UPDATE June 21, 2012:
I purchased a Ferric Chloride, Positive Developer, and positive PCB boards from MG Chemicals and used the photo-etching process. The results were OUTSTANDING! You don't need their sparge tank or exposure kit. I simply exposed my pcb underneath a 20W compact florescent bulb for 10 minutes, developed the pcb in a tupperware dish according to the instructions, and then etched in the same (rinsed out) tupperware dish for 15 minutes while agitating occaisionally with a foam brush.
Also, I used an inkjet printer. The instructions say only to use a laser printer, but I found that if I set my printer to print the transparency using very dark, rich dpi settings that I had sufficient contrast.
The results were great--super fine and detailed thin traces!!
I recently purchased some Syma brand indoor RC helicopters for my nephews. Well, I had so much fun enjoying these with the boys that I have since started a small collection of my own.
Although loads of fun and durable, these toys use cheap electronics:
- An infrared transmitter/receiver that seems to lose signal quality in a brightly lit room
- Single channel so that you and someone else can't fly at the same time without interfering with one another.
- Not an electronic engineer, though I am technically minded.
- I am very much a novice with soldering and wouldn't be capable of soldering the tiny board inside these little birds.
What I would like to do:
In an ideal world, I would like to have a custom circuit board made for these little birds that
- Accepts a non-infrared signal (2.4 GHz? Bluetooth? Wi-Fi? --Remember these are "living room" flyers).
- Allows for you to choose between 2-3 channels on both the transmitter and receiver so that 2-3 people can fly concurrently.
I realize that this might already be available for bigger outdoor birds, but I need the circuit board to be small.
Is there a cost-effective way of prototyping this? Is there perhaps a place where I can send them the specifications and they would "print" up the circuit? Software that a semi-layman like myself could use to design it? I realize that the first run would be expensive, but I can see this being an after-market item that those of us bitten by the indoor heli-bug would buy enough of to bring the cost down.