Title:
Method of partially electroplating radiator
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A method of electroplating a radiator is provided. A container is disposed on a predetermined plating area of the radiator and an electrolyte containing the plating material is added into the container such that the electrolyte directly contacts the predetermined plating area to form a plating layer thereon.



Inventors:
Gu, Jing-de (Hsin-Chuang, TW)
Liu, Jiang-yan (Hsin-Chuang, TW)
Lin, Hsin-cheng (Hsin-Chuang, TW)
Application Number:
11/437508
Publication Date:
11/22/2007
Filing Date:
05/22/2006
Assignee:
ASIA VITAL COMPONENTS CO., LTD. (HSIN-CHUANG, TW)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
C25D3/22
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
WONG, EDNA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Asia Vital Components Co., Ltd. (YUNG HO, TW)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A method of electroplating a radiator, comprising providing a container corresponding to a plating area of a radiator for holding an electrolyte such that the electrolyte directly contacts the plating area to form a plating layer thereon.

2. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, wherein the electrolyte is held still in the container so that the electrolyte constantly contacts the plating area.

3. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, wherein said container surrounds the plating area and the electrolyte flows through the container continuously and has a constant contact with the plating area.

4. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, wherein the electrolyte comprises a nickel solution.

5. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, further comprising the steps of: performing a cleaning process to clean a surface of the plating area; and performing a reduction process on the cleaned surface of the plating area before contacting the electrolyte with the plating area.

6. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 5, wherein reduction process includes treating the plating area with a zinc solution to remove an oxide layer thereon.

7. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 6, wherein the plating area is treated twice with zinc solution with a step of cleaning the plating area using aqueous nitric acid between the two treatments followed by a cleaning step using water.

8. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 6, wherein the zinc solution held inside the container to contact the plating area.

9. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, wherein the plating area of the radiator comprises a groove.

10. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, wherein the plating area of the radiator comprises a flat surface.

11. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, wherein the container only corresponds to the plating area of the radiator.

12. The method of electroplating a radiator according to claim 1, wherein the container has a smaller dimension compared to that of the plating area of the radiator

13. A method of electroplating a radiator, comprising: cleaning a surface of a predetermined plating area of a radiator; performing a first treatment process to treat the surface of the predetermined plating area with a zinc solution by constantly contacting the zinc solution with the surface of the predetermined plating area to reduce the surface of the predetermined plating area and transferring the zinc solution to recycle; treating the surface of the plating area with aqueous nitric acid; performing a second treatment process to treat the surface of the predetermined plating area with zinc solution to reduce the surface of the predetermined plating area and transferring the zinc solution to recycle; cleaning the surface of the predetermined plating area with water; heating the radiator to dry the radiator; contacting zinc solution to constantly contact the surface of the predetermined plating area to form a zinc layer thereon; and cleaning the zinc layer using water.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a electroplating method, and more particularly to a method of partially electroplating a radiator.

2. Description of Related Art

Conventional copper radiator comprises two structures comprised of different metallic materials, for example, an aluminum structure and a copper base assembled together with a nickel plated layer formed at a conjunction portion between the aluminum structure and the copper base. Furthermore, an adhesive layer, for example, a tin paste is coated thereon.

The method of electroplating a nickel layer includes first submerging the whole radiator structure into a tank containing a zinc solution for electroplating a zinc layer, and then submerging the radiator into a tank containing a nickel solution for electroplating the nickel layer thereon. The nickel layer is thus electroplated on the surface of the zinc layer.

However, only the conjunction portion between aluminum structure and the copper base are required to be plated with nickel layer. Since conventional electroplating method includes submerging the whole radiator into the nickel solution, and therefore not only more material and process time are required, which substantially increase the cost, but also the heat dissipation of the radiator is adversely affected due to the poor heat conduction property of the nickel. The appearance of the nickel is not as good as that of copper.

Thus, it is highly desirable to further improve the heat dissipation effect of the copper radiator.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Accordingly, in the view of the foregoing, the present invention provides a method of partially electroplating a radiator for improving both the heat dissipation effect as well as the appearance thereof.

According to an aspect of the present invention, the electroplating method not only reduces the process time and the production cost but also allows recycling of the electrolyte.

In accordance with above objectives and other objectives, the present invention provides a method of electroplating a radiator including providing a container capable of plating a layer on a predetermined plating area or section of the radiator by contacting the electrolyte to the predetermined plating area or section of the radiator.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

For a more complete understanding of the present invention, reference will now be made to the following detailed description of preferred embodiments taken in conjunction with the following accompanying drawings.

FIG. 1 is a flowchart illustrating a method of electroplating a radiator according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of a container and a radiator according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is an exploded view of a container for plating a layer on a predetermined area or section of the radiator according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is a sectional side view showing while the zinc solution and an electrolyte pass through the container to contact the predetermined area or section of the radiator.

FIG. 5 is view showing a method of electroplating a radiator according to another preferred embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE EMBODIMENTS

Referring to FIG. 1, a flowchart illustrating a method of electroplating on a predetermined plating area of a radiator is described as follows. First, the surface of the predetermined plating area of the radiator is cleaned. Next, the zinc solution is allowed to constantly contact the plating area to reduce the predetermined plating area, and then the zinc solution is transferred for recycling. Next, the predetermined plating area is cleaned with the nitric acid and water. Next, the predetermined electroplating area is once again treated with the zinc solution to reduce the predetermined plating area, and then the zinc solution is transferred for recycling. Next, the predetermined plating area is cleaned with water. Next, the radiator is heated and dried, and then the predetermined plating area is treated with the zinc layer. Next, the zinc layer is cleaned with water.

Hereinafter, the method of electroplating the predetermined plating area of the radiator using the electrolyte containing the zinc solution and the electroplating material is described with reference to FIGS. 2, 3 and 4. A container 12 corresponding to the predetermined plating area of the radiator 11 is mounted on the predetermined plating area 111, and then an electrolyte containing zinc solution and plating material is added into the container 12 such that electrolyte directly contacts the predetermined plating area 111 to form a plating layer thereon.

The plating material according to the above preferred embodiment comprises liquefied nickel for forming a nickel layer on the predetermined plating area 111.

According to an embodiment of the present invention, the above acidic water cleaning process includes flowing the aqueous nitric acid through the container 12 to clean the surface of the predetermined plating area 111, or adding the aqueous nitric acid into the container 12 to directly clean the predetermined plating area 111.

According to an embodiment of the present invention, the above thermal drying process includes placing the radiator 11 in a furnace at a temperature, for example 90° C., until the fluid on the surface of the radiator 11 evaporates and dries. However, it should be noted that the above temperature in the preferred embodiment is not intended for limiting the scope of the present invention, the temperature may vary according to the size of the radiator 11 and or the temperature and humidity of the surrounding environment.

The shape of the container 12 can be of any shape and is not limited to that shown in the Figures. It should be noted that the purpose of the container 12 is merely intended to surround the predetermined plating area 111 for holding the electrolyte containing zinc solution and the plating material directly in contact with the predetermined plating area 111 of the radiator 11. Even though the Figures show the radiator 11 has a groove formed at an end thereof, but this is not intended to limit the scope of the present invention. The predetermined plating area 111 may also have a flat surface.

Referring to FIG. 5, the container 12 corresponds to the predetermined plating area 111 of the radiator 11 such that the electrolyte held therein comes in direct contact with the predetermined plating area, wherein the diameter or dimension of the container 12 is smaller than that of the predetermined plating area 111. At least a through hole 112 is formed in the radiator 11 passing through the plating area 111. The electrolyte containing zinc solution and the plating material may be added into the container 12, where the electrolyte may be held or allowed to flow into the container 12 and out of the through hole 112 continuously contacting the predetermined plating area 111. Because the through hole 112 is substantially smaller than the diameter of the container, and therefore the volume of the electrolyte flowing into the predetermined plating area is more than that flowing out of the through hole 112. Thus, the electrolyte continuously contacts the predetermined plating area 111. After the completion of electroplating process, the electrolyte containing the zinc solution and the plating material can be completely discharged from the container 12 through the through hole 112.

Accordingly, as described above, only the plating area of the radiator may be selectively plated with nickel by contacting the electrolyte, and the remaining portions of the radiator that need not be plated with nickel is contacted with the electrolyte. Thus, not only the used electrolyte can be recycled and the process time can be reduced to reduce the manufacturing cost but also the appearance and the heat dissipation effect of the radiator can be effectively promoted.

While the invention has been described in conjunction with a specific best mode, it is to be understood that many alternatives, modifications, and variations will be apparent to those skilled in the art in light of the foregoing description. Accordingly, it is intended to embrace all such alternatives, modifications, and variations in which fall within the spirit and scope of the included claims. All matters set forth herein or shown in the accompanying drawings are to be interpreted in an illustrative and non-limiting sense.