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EXECUTION Electroplating and GOLD!

Discussion in 'Progress/Execution Threads' started by jpanarra, Jun 21, 2018.

  1. jpanarra
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    jpanarra Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Hey JP here,


    I know most of you haven’t read my progress thread here. For the ones that have, I’m going to start my research/breakdown of the electroplating business idea I have for myself . Electroplating needs alot of upfront costs to set up the plating process. I’m not worried sharing the informaton on here because electroplating is not a easy task if you dont understand the science of it. I am a certified electroplater/chemist this is something i do for my career path, now maybe i can apply it to my fastlane ideas.


    I’m going to break down the minimum I need to spend on to start it up.


    First for the electricity supply, I will need a 30 Amp/ 20 Volt plating recitifier that has varible controls. That’s going to run me about $200 on ebay. Not terrible but still a cost. This will be used across the different metals so I know I need this.


    The containers I can use will be polypro or glass for the time being. I’m not too worried about it, I’ll probably pick it up from the food store that’ll run me $100 at most.


    Now for the chemicals, I will need cleaners and ‘activators’ . Little electroplating 101 for ya if you’re interested, if the product is coming out poorly, 99% of the time its not cleaned well enough. So to save on operating costs… I’ll make sure my process is effective in cleaning!


    Ultrasonic cleaner- Will vibrate metal parts at a very high frequency effectively removing all types of dirt and stuff. ($69)


    Caustic Cleaners are solid, so I’ll use 75g/L of lye and water, thats dirt cheap to remove oils and grease on the metal. ($15)


    Electrocleaner - I’ll make this up with a compound I know that will work well, this will run me around ($50) I will be using the rectifier that I use to plate the metal later on with this, but the current will be inverted so all of the current will be pushing out of the part effectively cleaning it.


    Water needs to be clean as hell so I’ll have to purchase a lot of distilled water but nothing crazy, prob 20 Gal or so for a month. ($20)


    Bright Acid Activator - Blend of acids to brighten the metal and make it more ‘active’ so the electroplating solution can have high adhesive qualities. (mixutre of nitric, sulfuric, and hydroloric in water) - this blend with enough water will be fumeless and can be done safely but must be held in a glass ‘tank/container’ ($150) for the chemicals but they will last over an year.


    Woods Nickel Strike - An universal base layer to plate a good number of different types of metal ($100)


    Metal Plating Solution - I’m thinking about going for the Gold plating solution, due to the metal itself being inert and safe to work with. Also a lot of people tend to be hesitant because it's the more expensive compared to other plating solutions and they are afraid of contamination and ‘killing’ the bath. With my training and expertise I’m not too concerned about this. Gold will cost me about $3.00 per sq inch if done properly. I know how to make my own plating solution, but I can’t do so in my garage safely and without a laboratory license. When I can afford to move into a new facility that can handle wastewater then I can start thinking about that. Depending on which metal but focusing on gold the cost will be 800$.


    This comes together to be a total of $1500, which isn’t insane for a start up cost. Now I need to justify the profitability of this process. I did the math so it’ll be around 3$ per square inch of gold plated on something. For a good example a wedding ring is around .5 sqin, so for me to plate on top of a wedding ring it’ll cost me a 1.50. I’m not exactly sure what to charge for it yet but that seems promising because it’ll take me less than 5 minutes to plate a wedding ring in gold.


    I wanted to see the demand for local metal plating services. So i jumped over to google and used their keyword tool to look for the # of searches in my area which is Indianapolis. Gold plating service is searched at around 1-10k per month so it's definitely searched for around here. I’m confident I can get to the top, I’m not going to purchase everything just yet.


    Here’s my plan of action, I’m going to build a brand and website selling the gold plating service in indianapolis. I’ll have everything up and running and see if any people reach out to me. I’ll politely decline if i have any service requests and say that we are ‘booked’ or something of the sort until i get all the equipment in house.


    Like always, I’m open to feedback! Looking forward to this project of mine.
     
    Argue likes this.
  2. Walter Hay
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    Walter Hay Legendary Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    Gold plating could be of interest to people in the promotional products field and also jewelers who might be interested in having 925 sterling silver items plated or re-plated.

    Most of the gold plated products coming out of China have such thin plating that it rubs off with only a little use. I think your quality could benefit in the marketplace simply from being superior.

    Also, a lot of what is described as gold plating is actually brass plating. The consumer must take some blame for that, because market surveys have found that most women prefer the "gold" jewelry that is actually brass plated, because it looks more "gold". In other words, it is shinier.

    Walter
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2018 at 1:02 AM
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  3. jpanarra
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    jpanarra Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Ironically Brass plating is a much more difficult process than gold due to it being an alloy and the ratios in the bath have very little wiggle room in terms of the concentrations of metals and additives. It's an cheaper alternative only because of the price of the commodity.

    I've already done a good number of research in terms of starting up. I've reached out to my network in the area that I know that blends solutions and creates automated lines.

    Due to the cost of automation here is well in the million dollar range in terms of investment, the business will be underwater right out of the gate by several hundred thousand dollars. If I go with this route I will need to find an investor that's willing to put a majority of their money on this.

    Now, for a smaller scale I think I might have a better chance with brush plating rather than using the bath to get out of the gates. I've already shared my break down and got some of the materials in my garage. Its only a matter of time before I get bites. I'm starting to offer free services to local small auto shops for gold plating to get my name out there. @Walter Hay I'll try to reach out to smaller jewlers as well, I'm thinking about targeting people on esty. Maybe they'll be interested in mailing me their metal jewelry to be finished up in gold driving up the value of the product.

    The interesting thing is the competition via local and nationwide the web is at a very low bar of entry. Most of the webpages are not designed for mobile and cleaned up nicely and they're not SEO optimized as well. That's an advantage for me that I definitively can take ahold of on the web.
     
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  4. Walter Hay
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    Walter Hay Legendary Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    @jpanarra I had a look at a website that offers such a service and you are right - it is very poorly laid out and the operators can't have looked at the site themselves.

    Their Automotive Plating page is a jumbled mess that would turn off most readers. If that is any indication of the standard you are up against, you should have an easy run.

    Walter
     
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