Introduction: How to Make PCB at Home Part 1
Nowadays, we can easily create a high-quality printed circuit, not even a professional quality, but a good quality for hobby projects. at home without any special material.
What is PCB?
A printed circuit board (PCB) mechanically supports and electrically connects electronic components using conductive tracks, pads and other features etched from one or more sheet layers of copper sheets laminated onto a non-conductive substrate.Components are generally soldered onto the PCB to both electrically connect and mechanically fasten them to it. A printed circuit board has pre-designed copper tracks on a conducting sheet. The pre-defined tracks reduce the wiring thereby reducing the faults arising due to lose connections. One needs to simply place the components on the PCB and solder them. Different method to make PCB In our series, I will present 3 different ways to make homemade PCB: Draw a circuit by hand Iron on Glossy paper method Photoresist method
Step 1: PCB Design
The first step of the PCB making is design the board by converting the schematic diagram into a PCB layout. I’ve used the PCB-droid to design the board.
For this part, I’ve made a led blinker circuit with NE555.
Step 2: Drawing
After you finish the design process, you need to print the mirrored layout and cut around. After that, cut a piece of board with the size of the circuit plus about 3-5mm per side. Then polish the surface with some sandpaper and clean it with some alcohol to make a corrosion free surface.
Place an indigo on the copper and put the printed layout on it. Mark the holes with a nail and draw basic sketch from the tracks and the pads then confirm the line with a permanent marker.
Step 3: Etching
You need to be very careful while doing this step.
Take a plastic box and fill it up with some water. Put 2-3 tea spoon of ferric chloride into the water. Dip the PCB into the Etching solution The Fecl3 reacts with the unmasked copper and removes the unwanted copper from the PCB Check every 4-5 minutes how much copper is left on the board When the process has finished, remove it from the solution and wash it You can use a mixture of H2O2(30%) and HCl(10%) for etching in1:5 ration.
DO NOT TOUCH DIRECTLY THE ETCHING SOLUTION USE GLOVES OR FORCEPS!
Step 4: Final Steps
With a little alcohol, or acetone you can remove completely the marker bringing back the copper surface. After that you need to polish the copper to give it a better appearance and for the better soldering. Now you can drill the holes and solder all the components.