Introduction: 2-Layer Circuit Boards Using Laser Cutter / Chemical Etching

I've kind of been obsessed with trying to make circuit boards on my laser cutter since I got it.  Other people had already done this by using spray paint as resist - then laser-etching the paint off non-trace portions of the board.  This process still requires chemical etching - which I've been trying to avoid.

I had some success several months ago - making crude PCBs by laser cutting thin steel - but those boards aren't good enough for surface mount components or anything complicated.

So - if I can't make good boards without chemical etching - I figured maybe I could use chemicals in conjunction with the laser cutter to make some decent 2-layer boards.

After a few failures - I came up with the process documented in the video.  It works pretty well!  I suspect if streamlined a bit - you could go from Eagle to working board in under 90 minutes.

My first project is a demo board for the ATtiny43u - a nifty little microcontroller that uses a voltage booster to run on as little as 0.7 volts.  The booster can even power small external devices requiring a higher voltage - like an LED.

More resources for this project at: http://nothinglabs.blogspot.com/2013/05/2-layer-circuit-boards-using-laser.html

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Bio: Hi, I'm Rich Olson (nothinglabs.com). I sell cloud chambers for viewing radiation, make robots and dev software. If you need something prototyped - I ... More »
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