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Peche

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Hello everyone!

I have been lurking this forum for a week or so, and i decided to join the community today. I am from Chile and my english isn't the best so i apologize in advance for any mistake in this post.

I want to build a CNC with a laser to make printed circuit boards, i know how to work with the electronic needed but i don't know much about lasers. I have done some research in this forum and the internet but i still have some doubts, however, i will investigate a little further before asking openly in the forum.

I have already read the stikies for this forum so i tried to make this post as correct as posible and also filled some of the information in my profile but i would appreciate someone telling me if i missed something.
 

Hap

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Good intro! Welcome to the forums :)

-Alex
 

Laser Chick

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Hello Peche! Welcome to the forum. No worries as your English is great :)
Are you looking to do custom PCBs of 1 or 2 wafers using thin copper clad boards or production runs of 20 or more using heavier gauge boards?
Are they going to be through hole, SMT or a combination of both technologies? Are you going to want to create the holes with the laser? If so you are going to need a pretty powerful externally powered and cooled laser. If you go SMT then you don't have to deal with holes unless you are going to be mounting mechanical hardware, connectors and so forth. It can be done of course but it is a project for sure.
Have fun and be safe!!
 

Peche

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Thank you all for your comments!

I want to make isolation routing for small PCBs primarily for prototypes. My plan is to paint the copper with black paint then burn some of the paint away with a laser to make the routes and pads and then etch the board. This is mainly for SMD components so i don't want to make the holes with the laser, if i have to use any through hole element or some connector i don't mind drilling the holes manually.

I'm still not sure which laser will do the job, i have seen several posts asking similar questions but i have not found a direct answer. I plan to gather the info i have found and make a new thread asking for this.
 

Laser Chick

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It mainly is dependent on the thickness of the clad/waffer and the travel rate you desire. You will need a minimum of around 20 watts. Remember to not go too low in power because if your rate of travel is too slow you get heat distortion.
Do you use something like G-code, DFX or DMA?
Are you using black paint to aid in the absorption of the beam?
How are you planning to remove the paint afterwards without damaging the traces/pads?
 

Peche

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For the moment i pretend to use G-code as i'm not familiar with other formats yet.
The process i want to follow is in this post ( Making PCB's with a diodelaser ) so the black paint is mainly to coat the copper that i don't want to etch, and after etching the board the paint can be removed with acetone.

Also thank you all again for the warm reception :yh:
 

Laser Chick

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Hi Peche, I thought you wanted to burn off the copper using the laser itself and bypass the etching process altogether. That is why I suggested a 20 Watt laser minimum. Opps, sorry about that :D
 




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