Surface Processing Offers New Electroless Nickel Coating for Classic Car Restoration

Offered with a warranty, new electroless nickel coating process for coating bodyshells and parts is set to provide ultimate corrosion protection for classic car restoration.

A new coating offering classic car owners superior rust protection will be presented for the first time at the NEC Classic Motor Show (12-14 Nov 2010, Stand 2T170). Developed for use on classic and race cars by leading chemical cleaning and automotive specialist Surface Processing Ltd (SPL), the electroless nickel coating provides a performance improvement over existing paint technologies. The treatment is so effective it enables SPL to offer trade customers a three year warranty with every bodyshell that passes through the cleaning and finishing process. SPL will display a sectioned Mini Clubman that has been treated with the new coating at their show stand 2T 170.

“Historically, SPL has offered electrophoretic or e-coating as a means of inhibiting rust on classic and race cars,” says managing director Adrian McMurray. “This offered OEM levels of protection but with the ever increasing value of some classic cars and a desire to use them all year round, owners and restorers deserve the option of higher protection.” High phosphorous electroless nickel coating is already specified for sub-sea oil and gas applications, offering superb corrosion resistance in the harshest environment increasing service life over galvanised and painted coatings. For the classic car restorer, electroless nickel coating offers a bright, consistent 20 micron coating that can be sanded, filed, primed and painted with the best possible protection available for road, race and rally bodyshells.

SPL uses its fully immersive process, already successfully having treated over 2300 shells to remove all paint, sealants, adhesives and noise reduction materials, reaching areas that blasting cannot. Crucially, it effectively removes rust and breaks down filler without attacking the surface of the metal in any way. Further stages passivate and neutralise the metal resulting in a clean and distortion free bodyshell. Welding can then be done and corrosion damage or earlier repairs are clearly identifiable. The shell is then returned to SPL for the new electroless nickel coating to be applied. SPL still offers e-coating for smaller body parts such as wings, doors and bonnets.

In addition to the Mini, Surface Processing will display other bodyshells that have undergone the rigorous process. Visitors to the stand will also be able to see an overview of the full immersion process as well as images of the range of cars the company has cleaned in the last 16 years. “We are delighted to offer extra protection for cherished classic cars,” concludes McMurray. “This process will offer class-leading protection for years to come.


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