Kicad: Designing With Complex Shapes

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KiCad presentation by Andrew Sowa at Teardown 2018:

Kicad: Designing With Complex Shapes

While most PCBs can be simple rectangles, sometimes the design requires more complex geometry. EDA tools don’t always make this simple, so we will go over a few KiCad tips to make it easier. In this talk you will learn how to import unique board shapes from Fusion 360, create arbitrary fill zones using images, and embed high-frequency RF filters. We will use multiple software packages to enhance KiCad’s performance beyond its obvious use.

Kicad: Designing With Complex Shapes

PCB Artwork Hack Chat Transcript

The transcript has been posted from the Hack Chat last Friday with Andrew Sowa about Circuit Board artwork:

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PCB Artwork & Photo Conversions Hack Chat Transcript

PCB Art is likely as old as the manufacturing process itself. It has evolved over time from engineers hiding easter eggs in wasted space to whole companies devoted to the intricate authentic design. Andrew has created his own style by using each layer of the PCB to make multi-color images from computer generated designs.  In this chat he will talk about his process of turning photos into PCBs as well as tricks to getting high resolution results with KiCad.

 

In this chat, we’ll be talking about PCB artwork:

  • Bitmap to SVG Converstion (Inkscape and Illustrator)
  • Kicad Footprint creation
  • PCB Fabrication Limits
  • Backlighting
  • Halftones
PCB Artwork Hack Chat Transcript

PCB projects with awesome artwork

 

Here’s a list of some project with great PCB artwork:

Pure art boards

Functional boards with awesome art/layouts

PCB projects with awesome artwork

OSHWi Octopus Badge by Gustavo Reynaga

Alex Glow of Hackster.io takes a look at the OSHWi octopus badge designed by Gustavo Reynaga:

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The design files and source code are available on GitHub:

hulkco/oshwi_2017

GReynaga has shared the board on OSH Park:

001_Hackster_Rev1.kicad_pcb

Oshwi Badge HACKSTER Version Rev 1

 

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Order from OSH Park

OSHWi Octopus Badge by Gustavo Reynaga

Building a PCB lapel

JinGen Lim created this beautiful project:

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Building a PCB lapel

I had little experience with fabric, but building a lapel out of PCB seemed like something that might just work. PCBs are typically built with extremely high tolerances for its copper and mask layers and still acceptably accurate for the silkscreen.

 

Building a PCB lapel

PCB Artwork in 2017

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wrote on Hackaday about the amazing PCB artwork that he’s seen so far in 2017:

Hackaday Links: June 11, 2017

PCB art is getting better and better every year.  This year, though, is knocking it out of the park.  In March, Andrew Sowa turned me into money.

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More recently, Trammell Hudson has explored the layers of OSH Park soldermask and silk to create a masterpiece.

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Now, we’re moving up to full-blown art. Blake Ramsdell worked with OSH Park to create a full panel of art in gold, fiberglass, soldermask, and silkscreen. It’s 22×16 inches, and it’s fantastic.

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David I. Herman just created a Facebook group for PCB paintings.

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PCB Artwork in 2017