Lincoln Key Fobs Case Study
The Tier 1 supplier of the Ford Motor Company was in search of a company to create and supply chrome plating for the key fobs of their Lincoln vehicles. They needed a company that had the ability to plate only selected areas on the part while not compromising the fob’s functionality and sleek design. SAT created the process to chrome plate the fobs and meet high-volume automotive quality standards.
As a supplier, we needed to provide copper antenna functionality, while also maintaining a high-quality, decorative finish. This finish required meticulous plating that was only found on selective portions of the key fob. The final product was required to have superior adhesion for the plated finish to ensure quality was retained over longer periods of time, consistent and reliable product performance, and dependable supply and creation.
Our plan was to plate the key fob in two halves. The top half of the fob would be plated with the copper plate and would have a finish of Ford “Blackstone” SM 933, commonly known as “black chrome.” The bottom half would also have the “Blackstone” finish. Each part of the key fob would be multi-shot molded, which meant we had to fabricate plating racks and develop a plating cycle that ensured only one type of polymer would be plated.
Our depth of knowledge and dynamic plating experience afforded us the ability to execute this demanding project and ensure high-quality appearance and performance for the key fobs.
The most challenging aspect of this job was mass producing the key fobs. To successfully deliver and meet demands we designed and produced racks specially created for Ford that would mass produce the top and bottom halves of the key fob. We then produced a written plan that would chart every step of our production process, the materials used, and the amount of time each step would take. Finally, we implemented a quality control plan that ensured every minute detail for every single key fob lived up to the quality of standard we have set for ourselves here at SAT Plating.