Photo Chemical EtchingSecondary Services

Integrated secondary operations like plating, forming, and passivation. 

More Than Photo Chemical Etching

In addition to our photo etching services, we offer other in-house tin plating and other finishing services for your convenience. Our locally sourced vendors have the highest-quality compliance standards in the business. Because of our long-standing partnerships, they provide quick turnaround services to reduce lead time.

Below are the most common types of plating used on metal etched parts that require an increase in conductivity or solderability, such as etched EMI Shielding, step lids, and lead frames. Please contact us for other plating options and secondary services not listed so we can accommodate your part’s specifications.

In-House Tin Plating

We offer in-house bright and matte tin plating as a supply chain solution improve lead times. Tin, a non-toxic metal, is often applied to copper, nickel, and steel electronic components such as board-level shielding, connectors, and contacts. 

How does tin plating enhance photo etched parts?

  • Reduces friction between metal surfaces
  • Corrosion resistant
  • Excellent ductility -optimal for parts that require forming
  • Extra protection for non-ferrous metals such as copper and nickel
  • Low contact resistance
  • Solderability
  • Thermal conductivity- can withstand high temperatures

What are the differences between matte tin and bright tin plating?

The most obvious difference is visual. Matte tin plating has a dull and white
appearance, while Bright tin plating is shiny with a reflective surface. Both
compositions are mostly pure tin. However, bright tin has about 10% more organic
material than matte, which gives it that shiny look. We offer a broad range of
plating thickness on both types of tin per individual part specifications and product

Matte Tin Plating:

  • Greater solderability than bright tin
  • Less material stress with higher temperatures
  • Color retention under high heat

Bright Tin Plating:

  • Aesthetically attractive surface
  • Provides lower friction contact, which is necessary when combining parts such as electrical boards and connectors
  • Color changes under high temperatures

Choosing the tin finish depends on the part's requirements and the intended application.  Contact us with any questions you have concerning the tin plating process and how it can enhance the part's material and performance.

Nickel Flash Plating:

Another process we offer in-house is electro nickel flash plating.  A nickel flash adds a small layer of nickel to the base metal surface. The advantages include better adhesion to a plated material and increased plating uniformity.  For example, nickel is usually a base coat under gold plating in many electronic components because it provides extra corrosion resistance, prevents the dispersion of other materials on the surface, and increases the durability of the surface.

Silver Plating

With high ductility and electrical and thermal conductivity it is often substituted for gold to keep costs low and to prevent corrosion and increase strength. Options include a bright or matte finish.

Nickel Electroless Plating

A chemical process free of electrical currents is used to deposit a nickel-phosphorous or nickel-alloy onto the metal part to prevent corrosion and wear on components. This process provides a more even coverage than Electrolyte plating and includes magnetic properties. 

Gold Plating

A popular choice for electronic components, it decreases corrosion, provides high electrical conductivity, and provides reliable contact resistance. Its reflective property helps cool components during operation.

Nickel Electrolyte Plating

An electrical current deposits nickel onto the metal to prevent corrosion and wear resistance.

Other Photo Chemical Etching Value-added Services


Our half-etch capabilities allow for parts such as board level shielding to be formed by hand following the inspection process.  Depending on the material and thickness, photo-etching lines 1/2 of the material thickness will provide a bend at a 90-degree angle.  Machine forming is another method to achieve the desired shape when the metal is too thick to form by hand.


It is effective in preventing corrosion of stainless steel products and can be critical to the part’s performance. Passivation is the removal of surface contamination on the metal. Our metal prep includes a passivation process before production.


It is a method used to polish and passivate intricate metal surfaces that do not respond well to other methods. Typical applications include the removal of iron from stainless steel while enhancing the chromium/nickel content for superior surface smoothness.
Advanced Metal Etching
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