Home > Brew gear, Tech geeks > Gathering Gear

Gathering Gear

… But not the homebrewing type. I’ve been collecting the necessary tools to venture into home Printed Circuit Board (PCB) manufacturing, such as drlll bits, exposure sources, and developing & etching chemicals. At this point I have got pretty much everything except a drill press for my dremel, which is on backorder and should arrive sometime during July. I’ve got 100 micro-sized bits of various sizes for making the PCB holes, With 50 or so of them falling into the typical 0.030 to 0.035 inch range (the most common size for PCB components). I think the full range of sizes is like .0135 to .0465 inches, or something like that.

Why so many? These things are tiny, and they break relatively easily. I’m expecting that I’ll be producing a few boards over the next few years, and chances are that I’ll go quite a few. I included a close-up shot of the drill bits here to give you a little perspective … notice the dime, then check out the width of the bits. The smallest are basically the size of a hypodermic needle – you could easily stab yourself with them if you weren’t careful….

I was hoping to do my first trial run at etching a circuit board sometime this week, but with the weekend rapidly approaching and us taking a trip down to NC to visit my parents, it most likely won’t happen. Even if I exposed and etched my boards this week, I wouldn’t actually be able to drill them all that efficiently until the press comes in anyways – so I’m not in a huge hurry.

I say that, but I really can’t wait to debut this little monstrosity of homebrewed technology. Its so cool and so excessive and so… well, me. Quite simply put, it is very me.

The 9 or so gallons of American Pale I got from Sunday’s 20 gallon batch is fermenting quite nicely downstairs. It will most likely be done by Thursday, and I’ll transfer it to secondaries sometime mid next week. We also recently killed my keg of Saison du Sevier and put the American Raspberry Wheat on tap, which is quite a wonderful beer – Very flavorful, and incredibly clear for a wheat beer – both yeast and protein / chill haze are mostly absent. I think this has made my mind up that wheat beers are not necessarily cloudy, nor have to be in order to taste fantastic.

Categories: Brew gear, Tech geeks
  1. June 24, 2008 at 3:27 pm

    Looks like a lot of little fun things to play with – this thing is going to be crazy!

    Raspberry Wheat, mmmmm….

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