Photopaper circuit designs

Discussion in 'Marketplace' started by Robin Mitchell, Sep 5, 2011.

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  1. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2009
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    Hi,

    Is anyone here capable of getting PCB layouts onto photo paper > 600dpi?

    I don't have access to a laser printer to do this for me and will gladly pay someone for this when i need it?

    Many thanks,
    Robin
     
  2. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    I use Gimp. It is not easy to use, but it will access the full resolution of the printer. I also use M/S Paint, the image comes out 6X larger, but when printed with Gimp (assuming it is set up correctly) it comes out to scale.

    My laser printer (which cost around $40 used, but had an original HP laser toner cartridge) can't handle photopaper. It is one of the reasons I went to wax paper.

    How I make PCBs

    Inkjets have the resolution, you may want to consider using a photo technique.
     
  3. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2009
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    Made my first one :D!!!!
    Took long enough ¬_¬

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2011
  4. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    I have found hires images great for helping inspection. Have you ohmed out the following areas marked in red?
     
  5. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2009
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    Dont worry about those bits, i just got the traces a little too close, nothing i cant handle :)
     
  6. Georacer

    Moderator

    Nov 25, 2009
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    How long did it take for the copper to etch? Did you help the etching liquid do its job in some way?

    Did you use a laser printer in the end?

    Keep in mind that you can't go too small on your track width, 1.5mm might pose a limit.
     
  7. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2009
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    It took about 15 min for the copper to etch, i only moved the ferric chloride a little. I used a laser printer and I can get a trace width of less than 0.2mm ;D

    I got a laser printer that does 1200dpi and i dont use cheap photo paper, i use expensive high gloss, Look at my newest board:

    [​IMG]

    I made this one yesterday!

    I have made an even better one today, which is perfect ;)
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2011
  8. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    Yeah, trial and error seems to be the way. You can get people started, but they have to work out the bugs for themselves.

    You using an iron or a laminator?
     
  9. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2009
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    Two things,

    1, can a moderator edit my posts and make the pictures smaller :S

    2, I have the process perfect now, not one error!
    I have a slightly different method, I use an iron for the heating but use a rolling pin from my mums kitchen to apply even pressure. This ensures that all areas are pressed down. (You have to heat the board with the iron for a few seconds first). When you use the rolling pin, GIVE IT ALL YOU'VE GOT!!!

    Most methods say to use cheap photo paper, thats rubbish! I got my self good glossy paper, 170gm or greater, very high gloss. Whats even better is that when it comes to the peeling off stage, most of the paper comes straight off without even soaking in water :)

    Also when you make the boards you get free energy because of a simple circuit that i will sell for £10 lol lol

    But seriously, i will write up a tutorial on the method I use :D

    Many thanks,
    Robin
     
  10. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    I can edit your pictures and make them smaller, the attach them to this post. All you need is M/S paint. You look at attributes, then calculate the amount of percentate to get the side down to 640 pixels.

    More on this when I get home.

    **********************

    OK, you used .jpg, which is great for pictures but not so good for forums. Using M/S Paint the size was 2816 X 2112, to bring it down to 640 on the width 640/2816 = 22.7%, and I used 22% in MS Paint to bring it down.

    The second image was 2048 x 1536, which is 31.3%, so 31% it was.

    You can now link to these images and replace the ones you have. If you don't know how to do this I spell it out here...

    How to Display Attachments Full Size
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2011
  11. Georacer

    Moderator

    Nov 25, 2009
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    Stunning pictures Mitch! Especially if you say that you can make big circuits without having to re-touch them afterwards. Great job!
     
  12. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2009
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    Im still perfecting the technique but i have discovered one more thing. if you use high gloss photo paper, DO NOT soak in water. Instead, let it cool a little but still very warm and peel. It comes straight off (the paper)!

    If you soak in water bits of paper remain, you try to remove them off and end up removing the toner. By keeping the boar hot when peeling (but not so hot that the toner can still melt) the paper cant leave stuff behind on the board :D!
     
    Georacer likes this.
  13. Wendy

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    Mar 24, 2008
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    I would be interested in the rolling pin idea. If you want I could incorporate your technique in my tutorial too, ideas are always good. I will touch up the pictures as needed.

    It was extremely frustrating before I got the laminator. I am sure I'm not alone in this.
     
  14. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2009
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    Wow thanks :D!!!
     
  15. kubeek

    AAC Fanatic!

    Sep 20, 2005
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    All those floating pieces of copper are asking for trouble if you try anything high speed. It is better to either ground them or remove them.
     
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