We do not give you this on the score of cheapness for large articles, but plating on a small scale is a good experiment in electrolysis, which follows well on electrotyping.
You use the same battery for this experiment, and take a suitable trough for the immersion of the object to be plated. Of course the materials are somewhat more expensive; moreover they are poisonous; therefore keep them safely under your own care. Suppose you have a chain you wish to coat with silver. The substances required for the silvering bath are nitrate of silver and cyanide of potassium. Take a portion of each; dissolve them separately in distilled water, then mix them; when some of the silver will be precipitated, add some more cyanide of potassium, and the silver will be re-dissolved. Keep on adding the cyanide till nearly all the silver is re-dissolved, then stop. Let the solution stand till it gets clear, then pour it into a deep plate or glass vessel. Put in the chain to be coated, having previously attached a shilling to a piece of platinum wire and then to the copper end of the Daniell's battery. To the zinc end join another piece of platinum wire, and attach it to one end of the chain; drop them both into the basin containing the silver bath, but do not let them touch. The chain will soon be covered with silver, and when you think it has sufficient, take it out, dry it, and polish with sifted whiting. If you intend to try your skill on larger objects, they must be immersed in a suitable bath, and suspended in front of a silver plate attached to the copper end of the battery. A series of articles can be done at the same time by suspending them from a metallic rod, which must be in connection with the zinc end of the battery. Fig. 145 shows a suitable arrangement of trough and battery for electro-plating small things.
All objects must be well cleansed before they are immersed in the silver bath. This is done by putting them in a hot solution of soda, to take off all possible grease. Then they must be brushed with pumice-stone, or bath brick very finely powdered; and last of all, they must be well rinsed in clean water.
Fig. 145. - Battery and cell for electro-plating.