And "well" means nice and clean, here at ZINOX.
I'd like to talk to you about the most modern finish ever for a shower element: the waterproof one. But there are indeed a bunch of different possible options, when talking about finishes for stainless steel.
What are some of the most common finishes for stainless steel, then?
Let's go through them, albeit briefly. And a treat to those of you who shall read until the end.
Highly polished (a.k.a. Supermirror)
Through a careful choice of suppliers you can get your products in a finish that is more than the mere "chromed" brass finish. It is highly polished until it looks like a mirror, and acts like one, indeed.
The funniest thing I have seen doing with such material is to get a piece of scrap metal and make it into a mirror.
The most fascinating effect I've seen about it was when I first visited the ZINOX showroom and one large 400x400 ultra-thin showerhead... just disappeared in front of my eyes.
Check this photo!
Can you see the large 400 x 400 mm shower head?
Scotch-brite® (a.k.a. "brushed")
There are a large number of "brushed" finishes, depending on the graininess used for the brushing procedure.
Now, brushed steel has become a sort of nice standard tans to the classy look and the increased resistance to dirt and manipulation, and the coarser the brush, the more this is true. But, even if this is not really the case in a shower, brushed not lacquered metal can't be employed where food is processed.
Therefore when ordering for "Brushed" you will get the "Scotch-brite®" finish that has all the aesthetic effect of the brush and yet it is so finely brushed that you could eat on it.
See a a close example of the Scotch-brite® finish here:
And here a nice comparison with a polished gold finish:
Talking about "GOLD", not all gold is created equal, and there are two ways you can get that great, luxury finish on your products: galvanic process and PVD process.
You might want to check which one is it, as quality and price of the two are different. The R&D guys are going to prepare a post on the PVD later this month, so stay tuned.
But I might play my chances and spoil something at the end of the post, if you promise you'll read it through there.
When using the Galvanic Process, you are laying down a millimetric-thin deposit of actual gold on the metal. This is an"ancient" process, known (to some extents) to the Greeks, and greatly refined since 1800 in Italy (we kind of have a knack for these kind of things, it seems?).
The result is what we know from jewellery and it looks great. It retains all the shiny glamour and luxury of the original noble metal. Typically, when this kind of plating is used in this context, what you get it the appeal and shiny appearance of gold but it's not 24 K.
Unless you are prepared to pay for it, of course.
The industry also asks for rose gold, which looks great on some "old-style" shower heads.
(Here is an example of this finish, next to the same gold-plated column we saw before for comparison)
Sometimes finishes can be blended together, such as in "shiny brushed bronze". That would be:
galvanic finishing (with bronze)
lacquered with transparent layer (to be shiny)
Something that would absolutely need being seen in real life to fully appreciate the beauty of it:
the allure of the antique (the bronze)
the modernity of the brushed
the glamour of the transparent lacquer (everybody like it when it's shiny!)
Might it be "matt black" or "white", rest assured that the painted showerhead is a real must, appreciated by most players in the industry.
The best-seller award goes to the "black" version. And it's not hard to understand how it comes.
As easy and straightforward as it might seem, there are a number of tricky points in this finish that requires some very special care both in the design and the powder-painting process, characteristics specific to highly-skilled professionals and yet it might very well double the price on some models where the nozzles are not provided by use of "cartridge".
PVD and special coatings
What is the next big thing about finishes in the shower industry, then?
The R&D is preparing a very nice and informative post about this subject, but as treat to having read till this point here is a picture from the footage of a short movie about something truly extraordinary. Can you note what is it?
Talk to you soon! Stay tuned, stay sharp!