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Author Topic: Etching masks (masking masks, not masquerade masks) . Some random ponderings.  (Read 8796 times)
Herr Döktor
Gadgeteer, Contraptionist, and Inventor, FVSS
Master Tinkerer
United Kingdom United Kingdom

Herr Döktor, and friend.

« Reply #25 on: December 30, 2012, 12:10:15 am »

Now, that's what I'm talking about!!

Set up a decent sized etch tank in a small aquarium from a local bargain store.
Power from a CB radio type regulated supply.
Cathode is a Copper mesh soldered into a sheet Brass frame with a copper tube attached to feed the power and hook up to the air pump to agitate the mix.
Electolyte is Sulphuric acid/water mix which appears to be producing some Copper Sulphate as it goes along.
Masks are vinyl cuts produced on the cutter.

Process time of two hours gives a bite of about 0.5mm.
Real crisp edge to the etch.

I is a happy Quacky!!

Bloody marvelous!

(makes notes)

Dr cornelius quack
Rogue Ætherlord
United Kingdom United Kingdom

Arrant Carney. Phmebian Cultural Attache.

« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2012, 01:36:46 am »

I'll put a more detailed explanation together over the next few days and get some better piccies of the results when I can set up the camera with a less ferocious light source.

One point to note is that Sulphuric Acid is tricky stuff to deal with for the uninitiated. Diluting it down from a concentrated form releases a lot of heat. So much so that the solution can boil immediately and spit nasty corrosive stuff all over the place. Don't use it unless you have been properly trained to do so safely.

I'm going to swap it out for Copper Sulphate solution as soon as possible. The liquid only needs to conduct the current, and from what I read, Copper Sulphate gives good results.

Such are the feeble bases on which many a public character rests.

Today, I am two, separate Gorillas.
Drew P
Zeppelin Admiral
United States United States

« Reply #27 on: December 30, 2012, 03:08:48 am »

 Shocked Nice!

Dammit,I NEED time to try this!

Never ask 'Why?'
Always ask 'Why not!?'
Time Traveler
United States United States

convicted Rogue and Vagabond…long story…

« Reply #28 on: December 30, 2012, 03:39:58 am »

Very nice set-up. Copper sulfate works fine for me. I have the best results with a settled tank, so try not to disturb the sediment too much when swapping pieces in and out.

I use a piece of copper sheet for the cathode, which I clean every 3 months or so and replace after 3 cleanings. When the plated copper builds up you will start to lose conductance and the etching gets alittle wonky...

One additional suggestion: Timers. I wired outlets to one hour timers. I plug the power supply and air pumps into the outlets. This way I no longer lose pieces to a forgotten tank.  Ignore the rest of the set-up as I have upgraded my tanks since the pictures...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: December 30, 2012, 03:49:00 am by jringling » Logged

United States United States


Airship Builder

« Reply #29 on: December 31, 2012, 05:13:13 am »

Great job.  Very clean and very fast.  Thanks for the info.  Looking forward to learning more.

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