Flex and Rigid-Flex PCBs

PCBs with the ultimate versatility

Flex and Rigid Flex PCBs will include some degree of flexibility. This can be in the whole circuit (Flex) or a dynamic flexible join between two or more rigid boards (Rigid Flex). The main advantage is often considered as having the ability to fit into applications where no other solution would work but they have many other advantages.

Advantages include:

  • Weight reduction
    Flex construction with materials such as Polyimide are much lighter than conventional substrates. Further reduction is offered by not using traditional connectors making them ideal for ‘carry’ or ‘wearable’ products.
  • Reduced overall costs
    Using thin polyimide films allows these boards to easily fit in small packaging making product costs less. Faster assembly without as many connectors also offer lower box build costs.
  • Dynamic Flex
    Standard Flex are only flexed at install. Dynamic Flex boards can be flexed repeatably making them suitable for laptops, robots, printers etc.
  • Increased product reliability
    The need for traditional connectors can be removed thus increasing reliability re assembly issues or connector failures. The use of polyimide materials also aids the thermal stability of the circuits.
  • Ultimate use of packaging space
    The circuits are thin and can be easily creased or folded and bent to fit the smallest of available spaces. They are ideal to be formed in the geometry of 3D packaging solutions where rigid boards would not fit.
  • High vibration or shock environments
    Extremely shock resistant for high-stress environments
Rigid Flex PCB Animation
Flex (FPC) PCBs

DK-Daleba is a leading supplier of Flex and Rigid Flex circuit, and we can manufacture your boards in a wide range of materials and surface finishes depending on your exact application. Full capabilities are detailed below, and a pdf can be downloaded here.

Contact us today and our sales engineers will discuss your exact requirement Download Flex / Flex-Rigid Brochure
(Large print ready file - 95mb)

Flex PCBs (FCB)(FPC)

Flexible Printed Circuit PCBs
Flex (FPC) PCBs
Flex (FPC) PCBs

Flex circuits are also referred to as a FPC (Flexible Printed Circuit), Flex Circuit Boards, Flex PCBs, Flex Circuits, or Flexible Printed Circuits. They consist of a thin insulating polymer film encapsulating the conductor circuit. Polyimides are popular for construction as they offer high temperature opportunities for assembly or product environment. Flex circuits can be manufactured as a connector or designed for use with components. Rigid stiffeners can be included. They can be constructed as single sided, double sided or multi-layered.

Flexible Printed Circuit (FPC) - Capabilities
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Item Sample (Order Area <3m2) Batch (Order Area ≥3m2)
Main Materials    
Insulation Layer CVL, Ink CVL, Ink
Colour of coverlay Yellow, Black, White Yellow, Black, White
Colour of ink Yellow, Green Yellow, Green
Dielectric layer 0.012mm-0.1mm 0.025-0.1mm
Additional Materials    
FR-4 Stiffener 0.1-3.2mm 0.1-3.2mm
PI Stiffener 0.075-0.225mm 0.075-0.225mm
Steel reinforcement 0.2-0.6mm 0.2-0.4mm
Other Materials 3M tape, snap dome, electromagnetic shielding, lid-off film, micro-sticking film 3M tape, snap dome, electromagnetic shielding, lid-off film, micro-sticking film
     
Structure 1+n+1 ; 1+1+n+1+1 ; 2+n+2 (needs review) 1+n+1 ; 1+1+n+1+1 ; 2+n+2 (needs review)
F+R (needs review), cu+F+cu (needs review), R+F+R+F+R (needs review), R+F+R R+F+R
Layers ≤14L ≤8L
Board Thickness 0.06-0.35mm 0.1-0.35mm
Tolerance of Board Thickness Flexible Area 0.03mm;PI Stiffener Area 0.05mm;FR-4 Stiffener Area 0.1mm Flexible Area 0.03mm;PI Stiffener Area 0.05mm;FR-4 Stiffener Area 0.1mm
Min single unit Size PCB Size: 5mm*15mm-310mm*510mm PCB Size:5mm*15mm-310mm*510mm
Copper Thickness Outer layer 2oz, Inner layer 2oz Outer layer 1oz, Inner layer 1oz
Outline Breakaway Tab, Single PCB Breakaway Tab, Single PCB
Surface Treatment HASL, HASL lead free (single-side FPC only), ENIG, OSP (no-stiffener only) ENIG

Rigid Flex

Rigid Flex
Rigid Flex Hybrid Board
Flex Board and Rigid Circuit

Rigid Flex are hybrid boards and by definition consist of a Flex board with a Rigid circuit component incorporated in the design. These hybrid circuits can be a Flex with an FR4 stiffener, or two or more rigids connected with Flex circuits. Rigid Flex circuits offer the best of both flexible circuits and rigid boards combined in one PCB.

Rigid Flex circuits are extremely versatile and can be used in a wide range of applications. Designers often consider they are ultimate solution for making use of the available packaging space. Increased product reliability and overall reduced assembly costs are also drivers for this technology.

Rigid Flex Printed Circuit - Capabilities
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Item Sample (Order Area <3m2) Batch (Order Area ≥3m2)
Material    
Tg170 S1000-2M, IT180A S1000-2M, IT180A
Hi-Tg FR4 (halogen-free) S1165 S1165
Hi-speed material: needs review needs review
Structure 1+n+1 ; 1+1+n+1+1 ; 2+n+2 (needs review)  
F+R (needs review), cu+F+cu (needs review), R+F+R+F+R (needs review), R+F+R R+F+R
Layer ≤18L ≤16L
Board Thickness   0.5-3.2mm 0.5-3.2mm
Copper Thickness   Outer layer 2oz, Inner layer 2oz Outer layer 2oz , Inner layer 2oz
       
Outline      
Processes Rigid Area Single PCB; V-Cut; Breakaway Tab; Breakaway Tab+Stamp Holes; Breakaway Tab+V-Cut; Breakaway Tab+V-Cut+Stamp Holes Single PCB;V-Cut; Breakaway Tab; Breakaway Tab+Stamp Holes; Breakaway Tab+V-Cut; Breakaway Tab+V-Cut+Stamp Holes
Flexible Area Breakaway Tab, Single PCB Breakaway Tab, Single PCB
Tolerance of Size Rigid Area 0.1mm 0.15mm
Flexible Area 0.05mm 0.1mm
       
Drilling      
Drill bit(min) for mechanical drill 0.15(Board Thk≤1.2mm)-6.2mm 0.2-6.2mm
       
The gap between hole wall for different webs (CAF): IPC standard 12mil 12mil
Military standard 16mil 16mil
Hole to trace distance (after compensation) for one lamination 4L-5.5mil; 6L-6.5mil; 8L-7mil; 10L-8mil; 12-18L-10mil 4L-6mil; 6L-7mil; 8L-8mil; 10L-10mil; 12-18L-12mil
       
Surface treatment HASL, HASL lead free, ENIG, Immersion Tin (needs review), Immersion Silver (needs review), OSP, HASL+Gold Finger (needs review), ENIG+Gold Finger, ENEPIG OSP+Gold, Finger (needs review), ENIG+OSP (needs review) HASL, HASL lead free, ENIG, Immersion Tin (needs review), Immersion Silver (needs review), OSP, HASL+Gold Finger(needs review), ENIG+Gold Finger, ENEPIG, OSP+Gold, Finger (needs review), ENIG+OSP (needs review)
Solder Mask Colour Green, Yellow, Black, Blue, Red, White, Matt Green, Matt Black Green, Yellow, Black, Blue, Red, White, Matt Green, Matt Black
Silkscreen Colour White, Yellow, Black White, Yellow, Black
Joscar Registered