Etching FAQ

Frequently asked questions about etching

Q. The container of ferric chloride is not enough to fill my etching tank. Do I dilute it with water?
A. Do not dilute ferric chloride with water. You need enough ferric chloride to completely cover your board. You may require up to 5 liters on the Economy Etching kit and up to 7 liters on the Professional Etching Kit.

Q. How many boards will a bottle of ferric chloride etch?
A. Roughly speaking, one 500ml bottle of ferric chloride will etch approximately 500 square inches of copper. It really depends on how much copper you are removing from you boards. Basically, you use your whole bottle of ferric chloride to etch your boards. The first board will etch very fast. The next board will etch a little slower, and so on. When it finally takes longer to etch than you have patience, it is time to buy a new bottle.

Q. Do you sell the resist separately?
A. No. The resist is applied by big rollers at the factory.

Q. Do I have to remove the resist when I am done etching, and if so how do I do that?
A. No, you do not have to remove the resist. You can solder right onto it. You may, however, wish to remove it for reasons of appearance. If you do, just use our cat no. 435 Thinner Cleaner.

Q. How do I dispose of the ferric chloride when I am done with it?
A. Dispose of these chemicals in accordance with local environmental regulations. We reccomend that you store the used chemicals in a plastic drum until you have a significant quantity and then call your local waste management company for pick-up. See Look under “Waste Reduction & Disposal” in your local yellow pages.

Photofabrication Process

Obtain Exposure and Photofabrication Kits Peel back protective backing off of presensitized copper clad board Place artwork on board Place acrylic weight on artwork and board Expose 5 min. with Exposure Kit Mix Developer 10:1 with water Brush developer over board (1 - 2 min) Rinse Etch with Ferric Chloride (4 - 5 min) Rinse