HVOF vs Hard Chrome!
WC/Cr/Co coating has abrasion wear resistance 4 to 5 times higher than hard chrome.
A chromium plating facility is a full commitment to one coating. While a thermal spray facility offers a wide range of materials with coating material tailored to the application, e.g. WC/Co/Cr, WC/Co, Cr3C2/NiCr, WC/Ni coatings, and nickel-based corrosion-resistant alloys.
For plating, about 15 W of energy is needed per square inch. As part size expands, so do the energy costs. For thermal spraying, part size impacts the coating application time, and subject to the process used.
The relative capital cost for setting up facilities with the same production capacity is considerably greater for chrome plating than for thermal spraying.
Hard chrome plating uses toxic acid baths and may cause various health conditions, resulting in some countries no longer supporting this process. HVOF has no major ecological or health & safety concerns.
Hard chrome plating utilizes more than twice the number of process steps compared to thermal spraying. This means more processing time and considerably longer turnaround times for chrome plating than thermal spray.