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We enjoyed this (sponsored) segment from Make about etching circuit boards. Like Collin, we got our start etching boards we found on the web, at first with toner transfer and later UV photo masking. We didn’t know how the circuits worked, but it was still exciting to build something cool.
Our current method for single-sided prototype boards is about the same as in the video, but we use inkjet masks. Usually a mix of all ink colors, often called high quality black, has better UV resistance than black ink alone. We expose the board for 1 minute and 28 seconds under a tanning lamp from a thrift shop.
This portrait of Abe Lincoln etched onto a PCB is too fun to miss. We’ve hidden signatures, graffiti, and love notes in the copper of PCBs. How do you sign your boards?
We go through a lot of prototype PCBs, and end up with lots of extras that we’ll never use. Every Sunday we give away a few PCBs from one of our past or future projects, or a related prototype. PCBs by Seeed Studio.
This is the final version of the PCB for the USB infrared remote control receiver/transmitter. This IR hacking tool can visualize infrared signals on a Java logic analyzer, record and replay infrared signals, and decode them.
You can get an assembled USB IR Toy for $20, including worldwide shipping.
We’re giving away two PCBs this week, this is the second. Just ask for it in the comments.
We go through a lot of prototype PCBs, and end up with lots of extras that we’ll never use. Every Sunday we give away a few professionally-made PCBs from one of our past or future projects, or a related prototype.
This week we’re giving away free PCBs for our powerful new embedded web platform. The Web Platform is available as a kit for $35, including worldwide shipping. Seeed Studio will assemble yours for $5 more.
Instructables user ArduinoFun shows how to etch PCBs at home using a positive photo-resist. This method involves printing the PCB design on an inkjet transparency, exposing it under a UV light, developing in a basic solution, then etching in an acid.
Do you etch your own PCBs? What methods have you tried?
This is exactly how we etch prototype PCBs. Some of our tips and tricks are listed after the break.