CNC a PCB

IMG_5888-1000Yay, aacronyms.

A PCB is a Printed Circuit Board which is for electronics. People usually get them made at Seeed Studio, Dirty PCB or use an old technique using chemicals. The chemical thing is very messy. I think getting them made is the way these days but what about prototyping, low runs and same-day timelines?

A CNC is a computer controlled cutting machine or fabrication system (Computer Numerical Control). It’s possible to make simple PCBs using a CNC machine. I think this is attractive since in theory once you have a circuit design you can have it right away with no mail order.

Here’s a methodology. First learn about electronics, arduino, circuits and soldering. The next thing is install and learn Eagle (tutorial videos below). Once the board is designed there is a path from Eagle to a CNC machine.

There is another path to get from a PNG to a CNC machine. We made a small circuit board using the CNC. I think my friend Phone used fabmodules. The project guide suggested a 1/64″ endmill but we just used a 30 degree v-carve.

IMG_7312-1000

Here’s another run with a 1/64″ endmill. It’s a bit cleaner.

Related:

http://www.instructables.com/id/Make-your-own-PCBs-on-an-inexpensive-desktop-CNC-m/

http://www.diptrace.com/

Eagle

 

Posted Oct 3, 2014