Black Electroless Nickel

UPDATE (4/16/2021): SPC is no longer offering black electroless nickel plating. Please refer to our coatings page to learn about the other coatings we offer.

Metal plating can be executed effectively without the introduction of an electrical current into a plating solution. An alternative to traditional electroplating is electroless plating, which is the process of depositing a metal onto the surface of a substrate via an autocatalytic reaction. Advantages of electroless plating include the ability to achieve an even coating on the substrate/part surface, greater flexibility in achieving a desired thickness, and the ability for the bath solution to reach holes and other hidden places.

Electroless Plating With Nickel

Electroless nickel has long been a popular plating option due to nickel's ability to provide excellent protection against corrosion and wear. Types of commonly used electroless nickel plating processes include:

  • Low phosphorous- Provides uniform thickness for complex configurations, as well as superior protection against corrosion in an alkaline environment.
  • Medium phosphorous- The most common type of electroless nickel plating service, a medium phosphorus nickel solution is often used when brightening of the substrate is required.
  • High phosphorous- Offers the highest level of corrosion resistance, making it the preferred choice in highly acidic environments typically found in mining and oil drilling.

The Increasing Demand for Black Electroless Nickel Plating Services

In recent years, there has been a growing demand for a black electroless nickel plating process for reasons such as easier parts identification or simply to increase the aesthetic appeal. Developing a suitable black electroless nickel plating process can be difficult, and many companies have tried and failed in their efforts over the years. It took the extensive plating experience of Sharretts Plating Company to develop commercially viable black electroless nickel plating services to meet the requirements of today's manufacturing operations.

SPC: Meeting the Black Electroless Nickel Challenge

Through painstaking effort and by tapping into years of plating industry experience, the metal finishing experts at Sharretts Plating Company have developed a superior black electroless nickel coating we've proudly named "SMITH-EN-BLACK™" after our head laboratory and chief environmental officer. Through a combination of high purity lab grade reagents and a fine-tuning of the ideal bath parameters, SMITH-EN-BLACK enables us to reproduce high workload volumes via our black electroless nickel plating process, even for parts weighing as much as half a ton! Our development of SMITH-EN-BLACK has helped SPC become one of the top black electroless nickel companies in the world.


SMITH-EN-BLACK is essentially a low-phosphorous nickel coating consisting of a minimum thickness equal to or greater than 500µ" (13µm). The corrosion protection capabilities can be further enhanced by applying a 10-13 percent phosphorous nickel coating as a base coat under SMITH-EN-BLACK.

Black Electroless Nickel Meets Today's Manufacturing Requirements

Industries such as solar, automotive and aerospace all have a need for black coatings primarily to meet energy and light absorption requirements. Black electroless nickel can be blackened to provide close to 100 percent light absorption while also offering the superior corrosion protection these industries need. Black electroless nickel plating is also used in the firearms industry to provide an attractive and decorative coating on products such as gun barrels, ammunition clips and other steel gun parts.

Why Choose Black Nickel Plating Services from SPC?

SPC has been providing cost-effective metal plating solutions since 1925. Our black electroless nickel plating services are just another example of our continuous commitment to innovation in the plating industry. Our customer-focused approach enables us to provide customized black electroless nickel plating service for companies in a wide range of industries. Achieving total customer satisfaction is what we strive for with every black electroless nickel plating solution we provide.

Additional Resources:

Contact SPC to Learn More About Black Electroless Nickel Plating Services

Discover what makes SPC the best black electroless nickel plating company. To learn more about how black electroless nickel plating with SMITH-EN-BLACK can improve your manufacturing process and boost your company's bottom line, contact the industrial plating experts at SPC today.


"I would like to thank you for the help you have provided us in developing an electroless nickel plating technique on an unusual substrate. The sample platings you provided show that we should be able to reach our goals. I especially appreciate your willingness to take on an unusual job, with the uncertainties that that entails...We are looking forward to working with you in the future on our plating needs."

– Robert K.