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PICList Thread
'[EE]: Supplier of single-sided PCB prototypes'
2004\06\10@143303 by Paul Hutchinson

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Tag fixed :)

> -----Original Message-----
> [spam_OUTPICLISTTakeThisOuTspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU]On Behalf Of Matthew Brush
> Subject: Re: Supplier of single-sided PCB prototypes
> I wonder if there is a company that will make single sided boards with
> NON-translucent boards? I've been looking all over for this stuff, you
> know the kind of board that many consumer devices (thru-hole) have where
> the top layer is shiny and you can't see the traces through the top? It
> seems like all the companies do those semi-transparent baords that look
> like they were etched at home.

If the color is brown (shades range from tan to chocolate) then it is most
likely a phenolic laminate like XPC or FR2. These types of PCB laminate are
most often used in high volume, low cost consumer products (i.e. VCR's,

Last time I looked (many years ago) Radio Shack Catalog #: 276-1499 is a tan
colored phenolic 2-Sided Copper-Clad PC Board.

If the color is green, blue, red or, orange then it is most likely normal
FR4 (the translucent material) with one or more solid copper internal planes
and a colored solder mask (i.e. PC motherboard, PCI card).

IMHO, FR4 is best mechanically and electrically, XPC and FR2 are only used
where lower cost in volume is needed (phenolic PCB's are often punched
instead of drilled/routed).

Here's a couple links with some good info.
The PCB Laminate FAQ

Hope this helps,

PS - non-translucent is usually called opaque :-)

> Any ideas, either blank boards, or a company that uses this stuff? I
> can't tell from the digikey catalog if they have any or not, I HATE not
> being able to see exactly what I'm buying.
> Thanks.  Peace.
> MJ Brush

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