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Picture of How to make large PCBs with a Sublimation Machine
In this Instructable I'm going to show you how I use a Sublimation Machine to print and etch large PCBs or multiple board.

 
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Step 1: What is a Sublimation Machine!?

Picture of What is a Sublimation Machine!?
First, 99% of people will be asking "what is a Sublimation Machine".........and its a good question!

A Sublimation Machine is a heat press for transferring onto many flat surfaced items, such as fabric, metal, wood, ceramic & glass, etc.

But, is commonly called a "T-shirt Heat Press" as it is most commonly used for printing onto garments!

They can be easily picked  up on popular auction sites for as low as £80 ($100) for a very basic models.

Step 2: What are you going to need.


As we are basically using the toner transfer technique of PCB making this will be very familiar to many of you who make your own PCBs:

A Sublimation machine.
A laser jet printer.
A Copper laminated board.
A Glossy magazine paper.
A container of water that is large enough to submerge your copper board.
A sheet of craft felt that will cover your copper.

Step 3: Setting up the sublimation machine.

All sublimation machines will have two setting; Time, and Temperature.

For printing PCBs, Iv found the best setting on my machine is 190°C for 60 seconds.....you may need to tweak your settings. 

(Now this is one of the huge advantages with this technique, sure you can print large PCBs with just using a domestic iron and the  toner transfer method.....but can you print upto 38X38CM baroads in 60 seconds with a domestic iron, no!)

Step 4: Let's make sandwiches!

Picture of Let's make sandwiches!
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Right, lets go!

Step 1: Print your artwork onto a sheet of glossy magazine paper.
Step 2: Place your copper board copper side up.
Step 3: Place your artwork on-top of your copper board.
Step 4: Place the sheet of craft felt onto of the artwork and copper board.
Step 5: Press in the machine for 60 seconds, at 190°C.
aloya32 months ago

IcecreamTerror,

First off, thank you for this awesome tutorial! Your boards look fantastic.

Do you have a preferred method for double sided copper boards? I have all the similar tools (including a heat press). After withdrawing the boards from a water bath and removing the remnant magazine paper; the traces look noticeably blurry. Could this be due to excessive heat? Any advice will help. Cheers!

icecreamterror (author)  aloya32 months ago

Hello aloya3,

Are you using a bit of felt on top of the paper? I only ask as I get really blurry lines if I don't use it. you could also try using a little less pressure and heat.

For double sided, I used photoshop to put a space the same size as the thickness of my board between both sided and fold along those lines and put it the press for seconds each size.

zeem4112 months ago

Icecreamterror are you the creator this images if yes can i take the permission to use one of them .

icecreamterror (author)  zeem4112 months ago
yes, help yourself!

Kind regards
Brook

Thank You So Much

gada8882 years ago
awesome.
icecreamterror (author)  gada8882 years ago
lol thanks