Tin plating is known as the process of depositing a thin coat of tin onto the surface of another material using an electrical current. Electroplating tin is incredibly popular because it is a cost-effective process. Tin is readily available, and it is typically much less to purchase than other metals like palladium, gold, or platinum. Tin is an ideal choice for plating because it is both soft and ductile and oxidation is normally not an issue.
Tin is often used in the electronics industries because it is a strong conductor and resists corrosion. It has enhanced solderability capabilities that in other instances would be difficult to solder.
Once plated, tin often produces a whitish-grey color that is ideal when you want a matte or dull appearance. However, when desired, tin can look shiny and metallic. It is important to note that tin is FDA approved for use in the food services industry. You should choose electroplating tin because:
- It offers excellent solderability
- It has a strong contact resistance
- It is affordable
- It is non-toxic
- It is a highly effective option for shielding
Tin and Silver Plating Options
If you are torn between tin and silver plating, you should keep in mind that the two should not be used interchangeably. Tin electrodeposits are most often used to provide functional purposes, such as adding corrosion resistance or protection. Tin is the cost-effective option, and it is often plated onto copper. Silver is more expensive than tin, but silver is known to extend the lifecycle of electronic devices. Both materials have some similarities but you should speak to a trained production person to match your specific needs.