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FLEXIBLE PCB AND FLEXI-RIGID PCB

Flexible PCB & Flexi-rigid PCB options

Our capability includes single sided, double sided (with or without PTH), multi-layer and flexi-rigid. All of our flexi circuits are constructed by building up component layers, eg. base, copper, coverlay, stiffener. Our flexible PCB’s are available at varying delivery times, depending on PCB type.

Send your flexi-circuit PCB specifications to us by fax or e-mail for a quotation.

Flexible PCB & Flexi-Rigid PCB Quality Assurance

We are quality approved both by UL and ISO9002.

Over-view of Flexible Circuits

Flexible circuits are constructed by building up component layers, eg. base, copper, coverlay, stiffener.

Bonding between each component layer is provided by an adhesive layer (epoxy or acrylic).

The materials selected must be appropriate for either static (eg. one time bend into a camera) or dynamic applications (eg. hard disk drive).

If components are to be attached, the base material must be selected to withstand solder temperatures, and a stiffener may be added.

Flexible base materials are relatively dimensionally unstable and have to be processed on small step & repeated blanks, typically of a size only 20% of that used for rigid pcbs. Flexible PCBs are significantly more expensive than rigid pcbs.

Final profiling and test for flexible PCBs will often be carried out as single circuits.

Mechanical tooling must be selected according to the volume and accuracy required. Tooling may be either CNC soft tooling (low cost but high unit costs), steel rule (volumes up to a few thousand pieces, medium cost, low dimensional stability), or hard steel punch & die sets (durable, accurate, & high cost).

Delivery Times for Flexible Circuits

Single Sided

  • Samples 10-15 w/days
  • Production 3-4 weeks

Double Sided

  • Samples 10-15 w/days
  • Production 3-4 weeks

Multi-layers

  • Samples 10-20 w/days
  • Production 4-5 weeks

Rigid-flex

  • Samples 10-25 w/days
  • Production 5-6 weeks

Flexi-Circuit Applications

  • Computer & peripherals: Notebook computers, LCD monitors, Hard disk drives, Printers, CD Roms.
  • Consumer products: Cameras, Camcorders, Monitors.
  • Telecommunications: Cellular phones, Wireless phones.
  • Office equipment: Faxes, Copiers, PDA.
  • Automobiles: Instrument panels, ABS systems.
  • Aerospace & military: Satellites, Radar, Missiles, Smart weapons.
  • Medical instruments: Hearing aids, Heart pacemakers.
  • Industrial: Motors
  • Others: Smart cards, Toys.

Raw material Specifications

  • Copper foil : RA copper 17.5, 35, 70 microns
  • Copper foil : ED copper 17.5, 35, 70 microns
  • Base film : Polyimide 17.5, 25, 50 microns
  • Base film : Polyester 25, 50, 75 microns
  • Coverlay : Polyimide 25, 50, 75 microns
  • Coverlay : Polyester 17.5, 35, 70 microns
  • Coverlay : Solder mask 25, 50 microns
  • Adhesive : Epoxy 20 – 35 microns
  • Adhesive : Acrylic 20 – 35 microns
  • Stiffener : Polymide 25 – 175 microns
  • Stiffener : Polyester 25 – 300 microns
  • Stiffener : Glass-epoxy 0.1 – 1.6 mm

Schedule of Flex Manufacturing Operations

The principle manufacturing operations for a double sided flexible circuit are set out below.

  • Cut blanks
  • Drill << CNC drill tool
  • Plate copper (electroless & and electrolytic copper)
  • Laminate and UV print << Photographic tooling
  • Develop
  • Etch
  • Clean
  • Attach coverlays << punched coverlays (2 sides)
  • Hot Lamination
  • Visual inspection << 100% inspection
  • Finished treatment (HASL or Au/Ni)
  • Legend Print
  • Apply stiffener << punched/routed stiffener
  • Punch & die profile << punch tool
  • Electrical test << test fixture
  • Component assembly
  • Electrical test of assembly << test fixture
  • Visual inspect << 100% inspection
  • Pack

Technical Specifications

  • Minimum track & gap 0.075mm
  • Minimum hole diameter 0.3mm
  • Min total thickness, single sided 80 microns (inc CVL)
  • Min total thickness, double sided 210 microns (inc CVL)
  • Hole diameter tolerance, before plating +/-0.05mm
  • Hole diameter tolerance, after plating +/-0.10mm
  • Outline tolerance (Hard punch tool) +/-0.05mm
  • Pitch Tolerance +/-0.05mm
  • Conductor width tolerance +/-20% of width
  • Maximum economic length of flex circuit 500 mm

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