lite. Quoted 400+ for welding the holes shut and doing the chrome work and about $140 for the gas cap. I don't think that is that bad of a price. I'll let you know how the pieces look when I get them back. They are still quoting about 8 to 12 weeks.  Will be sending all my Durant parts for Nickel when I get to that part of that restoration.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've used Atlantic Coast Plating in Athens, TN.  They did the ashtray in the rear of the front seat of my 57 Chevy and did a fine job at what I consider a fair price.  The spots are dust from pulling it out of the packaging.  

 

Before  

 

IMG_3588.thumb.JPG.daaec018fc31d820843162c19ef1a520.JPG

 

After  

 

IMG_1099.thumb.JPG.57d5ab410cf11290744fb9b282386bb3.JPG

Edited by AURktman (see edit history)
Link to post
Share on other sites

No one talks about this ??  Triple Chrome Plating.

 

I get about 4 items done ever year.. for the last 5 years...

 

You never know if the price will go thru the roof with more regulation..

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...