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If you are going to do anything differently than is normally done, you should understand what you are going to do and why it should work.(*) The essential (but often not sufficient) conditions for successful electroplating by any metal are: The used metal salts/compounds are soluble, so ions can migrate within the solution in applied electrostatic gradient. ...


The standard technique is to copper plate then nickel ,then chromium, if you want chrome. The copper protects the steel then the nickel provides a silver surface color ,normally significantly thinner than the copper.


$\pu{3 V}$ is too high. Kinetics of deposition of $\ce{Cu}$ is saturated, so another electroactive system kicks on, creation of hydrogen. Similarly for anode. Try to evaluate volt-ampere characteristic of the system and stay on the current plateau before gases start to be created. Generally, is is more advantageous to use a power source keeping constant ...

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