I saw a thread where someone asked about the home plating kits and whether they were usable. The answer was no they are more of a toy. The impression that I got was there was only an option to send it out to a plating company, and that’s fine. However, to dismiss the Eastwood plating kit for example is bad advice for people that want to plate things on a budget and do it straight away. There has to be another solution and there is, it’s the kit. The devil to making the kit work is in the prep just the same as at the platers except you are paying him to do it not you.
The kit is not a toy and is a boon to those that take the time to find out how to use it. It takes 4-5 minutes to plate and the same to polish. It’s a tin zinc plate and will last years. It looks excellent and is a lot cheaper (free actually) after your 3rd or fourth piece than sending to a plating company, that’s if he will accept your small job.
Here is a link how to do it safely. https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/williams-1963-major-league-restoration . Scroll down to thread 33 or you may get bored and fall asleep.
Here is the link to the starter kit. http://www.eastwood.com/eastwood-s-tin-zinc-electroplating-system.html
How thick is the plate? I can’t tell with my calipers but how thick was your original plate and why did it come off in the first place.
I have used the home kit it in my last 3 restore projects. You get the results depending on how much prep you do. I use it mostly under the playfield so corrosion protection is my first priority. However an excellent finish is just a few additional minutes away. Take the time to get scratches and smooth the finish with your dremel and the brown 120 grit brushes and it is gets close to perfect.
See for yourself. A few examples.
The relay covers were in a sad way. So used 120 grit sand paper and red scotch pad red to remove most of what was left of the original; plating.
They came out well. I should have rubbed more with scotch pad as this is the secret to a good shiny finish.
The plating came off the coil stop in the tumbler. Never saw that before. I wonder if I soaked in something by mistake? Anyway it needs a new plating.
The ball guides at the bottom of the playfield were in a sorry way. They were pitted and had a ball grove worn into the face, see the lower guide in the picture before repairs like the three above.
I used a dremel with 120 grit brown sandpaper bit and it soon smoothed out the wear. I finished with the red scotch pad and they were ready for the dip.
Not too bad finish.
As these coin acceptors are to be seen I needed to clean the rust off with Evaporust and paint remover.
I found the brass rivet repair on one after the paint removal. Buying off eBay gets you that. However, it is well repaired and I think I like it. Key to a good finish was a good wire brush etc after the initial preparation to get most of the scratches and pitting out. I have removed most of the original plating by this stage.
Here is the repaired one, I pulled out from the electrolyte after 5 mins.
They polished up with Autosol quite quickly because I has smoothed them well during the prep stage.