How to Chrome-Plate at Home

Chrome-plate household objects, such as an adjustable mirror rack.
Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images

Chrome-plating at home is a creative way to restore luster to any metal object. The most effective means of chrome-plating involves an electrical process, according to Finishing. Electroplating is the process of transferring microfilaments from a positively-charged anode to a negatively-charged cathode. The anode is an object made of pure chrome and the cathode is the object to which the chromium microfilaments are transferred. Once the process is complete, display your chrome-plated objects to family and friends.

Things You'll Need

  • Wire With Metal Connectors (2)
  • Metal Cathode
  • 4 1/4 Ounces Table Sugar
  • Chrome Anode
  • Work Gloves
  • Safety Glasses
  • 3 1/2 Ounces Epsom Salt
  • 1 Liter Vinegar
  • 1 1/2-Volt Battery
  • Large Glass Container

Slide on a pair of work gloves and safety glasses to protect your skin and eyes.

Fill a large glass container with one liter of white vinegar. Place the anode into the container. Allow the anode to sit for three hours to give the vinegar time to begin releasing the chromium microfibers.

Add 3 1/2 ounces of Epsom salt and 4 1/4 ounces of table sugar to the vinegar. Connect the anode with a wire fitted with metal connectors to the positive terminal on a 1 1/2-volt battery.

Place the cathode into the container. Connect the cathode with a second wire fitted with metal connectors to the negative terminal on a 1 1/2-volt battery. Watch for the chromium transfer to take place in a period of three to five minutes.

Warnings

  • Avoid touching the positive and negative wires together.