Design Guide For Chemical Etching Process

All dimensions, tolerances and configurations are functions of the thickness of the material being photo chemical etched and should be considered during the designing process. The following guide gives practical limitations for slots, spaces, holes and construction dimensions with relation to metal thickness for photo chemical etching. 

Data Formats

We accept below file formats:
dwg, dxf, pdf, ai, cdr; files generated by Solidworks, NX UG, Pro/E … etc.

It is better to unfold designs so that we don’t have to transfer and modify the drawings ourselves much.

Materials, Thickness, Sheet Sizes

Metal Type
Thickness Range
Steel & Stainless Steel
0.02 to 1.0 mm
Copper & Copper Alloys
0.05 to 1.0 mm
Nickel & Nickel Alloys
0.05 to 1.0 mm
Aluminum Series
0.1 to 1.0 mm
0.1 to 1.0 mm

Dimensions & Tolerances

Min. Hole/Slot Size
Min. Bar Width
Standard Tolerance
0.02~0.05 mm
0.1 mm
0.1 mm
± 0.025 mm
0.05~0.1 mm
0.1 mm
0.1 mm
± 0.025 mm
0.1~0.3 mm
130% material thickness
100% material thickness
± 0.03 mm
0.3 mm & above
130% material thickness
100% material thickness
10% material thickness

Corner Radius

Outside corner radius(R)
The outside corner radius will be at least 0.75 of the material thickness, R>0.75 x T

Inner corner radius(r)
The smallest inside corner radius is proportional to the metal thickness. Contact us if a smaller or sharp radius is required.


Etched Profiles

Etched profiles
There are a few different etched profiles for the etching parts, each profile has its special etching results.

CUSP(Etched edge)
While etching, the chemical etchant erodes the metal laterally and vertically resulting in an edge “CUSP” which is typically about 20% of material thickness.

The CUSP is controllable in Trivision Etching, contact us to discuss on your projects!

Etched Profile-CUSP

1. Single-side Etched

Single side etched

Used most on thin metals w/wo tabs, or half etch on one side of the sheet.

2. Standard Etched

Convex etched profile

Etched from both sides at the same time to create through holes, but with convex CUSP

3. Parallel Etched

Parallel etched

A little over etched after standard etch, CUSP can be reduced in this profile

4. Concave Etched

Concave etched

Fully over etched, used to achieve a straighter edge profile

5. Half Etched

Double side deep half etched

Used for surface engraving on both sides, the depth can be controlled

6. 70/30 Etched

2 to 3 etched

Control different etching time on top&bottom sides, used to produce conical apertures or cutting edges

Connected Tabs

Tabs are connections between sheet metals and components, they are used to mount the components on the sheet metals during chemical etching.
We have 5 tabs designs in our factory: without tab components, inner tabs(w/wo half etched), outer tabs(w/wo half etched), customers can select one of the tab designs below according to your application.

Without tab

A part without any connected tab is feasible in Trivision Etching, but material thickness need to be under 0.2mm

Inner tab

For this tab design, no protrusion remains after breaking off the tab from the component; the tab can be half etched for easier breaking off

Outer tab

If you don’t want the tab to affect the component surface, you can choose the outer tab design; the tab can also be half etched

Any question, don't hesitate to contact us !