The high cost of chrome

'53 OTS.

Is there any wonder why so many custom car builders are turning to flat black and satin silver as an alternative to chrome?

I was quoted $2,300.00 to chrome only the windshield parts and dip stick from Advanced Plating.

Does anyone think this is abnormally high?

Give Quality Plating a call: I do know the windshield frames on 120/140s are notoriously hard to get right.

It cost me 1800 to do my hardtop chrome and one bumper blade recently. I suspect part of that is the relative fragility of trim parts. You can’t apply much pressure or they deform. It has increased dramatically in the last decade though. It’s an expensive hobby for sure.

Mitchell on my 120 THE LAST DETAIL rechromed mine……
Its beyond perfect…6,700 it Pebble beach perfect.
The issue here is the PLATERS are being run out of the business from the epa.
If they can do it for that price and not warp anything GO GO GO…Get it done.

Once the science is understood the labour and materials numbers behind electroplating are measurable. There’s an environmental cost to it too, though difficult to assign a specific number to. Decorative chrome plating is a sunset industry. The number of shops still in the business diminishes yearly. Supply and demand. Some shops are profiting more than others.

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The most expensive part of show quality plating is the prep. Most parts need a lot of work that may involve several coats of acid copper, sanding, buffing soldering, etc. before the part is ready for nickel and then chrome. One option I am exploring is doing all of that prep work myself. Caswell Plating has DIY kits for plating. They also sell good quality soldering and filling materials. I plan to minimize my plating costs by taking the parts through the acid copper stage myself and then letting the chromers just do the nickel and chrome plating only.

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Nick and Tim are correct…
In New York once the owners of a plating shop retire or die, you cant pass in on now.
The EPA wont let the permits renew. Same with many solo paint places as well.
PA seems to be a last strong hold. Yes the prep is the whole thing……

You guys are gonna cringe on this one.

A buddy is building a hot rod… his entire car, frame down, will be nickel plated. He has spent hundreds of hours welding and shaping/polishing every pit, casting mark, nick. EVERY PART.

It’ll be stunning.

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Like the retort to the old 50s adage: if it don’t go, chrome it.

It didn’t… and your friend did!

PS: cut down, this Ford axle tubes make bonza jack stands!

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Car show sign stands too.

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How old is your friend? The main objective of one’s magnum opus should be finishing it before you die. :sunglasses:


He could have saved thousands by just buying old Frankland quickchange parts and having them polished.