making pcbs

I’m looking to etch a few boards, but I don’t have any materials.

Can anyone recommend a place to get materials cheap… single sided will do for now, and I don’t mind thin boards either.

It's a bit hard when you don't say where you are located, and if you are willing to order online etc...

In Australia I can recommend Jaycar - www.jaycar.com.au

you are right, I should have mentioned that I am in the northeast US, I am willing to order online, I'm actually expecting to.

Single sided boards are actually harder to find than double-sided these days. Recently I've been buying a fair amount from ABCfab on eBay, but they seem to have gone out of business for the winter. Electronics Goldmine seems to have a reasonable selection.

I dont seem to be able to find fecl at goldmine, any ideas for that?

I plan on making an oscilliscope. http://www.serasidis.gr/circuits/AVR_oscilloscope/avr_oscilloscope.htm

I wish someone would just kit this baby, but I'm not expecting it.

I dont seem to be able to find fecl at goldmine, any ideas for that?

Google "etch pcb hcl hydrogen peroxide". HCl (hydrochloric acid aka muriatic acid aka brick acid) is readily available at pool supply stores. Hydrogen peroxide is found at any drug store, etc. I tried it and prefer it over FeCl.

Find the instructions and do the math yourself, but I got 33% HCl and mix 10oz of that with 1 qt of hydrogen peroxide. I think this is a bit stronger on the peroxide than the instructions I saw, but the mixing is easier.

The mix seems to have a fixed life; 24 hours after mixing, it is almost useless.

It's prettier than FeCl, too - the solution is clear before use, and turns a very bright green as the Cu reacts.

-j

I wish someone would just kit this baby, but I'm not expecting it.

Its on my (very long) todo list. I'll be doing it after I get around to actually making one of them. ;)

In Australia you can get everything you need from Dick Smith Electronics. They even have a PCB making kit. There must be something similar where you are.

oh dude please kit this.... I just tried to make a BOM, and there are too many parts I cant figure out... I mean the LM358 has so many variations... the LCD is not listed on mouser or digikey... and I cant figure out what would be an equalivent graphics LCD.... which switches, cause they are totally unlabeled.. etc

If it helps here is my list so far... heck if you could help complete the BOM, I think I could make the board, flash the chip with avrdude, and put it all together myself... (how bout make 2, nudge, nudge?)

I simply cant cant afford a real oscilliscope... this one would be really helpful.

R1 1M ohm resistor R2 1M ohm resistor R3 390k ohm resistor R4 1M ohm resistor R5 390k ohm resistor R6 56 ohm resistor R7 220 ohm Resistor R8

P1 10k pot P2 22k pot

D1 8V2 D2 1N4007 D3

S1 N S2 O S3 T S4 A S5 C S6 L S7 U S8 E

IC1A LM358 IC1B LM358 IC2 DEM128064A IC3 ATMEGA32 IC4 7805

C1 470nf C2 27pf C3 22uf/16v C4 100nf C5 22pf C6 22pf C7 100nf C8 100up/25v

X1 16mhz

K1 some sort of jack? K2 another jack?

oh dude please kit this.... I just tried to make a BOM, and there are too many parts I cant figure out... I mean the LM358 has so many variations... the LCD is not listed on mouser or digikey... and I cant figure out what would be an equalivent graphics LCD.... which switches, cause they are totally unlabeled.. etc

If it helps here is my list so far... heck if you could help complete the BOM, I think I could make the board, flash the chip with avrdude, and put it all together myself... (how bout make 2, nudge, nudge?)

The LCD is incredibly common actually. I've got one next to me. http://www.futurlec.com/LCDDisp.shtml at the bottom there is a pile. I've got the blue 128x64 one. Your just searching for the wrong thing. :)

When I get around to it I'll be doing it properly. The PCB and the code needs to be polished. I'll also probably make a computer interface.

This is all at least a couple of months away though. I'm rather busy. :( There must be tons of people looking for a ~$50 oscilloscope.

futurlec has a pcb order service that is pretty reasonable if u just wanna get one board etched.

If you want to build this for fun and learning and stuff, then all good...but if you want a half decent cheap oscilloscope then check out the chinese USB ones on ebay, they are about $200 AUD delivered (so less for $US) and are very powerful for the price. I got the 100MSa/s DSO-2090 and am very happy with it. By the time you etch a board and buy all the components, buy a box, fit everything, labels, troubleshoot and add up your time and effort, you'll have a low speed, low resolution 1 channel scope for only a bit less than buying a cheapy USB scope that runs rings around it performance wise.

I'm not saying don't build one, just think about why your building it and what your aiming to use it for. The speed that the low speed AVR scope works at isn't even useful for audio or tv signals.

Anyway thats my 2 cents worth ;)

yeah, I think it would be fun to make… the pcb is a big gif however, so I can print one… and etch it… but I wont be sending it out anywhere. Futurlec may have all the parts too… I’m just not sure which ones to order :frowning:

I dont want a USB oscilliscope… I don’t run windows, I really don’t want to.

I also found these, two are handheld… the first two actually look like they might be in my price range too.
http://www.kitsusa.net/phpstore/images/products/CQ5002-L360.jpg
http://www.kitsusa.net/phpstore/html/VELLEMAN-HPS10SE---PERSONAL-SCOPE-10MSs---SPECIAL-EDITION.html
http://www.kitsusa.net/phpstore/html/VELLEMAN-HPS40-Hand-held-Oscilloscope-with-PC-interface.html

The mix seems to have a fixed life; 24 hours after mixing, it is almost useless.

Hmmm, I thought one of the reasons for using it was because it was usable for longer...

From memory this Instructable talks about "refreshing" the mix.

--Phil.

I simply cant cant afford a real oscilliscope... this one would be really helpful.

You're probably aware of this, but from the "possibly better than nothing" file, I've managed to get xoscope running.

(Regarding USB scopes, I thought there were non-Windows packages that supported some of them?)

Since I wrote up the page linked above I've actually acquired some proper scope probes (secondhand, for like a $1) but haven't tried to hook them up yet.

--Phil.

Hmmm, I thought one of the reasons for using it was because it was usable for longer...

From memory this Instructable talks about "refreshing" the mix.

The instructions I found/followed use a much lower concentration of HCl - maybe that's the difference. (There was no "starting" with copper, either - just dunk the board and go).

I happen to have some used solution that's been sitting around for a few weeks, maybe I'll hang on to it and try to refresh it with more HCl.

-j

Here is a usb scope that works with OSX and linux.

http://members.optusnet.com.au/~eseychell/PCB/etching_CuCl/index.html ← howto completely regenerate HCl+H2O2 etchant simply by bubbling air through it.

with a bit of practice you can make some pretty decent boards. These are some I made yesterday:

Imgur