[clug] PCB printing - Queanbeyan

Ben Coughlan ben.coughlan at gmail.com
Thu Nov 26 18:18:15 MST 2009

I might as well suggest http://www.batchpcb.com/ while we're on the topic.

They cut the cost by aggregating many customer designs onto the same raw PCB panel.  This way you only pay for the PCB you use (by the cm^2).

They can be quite slow at times, given they need to wait for enough orders to fill a board.  My last order took 3 weeks including postage from the states.

They're very good if you're just working on a personal project or a cheap prototype and you don't want to pay for 20 copies you don't need.


On 27/11/2009, at 10:57 AM, Geoff Swan wrote:

> Print'N'Etch +1. I have used them for some 4 layer stuff and was very
> pleased.
> Also I came across this place http://www.ourpcb.com/index.htm that seems to
> have some very cheap prices. They are based in China which is where pretty
> much all competitve PCB manufacturers get their work done (lintek being an
> exception). I haven't used them yet myself but have a few small projects
> which I may be looking to try them out on... please let me know if anyone
> else has used them before...
> On Fri, Nov 27, 2009 at 9:26 AM, Ben Nizette <bn at niasdigital.com> wrote:
>> On Thu, 2009-11-26 at 22:34 +1100, Adam Baxter wrote:
>>> Hi all,
>>> Thanks Tridge for the coffee and quick intro to USB hacking.
>>> A funny thing happened on the way home in the taxi. Turns out the driver
>>> works in a factory producing PCBs.
>>> http://www.lintek.com.au/contact.html
>>> Not sure what the prices would be for a small run, but it's worth asking.
>> LOTS.
>> Yeah, Lintek use a pretty unique process which gives excellent
>> reproducibility but it's darn expensive.
>> Usually a manufacturer gets a fibreglass board plated with copper at the
>> right thickness, applies an etch resist in the shape of the tracks and
>> dunks it in an etching chemical.  This is quick and easy but the
>> chemical actually etches under the resist a bit, making track with a
>> cross-section like a trapeze balanced on its short edge.
>> Lintek get that same board, etch off /all/ the copper then
>> electro-deposit a new layer of copper, just a few microns thick.  They
>> etch that in the normal way then grow new copper on top of the thin
>> tracks.  This way they can grow the tracks up with a perfect
>> cross-section and, for that matter, pretty much as thick as they want.
>> They can also make narrower tracks - by a traditional process there
>> comes a track width where the cross-section goes to a triangle balanced
>> on its point, but Lintek don't have that problem.
>> As Geoff said, this makes them great for RF boards because the track
>> shape is almost perfectly defined and very similar across all boards in
>> a run.
>> All this said, I've used Lintek a fair bit in the past - if you've got
>> the $$ they're pretty accommodating.  I've had massively urgent 2 layer
>> boards produced same-day (no screen-print, no bare-board test etc).
>> FWIW the best short-run PCB manufacturer I've found is Print'N'Etch,
>> they'll do a 2 layer panel (unlimited number of PCBs on that panel),
>> 10"x16", full screenprint and test, 10 day lead time, $295.
>>      --Ben.
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