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Old 20th Jan 2020, 10:54 pm   #5
G0HZU_JMR
Nonode
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, UK.
Posts: 2,435
Default Re: Which Dremel tool..?

From what I've read online I think some of the Dremel branded accessories like the router stand and the drill stand are not very solid in terms of build quality. So I'd expect the setup to be a bit wobbly and imprecise in operation.

The classic way to neatly cut strips out of PCB material is to use a steel ruler and a sharp scalpel. Then peel up a corner and heat and peel the (unwanted) strip areas with a soldering iron and some fine pliers or tweezers. It's possible to cut fairly accurate microstrip traces on a PCB like this and I'd be amazed if anyone could beat this with a Dremel and a cheapo plastic support tool.

The other issue with using the Dremel on fibreglass is that it will generate quite a bit of fine dust if you end up drilling lots of lines in the PCB material.

Here at home I have a dedicated PCB milling machine to do stuff like this and it uses a dust extraction system that sucks away the dust and vents it outside. Without the extraction system it gets quite dusty even on a small job. The copper layer on a typical PCB might only be about 0.0014" thick so any excess cutting depth beyond this just adds to more fibreglass dust. My guess is that you will have to set the depth fairly deep if you want it to cut reliably and cleanly on a single pass. So be prepared for lots of dust...

I have a new Dremel here somewhere with all the accessories plus the engraver but I've never used it. It was part of a long service gift at work. The whole setup feels clumsy and I think it will take a lot of skill and a steady hand to do any accurate cutting with this crude and heavy tool. Mine has been in the box for 5 years and never been used because I've always found a better alternative for any given task.
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Regards, Jeremy G0HZU
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