DIY PCB exposure box looks professionally made


[Stynus] was frustrated with the fact that he would have to flip his PCBs over mid way through the exposure process, so he decided the best course of action would be to build his own double-sided PCB exposure box.

He scored some UV LEDs on eBay, and after waiting a few weeks for PCBs to arrive, he was ready to start construction. The box contains a sliding glass shelf, which is positioned between two sets of LED panels. The setup lets him simultaneously etch both sides of any PCB, up to 20cm x 30cm in size. The exposure box is run by a PIC 16F628P and features an LCD status panel as well as a small handful of controls. [Stynus] programmed the box to retain the length of the last exposure, making it easy to replicate his results time after time.

Towards the end of the build log he shows off some pictures of the completed exposure box, which looks very professionally done. It’s a great job all around, and we would gladly take one for our workshop in a heartbeat.

10 thoughts on “DIY PCB exposure box looks professionally made

  1. Nice job!

    This is just the kind of thing your average Hackaday reader loves to see, a useful tool that you could make yourself for your workshop.

    Keep them coming :-)

  2. A friend once told me that all glass naturally provides some amount of UV absorption. Was he right? If he was, I’m making mine with a carrier ;)

    1. Glass blocks most UVB (shorter wavelength, causes sunburn), but lets most UVA (longer wavelength) through.

      I’ve not yet got around to looking at whether that’s actually an issue with photosensitive boards, I expect not.

    1. It probably just means that you will need a longer exposure than you would otherwise. But apart from the glass I love it.

  3. Maybe silly question, but why does he need the upper glass? Does he need to protect the UV LEDs from board off gassing or something?

    1. Think a little ! Its like your morning ham sandwich:

      Led Arrey
      Art Work
      PCB upper side
      PCB lower side
      art work
      Led Arrey

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