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PCB Prototype machine

Once the PCB software designer completes the design of PCB in the computer taking into consideration all the mechanical aspects; the prototype need to be manufactured to validate the proof of concept. Few samples of PCB prototype are needed for component mounting and testing (both unit and system testing). This is required before one can go ahead for mass production of PCB. If any problems arrise during prototype PCB design the same need to be rectified at the protype stage itself. This avoids lot of rework at the later stages of the product developments.

To manufacturer less number of PCBs needed for prototype design, companies usually use photo resist and UV techniques. These techniques are very inaccurate and takes more time and are cumbersome. Now-a-days PCB prototype machines have been developed to manufacturer even less number of PCBs very quickly and accurately.

The PCB prototype machine has two types viz. mechanical and laser milling. Both of these systems does following:
•   create conducting paths and also pads by milling insulating paths for mounting.
•   All the required holes are drilled next needed for mounting through hole electronic components.

Mechanical milling system composed of rotating drill head which mills all the insulating paths on the copper sheet. It works slower than laser counterpart. Laser milling system uses energy emission device. This helps in focusing stream of photons on work area of PCB which will mill insulating paths.

Manufacturers

Before purchasing PCB prototype machine from manufacturers consider following specifications:
•  Resolution needed
•  Working area of PCB
•  Speed of process
•  Drill Size required
•  Power consumption

Manufacturer OR vendor Product Description with model
Colinbus CPR series, PCB box (mechanical type)
Everprecision Tech Co EP-2006 (Laser type)
T-Tech QC series (mechanical type)
MitsPCB FP21T (mechanical type)
AccurateCNC Accurate 426 (mechanical type)
LPKF Laser and Electronics ProtoMat S103 (Laser type)

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