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Publication numberUS1996187 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 2, 1935
Filing dateJan 24, 1933
Priority dateJan 24, 1933
Publication numberUS 1996187 A, US 1996187A, US-A-1996187, US1996187 A, US1996187A
InventorsGeorge E Barnhart
Original AssigneeGeorge E Barnhart
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method of marking plated articles
US 1996187 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 2, 1935. G. E. BARNHART 1,996,187


nf l

INVENTOR n Geopee E. BARNHART BYZ'WM -A-'l-TORNEY Patented Alpi'. 2, 1935 UNITED A STATES- vParrain* OFFICE I' z claims. (c1. 41-18) This invention has to do in a general way with the art of markim metal plated articles, and is I more particularly related to the art of placing'v names, trade-marks, designs, and the like on metallic or other articles, such as golf club heads, golf club shafts,v swords, automobile headlights, table ware, boudoir articles, cigar lighters, watches, pencils, scientic instruments, musical instruments, identification plates, and the like, the surfaces of which are 'plated with metal.

It is a primary object of this invention to pro-` duce a method of marking articles of the class described in a manner such that the mark or design lies entirely within the plate and does not eiect in any way the strength or characteristics of the base metal or base material.

The method contemplated by this invention is' especially adapted for use in connection with chromium plated articles, since it takesr advantage in a novelway of the fact that the adheive qualities of ,chromium are very selective, (and that chromiui'rplate is not deposited to an appreciable thickness), to provide a process which can be efliciently practiced at a minimum cost for labor and material, and to produce results which are new and distinctive in appearance.

The method contemplated-by this invention, as pointed out above, contemplates inlaying the design or mark within the plate itself. In this connection, it is a well known fact that, in view of the properties pointed out above, a vchromium plated article is, for satisfactory wear without peeling, formed of vthree layers of metal in the plate. 'I'he base metal, usually iron or steel, is first plated with copper, which adheres strongly to the iron. Chromium will not adhere satisfactorily to the copper so a plating of nickel is, ap-

plied to the copper to provide a ba'sehforft ej chromium. I.

The marking of chromium plated articles heretofore been done by paintingor stamping both of which being undesirable from the standpoint of wear and appearance. Furthermore, the

I sired,- be platediwithchromium or another suitstamped mark `have the undesirable property o weakening li t metal parts.

duce a process of the class described wherein the `chromium is removed in the regions necessary to form the mark or designthereby exposing It is a further object of this invention to pro-.

gional application heat (the acetylene torch or the electric mean s) itis to ybe understood that the remova1 of thesurface plate may be effected only in that the surface metal forms an alloy having different characteristics (color and s ailinity for other plating metals) from those of the original surface plate. In any event, it is one feature of the process contemplated by this inventionvthat the regional removal of plating mii--A `terial is not carried to a thickness beyond the 10 plate itself; in other words, the design or mark does not extend into the base metal, except where my method of depositing metal is used on an engraved or stamped surface for further ornamentation of the marking. l After the design has been cut or etched into the plate to theldesired thickness, a coating of metal, having color contrasting with the surface metal, is deposited on the exposed metal in the design or mark. `For example, gold, copper, silver, or 2.

' complished by treating the surface of the metal deposited in the designo'r mark with an oxidizing. or other suitable reagent .which will react with-the metal to deposit therein an oxide or 35 a salt having the desired color.

Since chromium will deposit to lonly a very `.small thickness, it becomes a still further object totake advantage of this fact to produce a raised rj" 'einbossed effect inthe design or mark. This 40 s'accomll1i,-Shed by depositing the inlay metal to a pointv atwhigh' it is even with or above the surface of thechromium, after which it may, if de- The details in the process contemplated by this inventiom'together with other objects attending its production, will be best understood from the following' description ofthe accompanying drawing, which is chosen for illustrative purposes only, 50 and in which, Y

Fig. 1 is a plan view illustrating an article, such as a name plate, or a portion of .any other article v which has been marked in accordance with my invention;

Fig. 2 is a perspective view, partly in section, which illustrates two of the steps followed in practicing one method of the invention;

Fig. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary section which may be considered as having been taken through an article having a three layer plate thereon;

Fig. 4 is a section similar to Fig. 3. illustrating one step in the method contemplated by this invention;

Fig. 5 is a section similar to Fig. 4, illustrating another step in the method; Fig. 6 is a section similar to Fig. 3, illustrating another manner'of practicing the method;

Fig. 7 is a section simialr to Fig. 3, illustrating still another result contemplated by my invention;


Fig. 8 is a section similar to Fig. 7 and illustrates another result contemplated by this invention.

More particularly describing the invention as herein illustrated, reference numeral II, as applied to Figs. 1 to 8 inclusive, indicates, what I may term, a base member which is preferably a metal, but which may be of any other suitable material that will receive a metal plate.

Reference numeral I2 is generally applied to indicate a plate electrically or otherwise de- .posited upon the surface of the base member II.

In the form chosen for illustrating this invention, I have represented the plate as being com.- posed of three layers, and, since chromium lends itself particularly to the use of my process, as has been pointed out hereinabove, I will describe the plate as comprising a layer I3 of copper which is deposited directly upon the base metal.

In order to provide a good bonding surface for the chromium, the copper plate I3 is coated with a nickel plate I4, upon which the nal thin plating of chromium, indicated at I5, is deposited;

As has been pointed out above, the essence of this invention resides in laying the design or mark within the plate itself. and Figs. 4 and 5 indicate one method of doing this. In Fig. 4, reference numeral I6 indicates a recess or groove which may be considered as forming a part of a mark or design, such recess or groove being formed by the regional removal of a part of the plate metal. This so-called regional removal can be effected in any conventional way, such as by means of an acid etching process, or by engraving, or by cutting with a suitable torch or a suitable abrasive wheel.

In the event an etching process is used to produce the groove shown in Fig. 4, an acid may be employed which will attack both the chromium and the nickel. For this purpose, I may use a sulphuric acid electric bath, removing the article from the bath when the acid begins to attack the copper. It will be understood, of course, that in etching the plate in this manner, a suitable wax or other stop-oil? must be used on the surface of the chromium in the conventional manner.

After the design has been formed by the regional removal of the plate material, the article is then immersed in a plating bath adapted to deposit the desired metal on the exposed surface of the copper. This bath may be a copper electro-plating bath, a copper cyanide plating bath, or it may even be a gold, silver, nickel or other metallic plating bath, depending upon the ultimate color eect desired in the design. In the event a stop-off is used in etching the design, the stop-off material may be left on the article during the plating operation, thereby protecting the surface plate.

Inasmuch as copper will not readily adhere to the chromium plate on the surface, it is not necessary, when chromium forms the surface metal, to use a stop-off in this copper plating operation. This is particularly useful when the design is formed by an engraving or other cutting process.

After the inlaid metal` which is indicated by reference numeral I1 in Fig. 5, has been deposited, the surface of this metal may be colored by subjecting it to the action of a suitable oxidizing agent or other suitable reagent to form an oxide or a salt in the surface of the inlaid metal.

As an alternative method of practicing the process, I may chemically etch the chromium with an acid, such as diluted hydrochloric acid, which will not attack the nickel. With this reagent, the mark or design is formed in the chromium plate only, thus exposing the surface of the nickel, and, in this case, the inlaid metal, indicated at I8 in Fig. 6, is deposited on the nickel. As pointed out above, the inlaid plate may be of any suitable metal which will eiiectively adhere to the nickel.

As another alternative in practicing the process, I may etch or engrave the plating so that the mark or design extends clear through the plating metal to the surface of the base metal. It is an important feature of the process, however, that the mark or groove does not project into the surface of the base metal in a manner such as to alter or destroy its structure or strength, except in cases where my process is used to add to the value of engraving or designs on work that has ample structural strength. This form of the invention is illustrated in Fig. 7 where the inlaid metal, indicated by reference numeral I9, is shown as being deposited upon the surface of the base metal II.

When chromium or another similar metal is used to form the outside surface of the plate, my invention, as has been pointed out hereinabove, may be effectively used to obtain a raised or embossed effect without stamping or in any way affecting the base metal or the internal structure of the plate metal.

This is accomplished, as shown in Fig. 8, by iirst tching through the chromium to any desired extent in the manner shown in Figs. 5, 6, or 7.

In Fig. 8, for illustration, I have shown the first inlaid metal, indicated by reference numeral 20, as being deposited on the surface of the nickel. This metal may be either nickel or copper, preferably copper, which does not readily adhere to the chromium, but has strong adhesive properties relative to the nickel. After this inlay has been deposited to the desired extent, at which its outer surface is ilush with or extends beyond the outer surface of the chromium, the inlay metal 20 may, if desired, be plated with another metal, such as chromium, to give a raised or embossed effect in the same color as the balance of the plate, when the inlay is one to which chromium will adhere.

In addition to the methods outlined above, the results contemplated by my invention, (that is, the placement of a mark or design within the plate itself), may also be accomplished by sandblasting the plated article through a suitable stencil, or by using an electric pencil arc, which, in the case of a chromium, nickel and copper plate, fuses the plate metal together to give a black mark or design. Other color effects may, of course, be obtained with different plate metals or alloys.

It will be apparent from the foregoing description that the method contemplated by this invention provides convenient, efficient, and economical means of marking any plated article without in any way affecting or changing the internal structure of the base metal or the plate metal.

It is to be understood that, While I havefused chromium plate as an example to illustrate the invention, the invention is not necessarily limited to chromium but, in its broader aspects, may be practiced with any other metal plate. It is, therefore, to be understood that, while I have herein described and illustrated certain preferred proV cedures followed in the practice of the invention,

the invention is not limited to the examples given, but includes within its scope whatever changes fairly come within the spirit of the appended claims.

I claim as my invention:

1. The method of marking a plated article which comprises fusing the plate metal with a pencil torch to form a mark which differs in color from the color of the plate.

2. The method of marking a plated article which comprises fusing the plate metal with an electric pencil torch to form a mark which dif- `fers in color from the color of the plate.


Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3948736 *Jul 22, 1974Apr 6, 1976Ametek, Inc.Method of selective electroplating and products produced thereby
US5466540 *Feb 14, 1994Nov 14, 1995Ceridian CorporationMark of an electronic component lid
US9017775 *Aug 27, 2010Apr 28, 2015Zanini Auto Grup, S.A.Treatment of parts with metallized finish areas with a differentiated appearance
US20110050055 *Apr 7, 2010Mar 3, 2011Shenzhen Futaihong Precision Industry Co., Ltd.Method for making device housing and device housing thereof
US20120164350 *Aug 27, 2010Jun 28, 2012Augusto Mayer PujadasTreatment of parts with metallized finish areas with a differentiated appearance
EP2048265A1 *Oct 9, 2007Apr 15, 2009HDO -Druckguss- und Oberflächentechnik GmbHMethod for manufacturing a component part and component part
EP2184179A1 *Nov 5, 2008May 12, 2010Faber-Castell AGMethod of manufacturing a pen, especially a pen in a wooden surround for writing, drawing and cosmetic purposes
WO2011023798A1 *Aug 27, 2010Mar 3, 2011Zanini Auto Grup, S.A.Treatment of parts with metallized finish areas with a differentiated appearance
U.S. Classification148/240, 216/4, 205/120, 205/223, 216/108, 205/180
International ClassificationB44C1/00, B44C1/26
Cooperative ClassificationC25D5/022, B44C1/26
European ClassificationB44C1/26, C25D5/02B