Electroless Nickel Plating, corrosion resistance and surface technology specialists

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NiTEC (UK) Ltd, Hardwick House, Hardwick View Rd,
Holmewood, Chesterfield, Derbyshire S42 5SA, UK

Extruded Benches Nickel Plated for Thomas Heatherwick

NIckel plated extruded benchesOne of the many fantastic projects that NiTEC have been lucky enough to be involved with is the nickel plating of a number of extruded benches for English designer Thomas Heatherwick.

Heatherwick is known for his innovative designs and creative use of engineering and materials to produce public monuments and sculptures, and works across the disciplines of architecture, art and design. These amazing extruded benches began life in Heatherwick’s design and architecture studio when working on a project that involved manufacturing aluminium components through an industrial process called extrusion.

The Process of Extrusion

The process of extrusion involves squeezing heated metal through a shaped hole which is known as die. The heated metal produces straight aluminium lengths with a precisely shaped cross section. Extrusion often produces contorted shapes when the metal initially squeezes through the die because the metal is inclined to snag warp as it struggles to fit through the gap. The form eventually straightens out and usually during this process; the contorted end is chopped off and melted back down. But Heatherwick considered the mutated sections to be more interesting than the straight parts, and decided to produce more warped lengths of extruded aluminium on a much larger scale!

Extruded Metal Benches

The designer then wondered if it would be possible to use the extrusion process to create seating, much of which was needed at the time to furnish new airports and stations being built around the world. He saw it as a simple but effective alternative to ordinary furniture that needed to be  made up of several components and materials. These extruded seats could be made all in one go, with the legs and back of the seat formed all at once.

The Heatherwick studio hunted for a machine capable of making this dream a reality for more than 16 years, until they finally came across a new extrusion machine that had been built in the Far East. The machine was designed for use in the aerospace industry and had the capability of exerting ten thousand tonnes of pressure. The factory it came from could not actually guarantee the outcome of the experiment because the machine had never been used to its full capacity.

Nickel Plating Aluminium Benches

Using this specialised die, Heatherwick and his studio staff made a series of aluminium benches with straight, extruded lengths, and contrasting raw, contorted ends. We were asked to electrolessly nickel plate the benches in order to provide a high quality surface that would be very resistant to wear.

Electroless Nickel Plating

The electroless nickel plating process is a high quality, cost effective solution for coating metals such as mild or stainless steel.

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Diffused Nickel Plating

The simple process of diffused nickel plating is the most effective coating to ensure the highest levels of corrosion resistance.

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SeaTEC 100 Marine Corrosion Prevention

SeaTEC100 is a cost-effective way of extending the life of mild-steel operating in marine environments.

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Ni-PTFE Self Lubricating Coating

Nitec's specially developed Ni-PTFE self lubricating corrosion resistant coating is perfect for sliding wear applications.

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Copper Plating

NiTEC offers a copper plating service that is suitable for both functional and decorative purposes.

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Shotblasting

NiTEC has the capacity to shotblast components of up to 20 tonnes in weight.

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Heat Treatment

The heat treatment solutions at NiTEC can be used for stress relieving and de-embrittlement as both pre-plate and post-plate treatments.

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Aqua Blasting

Aqua blasting is a wet blasting process that's perfect for gently removing surface dirt and grime from metal components.

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Nickel Boron Plating

Nickel boron plating is a good alternative to chrome for coating a variety of steels to enhance corrosion resistance.

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Case Studies

From corrosion resistance for oil pipes to plating vacuum chambers, our electroless nickel plating is second to none.

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Quality

NiTEC is committed to the highest levels of quality and standards.

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Applications

From marine to mining, gardens to artwork, we've got your surface technology needs covered.

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Special Projects

NiTEC have many years' experience working with special projects; from art installations to architectural features.

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Technical Information

As the deposit formed by electroless nickel plating is based on a chemical reaction, the dispersion of the deposit is equal over part, regardless of shape.

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Marine corrosion resistance product, SeaTEC 100 - corrosion resistant coating

Corrosion resistant coating withstanding salt-spray conditions for at least 3 and a half years

NiTEC's SeaTEC 100 provides unprecedented corrosion resistance extending the life of components and reducing maintenance costs.

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Surface Technology

Electroless Nickel Plating - wear and corrosion resistance, cost-effective and wear resistance - find out more about our Nickel Plating services

Diffused Nickel Plating - the gold standard in corrosion resistance - great for a marine environment - find out more about our Diffused Nickel Plating services

SeaTEC 100 - increases the longevity of components in subsea environments reducing maintenance costs and increasing strength of components - find out more about SeaTEC 100

Copper plating - an excellent conductor providing EMI (Electro Magnetic Interference) and RFI (Radio Frequency Interference) shielding - find out more about Copper Plating

Shotblasting and Heat Treatment - thorough surface preparation is acheived using Shotblasting and Heat Treatment in addition to the standard chemical cleaning and activation process - find out more

Special Projects - Electroless Nickel Plating has been used in many special projects throughout the world where corrosion resistance is required such as art installation and archictectural application - find out more about special projects

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