Instructables

Is it possible to make your own electroplating solution?

Is it possible to make your own electroplating solution? Couldn't one simply toss some atomized copper dust from the sculpture supply store into a hydrochloric acid solution, and let it dissolve? If so, what other chemicals are necessary, and what approximate proportions should they be? I'm thinking quick and dirty here, specifically for electroforming medium sized objects. Thanks!

rickharris5 years ago
YES copper sulphate is the easiest and will coat ferrous material with copper just by dipping them in. other metals are possible although may use unpleasant chemicals. Nickle, Gold, Silver are the common home electro plating metals.
alexhalford5 years ago
Sorry, I forgot to mention, copper chloride forms both as CuCl and CuCl2.
alexhalford5 years ago
Yes, but to dissolve the copper, the acid will have to be quite strong if you don't fancy waiting six months.
Also, quick point: 2HCl + 2Cu(s) --> 2CuCl(aq) + H2
The CuCl, copper chloride is what you want. If you plan on doing this on a large scale, careful of releasing hydrogen in enclosed spaces, it's a rather big fan of exploding =]
frollard5 years ago
dead easiest is salt water to conduct, then attach your plating material to one lead, and your object to be plated on the other lead. I forget which is which cathode or anode...and don't care to look it up at the moment :D
ry259205 years ago
I suppose... Popular science did something like this a little while back. I believe it was "desktop electroplater." ry25920