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Etching a Printed Circuit Board with the Toner Transfer Method

Etching a Printed Circuit Board with the Toner Transfer Method

When working with electronics, breadboards are a cheap way to put together circuits. Having professional Printed Circuit Boards made can be very expensive in small quantities, but the results not only make projects easier to construct but also make them look fantastic.
There are two ways to etch a PCB: the Toner Transfer method, and the Photo Resist method. This article will examine the former method using common household items. Before you start you will need the following:

Access to a Laser printer.

A sheet of photo gloss paper.

A fibre glass copper coated board.

Ammonium Persulphate.*

A cloths iron.

Plastic containers.

0.8mm 1.0mm and 1.2mm drill bits and a drill.

Pliers

A hacksaw

Acetone or methylated spirits.

Some Fine grit sandpaper or a scotchbrite pad.

The following optional parts will also help improve the results:

A fine artwork knife, or scalpel.

A etch resistant touch-up marker.

A kettle.

A metal file

Some kind of small rotary tool like a Dremel instead of a drill.

A toothbrush

PCB solder-through lacquer.

* Ferric Chloride can also be used. For guides on etching with Ferric Chloride select the link at the bottom of this article.

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