View Full Version : Printing circuits with an ink jet printer

04-19-2007, 04:34 PM

Just thought it might interrest you :http://www.newscientisttech.com/article/dn11632-modified-ink-printer-churns-out-electronic-circuits.html

04-19-2007, 10:46 PM

Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning.

Microsoft: "You've got questions. We've got dancing paper clips."

Loopy Byteloose
04-20-2007, 03:05 PM
I have had very good success using HP inkjets directly to clear overhead projector sheets. It appears that HP ink is quite dense and properly formulated to flow and stick smoothly on plastic.

On the other hand, I have had miserable luck with a CANON ip1000 as the ink beads up into droplets and the image is useless even though I am using the same clear plastic medium.

Both use Eagle software to get perfect images.

If I use a Fuji-Xerox laser printer on to the clear media, the image is not quite dark enough for good quality exposure.

The only drawback with the Inkjet is that the image will smear if roughly handled.

"If you want more fiber, eat the package.и Not enough?и Eat the manual."ииииииии

ииииииииииииииииииии Tropical regards,иииии G. Herzog [и黃鶴 ]иin Taiwan

04-20-2007, 04:41 PM
Kramer, this isn't about creating a UV mask, but how to make the circuits directly.

I'd love to be able to print the circuits directly onto a medium...

Particularly if I could print it onto clear plastic. Then I would be able to create those flexible cables used in many computers. (They're bl**dy expensive if you want to have them made in small series, or gods forbid, singles)
I need to make these as one of my hobbies is to collect old computers, and in many of those(particularly handhelds or old laptops), these cables have been ruined.

Don't visit my new website...

Loopy Byteloose
04-22-2007, 02:17 PM
I understand.
The drawback with direct printing is that you have to modify the paper feed to the printer to fit the size and stiffness of the object or use paper sized sheets regardless of how small your project might be.

With a UV mask, you buy flexible or rigid printed circuit stock, cut to rough size, and merely expose it on a flat surface. There are spray-on light sensitive emulsions available.

In sum, for small projects, I suspect this approach is more cost effective and the results are more controlable.

So it seem the real problem is to get copper on flexible substrate at a reasonable cost and in smaller quantities. I think we all know that the manufactures are primarily interested in volume and don't see providing hobbyist with material as an economic advantage.

Fortunately, there are distribution channels for material that becomes surplus due to changes in market and designs. For instance, there are several in and around Silicon Valley in California and they advertize via Nuts & Volts. They may not list what you want in an ad space, but it might well be sitting in the store.

Try an email to them.

"If you want more fiber, eat the package.и Not enough?и Eat the manual."ииииииии

ииииииииииииииииииии Tropical regards,иииии G. Herzog [и黃鶴 ]иin Taiwan