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DIY PCB The Easy Way

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  • Pete Basel
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    Just curious, what model is that CNC router?

    Can it hold more than one bit?

    Leave a comment:


  • neildavis
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    Originally posted by hongrn View Post
    There are many methods to DIY PCBs on the web and on youtube...
    There was a nice article about 35 years ago that described a very easy method where you use shellac in a Rapidograph as etch resist. I guess you can still buy drafting pens, but it turns out paint pens work just as well, and they are easy to find at your local craft store. Those permanent markers aren't very effective as etchant resist, but the paint pens are excellent. I've made many boards using this method, and I still think it's the easiest way to make quick boards at home. The article is here: https://archive.org/stream/radio_ele...e/n55/mode/2up . It's from their famous author series :D.

    Leave a comment:


  • philthien
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    I have a small desktop CNC router and have often though of making boards where I'd leave almost all the copper, I'd just remove enough copper (the width of a bit) to separate the traces, does that make sense?

    The problem of course is that giant planes of copper can be difficult to solder but maybe I could make solder pad islands.

    If anyone is interested in experimenting with this, let me know.

    Leave a comment:


  • PWR RYD
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    I've fab'd a couple of DIY PCB's in the past using the trace and pad tape Radio Shack used to sell. That was a pain and anywhere the tape overlapped you had the potential for etching agent bleed through. Your idea and John's suggestion look like a much better way to go.

    Leave a comment:


  • johnk...
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    If I may make a suggestion to the process. Instead of marking the holes and drawing the traces on a piece of paper, 3) take the PCB board and cover the copper side with a layer of masking tape. 4) Mark the holes on the draw out the traces on the masking tape side. 5) With an X-acto knife or razor blade cut and removed the tape so the traces are exposed. 5) Spray the PCB with black lacquer spray paint (like Krylon). 6) remove the remaining masking tape exposing the unpainted copper. 7) Etch the PCB. 8) Wipe down the PCB with a rag soaked in lacquer thinned to remove the paint from the traces.

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  • Navy Guy
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    Really great tutorial, Hong! And very professional looking.

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  • Rory Buszka
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    You should post this to Instructables. It's a good tutorial.

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  • hongrn
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    ...and it looks a heck of a lot better than this previous job!
    Attached Files

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  • hongrn
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    17. Drill holes, solder components, and attach standoffs. Now you can have a professional looking PCB for small electronic projects, or even for small crossover boards.
    Attached Files

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  • hongrn
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    14. Pour the Ferric Chloride etching solution in a plastic container with lid, and warm the solution in a microwave for 20 seconds.

    15. Completely immerse the PCB in the etching solution, gently agitate for 15-20 minutes, and check to ensure that the etching action is complete.

    16. Thoroughly rinse using running water.

    17. Dry PCB, then gentle rub with steel wool to bring copper trace to a shine.

    16. The final product should like like the pic below.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by hongrn; 10-18-2015, 10:48 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • hongrn
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    12. Once cool, slowly peel off the photographic paper from the copper plate.

    13. Soak the whole PCB in hot water for 20 minutes, then use a scrub sponge to remove all remaining traces of paper. Do not scrub too hard, or you risk removing the black traces as well.

    13. Use a permanent marker to retouch black areas that did not come off the photographic paper properly. You should end up with something like the pic below.
    Attached Files

    Leave a comment:


  • hongrn
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    7. Cut a piece of single sided copper clad PCB to the desired size. Use the fine steel wool to remove any oxidation and bring the copper to a nice shine. Use acetone on a paper towel or cloth to clean all oil residues from the copper.

    8. Turn off the steam on the iron, and heat it to the maximum level.

    9. Apply the iron on the copper plate and heat it for a full 60 seconds.

    10. While the copper plate is still hot, apply the photographic paper with the black traces on the plate. Apply the iron with good pressure on the photographic paper for another 60 seconds.

    11. Let cool completely.
    Attached Files

    Leave a comment:


  • hongrn
    replied
    Re: DIY PCB The Easy Way

    5. Scan the traces into a Paint program or Photoshop, if available. Use the "Invert" function to turn the black dots white, and use the "Fill" function to paint the traces black.

    6. Print the final schematic traces on glossy photographic paper, the same paper used to print photos from digital cameras.
    Attached Files

    Leave a comment:


  • hongrn
    started a topic DIY PCB The Easy Way

    DIY PCB The Easy Way

    There are many methods to DIY PCBs on the web and on youtube, but I came with a quickie way because I didn't want to learn another computer program. I needed to do a better job on the Texas Instruments Soft Start module I have been using for my amplifier builds, so here it goes, step by step.

    Supplies needed: perforated board, single sided copper clad PCB, small hacksaw to cut board to desired side, hot iron, acetone, fine steel wool, glossy photographic paper.

    1. Layout components on perforated board (old board for illustration purposes).

    2. Remove components and drill slightly larger holes on perforated board.

    3. Use a sharp pencil and mark the holes on a piece of paper.

    4. Start drawing the traces to connect the components according to the schematic.
    Attached Files
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