Barrel Plating

Advantages of Barrel Plating

Barrel plating generally entails a rotating container that turns a large amount of items at one time. The vessel is dipped in a number of different chemical tanks during the plating process. At this time, metal ions in the electroplating solution attached themselves to the workloads surfaces.


Barrel plating parts and objectsAs stated above, barrel plating helps when plating of bulk workloads. Like other methods of metal plating, barrel plating provide’s the following functions:

1. For corrosion resistance.

2. For decorative purposes.

3. For engineering finishes which protect from wear and tear.


Furthermore, barrel plating was developed in the post-Civil War era. During this period, equipment is made from wooden barrels or kegs. The use of wooden equipment was likely implemented due to the materials availability and cost effectiveness (modern barrel plating processes would not be developed until the twentieth century). Today, equipment is composed of non-conductive and chemically inert materials as a result  it can be submerged in a number of alkaline and acidic solutions.


In combination with higher levels of efficiency, there several other advantages to using the barrel plating method, for example:

1. Large, rapid volume production in comparison to rack plating.

2. Barrel plating requires less floor space and lower equipment investments.

3. We use less labor compared to the rack plating process.

4. The entire plating process is taken care of inside of the barrel or vessel.

5. Barrel plating is versatile: Plating several different objects at the same time is easy.

6. The cascading motion of barrel plating can produce a more uniform metal finish.

7. Agitation of the tank’s solutions eliminate stratification and produces a homogeneous bath.

At American Plating Company, (located in St. Louis, Missouri) we offer both rack and barrel plating. For a price estimate call American Plating Company at (314) 776-0542 or e-mail us through our Contact page.

Plating available in gold, tin, silver, brass, nickel and copper.


Singleton, Raymund. “Barrel Plating.” Metal Finishing 97.1 (1999): 346-67. Web. 26 July 2015.