Great Lakes Metal Finishing Inc. has been providing plating services for the automotive industry for over 24 years. We specialize in zinc and zinc nickel electroplating with trivalent black, trivalent yellow, and trivalent clear metal finishing on automotive parts for various car and motorcycle applications. Some of our recent automotive metal finishing jobs for clients include parts such as dipstick fittings, small locking lug nut shroud, pipe plug, sunroof guide, motorcycle bracket, and a fuel sensor electronics holder.

Dipstick Fitting for European Car Model

This dipstick fitting was plated to Mercedes Benz specifications (DBL-8451.15) with 10 microns of zinc, and top coat Chromax ELV, JS500 and Torque ‘n’ Tension 15. Chromax ELV is a high build trivalent passivate which meets high corrosion requirements and with JS500 added to the passivate as a topcoat, it can provide additional corrosion protection. Torque and Tension 15 provides a coefficient of friction .15, which also adds corrosion protection. It meets 168 hours to white and 360 hours to red. Because of the high corrosion and threading integrity, the part is rack plated. At GLMF, our plating baths give a deep throw, which enables us to provide rack plating that covers the part inside and out. We’ve coated similar parts requiring consistent multiple surface plating for the motorcycle and tractor industry. These types of parts, especially fasteners require the Torque ‘n’ Tension coatings to reduce friction in situations where the threads may have a tendency to break or bend. We provide several Torque ‘n’ Tension capabilities in-house.


Small Component of Locking Lug Nut

This small locking lug nut shroud has a key inside, which can be removed as needed. The part has 5-10 microns of trivalent clear zinc and is barrel plated using our new Hardwood plating barrels, which are able to transfer more solutions in the barrel, allowing us to run the process more efficiently. The part specs we plated require 120 hours for salt spray to white corrosion.


Pipe Plug

This pipe plug is trivalent black zinc nickel plated and is sealed, which protects the part’s threading from becoming clogged. (Spec: WSS-M21P44-A4) A challenge many metal plating professionals need to look out for is how possible nicks can develop throughout the trivalent black process when it is barrel plated. GLMF has a proprietary process that minimizes these defects and produces a consistently dark black finish every time. The finishing process meets 480 hours to white corrosion and 840 to red corrosion. Although specs call for 480/840, our plating far surpassed these numbers. Similar to this part, GLMF can coat other high corrosion protection coats that require consistent, deep black finishes. We also plate externally treaded fasteners and larger brackets, clips, and stampings.


Sunroof guide

This sunroof guide is plated to Honda Specs (HES-D2003). This part has 8 microns of zinc plating with a trivalent topcoat to seal. Because the guide is seen within the interior of the car, the finish on it needs to be extremely consistent and free of any drips, sagging, streaks or visible marks. Both the left and right sunroof guides need to look identical, with the same consistent deep black finish free of defects. This part typically meets 72 hours to white corrosion, and 240 hours to red corrosion, however, some parts can reach 160 hours to white corrosion here at GLMF. Similar to this part, GLMF can coat products for motorcycles, power equipment parts, and automobiles – interior and exterior.


Bracket for Motorcycle

This part is a bracket for a Harley Davidson build and has 12 microns of trivalent black passivate with topcoat. This part has similar considerations as the previously shown sunroof guide because it is visible and needs to have consistent color and thickness throughout the part.


Electronics Holder for Fuel Sensor

This part holds electronics for the fuel sensor and protects the fuel-sending unit. It has 5 microns of zinc plating with high build trivalent clear passivate. During the plating process, the adhesion of zinc needed to have consistent thickness throughout the part to help prevent flaking, especially because this part is crimped at both ends.


For more information regarding metal finishing for the automotive industry, don’t hesitate to reach out to Great Lakes Metal Finishing Inc. at 814-452-1886, or use our contact form here. Our experts will be happy to answer any questions you may have.