Removal of copper, nickel, and zinc ions from synthetic electroplating rinse water was investigated using cationic exchange resin (Ceralite IR 120). Batch ion exchange studies were carried out to optimize the various experimental parameters (such as contact time, pH, and dosage). Influence of co-existing cations, chelating agent EDTA on the removal of metal ion of interest was also studied. Sorption isotherm data obtained at different experimental conditions were fitted with Langmuir, Freundlich, Redlich–Peterson, and Toth models. A maximum adsorption capacity of 164 mg g−1 for Cu(II), 109 mg g−1 for Ni(II), and 105 mg g−1 for Zn(II) was observed at optimum experimental conditions according to Langmuir model. The kinetic data for metal ions adsorption process follows pseudo second-order. Presence of EDTA and co-ions markedly alters the metal ion removal. Continuous column ion exchange experiments were also conducted. The breakeven point of the column was obtained after recovering effectively several liters of rinse water. The treated rinse water could be recycled in rinsing operations. The Thomas and Adams–Bohart models were applied to column studies and the constants were evaluated. Desorption of the adsorbed metal ions from the resin column was studied by conducting a model experiments with Cu(II) ions loaded ion exchange resin column using sulfuric acid as eluant. A novel lead oxide coated Ti substrate dimensionally stable (DSA) anode was prepared for recovery of copper ions as metal foil from regenerated liquor by electro winning at different current densities (50–300 A cm−2).