Laser additive manufacturing (LAM) is a fabrication technology, which enables production of complex parts from metallic materials with mechanical properties comparable to those of conventionally machined parts. These LAM parts are manufactured via melting metallic powder layer by layer with laser beam. Aim of this study is to define preliminarily the possibilities of using electroplating to supreme surface properties. Electrodeposited nickel and chromium as well as electroless (autocatalytic) deposited nickel was used to enhance laser additive manufactured and machined parts properties, like corrosion resistance, friction and wearing. All test pieces in this study were manufactured with a modified research AM equipment, equal to commercial EOS M series. The laser system used for tests was IPG 200 W CW fiber laser. The material used in this study for additive manufacturing was commercial stainless steel powder grade named SS316L. This SS316L is not equal to AISI 316L grade, but commercial name of this kind of powder is widely known in additive manufacturing as SS316L. Material used for fabrication of comparison test pieces (i.e. conventionally manufactured) was AISI 316L stainless steel bar. Electroplating was done in matrix cell and electroless was done in plastic sink properties of plated parts were tested within acetic acid salt spray corrosion chamber (AASS, SFS-EN-ISO 9227 standard). Adhesion of coating, friction and wearing properties were tested with Pin-On-Rod machine. Results show that in these preliminary tests, LAM parts and machined parts have certain differences due to manufacturing route and surface conditions. These have an effect on electroplated and electroless parts features on adhesion, corrosion, wearing and friction. However, further and more detailed studies are needed to fully understand these phenomena.
Mäkinen, M., Jauhiainen, E., Matilainen, V. P., Riihimäki, J., Ritvanen, J., Piili, H., & Salminen, A. (2015). Preliminary Comparison of Properties between Ni-electroplated Stainless Steel Parts Fabricated with Laser Additive Manufacturing and Conventional Machining. In Physics Procedia (Vol. 78, pp. 337–346). Elsevier B.V. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phpro.2015.11.048