Homebrew Printed Circuit Boards

I’ve started making my own PC boards. I spent a lot of time perusing the archives of the Homebrew PCB Yahoo group and am using the toner-transfer method with a cheap Samsung laser printer. I tried using the Pulsar paper but unfortunately it doesn’t work with my printer. I have obtained very good results with Epson Glossy Photo Paper (yes, the stuff made for inkjet printers) and a GBC Personal Laminator. Here’s a photo of my most recent board (click the little image to see a full-sized one):

To give you a sense of scale, there are pads and holes for an 8-pin DIP near the lower-left corner. The square SMT array near the center is for a 64-pin TQFP Atmel microcontroller. It’s a double-sized board but the other side is less interesting; it’s mostly just a ground plane.

I found a couple of traces that weren’t quite complete because I scratched the toner but I bridged them with solder. I’m quite pleased with the results. I’d still use a commercial fabrication house if I had to do more than a couple of the same PC board, but for one-offs I’ll definitely do them by hand.

By adam

Go ahead, try to summarize yourself in a sentence or two.

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