What is Cadmium Plating? Benefits of Cadmium Plating | Anoplate, Inc

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: based on customer demand cadmium plating remains an essential coating for specialized applications primarily in the military and aerospace sector. Although cadmium has been scrutinized as a toxic substance, when properly used within regulatory limits by folks like us at Anoplate, this plating offers incomparable protection against the elements as well as other unmatched benefits.

However, we fully understand skepticism surrounding this controversial coating so, in this article, we’d like to give you a little more information so you can understand why cadmium plating is both useful and necessary.



Cadmium plating is a metallic silver, soft coating that can be deposited on various base materials such as steel, copper, iron, brass and aluminum. It is prized for its corrosion resistance, lubricity, chemical resistance, ductility, and ease of solderability. These qualities make it the ideal coating for everything from bolts and screws on submarines to military parachute buckles. It’s unrivaled durability and protective attributes have undoubtedly saved countless lives.

So why is cadmium plating so effective in the first place? It acts as a ‘sacrificial coating’, meaning that it corrodes preferentially when applied over steel for example. It also significantly outperforms other commonly used coatings, such as electroless nickel and zinc, in lubricity, conductivity, natural corrosion resistance and protection from corrosion of underlying and nearby base metals.




Now that you’re familiar with the basic properties of cadmium plating, let’s get into some of the specific benefits so you can see why we choose to use it at Anoplate:

  • Unparalleled resistance to corrosive marine / sea shore environments
  • Natural lubricity which provides anti-galling and low friction properties
  • High bath efficiency makes it a perfect solution to coat critical parts and complex geometries
  • Naturally resistant to mold and bacteria growth
  • Low electrical resistance and exceptional conductivity
  • Favorable galvanic compatibility with aluminum
  • Good bonding surface for adhesives
  • Can be used with a wide range of base metals
  • Will corrode first even when scratched, providing galvanic protection for base metals
  • Soft, malleable and ductile
  • Works well as a paint base
  • Ability to be subsequently colored available Black, Clear, Olive Drab or Yellow


Hopefully, through reading this article you have a clearer understanding of why many of our customers choose to use cadmium plating for their projects.


Need Cadmium Plating for your next project? Request a quote today.

Need Cadmium Plating for your next project? Contact Us Today.

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