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Old 26th August 2005, 09:51 PM   #11
Wombat2 is offline Wombat2  Australia
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Good quality guillotines are self sharpening and I work in a Government department - nothing but the best
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Old 5th March 2008, 03:21 AM   #12
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Default Cutting FR4

The cleanup sucks but I've found that a ceramic tile saw produces the best results.

Kenneth
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Old 5th March 2008, 03:27 AM   #13
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As Wombat2 says, guillotine cutters are self sharpening. You need the old fashioned kind with a heavy cast arm- the modern cheap ones are useless. I've used my old Premier for cutting PCBs for years, and it's none the worse for wear. I actually drilled a couple holes in it so I can mount a clamp bar. That way the material doesn't shift, and the fingers are safer.

No matter what you're cutting, try to distribute the cutting over the length of the blade. If all the cutting is done next to the guide, eventually the cutter won't cut a straight line because the lower blade wears nearest the pivot.
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Old 5th March 2008, 05:11 AM   #14
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"DON"T use a bandsaw. Fibreglass pcb will destroy a bandsaw blade in seconds."

Would scoring both sides and using a 16" scroll saw work? (As I recall, blades are inexpensive.)

David.
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Old 5th March 2008, 06:52 AM   #15
djQUAN is offline djQUAN  Philippines
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a guillotine isn't easily available so I use the dremel + cutting disc method.

lots of dust (use a mask) flying debris of exploding disc (doesn't happen to me anymore, use safety goggles) and draw a line before cutting and you get really straight, clean cuts.
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Old 5th March 2008, 01:52 PM   #16
Nordic is offline Nordic  South Africa
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Guilotine is the last thing I would use...

I almost cried when I fetched the first batch of HRII PCBs form the fab house, as their scorer packed up, and they proceeded to guilotene the boards...

Sure it could be filed if it was a once off board, but I was not going to file over 100.. looks like a rat chewed the sides.... In fact I think I can do better with my tin shears (Big scissors made for cutting metal sheets)....

After lots of moaning I now get beatifully scored panels.

Oh and I am one up from you guys in useing dangerous methods...
My table saw for cutting DIY PCB (whe I can't find the shears).
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Old 5th March 2008, 02:08 PM   #17
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I wonder if a ceramic tile scorer would work well for snapping boards? To be honest, I use a band saw in my prototype shop, and just deal with replacing the blades. I don't honestly notice any shorter life from them.
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Old 5th March 2008, 02:47 PM   #18
oshifis is online now oshifis  Hungary
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I use secateurs (hand pruners, pruning shears) with succes for smaller size PCBs.
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Old 6th March 2008, 11:08 AM   #19
OzMikeH is offline OzMikeH  Australia
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I used to use a guillotine when I was doing boards. Used to make at least a hundred at a time because we silk screened by hand and cleanup of the etch resistant paint from the screens was difficult.

cuts were nice and neat. We did take care to use the far end of the guillotine. the near end was for fine metal work.

have used tin snips for small boards, the guillotine was best though, you really do need a clamp on it.
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Old 6th March 2008, 03:19 PM   #20
KP11520 is offline KP11520  United States
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Hello!

WHY do you think we have teeth?

I don't need no tools.

Tools are for Marys! LOL

All kidding aside, I measure 1 or 2 mm larger than I need. I score the copper several passes with a utility knife (new blade) with a straight edge as a guide. If you have a way to clamp the straight edge, even better. Then I cut it with the finest tooth hacksaw blade I can find (I told you I use my teeth) just over the waste side of the line.

Then I turn on my belt sander with a very fine sanding belt and lock the trigger on, I turn it upside down on the bench (mine sits flat) and hold the PCB to the belt on the flat surface at varying pressure until it looks like a professional cut.

Nico, this is what you needed to do with those 100 boards. It goes fast. Just wear a mask as the dust is very fine and can make its way to where it shouldn't be.

The belt sander is one of the best small adjustment tools ever designed!

BTW, I guess I am a Mary but I love my tools!

Regards//Keith
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