The Art of Chrome Stripping in CNC Machining(aluminium 6061 vs 7075 Andy)

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In the world of CNC machining, chrome stripping plays a crucial role in achieving precise and flawless finishes on various metal components. This process involves removing layers of chrome plating from a surface using specialized techniques to enhance aesthetics or prepare for subsequent manufacturing steps. In this article, we will delve into the intricacies of chrome stripping, its applications, and the methods employed to achieve desirable results.

1. Understanding Chrome Stripping:

Chrome stripping refers to the removal of chromium deposits present on metallic surfaces. While chrome plating offers exceptional corrosion resistance and an appealing aesthetic finish, there are instances where it becomes necessary to strip off the existing coating. These situations may arise due to imperfections, scratches, outdated designs, or the need for modifications before further processing.

2. Applications of Chrome Stripping in CNC Machining:

a) Surface Preparation: Before applying a new coat of chrome or any other finishing material, the old plating must be removed through stripping. This step ensures smoothness and uniformity, enabling superior adhesion of subsequent coatings.

b) Component Repair: Damaged or deteriorated chrome plating can impact the functionality and appearance of machined parts. By efficiently stripping off the damaged layer, CNC machinists restore the component's integrity, promoting longevity and performance.

c) Design Modifications: In certain cases, design alterations or updates require the removal of chrome plating. This allows for innovative patterns, branding, or texturing to cater to evolving customer preferences.

d) Customization: In industries like automotive and aerospace, clients often request personalized finishes on their machined products. Through chrome stripping, these desired customization options can be explored, opening up endless possibilities for unique appearances.

3. Methods Used for Chrome Stripping:

a) Chemical Stripping: One common method involves immersing the part in a chemical bath capable of dissolving the chrome plating. Depending on the specific requirements, different formulations of chemicals like sodium hydroxide or sulfuric acid are utilized. This process allows for precise control over the stripping depth and is suitable for intricate components.

b) Electrolytic Stripping: In this method, an electric current is applied to the part submerged in a solution that acts as an electrolyte. The chrome plating dissolves due to polarization, making it easier to remove. Unlike chemical stripping, electrolytic stripping tends to be faster and more efficient, but careful monitoring is essential to prevent damage to the underlying material.

c) Mechanical Stripping: For certain applications, mechanical methods are employed wherein specialized sanding tools or abrasive materials are used to manually strip off the chrome layer. This approach is commonly practiced when dealing with thicker coatings or large-scale surfaces.

4. Advantages of Chrome Stripping:

a) Restorative Benefits: By removing damaged or obsolete chrome plating, CNC machinists can repair components without compromising their structural integrity. This cost-effective technique revitalizes parts while preserving their original quality.

b) Enhanced Customization: Chrome stripping provides businesses with flexibility in customization endeavors. Whether it's incorporating new design elements or adopting unique finishes, this process paves the way for product personalization to meet diverse market demands.

c) Cost-efficiency: Instead of manufacturing entirely new components, chrome stripping enables reusability by restoring old ones. This not only saves raw material costs but also reduces the environmental impact associated with production waste.

d) Time Savings: Investing in chrome stripping minimizes lead times compared to producing freshly plated parts. Consequently, manufacturers can meet shorter deadlines and, in turn, enhance customer satisfaction.


Chrome stripping serves as a crucial stage in CNC machining operations, ensuring top-notch finishes, repairs, and customization options for various metal components. Its application extends from surface preparation to maintaining machine longevity. By utilizing the appropriate stripping techniques discussed above, CNC machinists can achieve remarkable results and deliver exceptional products that meet their clients' requirements efficiently. CNC Milling CNC Machining