Chrome objects are everywhere in everyday life. And the day when you also want to chrome an object, you ask yourself the question: can I chrome it myself? Yes, you can indeed chrome an object but it will in no case be a real chrome plating, this one requiring dangerous products and the gestures of professionals. However, you will have three possibilities. The first solution being that of polishing, the second that of painting and the third the use of a special kit.
It is important to emphasize that companies that do chrome plating employ professionals who generally use extremely toxic products that you cannot use at home. The toxicity of these products is so high that the European Union is considering toughening the law even more, or even banning the use of chromium altogether. The solutions described below do not use this type of product, which is why they give the impression of chrome plating to your objects but are by no means true chrome plating operations.
Solution 1: Chrome an object by polishing
Do you want to get down to chrome-plating an object in your kitchen, your bathroom or even your car? Because this object is no longer as shiny and elegant as it used to be? So over to you! Start this operation for the first time and you may get a taste for it and start cleaning and polishing this object regularly.
Avoid harsh cleaning products. They will certainly remove dirt but also metal. Use a microfiber cloth, and if some areas are difficult to access when cleaning, a toothbrush or a narrow brush with a long handle. Go ahead with lukewarm water and dish soap. If your object is stained, rub it with half a lemon, let it act and then rinse it with lukewarm water. Depending on the dirt, you can add white vinegar to it. An old and proven home remedy is baking soda. Not only is it inexpensive, but you also remove heavy build-up of dirt. Spread the powder on the chrome with a damp cloth, then let the baking soda soak in for about two hours. After that, wipe off thoroughly with lukewarm water. If you have an open fireplace, you can also clean the chrome with leftover ash. To do this, gently rub the object with the ashes and then wash it thoroughly.
Once the object you want to chrome thoroughly cleaned, you can start sanding. Whether you sand by hand or with an electric sander is up to you. In case you sand by hand, equip yourself with sandpaper. Start with a fairly low level of abrasion, which aims to start erasing the roughness of your object. Then use paper with crescendo abrasive power. This should allow you to make your object perfectly smooth. Similarly with an electric sander, use different types of discs. Then apply a polishing cream. Choose it according to the metal you are dealing with. Then finally polish the object so as to obtain a beautiful shine. This can be done with a polishing cloth.
Solution 2: Chrome an object with paint
The second possibility to chrome an object is to paint it with a chrome paint. You can apply it preferably with a spray gun. The prerequisite is that your object is perfectly smooth. If your object is not, you can proceed to sanding as described above. You also have the option of applying an undercoat. In this specific case, really wait a long time for this undercoat to dry. All solvents must be evaporated. And then, as traditionally for a painting operation, protect your site. Then install the object to be painted on a support that will allow you to paint it completely or to turn it easily. If there are areas that need to be avoided, cover them with protective tape. Of course, wear masks and gloves so as not to inhale the paint and to avoid splashes.
Regarding the gesture, it must be very light. Before you start, do some testing. Then proceed in regular bursts. Gradually cover your entire object. Again, let it dry for a relatively long time: ideally at least one day and one night.
Solution 3: Chrome an object with a kit
The third possibility to chrome an object at home is the small parts chrome plating kit which you can find for around 200 euros. It includes all the necessary elements for your chrome plating, which you can do in your garage or in your garden. Without any special equipment and without any machine, you will be able to achieve your goals, and this on any type of support. An example: you can choose the chrome kit solution if you want to chrome a motorcycle helmet. For larger surfaces, it is better to turn to the service of a professional.
Here too, the conditions for using this kit must be met: a space for painting and varnishing to be protected with a tarpaulin, a support which allows your object to be painted to rotate – think that the products used may run off. It is necessary that the temperature of your place is high enough, it is necessary to count at least 20 degrees so that the chemical reaction takes place correctly. Remember to ventilate the room where you will be doing the chrome plating.