Old Carleton.


Saw a Carleton road bike locked up on Saturday. Probably a mid 60s - 70s model, as the entire frame was chrome plated. Didn't note the model, but the frame needed some tlc judging by the rust pitting particularily on the chainstays etc..
Set me thinking about the lore of plating I'd been told many years ago. Chrome, as we all know, doesn't rust. It's when it gets holed by stones etc. that the ferrous metal underneath corrodes through. Apparently, especially in the days of nickle plating, the frames were electroplated with copper before the nickle to prevent / reduce the chance of the base metal corroding.
So, if this were to happen again, would shiny chrome frames make a comeback I wonder - ? :whistle:

Smokin Joe

Legendary Member
Chrome is not waterproof, hence the nickel plating that quality frame builders finished the metal with first. The surface needs to be roughed up to provide a key for the process which is not good for already very thin tubes and why Reynolds recommended that it not be used on 753 tubesets. It is a quite expensive process and weighs a lot more than paint.

With very few steel frames being produced now and numbers likely to diminish even further in future as the steel fans expire with age it's day is done.
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