A printed circuit board, or PCB, is a self-contained module of interconnected electronic components found in devices ranging from common beepers, or pagers, and radios to sophisticated radar and computer systems. The circuits are formed by a thin layer of conducting material deposited, or "printed," on the surface of an insulating board known as the substrate. Individual electronic components are placed on the surface of the substrate and soldered to the interconnecting circuits.
Electronics hobbyists evolve through a series of circuit-building techniques, starting with the simplest of the simple, such as wire nuts or twisting component leads together, to designing, fabricating, and assembling their own printed circuit boards. After successfully building a few simple circuits on perf board, and perhaps a small kit or two, confidence rises. They find it's time to move on to bigger and better circuits.
Quality is not something that is inspected into your PCB. We build it into your boards from the moment you open the price calculator. Our smart menus guide you towards optimum manufacturability.
Making printed circuit boards is a necessary skill for being able to build electronic gear above a very simple level. This article describes a set of techniques, tools, and materials used to turn an image file of a circuit pattern into a finished board. A positive of the pattern is exposed onto a light-sensitized copper-clad blank.
This Instructable documents the 'minimum' tools necessary to create reasonable quality electronic circuits and gives pragmatic construction tips finishing with a practical design exercise. It is assumed all components are low power 3v3 - 5v and are based around 0. Pictured above are typical circuits I have designed in the past using these tools and following this construction process.
Before you start, take a minute to locate, identify and count the components. It can save you a headache later. These can be difficult, but they can be considered optional; the LCD is very readable in daylight.