Making PCBs with the toner transfer method


Well… I thought this would be fun. I even got the pulsarprofx toner transfer paper and a laminator (GBC H212) because I couldn’t get proper results with my tiny clothes iron, but It did not work.

The transfer paper itself seems OK, release time in cold water is just a few secs, but the laminator just won’t get hot enough. I usually need 15 passes to get the toner to refuse. The laminator can cope with 1.5mm thick F4 material, but its plastic case warped at some spots, it wasn’t made for hot copper it seems. I also  had to mod the laminator a bit. Some paper guides had to be removed to avoid blocking.


My last attempt will be to mod the temperature regulation. First I’ll check if I can ‘hack’ the pot to get it hotter. If that doesn’t work I’ll discard the whole method and it’s ‘back to good old UV light + NaOH’.

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3 Responses to Making PCBs with the toner transfer method

  1. dchurch says:

    I do not want t discourage you from making your own pcbs _ I did it for years. There is a side of me that thinks everyone should try it_ part of paying your dues. Just be careful especially when using chemicals. Take every step seriously and do not work in cramped or cluttered conditions. I was recently making pcbs under these conditions and had a nasty acid spill.

    I decided to give up making my own PCBs (no fun anyway) and started looking for a PCB service. Most places were not much of a bargain for guys like me who use simple designs and just want to order one board sometimes. Most places are charging setup fees, minimum quantities… plus $20 for shipping.

    I finally found a place that is very reasonable and perfect for my needs (simple one side PCBs – no minimum – no fees – flat rate shipping $4.99) [url=””][/url] They accept all kinds of file types including Eagle pcb software files and plain old .jpg image files. There price for single boards start at $6.30. I don’t have to worry about the danger, mess, waist, workspace, storage space, equipment cost, supply costs… or the time I spend making boards and the failures… I wasted a bunch of money and time trying to find the best do-it-yourself method. I found mine_ it’s send the design and have my PCB delivered then just enjoy the fun stuff.

    Have fun and no BS just handle PCB chemicals with reasonable care, and don’t let your work space get to cluttered _ E.G. never balance a tray of acid on top of “stuff”.


  2. robert says:

    No worries mate.

    I’m too old for playing carelessly with nasty chemicals. I’ve had my lifetime’s share of all sorts of spillages and I hate cleaning up :-)

    Getting PCBs from a professional shop is nice, but for me most of the fun is in the making. At least for single sided boards that is.

  3. Hamman says:

    Greetings from ireland !
    I can see you are in Europe -from this article:)
    how did i know???
    Good quality Lidl tissues :) hehe
    I am hoping to mod an x- y ploter for making pcb’s soon.
    My 2uF is a very clever name.
    Im studying EE by the way & I love it – Electronics rocks :)

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