Panelize 4 DP6037 standard PCBs on a single cheap PCB order

in Bus Pirate, PCBs by DP | 23 comments

Schazamp is making a community order of Bus Pirate v4 Sick of Beige PCBs. He decided to use Seeed Studio’ss cheap PCB service and hack together 4 Bus Pirates on one 10x10cm PCB. He hit a little snag with combining the gerbers, but Ernie helped him out.

Since the Bus Pirate uses our DP6037 standard PCB size, any project on that size board can be assembled in this fashion to get 40 boards for $25! Really!?! We remember getting 5 copies from Bulgaria for $100. Uphill both ways. And we liked it, cause we thought it was cheap!

There’s a downside: you have to cut the boards out of a panel yourself. No pretty edges without some extra elbow grease.

Via the forum.

This entry was posted in Bus Pirate, PCBs and tagged , , , .

Comments

  1. ken says:

    How in the world would you be able to cut the boards out cleanly?

    That’s a nice concept…would be nice if there were an Eagle template for this…

  2. FourthDr says:

    Neat! But you could squeeze a blinkM in the center! :-D All you need is access to a water jet cutter to have nice smooth edges. Otherwise, good luck cutting those out! With a hacksaw?? :-D

  3. neslekkim says:

    If one could put these boards in an lasercutter aftewards… or maybe that wouldn’t go?

  4. Superfro says:

    I’ve used Itead’s service before and done multiple designs on 1 board. Same rules, no vgrooves or holes so just silkscreen… however, I wouldn’t dare do this complex of a self-cutout, I usually do just 2 panels side by side with a little gap and its enough to run it straight through the scroll saw to cut it out, this looks like a pain to cut out .

  5. Vladimir says:

    You have an error in the post title.

  6. George says:

    what spacing did you use between the boards? i’m working on a CNC that would be ideal to cut these apart

  7. systemstech says:

    Maybe try something like this.

    http://youtu.be/Vlyc2wEsak4?hd=1

    Or try the same thing but with a pizza cutter for the blade, Dremel and a 1/8″ bit with a template/jig.

    • neslekkim says:

      But his board seems to be partially cut already, so he can just break them apart, I guess that is not something that seed does?

  8. systemstech says:

    The board spacing is 2mm

  9. systemstech says:

    If all else fails then a utility blade and a steel straight edge with clamps will do. Then just run them on a belt sander to round the corners.

  10. Brian Ray says:

    Maybe I’m mistaken, but I think you meant “panelize”. Penalize means “to subject to a form of punishment.”

  11. systemstech says:

    I think Ian was right because when schazamp finishes cutting all those boards he will have been Penalized. LoL

  12. schazamp says:

    I use a band saw to cut the boards, and a belt sander to clean up the edges.

    I set the price too low this time, once you factor in the etest and red soldermask. Let that be a lesson to me…

    • Peter says:

      As some others have said, I think you should ask for an increase. As long as it is reasonable, I think most people will understand. There is no reason you have to take it on the chin after you went out of your way to contribute. I paypal-ed you already for two but I would be happy to paypal a reasonable delta.

  13. systemstech says:

    Hay your not in this to loose money so let us know how much more you need to make up the difference.

  14. r4k says:

    The only problem with this layout is that it is going to be *extremely* difficult with the score-and-snap method of separation. If score and snap is your plan, you need lines that go all the way across the board.

  15. Kaz says:

    You can probably get 3 of the 4 corners nice and clean from Seeed. Just connect that little middle area to all 4 boards, and then use a bandsaw and router to cut the rest. Just expect that you’ll cut through part of one of the boards accidentally if you aren’t careful…

  16. Dolabra says:

    He’ll be fine with a band saw, set up a rip fence and a stop, the it is cut turn 90 40 times and they are all separated.

  17. systemstech says:

    schazamp, You should video the de-panelization so that we can critique your method. It would make for along blog. :)

  18. George says:

    I’ve almost got my prototype manual CNC setup with plans to de-panel my own board so I could do your too if wanted. Since I don’t have the servos connected I plan on mounting the router on a sled which will give perfectly straight cuts. After they are broken apart you make 1 template with rounded corners and use that as a guide. If the CNC was all setup automating this would be a breeze. I’m surprised nobody here doesn’t have a CNC setup.

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