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mlaw7

Protecting chrome vacuum plating

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    Any ideas on how to preserve and protect the chrome vacuum plating on plastic parts and door panels? It seems to be so fragile after 30-40 years.

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    Are there any companies that can restore the vacuum plating? Maybe that's an option - would love to hear if others have found a way to preserve, restore, or refurbish it

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    It's not really "chrome" on plastic, it is vapor deposited aluminum "dust", which is then clear coated to protect it and make it shine. I would suspect that some high quality clear urethane would be a good way to go on pieces which have not yet been damaged.

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    My "chrome" was all worn off and displaying the blue plastic underneath. I just painted it silver with a brush, but my car is not, and never will be a show winner, so my methods may not be appropriate for you.

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    Any ideas on how to preserve and protect the chrome vacuum plating on plastic parts and door panels? It seems to be so fragile after 30-40 years.

    I posted my technique for the Door Panel repair here:

    http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/showpost.php?p=346413&postcount=11

    As for commercial vacuum plating of plastic, there are very few places that will do it and it is VERY expensive.

    Here are a few links:

    http://www.advancedplating.com/

    http://www.chrometechusa.com/autoplate.html

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    I posted my technique for the Door Panel repair here:

    http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/showpost.php?p=346413&postcount=11

    As for commercial vacuum plating of plastic, there are very few places that will do it and it is VERY expensive.

    Here are a few links:

    http://www.advancedplating.com/

    http://www.chrometechusa.com/autoplate.html

    Your method was how I applied this stuff from the hobby store except I used a plastic puddy knife over a razor.

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    I posted my technique for the Door Panel repair here:

    http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/showpost.php?p=346413&postcount=11

    Thanks Andrew! Perhaps, though, I should have been clearer.

    I wasn't asking about repairing or replating door panels or other plastic interior parts. The vacuum plating on my door panels and handle trim covers is miraculously still almost 100% intact.

    What I am asking about is any ideas or techniques on how to keep them that way - ideally for another 30 years or so! I'm scared to even polish them since they seem so fragile. Especially the strips on the door panels.

    PWD 's idea of a high-quality urethane clear coat is intriguiging.

    Thoughts?

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    Thanks Andrew! Perhaps, though, I should have been clearer.

    I wasn't asking about repairing or replating door panels or other plastic interior parts. The vacuum plating on my door panels and handle trim covers is miraculously still almost 100% intact.

    What I am asking about is any ideas or techniques on how to keep them that way - ideally for another 30 years or so! I'm scared to even polish them since they seem so fragile. Especially the strips on the door panels.

    PWD 's idea of a high-quality urethane clear coat is intriguiging.

    Thoughts?

    Well, PWD's idea does have merit, but I am not sure how well it will keep the metal from separating from the plastic. I believe that the best way to protect it might be with some wax - keeping it clean and free of corrosion.

    As for the door panels, the chrome comes loose from the constant abrasion of your clothes from getting in and out of the Z, coupled with the temperature variations and age.

    I am in the process of re-covering my door panels so that won't be a problem any longer.

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