Flexible PCB Manufacturing Design And Process

With constant improvement in technology came the demand for a flexible PCB (printed circuit board). The most common type of PCB's for many years was the rigid PCB. While still being very popular, the necessity of smaller, lightweight printed circuit boards that were also flexible brought upon the need for flexible PCB's. In addition to the mentioned requirements, some spaces were not served by the traditional boards. This is where this type of board shines as flexible boards can be molded into three dimensional shapes that weren't possible in the past. Along with this complexity came the growth of an improved flexible PCB manufacturing process. While is possible to work on (Do It Yourself) DIY flexible PCB, which hobbyist's love to do, one can understand the benefits of a professional manufacturer such as JY Electronic Technology to serve those with specific needs well. Let's go over some of the intricacies of flexible PCB manufacturing so one can make an educated decision on how to proceed.

Flexible PCBA flexible PCB substrate is what distinguishes it from a regular PCB. This gives it the flexible properties that we discussed. Knowing the full potential of what is possible makes creativity in the PCB design one wants to concentrate on, as it is most important.

We are going forward assuming you have a good grasp of using flex circuit types and their capabilities plus limitations, since this will dictate if you design the right circuit board for your needs. Proficiency in computer aided design software, best referred to as CAD design software is a must since most professional factories will require this format to provide an accurate mock up. It is possible of course to use heavy paper stock where you can test for fit, while adjusting and modifying wherever necessary.

By first imagining the right PCB for the job and then building up a working flexible PCB prototype, where you've worked on positioning connector footprints in the proper locations while simultaneously routing conductors where they belong, the chances for a successful end product is very high.

For those who are not as technically inclined, speaking to a specialist here and mocking up a proposal is the best way to get your desired PCB. Simply put together a two dimensional CAD model that clearly highlights the sizes and locations of any holes. Be particular about layer count and any other pertinent information. Most importantly, submit what the PCB will be used for so we can use our experience and judgment to help achieve what you want.

The Manufacturing Process

Flexible PCB Manufacturing Process

What is important to note and where things can go wrong for those who attempt this themselves is during the application of the coating on the substrate. The amount of layers will determine the difficulty of this since more complex designs will have insulating layers and adhesive layers. The conductive layers need proper insulation to work properly. Ensuring this through the whole process requires attention to detail that mass manufacturing and advanced machinery in these facilities can provide.

For most, it's the investment they think that is necessary that holds them back from getting their printed circuits done through a factory. While some may charge an exorbitant amount, claiming their quality is best, upon further examination, there is a reason why the majority of PCB's are manufactured in China. The skill set is clearly here as well as the know how to manufacturer quality components in a large scale and reliably. The flexible PCB cost is of high value and a great return on investment.

Find out more about the benefits of flexible PCB's for your project such as:

  • Versatile shape configuration - As mentioned before, the flexibility with this type of circuit board allows designers to come up with new configurations, especially when factoring in the three dimensional options.
  • Vibration resistance - compared to standard PCB's, flex circuits are much more resistant to bouncing around and shock. This minimizes the need for being serviced.
  • Long duty cycles - Flex circuits are thin and lightweight so that is already a benefit but this inherent quality also allows it to transmit reliable power and signals through a long life cycle.

There is much more but we think you get the idea. For more detailed information to see if a reliable PCB supplier can help you, contact us today!