As we enter the second month of 2022, we wanted to bring you another post on one of Sheffield’s core processes. This month we are going to highlight Sheffield’s E-Nickel PTFE.
What is SPI E-Nickel PTFE?
SPI E-Nickel PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) is an electroless nickel composite plating process that co-deposits Teflon®, at 20 to 25% by volume as occluded particles in the plated coating. In more simple terms this means we can add PTFE in an electroless nickel deposit to provide corrosion resistance and great wearability and lubricity, (A slicker surface).
The sub-micron PTFE particles become firmly imbedded throughout the nickel deposit. Unlike topical coatings of Teflon®, this unique composite allows for renewed Teflon® at the surface even as the coating wears. This chemical plating process is specially designed to produce a consistent amount of uniformly dispersed PTFE throughout the nickel deposit in order to ensure optimum performance in high friction and non-lubricated applications. This coating can be stripped from parts with no attack of the base metal. Components with complex shapes are especially well served since the process provides a conformal coating. With a coating range of .00005″ to .001″ thick, the typical coating thickness of .0002″ – .0003″ is suitable for most applications.
“SPI E-Nickel PTFE makes it possible to effectively coat parts with sharp edges, deep recesses, seams, threads, and complex geometries.”
The process yields a surface with the engineering properties of nickel and the additional lubricity of PTFE. As with standard electroless nickel, the deposit occurs via an autocatalytic chemical reaction so that a reliable, repeatable coating of uniform thickness is generated. This makes it possible to effectively coat parts with sharp edges, deep recesses, seams, threads, and complex geometries. In some cases, the use of the SPI E-Nickel PTFE provides lubricity sufficient to eliminate the use of other lubricants.
SPI E-Nickel PTFE coating can withstand temperatures of up to 500ºF.
The appearance of the plated finish is usually dull silver-gray and can be used as a non- reflective coating for military applications. SPI E-Nickel PTFE can be applied over a variety of substrates including stainless steel, aluminum, copper, brass and other substrates.
This process conforms to the AMS 2454 specification.
Please reach out to Sheffield if you have the need for this coating or any other metal finishing needs. Be on the look-out for next months blog regarding Soft Gold Plating.