Bales Metal Surface Solutions hosts ribbon-cutting for two new lines, improving capacity by 100%

Bales Metal Surface Solutions in Downers Grove has replaced the two nickel lines in its 29,000-square-foot facility. The project has doubled the finishing supplier’s nickel line capacity, which leadership estimates will reduce customer lead time by half.

Installing the new nickel lines has expanded Bales’ nickel plating capacity from five to 10 tanks. It also introduced a counterflow rinse and a hoist system designed to accommodate heavier parts.

“In addition to faster turnaround times on nickel plating, customers can expect even better plating quality and consistency, such as color and shininess. The new equipment rinses parts more effectively and provides easier access to tanks for quality checks throughout the day,” said Mike Hill, operations manager.

Steve and Mike Bales, who founded Bales in 1978, devised the new nickel lines almost two decades ago.

“In 2007, my father, Steve, envisioned a plan to continue Bales’ growth through modern equipment. We’re proud to have carried out our family’s dream with these new nickel lines. It’s not exactly how he drew it, but it’s exactly what we need today to continue improving lead times for customers,” said Stacey Bales, president of Bales.

Stacey Bales and Sara Mortensen are the second generation of Bales’ family leaders. They assumed leadership in 2009 after the sudden passing of their father.

Bales provides four engineered nickel coatings that protect metal components against corrosion, abrasion, and sticking:

Electroless Nickel

NICKLON (electroless nickel with polytetrafluoroethylene)

NIBORE (electroless nickel and boron nitride)

Diamond E.N. (electroless nickel with diamond particles)

Bales also provides Hard Chrome and Diamond Chrome plating, plus finishes and other services for preparing and processing metal components for surface finishing. The new nickel lines will allow Bales to continue developing services that meet customer demand.

Bales designed the new nickel lines in partnership with Plating Specialists, Inc. and John Schneider & Associates, Inc. The lines were manufactured and installed by Corrotec, Inc.

Bales Metal Surface Solutions provides engineered surface coatings and finishes that maximize metal part performance. Founded in 1978, Bales has helped thousands of manufacturers worldwide better protect their metal surfaces to improve productivity and cost savings. It supports 10+ industries — including automotive, fasteners, and plastic injection molding — from its 29,000-square-foot facility in Downers Grove, Ill. Bales holds the ISO 9001:2015 certification for quality management and is a certified woman-owned business. Learn more at

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