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Toner transfer not working anymore

LightChaser

Nov 19, 2015
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Nov 19, 2015
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I used to be able do it very well, but I don't really know what happened. Could someone please take look at what Im doing and tell me if I'm doing something wrong?

Here the steps I take
I make and print out my PCB layout at home. Take it to office depot where I have them copy it on some high gloss paper with their laser printer. I make sure they don't touch it after it's been made so their finger prints don't get on it.

Cut the PCB Board to size and use a sponge abrasive to clean the board till its shiny. I only use water to clean it with used to use rubbing alcohol and water to clean it, but stopped thinking it was the problem.

I dry it and place the paper with my layout onto the PCB. Pushing and holding an iron on to it for 5 minutes, then using the tip of the iron to push even more pressure on it. I move it all over the board for about 10 minutes, then go back to holding the iron on it. I repeat the part with the iron tip and go back to pushing and holding it for about 20 minutes. The paper dose doesn't move or come up at any time when I'm doing this.

I place the board in hot water, allowing it to set for 15 minutes. Taking it out to rub it a little. I place it back in and keep repeating till it comes off. The end result little less than half of it stuck to the board and a lot stays on the paper. This paper being used is the same type of paper that was working well for me.

If you want to see the pcb I added a photo of it below.
What has worked for you guys?
I seen alot of videos of people with their ways but nice hear from someone and talk about it.
 

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Bluejets

Oct 5, 2014
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Some printer toner is not re-fusable i.e. it's only meant to melt to the paper one time.
An example of this is Brother toner.
HP toner works ok.
Could be your office is using cheap toner refills.
 

LightChaser

Nov 19, 2015
4
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Nov 19, 2015
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Thank you, I think I got the name of the toner they use. The guy I talked to didn't seem know anything
Xerox Toner Color 560
Another one Xerox workcenter 5875 but I think that name of the printer not the toner being used.

My prints are being made on a color laser printer
 

LightChaser

Nov 19, 2015
4
Joined
Nov 19, 2015
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I have another question.

Does it really matter what shape my soldering pads are? I ask because my solder always runs down the lines of my PCB. Not staying on the square pad because I don't have that thing called a solder mask? I don't know how put it on. That green stuff. I would have these made by a PCB manufacturer, but I can't find one that looks trustworthy. If you know of one it would be nice I would need about 20 of these boards made.

Also do my lines need be thick or can they be thin. This thing isnt pulling much current.
 

Bluejets

Oct 5, 2014
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Never used any mask, never found the need.
Circuit lines can be thin but it depends on what you mean by thin.
To avoid "undercut" from the etchant, I have found using the following helps a great deal.
1. Use a board with thin ( there's that word again) copper coating. I think most are probably like that now. The ones I use come from China.
2. Place etchant in a plastic container and warm it up before putting the board in.
I usually half- fill the kitchen sink with rather hot water (maybe 70 degrees F) and float the container in that for a couple of minutes before throwing in the board.
3. Agitate and watch as the etchant does it's job and take out the board and rinse under cold water the moment all the unwanted copper is gone.
When ready to drill, I clean off the toner with acetone.
Drill the board, clean again with acetone and spray the exposed copper with circuit board lacquer. ( pic attached) .... http://www.jaycar.com.au/Service-Ai...sols/Circuit-Board-Lacquer-Spray-Can/p/NA1002
 

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LightChaser

Nov 19, 2015
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Thank you and Im talking about the lines them self on the PCB not the thickness of the copper. :)
 

Bluejets

Oct 5, 2014
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So was I.....also the thickness:cool:
If you have norrow (thin) lines and thick copper layer they (the lines) can easily undercut with over-etching which is why I outlined what I did.
 
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