Cheap SMT Stencils

ohararpohararp Posts: 24
edited February 2008 in Propeller 1 Vote Up0Vote Down
Propheads,

I hate advertisements just as much as everyone else.· However, I have grown from being a simple hobbyist on these forums to actually making some money using parallax and other products.· One thing I found especially handy was the ability to make surface mount products quickly and easily.· Key to this has been the use of mylar stencils.· Seeing an opportunity to provide others with this capability seemed to make logical sense and we recently purchased a laser expressly for this purpose.

We are offering 8.5"x11" mylar stencils for SMT designs.· You send us a .eps file of the SMT resist layer and we'll send you a mylar stencil the next business day.· .EPS files are easily generated from most PCB packages (Eagle and ISIS I can confirm).

You can use these stencils to make your own hobby or even commercial products.· See how we make our gps loggers via http://www.instructables.com/id/EV6AYB8F4WXXL1X·using these stencils.
These are the same stencils used by Sparkfun in their tutorials - http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/present.php?p=Stenciling

Stop by and check out our site at www.ohararp.com/Stencils.html

PS If you have other questions about these stencils feel free to drop us a line via this thread!



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Regards, Ryan O'Hara


Check out our $20 SMT Stencils!!!
www.ohararp.com/Stencils.html

Post Edited (ohararp) : 2/4/2008 3:51:20 AM GMT

Comments

  • 24 Comments sorted by Date Added Votes
  • rjo_rjo_ Posts: 1,825
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Looks great. I'm wondering if anyone has used this?
  • LoopyBytelooseLoopyByteloose Posts: 12,537
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    It is a useful service. I can prepare files using Eagle.

    I would love to have someone provide transparencies for photo exposure.· Many people may have the right software, but be shut out by the wrong printer.

    Ever since I broke my HP inkjet and replace it with a Canon product, I have been unable to make my own transparencies. The Canon does not have the same ink that the HP uses. It beads up rather than flows. The image is a complete mess. And the density of a transparency on my Xerox laser printer is not dark enough to properly work with photo-emulsions. It is quite daunting to buy a 3rd printer just for hobby work.

    I guess I am asking if someone does this and can assure that the image density will work with Kinsten or similarly prepared circuit boards.

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    PLEASE CONSIDER the following:

    Do you want a quickly operational black box solution or the knowledge included therein?······
    ···················· Tropically,····· G. Herzog [noparse][[/noparse]·黃鶴 ]·in Taiwan

    Post Edited (Kramer) : 2/4/2008 4:44:18 PM GMT
    Hwang Xian Shen, Puddleby-on-the-Marsh.
    All things considered, I can live and thrive without Microsoft products. LINUX is just fine.
  • James LongJames Long Posts: 1,181
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    rjo_ said...
    Looks great. I'm wondering if anyone has used this?
    Ohararp is our stencil supplier if a customer wants to stencil their boards for assembly.

    They make very nice stencils, and the price is excellent.

    Although you don't know·me, you can take my word, the stencils are definitely worth the money.

    James L

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    James L

    Partner/Designer
    Lil Brother LLC (SMT Assembly Services)

    Post Edited (James Long) : 2/4/2008 5:22:22 PM GMT
  • LeonLeon Posts: 7,619
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    I use a cheap HP Deskjet 5940 printer with Mega Electronics Premium JetStar film for my transparencies, and get excellent results. Whatever printer you use, you need to use the correct media.

    Leon

    ▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔
    Amateur radio callsign: G1HSM
    Suzuki SV1000S motorcycle
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM
  • Graham StablerGraham Stabler Posts: 2,507
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Kramer,

    This is a neat project:

    pico-systems.com/photoplot.html

    Graham
  • Tracy AllenTracy Allen Posts: 6,284
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Can your plotter deal with pads for the QFN version of the Propeller? I think the pads have to be something like 12 mil x 22 mil on 26 mil pitch.

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    Tracy Allen
    www.emesystems.com
  • Graham StablerGraham Stabler Posts: 2,507
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    It's not mine
  • Tracy AllenTracy Allen Posts: 6,284
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Sorry Graham, my question is @O'hara.

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    Tracy Allen
    www.emesystems.com
  • James LongJames Long Posts: 1,181
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Tracy Allen said...
    Sorry Graham, my question is @O'hara.

    Tracy,

    Ryan is using a laser, so I would think it may be possible.

    James L


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    James L

    Partner/Designer
    Lil Brother LLC (SMT Assembly Services)
  • ohararpohararp Posts: 24
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Can your plotter deal with pads for the QFN version of the Propeller? I think the pads have to be something like 12 mil x 22 mil on 26 mil pitch. said...
    (replace this text with what was said)
    Tracy,

    QFN pads are not a problem...even the little 8 pin pads.· The trouble usually comes from high pin count TQFP packages with really fine pitches.· The TQFP packages have really long and thin pads·We can do some things to still cut these but they require more work.· If your design did have an issue we would notify you first and since we do not authorize your card till the item ships you would not be charged until a resolution could be found, or your money would be returned.

    If you have any questions about your order you can send the design to [url=mailto:stencils@ohararp.com]stencils@ohararp.com[/url] and we can tell you if it will work or not.· I'll possibly add this to get prior approval to the webpage.

    Otherwise I will try and get some pics of the small qfn stuff and post them here.· The clear mylar stencils are very hard to take pictures of due to contrast issues.
    I would love to have someone provide transparencies for photo exposure. Many people may have the right software, but be shut out by the wrong printer. said...
    (replace this text with what was said)
    Kramer, the mylar sheets are basically overhead transparencies.· If this would work for you I don't see why we couldn't cut the stencil for you.· If clear mylar wouldn't work what other material would?· We can cut acrylic very easily on the laser.

    In general, we would also like to provide other low cost cutting options for people out there but are working on a way to do this cheaply and easily.· The php/mysql work is a bit pricey for custom quoting, if enough people are interested we could definitely look into this more.

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    Regards, Ryan O'Hara


    Check out our $20 SMT Stencils!!!
    www.ohararp.com/Stencils.html

    Post Edited (ohararp) : 2/4/2008 9:06:44 PM GMT
  • bambinobambino Posts: 789
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Have you tried etching any boards with the laser? I know you can not cut the copper, but you could remove the ink applied to a board where you wanted the copper removed!
  • Graham StablerGraham Stabler Posts: 2,507
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    I have seen someone do that with a laser but it's a slow way to do things when normal photoresist methods are so easy (within the kind of enviroments that have laser cutters).

    Graham
  • bambinobambino Posts: 789
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    I guess I can see that, I've unfortunately not had a photoprinter to make the boards with. I have seen them on a few web sites though. Tis a shame the laser cutters can't remove the copper, that would be sweet!
  • James LongJames Long Posts: 1,181
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    bambino said...
    I guess I can see that, I've unfortunately not had a photoprinter to make the boards with. I have seen them on a few web sites though. Tis a shame the laser cutters can't remove the copper, that would be sweet!
    There are some lasers that can remove the copper, but they are a lot more power than the typical engraver/cutter type.

    James L

    ▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔
    James L

    Partner/Designer
    Lil Brother LLC (SMT Assembly Services)
  • bambinobambino Posts: 789
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Well, I guess that's good. I've seen the price of the one he's using in this thread, so anything more powerful is definately over the rainbow for this dreamer! Would be nice though.
  • LoopyBytelooseLoopyByteloose Posts: 12,537
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Regarding transparency media. I used the same for both an HP Inkjet and a Canon. The package claims that it is specially made for inkjets and laser printers, but should I believe the hype? I've ocassionally tried to locate other media for the inkjet and laser printer, but have had no luck at changing the outcomes.

    On the HP, everything is fine as I suspect they add an emulsifier to the ink to make it flow well on plastics. HP just seems to understand that plastic is a viable printing media. But the ink in the Canon inkjet just beads up and the image is useless. The same film in my Fuji Xerox works, but is not dark enough for photo exposure. I've wasted several boards and invested in a 60 second timer with relay to precisely control the exposure. I don't currently own an iron [noparse][[/noparse]have a Chinese laundry across the street], so I've never tried the laser printer for laser transfer method with slick coated paper.

    In neither inkjet case is the ink ever 100% dry. One must be careful not to smear the image. I am unsure if the HP will print a very fine pitch as I haven't done any thing other than DIP.

    It would be nice to job it out to a service that provides an image that is precise, very dense, completely dry, and stable. Then I could easily keep the transparencies on file rather than have to remake smeared images [noparse][[/noparse]they don't store well].

    ▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔
    PLEASE CONSIDER the following:

    Do you want a quickly operational black box solution or the knowledge included therein?······
    ···················· Tropically,····· G. Herzog [noparse][[/noparse]·黃鶴 ]·in Taiwan
    Hwang Xian Shen, Puddleby-on-the-Marsh.
    All things considered, I can live and thrive without Microsoft products. LINUX is just fine.
  • Graham StablerGraham Stabler Posts: 2,507
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Newer HP printers as well as Epsons use pigment inks, these work much better on less absorbent surfaces such as films.

    Graham
  • tekochiptekochip Posts: 56
    edited February 2008 Vote Up0Vote Down
    I've had variable results with ink jets.· When I used·an Epson with Durabright ink and the special ink jet transparency material (make sure you print on the·rough side), I got pretty good results that I could use it down to 12mils.· I started taking my artwork to Kinkos to get a laser transparency, and then just bought a color laser.· With the laser I've gone down to 10mils without trouble, and could probably go farther, but at 10mils I have a 100% yield, and that's great for home.
  • radciffkaty1radciffkaty1 Posts: 4
    edited October 30 Vote Up-1Vote Down
    Hey there, I know this post is very old but still I would like to contribute one helpful link where I found cheap SMT Stencils over the internet. Follow the given link below for buying or getting more details:
    www.soldertools.net/smt-stencils-1
  • I use oshstencils.com
    My Prop boards: P8XBlade2, RamBlade, CpuBlade, TriBlade
    Prop OS (also see Sphinx, PropDos, PropCmd, Spinix)
    Website: www.clusos.com
    Prop Tools (Index) , Emulators (Index) , ZiCog (Z80)
  • MIchael_MichalskiMIchael_Michalski Posts: 106
    edited October 31 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Heres an interesting thought that just occurred to me this moment. Take a copper clad board. Coat it with a nice thin layer of powdercoat. Now use a laser engraver or cutter to draw a pattern on the board, melting/curing the powder coat. Hopefully it will adhere to the board and you can now etch it. If that works, take masking tape and mask off the traces you want to KEEP the powder coat near the pads you need to remove it from, then use a piece of fine grade sandpaper to carefully remove the powder coat from those parts. It might also work to put the powder coat in a solvent, or make an emulsion of it so you can dip the board, then use the laser to cure it.
    Particularly patient proactive practice positively predicates practically precise poly-processor Parallax Propeller programming paradigms.

    .
  • potatoheadpotatohead Posts: 9,503
    edited October 31 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Re: copper and lasers

    I worked with and installed, industrial laser systems for a few years. Most had 4 figure power ratings.

    Copper is a difficult material. In machining, it is tenacious. Proper feeds and speeds really matter as do tools and coatings.

    With lasers, it is highly reflective and an excellent heat conductor. Both of those = more power to do work.

    At that time, higher power was a problem for small details. What I ended up doing was to apply a coating.

    Maybe doing that makes sense with these lower power machines. Might put removal within reach of some of them

    Just putting it out there.
    Do not taunt Happy Fun Ball! @opengeekorg ---> Be Excellent To One Another SKYPE = acuity_doug
    Parallax colors simplified: https://forums.parallax.com/discussion/123709/commented-graphics-demo-spin<br>
  • ... Take a copper clad board. Coat it with a nice thin layer of powdercoat. ...
    There's an aerosol product made for laser cutters that will do just what you suggest:

    https://www.johnsonplastics.com/engraving/engraving-supplies/cermark

    The mist dries to a fine powder which gets melted by the laser and bonded to the metal substrate. Not sure how you get the stuff off after etching, though.

    -Phil
    “Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
  • There's an aerosol product made for laser cutters that will do just what you suggest:

    https://www.johnsonplastics.com/engraving/engraving-supplies/cermark

    The mist dries to a fine powder which gets melted by the laser and bonded to the metal substrate. Not sure how you get the stuff off after etching, though.
    If the Cermark is done properly it won't come off unless it is sanded/ground away. Some people have had success using CRC moly spray as an alternative, I half heartedly tried it with mediocre results. Others have used a slurry of plaster of paris, and other things too. The powder coat is a neat idea, probably best for lower power lasers, maybe a diode laser would work well. It would be tricky to get the underlying copper hot enough to melt/bond without the powder getting vaporized, preheating the board or using a heated build plate might make a difference.
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