Why Choose Cadmium Plating?

Cadmium is a versatile metal used in various industrial applications, including batteries, alloys, and pigments, with electroplating being the most common. Although it is highly toxic and should not be used on surfaces that come into direct contact with food, cadmium provides superior protection to industries constantly subjected to harsh conditions.

In this article, we will walk you through the fundamentals of cadmium plating, including its process, benefits, applications, and types.

What Is Cadmium Plating?

Cadmium plating, also referred to as cadmium electroplating, is a type of metallic coating with distinct and advantageous properties. In this process, cadmium undergoes electrodeposition onto the metal from a formula with electrolytes and cadmium salts in vats or barrels. These electrolyte solutions are based on the cyanine alkaline system. However, there are other solutions, such as fluoroborate-based systems, but the results may need more brightness and power.

Another method is mechanical cadmium plating, which uses mechanical energy to apply coatings to components. This application is ideal for clips and fasteners that are small enough to be plated within a barrel. Finally, this process can be carried out using ion or vacuum deposition, in which cadmium is heated inside until it vaporizes. The process is followed by condensing cadmium atoms, forming a thin film of high-quality coating as its by-product.

Benefits of Cadmium Plating

Cadmium plating is a sacrificial coating, which means it corrodes and degrades before the underlying material, providing a layer of protection to the metal below. Furthermore, it offers several advantages, including the following:

  • High resistance to saltwater corrosion
  • Provides adhesives with an exceptional bonding surface
  • Excellent electrical conductivity
  • High solderability level
  • Built-in lubricity, which prevents galling and yields a low-friction surface
  • Natural resistance to mold and bacteria
  • Can coat dissimilar materials, complex shapes, and difficult-to-reach contours with ease
  • Applicable in an ultra-thin, lightweight layer

Industries & Applications of Cadmium Plating

Cadmium electroplating is used in several industries, including:

Military and Aerospace

Cadmium electroplating’s anti-corrosive properties and natural lubricity make it ideal for critical in-flight applications. In addition, its adhesive properties make it particularly useful for bonding materials to aircraft aluminum frames.


Cadmium plating is commonly found in disc brakes and hoses in modern high-performance automobiles, tractor-trailers, and other modes of transportation because of its corrosion resistance.


Cadmium plating has excellent resistance against saltwater corrosion, making it ideal for marine applications.


Cadmium electroplating’s conductivity makes it an ideal choice for electronic connectors and relays. It is also used to manufacture batteries for cell phones and laptops.

Construction and Manufacturing

Cadmium coats many standard components in industrial construction, such as hardware and industrial fasteners. It is also present in prefabricated products used in various manufacturing environments.

Types of Cadmium Plating

The post-treatment colorization of cadmium coating is referred to as the plating type. Cadmium plating comes in three different types and classification levels, which are as follows:

Type I

Type I, also referred to as “as plated,” is the standard color scheme for cadmium plating. Therefore, no additional color treatment has been applied to this type.

Type II

This type of cadmium plated is iridescent yellow. The quality of this treatment is evaluated by spraying salt on the exterior of the plated component and then inspecting for corrosion after a 96-hour waiting period.

Type III

This cadmium plating is used as a paint base and has a supplementary phosphate colorization.

Choose New Method of Plating for Precision Electroplating

New Method Plating Company has maintained our leadership position as one of the most exquisite specialty platers in the New England region by constantly improving our facilities, equipment, and staff. We also have such a strong commitment to quality and pride in our craftsmanship that we can provide our customers with the highest quality electroplating and metal finishing services.

Contact us today to learn more about our services and solutions, or request a quote!

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