Valve Cover Rechroming - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old May 21st, 01, 05:12 AM Thread Starter
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Steve
 
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Location: Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
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I need to have the valve covers on my 302 rechromed. Can you guys recommend a shop and provide some pricing guidelines? I want to try to match the original quality of the covers, and not strive for museum piece standards.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old May 21st, 01, 05:19 AM
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Brian
 
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What year is your 302? If the covers are from the 69 they are aluminum and will need to be polished.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old May 21st, 01, 05:26 AM Thread Starter
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Stewie,

It's a 03A 1968 car with the original chrome covers.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old May 21st, 01, 06:33 AM
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Steve
 
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Good luck!I have not found someone to do mine the correct way yet.The factory finish was a "flash chrome" and was a very cheap plateing.It will actually cost you more to duplicate this bad finish then get a good show chrome finish.The edges (mounting surface)and the sides had a almost unpolished finish,while the tops were a polished finish.The covers should show all the ripples and dents in them,yes they don't look that great compared to a show chrome set.

Steve
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old May 21st, 01, 08:46 PM
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Nearly everything you get that is chrome plated is just flash chromed! Chrome by itself does not make a good finish for much of anything...all those bright shiny car pieces you see are plated with what is called "bright nickel"...the only problem with any nickel plating is that it loses its luster pretty quickly...the flash chrome layer on top of it keeps it shiny for a long time. The voltage required to actually chrome plate something with the surface area of a valve cover will cause burrs around the edges and can also "burn" the metal if applied for very long. Then you get into the whole hydrogen embrittlemt problem. Not only that, but straight chrome of any real thickness (over .005) is extremly brittle...it would shatter the first time you slightly over-torqued the valve cover bolts...a very thin flash plate will flex just enough to be useable in an application like this.

------------------
375hp 78 Chevy truck
77 Chevy Nova
95 Chevy Lumina 3.4L
and building a 78 Nova
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old May 22nd, 01, 06:31 AM
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Steve
 
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Travis,do you chrome plate?If so, can you acheive this correct finish?I have not seen a rechrome that was close enough to the correct finish.Thanks.

Steve
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old May 22nd, 01, 10:23 PM
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Nope...I dont plate anymore...spent 4 1/2 years as the "master" plater ( ) in an aircraft plating shop...lots of mil spec, FAA guidelines stuff. I loved that job more than any other I have ever had...developed techniques for plating stuff that nobody else could figure out, like Inconel and spray metal. I had to move on though...the pay wasnt that great and I was topped out so there was nothing more to look forward to as far as money was concerned. We technically didnt do car stuff...but one of the owners is a hard core street rod guy (50's style!) and plates all kinds of stuff for his car club, and while I worked there I plated everything I could get my hands on for my cars and a few of my buddies cars. Since I left on good terms, I can still get a little free plating done for myself once in a while. I honestly wouldnt know who would be able to replate your covers for you...there are usually a few places advertised in the back of hot rod magazines.

------------------
375hp 78 Chevy truck
77 Chevy Nova
95 Chevy Lumina 3.4L
and building a 78 Nova
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old May 23rd, 01, 02:59 AM Thread Starter
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Steve
 
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68L30 - I have found two plating shops that have come recommended. The indication from all the research I have done is that the original finish can not easily be reproduced. The two companies are located on the web at www.ogdenchrome.com and chromemasters.com. I have seen work from Chromemaster and it looks real good, their price was $100/cover. I have not been able to see any work from Ogden, but their WebPage is very informative and indicates that they know what they are doing. Their quote was $45.00/cover. They strongly recommended re-chroming everything at the same time, and then the plating finish difference will not stand out. I will probably go this route as I only have the valve covers, the oil fill tube and the air cleaner lid. Obviously, this would be impractical if you already had a lot of aftermarket chrome under the hood.

Travis thanks for the great information.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old May 23rd, 01, 06:33 AM
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Steve
 
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Thank you gentelmen!I already have a set of NOS 68 covers (chrome) and just wanted another set that I could put on a driver. Just as a side note your covers should have a "C" stamped between the valve cover holes,toward the center,on the mounting flange.The "C" is rotated 90 degrees from the way I have it typed.It is only on one side of each cover.

Steve
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