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Galvanic

The next step is the plating or galvanic. In this step of the process, the stampers which we use to press the records, are produced.

The lacquer with the groove is sprayed with silver, which forms a layer on the lacquer. Than the lacquer with the silver layer is put into an electro-forming bath which bonds a nickel layer onto the silver. If this layer is substantial enough, the nickel layer will be separated  from the lacquer and a first master is ready. This master is called the negative. As the DMM is already a metal plate, we do not need to spray it with silver, the nickel grows directly onto the copper layer.

From the negative a positive is made, in the same way as the negative was made. The negative is put in the electro-forming bath, a nickel layer 'grows' on the negative. After this step the two layers are separated from each other, leaving now not only the original negative but also a positive. The negative is a back-up copy which is archived.

From the positive, the stampers are produced, again in the same electro-forming bath. The stamper is a negative, each record needs two stampers, one for the A side and one for the B side. In this way we are able to develop more than one set of stampers from the same lacquer or DMM. The stampers are used on the presses to actually press the grooves in the vinyl. We can press approximately 1000 to 1500 records with one set of stampers.

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