Stokes' ProjBlog

A journal documenting innumerable, mostly terminally in-progress undertakings. Nerdiness abounds.


Doing the unstuck January 21, 2008

Filed under: The Motor Controller Project — Stokes @ 1:24 am

A detailed scan of my bad transfer.Motor Controller Board toner transfer attempt #2: failed.

An oft-quoted definition of insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result. I don’t think I’ve quite lost it yet, at least not completely, but I was perhaps a bit overly optimistic. I was hoping for a better outcome than my previous attempt; in hindsight, however, I realize I could have done a bit more to differentiate this try from the previous one.

A bit more, in this case, meaning anything at all.

The board and laser prints, pre-transfer.The matériel used in this try was identical to that of the previous attempt: an identical piece of copper-clad board and an identical laser printing on identical high-gloss inkjet paper. The results were, unsurprisingly, almost entirely identical. I had tried cleaning the board more thoroughly this time, as well as applying more heat and pressure with the iron; none of these differences seemed to have much of an effect whatsoever.

I’ve concluded that the paper is the primary problem. The toner stuck to it too firmly; hardly any transferred to the board whatsoever. The paper did not even cling to the board — it came completely away after the iron had been removed. For attempt #3, I will return to the magazine pages. I will also make a better attempt at cleaning the board. While the paper may have clung too tightly to the toner, the splotchy irregularity of the transfer seems to indicate that the board wasn’t completely free of surface oxidation and gunk. I got a bit of advice after showing the failed board to a few people at the last Dorkbot Boston meeting; I’ll try it next time.


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