Make your Own PCBs for your R/C stuff - RC Groups
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Jun 04, 2004, 07:06 PM
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Make your Own PCBs for your R/C stuff

Hi all.

If you´re interested in building some projects but doesn´t know how to make your PCBs, here´s the solution for doing it at home with NO complicated stuff like guys publish around. Hints are for FREE..
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Jun 04, 2004, 08:50 PM
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vintage1's Avatar
That's excellent. I had thought to print onto a transparency and use photoresist, buut that is even EASIER.

That should go in the 'hot links' sticky thread.
Jun 04, 2004, 09:53 PM
Registered User
Never made a pcb before, but this looks easy enough for me to try. Thanks for the nice tutorial.
Jun 05, 2004, 01:50 AM
high-speed freak
opualuan's Avatar
I've tried this, even with paper meant to do this. I even have a $300 press meant to transfer the image to the pcb.

it doesn't work for me.

only part of the image ever sticks, I don't know why it looks so easy for this guy.
Jun 05, 2004, 02:01 AM
Registered User
Mr.RC-CAM's Avatar

Home etched boards using iron on transfers:

It isn't easy for me either. Simple single sided boards with large traces are not too bad, but even so it is still a messy and troublesome thing to do.

My advice: Be sure the board is PERFECTLY clean (don't even think of touching it), wear old clothes, and expect to ruin or stain something that will pizz off your wife.

My hat is off to those of you that are good at kitchen sink etches!

Jun 05, 2004, 01:10 PM
Registered User
There is an easier way to do it.
Try this site. They have precoated pcb boards and all the other things needed.
I can usually have a small board finished ready to solder with holes drilled within 30 minutes of the transparancy coming off my printer. Very easy to do after you've done it a few times and are set up.
Jun 05, 2004, 01:22 PM
Thats NOT indestructible
j8m8l's Avatar
I have used a similar technique several times with perfect results.
The key is in using INKJET glossy photo paper.
Some people have found that glossy magazine paper (ie Time) works well too, just use a page with as little colour as possible so you can see it toner!

Jun 05, 2004, 01:36 PM
Registered User
The ideal medium is A4 overhead projector transparancies available at most large news agencies or Stationary stores. ask for laser printer compatable ones as they take the high temperature of a Laser printer better without distorting. For a printer I use an old HP Laserjet4.
But its suprising what you can get away with. Generally forget about using Inkjet printers.
Jun 05, 2004, 03:02 PM
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lovefool's Avatar
I use very fine sandpaper ( waterproof 2000 ) to clean copper board. I have tired scotch brite, more rough sandpaper but this is perfect for me. When I used 200 grit of sandpaper, it have found several cut of pattern after etching. ( can't see it w/o magnifying glass. )

I have never tried photo paper, but I love press-n-peel from . Toner transfter system's paper type didn't work well for me. Also I use home-made cheap etching solution. Muratic acid from Lowe's and Hydrogen peroxide from phermacy. I heard sulfuric acid for car battery works.

I use HP4050 Laser printer with normal fuse temp. I have tried lower setting of fuse, but normal setting was better.
Jun 05, 2004, 05:28 PM
The reviewer
XJet's Avatar
Originally Posted by lovefool
Toner transfter system's paper type didn't work well for me. Also I use home-made cheap etching solution. Muratic acid from Lowe's and Hydrogen peroxide from phermacy. I heard sulfuric acid for car battery works.
You don't want to use an acid for etching.

An acid reaction will produce bubbles of gas which act to lift the resist from the PCB and thus produces a very irregular edge and the complete loss of thin traces.

*Real* echants, like ferric chloride or amonium persulfate work produce a chemical reaction that produces no gassing so the resist is not lifted and a very sharp edge (thus preserving narrow traces) is produced.

Although it's messy and stains like hell, I still use ferric chloride in preference to amonium persulfate -- mainly because a given amount of solution lasts a lot longer and it doesn't have to be heated to get a quick etch.
Jun 06, 2004, 01:54 AM
Registered User
lovefool's Avatar
XJet - thank you for your comment. Actually I have never used a real enchant. When I started PCB making, I have found this home-made enchant on someone's homepage, and I was satisfied with this. I believe etching in this enchant is faster too. Since etching time is short, I usually use chopsticks to move PCB constantly in the enchnat. ( Yes, I see bubbles ) I discard enchant everytime after etching, but it cost a few cents per use. ( $5~$7 for 1Gal Muratic acid, and $1 for one bottle of hydro peoxicide)
Jun 06, 2004, 03:56 AM
Registered User
If you coat the overhead projector film with PVA fiberglass release agent then print on the PVA side the lazor toner comes away cleanly in water -the pva disolves in water .
Jun 06, 2004, 05:33 PM
Registered User
OK one question for all you smarties! Whats a pcb??
Jun 06, 2004, 06:19 PM
Registered User
Hey hey, I know this one. Lemme have it guys !

Well, it is not Polychlorinated Biphenyls -that's a bad bad chemical.

It is -drum roll please- Printed Circuit Board.

sorry. couldn't resist. pun intended
Jun 07, 2004, 03:21 AM
Registered User
KOEZE's Avatar
Tried it once with Epson glossy inkjet photo paper. Results were very decent.
I'll try the pva trick once too.
The trick is AFAIK to use the right type of toner. I know that the original HP toner works good. Many of the refill cartridges appear to work less.

Print on the darkest setting to get the best coverage. Correct minor errors with touch up. and don't touch the part of the paper where the traces will be. The same applies to the pcb. Any trace of grease and the toner will not bind.