Just came back from the chroming factory and left Threepio there. In about 1-2 weeks time it will be spray chromed. The process used is very similar to the Spectrachrome system, which is a 3 step progress. First a base layer (primer) is applied, then an intermetidate coat is applied (this layer gives the actual silver-chrome like reflective finish). Finally, a top coat (protective layer) is applied, in which color can be added. This is basically a clear coat with some color tint to it to create the final “gold” effect. For silver, this top coat does not require any color to be added. As probably mentioned before, spray chroming ended up being almost twice the price as normal vacuum metallizing. However, the effect will be much better, actually, spray chroming is the best method to be chosen, and the finish is close to what you see used on automobiles. Compared to normal VM, spray chroming do not have any disadvantages at all, except the price of course. It’s much more durable, and one do not need to worry about ‘orange skin’ effects which tend to be a problem for vacuum metallization.
At last, after over 1 year, it’s Threepio’s time to shine! I chose a slightly silverish golden tint for the right leg instead of the pure silver one. I am yet to see the results, so I cannot comment on this choice at this state.
Goodness gracious me, I am excited to pick him up! Hold on for updates folks!