Customized Manufacturing PCB Circuit Board
Today I'm going to show you how to make simple customized PCB (printed circuit board). All you need are some materials and tools like: A PCB board, A bottle of Ferric Chloride, A mini drill, A small container, A bottle of thinner and Some plastic tweezers. Making your own circuit board only takes a snap, what you need is 30-45 minutes of time. Now, Let's kick off:
Step 1: Tools & Materials
Here are the tools and material that you are going to need.
- Mini Drill (Dremel)
- Flat Iron
- Laser Printer / Photocopying Machine
- Latex Gloves
- Eye Protection
- Etching Solution (Ferric Chloride)
- PCB Board
- Fine Tipped Marker
- Ruler (optional)
- Magazine Paper / Glossy Paper
- Plastic Tweezers / Plastic Straws
- Small Piece of Cloth
- Sanding Paper
Step 2: Making Your Circuit Board Design
If you already have a PCB layout then there's no problem you can just skip this step and go to the other one, you might as well write your design directly on the board, if you don't have plans doing the printing method. Before you make your own customizes PCB board you should first design your own PCB layout. You can can make your own PCB layout by using a decent PCB designing software. For me the best PCB board design software is Eagle Layout Editor, but for people who are looking for a less complicated software can use Microsoft Powerpoint.
Step 3: Printing Your PCB Layout
When you print your layout be sure to use a Laser Printer or a Photocopying Machine, Inkjet Printers wouldn't work since its ink is soluble with water so it won't transfer its ink on the PCB board. Use any kind of glossy paper, magazine papers would do.
What Paper Should I Use:
- Photo Paper
- Magazine Paper
- Glossy Paper
What Printer Should I Use?
- Laser Printer
- Photocopying Machine
Step 4: Ironing the Printed PCB Layout
Use a laundry iron to iron your printed PCB layout to your board. Ironing the printed layout transfers the ink from the paper going to the PCB board. You need to set your iron's temperature to the highest setting if your paper is thick but if not, set it to the medium setting.
Step 5: Rubbing the Paper Off the Board
You need to soak the board to a container of tap water for about 2-5 mins, or you can rub it will you expose it on running water from the sink. Be sure to wait until the paper on the board becomes soggy, then rub it gently so the ink wont get removed when you rub the paper off the board.
Step 6: Sawing the Excess Board & Sanding It
Saw the excess board with a metal saw. Next you need to sand the edges to smoon the the board with sanding paper, kindly use the finer so you will have a finer finish.
Step 7: Cleaning the Board & Restoring It
Even though you have rubbed the paper off the board there will still be excess paper left on the board, remove it using a very sharp object like the tip of the cutter, the point of a sharp compass or a tooth pick. When you had rub it off or you had sawed the excess board, some of the inked areas had been remove unintentionally, you should restore it with a marker and a ruler.
Step 8: Etching the PCB Board
There are different variety of etching solution but the most common is Ferric Chloride. Get a plastic container, never use any kind of metal container. Pour the etching solution on your plastic container. Leave the PCB board for about 30-45 minutes in the container. After for about 30-45 minutes remove it from the container, leaving it for a long time will etch the ink protected area so please remove it when it's done.
Step 9: Rinsing the Board
Rinse the PCB board with tap water, after etching it in the solution. Be sure to wear gloves when cleaning it. It is advised to use plastic tweezers, please do not use metallic materials like pliers or your tool will end up like mine's, its rusty.
Step 10: Removing the Left Ink
First you should brush the remaining ink with laundry soap after etching the board to expose the copper part of the board, or you could clean it with a small piece of sanding paper (fine) while give it its shiny finish.
Step 11: Drilling the Holes
Drill the board with a mini drill a dremel tool will do. After drilling it rinse it again with water. Be sure to drill it on the copper side, since the copper layout will be your guide where to drill.
Step 12: Your Done !
Be sure to clean it before you solder the components.