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Flexible PCB Manufacturing

Full feature flexible PCB manufacturing. Low-cost and quick-turn flex PCB services.

Flexible PCB

Full Feature Flexible PCB Manufacturer

MKTPCB manufactures and supplies quality flex-rigid and flexible PCBs at affordable prices. We manufacture them through sequential designing of flexible component layers like base polyimide, copper, cover-lay, and stiffeners attached by adhesive epoxy or acrylic layers. Our capacity is not limited to single-sided, double-sided (with or without PTH), multi-layer, and flex-rigid circuit boards.   

Full Feature Flexible PCB Manufacturer

The materials we use must be suitable for either static (for example, once only bend into a camera) or dynamic uses (for example, hard disk drive). Usually, we apply stiffeners in the flexible areas where components are fixed. Flex circuit boards are more expensive to manufacture than rigid PCBs because of their complexity and materials. Their base materials are a bit dimensionally more unstable than FR4 rigid laminates. Furthermore, they must be processed on more minor steps and recurring blanks.   

MKTPCB leverages mechanical tooling in the production of flexible PCBs. Tooling can either be CNC soft tooling (cost-effective but high-unit expenses), steel rule (volumes of up to a few thousand pieces, medium cost, low-dimensional stability), or hard steel punch & die sets (durable, precise, and high-cost).

Types of Flexible PCBs We Offer

Flexible PCBs are classified based on the number of conductive layers, design and materials, and the presence or absence of PTH. 

IPC Type 1

These are single-sided flexible PCBs with one conductive layer. They are the most typical flexible boards, suitable for dynamic, flexible uses. IPC Type 1 flex boards come with or without stiffeners. 

IPC Type 2

These are double-sided flexible boards and have two conductive layers with PTH. They also come with or without stiffeners. Copper is attached on both sides of the base material, then drilled, etched, and insulated on the two sides with an upper and lower dielectric cover layer. 

IPC Type 3

These are multi-layer flexible PCBs and have three or more conductive layers with PTH. The PTH technique is applied to facilitate the interconnection of conductive layers. IPC Type 3 flex circuits come with or without stiffeners. 

IPC Type 4

They use multi-layer rigid and flexible boards having three or more conductive layers with PTH. 

IPC Type 5

These are flexible or rigid-flex PCBs. They have two or more conductive layers and lack PTH.

Our Flex PCB Capacity

At MKTPCB, we have specialized in the manufacturing and assembly of flex PCBs for use in a wide range of industries. Our customized printed circuit board manufacturing capacities enable us to design and fabricate the highest quality flexible circuits that meet individual requirements. We can also partner with you to create a custom flexible PCB prototype that will significantly enhance the potential of a successful project outcome. For finer details, kindly refer to the table below.

Feature Capacity
Quality Offered Standard IPC class 2
Fabrication Routing, Scoring, Complex machining
Number of Layers Standard: 1-4L, Limitation: 6L
Order Quantity No MOQ requirement
Material DuPont PI: Pyralux AP, LF, FR, high-speed Pyralux TK (Teflon-Kapton), Isola: 370HR, FR406, FR408, high-speed FR408HR, polyimideRogers: TeflonArlon: Polyimide, metal-core, Domestic Shengyi PI.
Max Board Panel Size 18″ x 24″
Board Thickness 0.1mm - 0.8mm
Finished Copper Thickness 0.5oz - 2.0oz
Min Track/Spacing .003” / .003”
Solder Mask Color LPI S/M: Green, White, Blue, Black, Red, Flexible LPI S/M: Amber, Green, black, White , Yellow
Solder-stop coating / Coverlay PI and PET film
Silkscreen Color White, Black, Yellow
Surface Finishing HASL, Lead - free HASL, - RoHS ENIG , Immersion Tin - Immersion Tin, Electrolytic Nickel/Gold.
Min Drilling Hole Diameter 8mil
Min. hole size - Drilling (PTH) 0.2mil
Min. hole size - Punching (NPTH) 0.5mil
Tolerance of dimension ±0.05mm
Fabrication Routing, Scoring, Complex machining.
Additional methods Peelable solder mask Gold fingers Stiffener (only for PI/FR4 substrate)
Lead time 48 hours - 5 weeks

What Makes MKTPCB’s Flex PCBs and Processes Unique

What Makes MKTPCB’s Flex PCBs and Processes Unique

MKTPCB is an experienced and reliable flexible PCB manufacturer. What sets us apart from other flex PCB manufacturers? First, we act as a single point of contact throughout the process of quoting, designing, production, and shipping. Secondly, our flex PCB products come with multiple major differentiators that make them ideal for numerous applications.

We manufacture only the best-quality circuits using polyimide and thin copper foils on trace and space as 50 microns. We have refined our flex PCB production process for more than ten years to act as a one-stop-shop that meets all your PCB requirements.  

Our flexible PCB products have already proven themselves in various applications and sectors. Our products have been applied in handheld and implantable healthcare equipment. Besides, they have also been widely used in aerospace and automotive applications or consumer electronics like personal computers. 

Other than flexible circuits, we also fabricate rigid-flex printed circuit boards and HDI flex boards. Rigid-flex boards link conventional and flexible designs and are primarily used to connect multiple rigid-flex PCBs using flexible circuits.

Contact Us for Flexible PCB Services

At MKTPCB, we are ready to put into practice our rich PCB manufacturing experience. We aim to produce high-quality flex PCBs with reliable deliveries, competitive pricing, and superior technical support. Though flex PCBs are challenging to manufacture, our expertise turns customer orders into possibilities. Our far-fetching internal contract PCB assembly enables us to provide production pallets for flex circuits, enhancing assembly efficiency.

What is a Flex PCB

What is a Flex PCB

As the name suggests, flexible or flex PCBs are flexible printed circuit boards with thin substrates and high bendability levels, tensile strength, and physical flexibility. These boards can be designed into complex 3-D shapes for application across various industries like heads-up displays for aerospace piloting, wearable industry, and little gadgets (such as modern hearing equipment) for medical care.    

The substrates applied in the production of flexible PCBs are a few microns thick but reliably fixed. This feature makes the flex PCBs more appropriate to specific tasks than rigid boards. Additionally, flexible circuit boards eliminate traditional wiring harnesses and ribbon connectors in some instances. 

For instance, a flexible printed circuit board can be routed at tight confines and angles of equipment like a telecommunication satellite but still sport a significantly high conductor density. However, this adaptability is impossible when leveraging ribbon cables. Furthermore, flex circuit boards present multiple design benefits like:

  • 360-degree bendability.
  • Superior resistance to vibrations and other disruptions in severe environments.
  • Support for compact, lightweight designs since product weight can be significantly minimized. 
  • Small, flexible cables that consume less space than standard cables. 
  • The ability to be bent without causing any related breakage.

Why You Should Choose Flex PCBs

Why You Should Choose Flex PCBs

Flexible PCBs present several mechanical benefits over standard ribbon wires in various use cases, and in some instances, they display better chemistry. As mentioned earlier, a flex PCB can be produced in complex 3-D shapes with branches to various connectors, which is impossible to create with ribbon wires. Furthermore, these boards can be interfaced with their rigid counterparts without the comparatively tall and massive connectors flat cables need. For rigid-flex designs, they are more integral with the PCBs and get rid of external connectors completely. Still, the conductor density of flexible PCBs is better than that of ribbon cables. 

There are some exclusive benefits of flexible PCBs versus conventional ribbon cables apart from their significant differences. For instance, Kapton (one of the common flex PCB materials) has exceedingly low outgassing in ultra-high vacuum conditions. While Kapton-insulated ribbon cables are available in the market, they have few conductors and cannot be routed in tight angles. 

Ribbon wires insulated with Teflon and other plastic substrates outgas fluorine and other reactive compounds when exposed to high vacuums, which attack electronics in closed containers when significant measures are not put in place to release the gases fully.

Space, Weight, and Cost Saving Benefits of Flex PCBs

Restructuring a product to use flexible circuits instead of rigid boards presents immediate weight benefits. Users generally experience weight decreases of up to 75% when compared to conventional designs. This is facilitated by the thin materials consisting of polyester or polyimide materials – thin films ranging from 12-120 microns thick. Conductive material traces are imprinted on the flexible board in as many layers as the PCB specifications. Usually, a cover layer is applied to prevent moisture and dust from contaminating the layers. 

Another crucial application of flexible board design is eliminating wiring harnesses and ribbon connectors once applied to connect various boards. For instance, to link the engine control unit of a vehicle to the dashboard or lighting section. The standardization and economy of scale that accompanies this also minimizes the assembly expenses, condensing the components and interconnections needed and permitting high-volume production.   

Most flexible circuit board users realize that they can decrease connection costs by up to 70% compared to the conventional wiring harness design. A decrease in connection expenses consequently leads to a reduction of the costs associated with irregular quality. Besides, flex circuits’ standardization design also gets rid of manual harness errors.

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