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Black chrome coating is an often misunderstood term for two different manufacturing techniques:
The real black chrome coating is an electrolytic plating process, in which a chrome coating is created on the surface. In this process a black colour pigment is introduced. The end result is a shiny, black and durable surface finish.
The cheaper black chromating process is an oxidation process, in which the spoke containing chrome and nickel is activated with an acid. These receptive metals are then oxidised with a caustic solution and coloured black. Black oxides are created which are not a metallic chrome. The result is a matt black surface which is more susceptible to wear than the real black chrome coating.