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PICList Thread
'Making PCB Boards'
1998\12\08@195943 by Sean Breheny

face picon face
Hi All,

Tony Nixon recently posted a URL to his own page on making PCBs

I have always had mixed luck with etching my own PCBs but I tried Tony's
method and I want to say that it worked VERY well.

At first, I didn't think his method would work because I had tried ALMOST
exactly what he proposed in various forms before with only limited success
(the etching would take FOREVER, or some parts would etch completely and
begin to eat into the traces before the other part got started at all,
etc). I even tried bubble agtitation with uneven results. The KEY point
from Tony's method is to KEEP THE BOARD off the bottom of the container and
keep the face to be etched horizontal so that gravity can help keep fresh
etchant near the surface. No heating or bubbles necessary. I even etched a
double sided board by just flipping it over several times to give each side
time facing down. Each side etched very quickly (abt. 10 mins versus easily
40 mins before).

Thanks Tony!


| Sean Breheny                  |
| Amateur Radio Callsign: KA3YXM|
| Electrical Engineering Student|
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Personal page:  Phone(USA): (607) 253-0315 ICQ #: 3329174

1998\12\08@230829 by Tony Nixon

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Sean Breheny wrote:
> Hi All,
> I have always had mixed luck with etching my own PCBs but I tried Tony's
> method and I want to say that it worked VERY well.

The simplest methods ususally do ok ;-)

I've been playing around with PCB's a bit more and I am going to ammend
the page slightly when I get time.

Best regards


Multimedia 16F84 Beginners PIC Tools.

1998\12\09@101822 by lilel

We built a nice homebrew etch tank.  I went to the hardware store
and bought an icemaker tray, a plastic box about 8" deep, 8" wide and
6" long.  Made some racks out of plastic sheet and glued them in with
silicone rubber.  These hold the PC boards vertical.  Then I put a
length of fiberglass mesh tubing in the bottom and ran an air line to
it.  This tubing is porous, so it makes a pretty good bubbler.
Filled it with about a half gallon of ferric chloride.

I placed the whole thing in a rubbermade tub with a lid, to contain
splashes.  I aim a hairdryer through a hole in the side, and heat the
whole mess to about 45C before etching.  There is a thermometer
hole in the top to check etchant temperature.  Etches a typical board
in 5 minutes.

For safety, I use big rubber gloves and goggles when around this
thing, and I put it under a fume hood.  At home, you should just use
it outside.
-- Lawrence Lile

"Nyquist was an optimist."

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