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Photosensitive PCB supplies (AUSTRALIA)

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I'm finding a desire of late to restart doing what I used to do a hell a lot of back in the 80's (Am I really that old?)

That is making one off PCBs.

In the past it was relatively easy to obtain Riston coated boards, and 3M made a nice UV sensitive negative film. Some alkaline solutions and a UV box was all you needed, along with the good ol ferric chloride.

Is this stuff still around?
What are people using these days if not?
Is there a good supplier in *Australia*?

The main reason I lost interest in the past was the hole drilling drove me insane, but these days SMD technology is the go, and guess what minimal holes compared to back then ;D

Not much has changed really. The primary alternatives are toner transfer and milling, each with their own ups and downs. There is an alternative to FeCl that I use to keep things a bit cheaper, but it takes more work and is probably not worth the trouble unless you're broke.

It looks like farnell has a few photoresist boards, but the prices seem high to me. I've never shopped photoresist stuff for price. I'm sure the local folks will know where to send you.

I checked my favorite PCB supplier (abcfab on ebay, based in the US) and it isn't immediately apparent whether they do photoresist or international shipping, though I remember they once did ship internationally. If you decide to ask, the fellow to contact would be Bill and you can reach him through ebay or via email at abcfab yahoo. They've got all sorts of different materials, colors, thickness, copper weights, etc. for a reasonable price, which is something I never thought I'd see! He's been a help to the hobbyists here, so I thought I'd plug him a bit.  ;)

Hope that helps some :)

one twist now is you can make your own LED UV boxes in old scanners but it can be like 10 hours work to build a small one

World Wide Electronics in Perth sell Kinsten brand Presensitised PCB. I've been using the stuff for years without trouble.


* Use the Kinsten developer crystals, not generic stuff.
* Use normal 'cool white' fluoro tubes for the exposure, blacklight/germacidal lamps are not necessary.
* Any transparent/translucent paper is ok for the artwork. I use an old roll of translucent plotter paper.
* If you're making a large board, it must be weighed down with something heavy to keep it flat during the exposure.
For etching I use Ferric Chloride and two plastic trays. Fill one tray 1/3rd full of hot water, and the other tray with enough Ferric Chloride to cover the PCB. Put Blutack on the corners of the PCB if it's double sided. Put the etchant tray inside the hot water tray then rock it back and forth for 10 minutes or so.

Paper phenolic is my favourite material for single sided boards, it's much easier to cut and drill than fiberglass.


Now that's what I'm talking about, a reasonable price for the coated boards.  :)

Looks like a damn good supplier of bits, shame they are over in Perth, would be worth a visit.

Roger on all the tips.
I was making double sided s100 boards in the past, and registration of top to bottom is crucial on that sort of size.
As for clamping, the best bet is two sheets of glass either side of the DS sandwich, clamped with bulldog clips.
You can then easily flip over for the opposite side exposure.

Best paper for direct exposure back in the 80's was teleprinter paper - real thin, used along with a carbon sheet and a dot matrix printer very good results could be had.
This was still via a negative acting 3M scotchcal product.

Hmmm the old plotter / drafting mylar. Is that any good in an inkjet.....

I prefer the FR4 fibreglass, it is simply just more robust and I really prefer the appearance, all personal taste of course  ;D


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