Decorative Plating for Wire Mesh

Decorative plating is an electrodeposition process where a thin layer of brass, nickel, chrome, or copper is deposited on the wire mesh surface in a tank-dipped procedure. A decorative antique plated finish can really bring out the texture of a woven wire mesh in ways that other coatings cannot. The thin layer of metal does not mask the detail of the wire mesh but rather highlights it. The antique plated finish process introduces a dark oxide layer over top of the bright plated alloy. Then, visual depth is created by physically relieving the high points of the wire mesh allowing the bright plated alloy to show through. A thin layer of lacquer is applied after plating to help preserve the finish from further tarnishing.

Maximum Dimensions: 42"x96"

Appropriate wire mesh base alloys:

Plain Steel

Corrosion resistance: Since the base alloy is bare steel, a decorative plated finish is not appropriate for exterior use.  The plated finish will not adequately cover the “Wire on wire” areas that occur at the wire mesh intersections.

Wire mesh and frame assemblies: The plating process is a tank-dipped procedure. There are complications to sending a fabricated assembly through the plating process. Acid entrapment in the voids of the assembly can lead to bleed out. In some controlled situations, the plating process can be applied to wire mesh assemblies as long as there is adequate means of drainage during the rinsing process.

Special Considerations:  The antique finishes undergo an abrasion process by hand to relieve the brighter alloy underneath the darker oxidized layer.  The contrast between dark and bright alloy is unique to that of the various woven wire mesh patterns.  The pictures above demonstrate how the different textures of the mesh patterns affect the same color finish.  It should be noted that with any metal finish that is done by hand, a degree of variability will be inherent in the outcome.  Samples of the finish will generally provide a good representation of color and detail however the brightness and darkness of the antique process may be different from job to job.  This variability should be factored into the final design decison.