How do I get an estimate on the cost?

It is very difficult over the phone or by e-mail to give an accurate estimate of cost and time required to restore/refinish an item. We can usually give you a a general cost and time line, but until we actually have the item in front of us, we can not give a precise estimate.

How long will it take?

The time to complete a job depends on many factors: existing backlog in the shop and the complexity of the particular job. Time of the years also plays a small factor in the scheduling of work. We also do have times when large projects will cause delays. Your job may also be delayed due to strict standards. If we are not satisfied with the results of a plating job, we will automatically redo it, however, this takes additional time.

Normally items that only need to be polished have a turn around time of 2 weeks. Items being restored, plated and/or repaired will extend this time. At the time we give you an estimate you will be told the approximate completion date.

If you have a special requirement please give us a call, as we can usually work around some time constraints.

Will it decrease or increase the value?

Generally when restoring an item back to its original condition the value of an item will remain the same or increase. We have on staff experts that will advise you what is the best for your particulars item and consult with you on a course of action.

There are a few instances when we advise against refinishing. Certain items just are not worth refinishing, or they should remain in an untouched state. When these items enter our shop, we give our honest opinion of how far to go. Many times, we do only what is necessary and no more than that.

Is my heirloom worth restoring?

This can be a complex question. The answer usually falls into two categories: the piece is irreplaceable or it is or will be valuable. Something can be "irreplaceable" in different ways. You may have a drawer handle that is no longer made or very often you will find "They just don't make them like they used to."

Irreplaceable value and sentimental value are one of the main reason we fix/restore many items In the case of an antique, you are probably enhancing the value of it and safe guarding it for the future.

With a repair such as putting a foot back on a teapot, these jobs are inexpensive compared to the value of the tea set.

How long will it last?

Plating: Our silver plate should last a good twenty years. The same applies to our brass, copper, and gold plating. Keep in mind that if something is solid brass or sterling silver, it does not require plating, just a professional cleaning and polishing.

Lacquering: Our Lacquer is a clear coating which is applied after an item has been refinished. The purpose of it is to preserve the finish and prevent tarnishing which occurs on brass, silver, and copper finishes. It has pros and cons and we leave it to the customer to decide which is best. We recommend it for lighting, brass hardware, and many items which are strictly decorative. You should have many years of freedom from polishing and it is removable when necessary. We do not recommend it for any items which will contain food, water, or live plants. It is also impractical for many silver items. This is a case by case decision which we will be glad to discuss with you. It should be noted, however, that unlike our other services, we will not warranty lacquering.

What is electroplating?

Re-plating is renewing the surface of your item with the appropriate metal, silver, gold, pewter, brass, through an electromagnetic process. Re-plated items have "Like New" condition. We plate silver, brass, copper, nickel, and gold.

The process of electroplating is fairly simple. To start with, a negative charge is placed on the object that will be plated. The object is then immersed in a salt solution of the metal that will be used to plate the object. From there, it’s simply a matter of attraction; the metallic ions of the salt are positively charged and are attracted to the negatively charged object. Once they connect on the surface of the object being plated, the positively charged ions revert back to their metallic form again and you have a newly electroplated object. Normandy Metal can electroplate Brass, Copper, Nickel, Silver and Gold.

Controlling the thickness of the electroplated object is generally achieved by altering the time the object spends in the salt solution. The longer it remains inside the bath, the thicker the electroplated shell becomes. The shape of the object will also have an effect on the thickness. Sharp corners will be plated thicker than recessed areas. This is due to the electric current in the bath and how it flows more densely around corners.

Before electroplating an object, it must be cleaned thoroughly and all blemishes and scratches should be polished. As mentioned, recessed areas will plate less than sharp corners, so a scratch will become more prominent, rather than being smoothed over by the plated material.

The process of electroplating began at the beginning of the 20th century and continues to evolve today. Many common objects such as tin cans are actually electroplated steel with a protective layer of tin.

Contact us for more information about our services.

Normandy Metal Refinishers has become the leader in complete metal restoration. With three generations of knowledge to call upon, we have unquestionable experience in restoring metal articles to their original splendor.