Many years ago I worked with a friend of mine to do custom electronic design. We had a few projects that required a custom circuit board and he took on the job of cutting out the first prototypes on a local CNC machine we borrowed.
I wanted him to teach me how to do it but it just never happened. Since then I've designed 100's of boards and had most of them made at a board manufacturer. The prices have become very cheap to get 2 sided FR4 boards with solder mask and silk screen lettering. So I never really pursued the milling idea but it was always there on my "things I want to do" list.
About two years ago I saw that the Shapeoko CNC dropped to $499 and I bought one to try and make circuit boards. I ended up learning a lot about CNC but never was successful in milling a PCB. About a year ago Inventables.com offered me a large X-Carve CNC for my YouTube channel. I accepted and did a few videos on it. It wasn't until recently that I decided to put the time in to figure out how to make a board on the X-Carve. I finally figured out all the steps and successfully created my first CNC'd circuit board for a Filament Friday project. You can see the video below.
It wasn't the most complicated design but it was fun to make and I'm sure I'll be doing more in the future.
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Chuck has been programming with PIC Microcontrollers since there were only five devices. Now there are over 700 and growing. He also has a lot of fun 3D printing designs using his Davinci 3D printer and TinkerCad software. In this series of blog posts and occasional videos on his YouTube Channel he tries to help you get started with electronics and 3D printing.
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