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Ferric chloride

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Maurice08/04/2019 18:57:22
431 forum posts
50 photos

I have just been reading the account of etching the nameplates for a loco in the latest M.E. It brought to mind a couple of tips that I was given by the staff of a firm who did this sort of thing professionally for the electronics and printing industry. I was actually getting some photo resist from them, and while there, I was told that if using ferric chloride (they no longer did), if the action seemed a bit slow, don't add more crystals. Instead, dilute it a bit more with airated water. Oxygen is a catalyst to the reaction and it should speed things up. They actually applied the etchant via a foam pad through which they bubbled air, and the bubbles burst onto the work. Another tip, was to fix the work to something which allows the work to be held in the etchant face down to allow the debris to fall away, and rock it gently at the same time. I followed their advice and made two very satisfactory plates for a Robey steam tractor that I was building, (since disposed of). I hope this may be of help to someone.

Maurice

mick H09/04/2019 08:13:35
665 forum posts
19 photos

Oxygen is a catalyst to the reaction and it should speed things up.

Adding Hydrogen Peroxide from the chemist will provide the necessary extra oxygen and it works well.

Mick

Russell Eberhardt09/04/2019 15:03:48
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2431 forum posts
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Posted by Maurice on 08/04/2019 18:57:22:

Another tip, was to fix the work to something which allows the work to be held in the etchant face down to allow the debris to fall away, and rock it gently at the same time.

Heating it a little helps. I have an idea to place a tray of etchant on the heated 3D printer bed and program the printer to an appropriate temperature and to give a gentle back and forward movement to agitate. Some experimentation to come.

Russell

Massimo Dalmonte09/04/2019 17:45:44
15 forum posts
11 photos

Hi,

as others do, I etch pcb boards putting them vertically in a tall and narrow Tupperware container, along with an aquarium heather and a small flexible PVC tube (drilled with a few 1mm holes) coming from an aquarium pump on the bottom, works well.

Massimo

Edited By Massimo Dalmonte on 09/04/2019 17:49:58

Neil Wyatt10/04/2019 23:36:05
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Moderator
15814 forum posts
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Posted by Massimo Dalmonte on 09/04/2019 17:45:44:

Hi,

as others do, I etch pcb boards putting them vertically in a tall and narrow Tupperware container, along with an aquarium heather and a small flexible PVC tube (drilled with a few 1mm holes) coming from an aquarium pump on the bottom, works well.

Massimo

Edited By Massimo Dalmonte on 09/04/2019 17:49:58

I was going to mention aerated PCB etch tanks but this would work just as well.

Neil

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