PCBs as Front Panels ?

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dKRelease
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Re: Re:

Post by dKRelease » Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:42 pm

mrand wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 3:17 pm
Lolo73 wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 2:02 pm
I use 1.6 aluminium panels, made by PCBWay.
I'm curious, is 1.6mm aluminum panel more rigid than 1.6mm PCB with full "ground plane" on the backside? Wondering if anyone has had a chance to do a fair comparison.
Yeah it’s definitely more rigid. I think most euro size aluminium panels are 2mm but the 1.6mm are suffice providing your panels aren’t too big. FWIW, ground plane won’t add anything to rigidity as it’s something like 0.03mm thick.

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Re: Re:

Post by mrand » Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:51 pm

dKRelease wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:42 pm
FWIW, ground plane won’t add anything to rigidity as it’s something like 0.03mm thick.
Surprisingly, it does! Not as much as +0.4mm PCB material, I'm sure, but I've got the same sizes of each to compare (with and without ground plane), and the difference is quite easy to feel. I never would have guessed it would make a difference. I only ordered the ground plane because I thought it would look nice, but the added rigidity was a welcome accident!
--ssdp--

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Re: Re:

Post by Lolo73 » Mon Jan 13, 2020 4:51 am

dKRelease wrote:
Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:42 pm


Yeah it’s definitely more rigid. I think most euro size aluminium panels are 2mm but the 1.6mm are suffice providing your panels aren’t too big. FWIW, ground plane won’t add anything to rigidity as it’s something like 0.03mm thick.

My largest panel measures 20 hp (see photo) and, even with 1.6 mm aluminum full of holes, the panel is very rigid. You have to force a lot to bend it! So I don't think we need something stronger.
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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by smrl » Mon Jan 13, 2020 5:24 am

FetidEye wrote:
Sat Jan 11, 2020 4:03 pm
I have yet to find out how to make oval holes and milled cutouts (for sliders and displays for example. If anyone has tips on that, please :)
I don't know specifically about how to do this in Eagle. But in KiCAD I've had luck specifying slots as custom footprints, and using oval hole shapes to specify dimensions of routes.

Here's an example of a footprint I just used to make a route with "mousebites" to separate two panels in a design
image911.png
image912.png
image989.png
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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by mrand » Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:27 pm

I see so many builders here... is there a network to trade complete, homemade modules? I know about the trades thread, but it seems more for parts and unbuilt kits, etc. What about a place to trade 1:1 finished modules? Must be loads of folks like me who order 5 units from china but only need 2 or 3.
--ssdp--

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by Lolo73 » Tue Jan 14, 2020 4:35 am

mrand wrote:
Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:27 pm
I see so many builders here... is there a network to trade complete, homemade modules? I know about the trades thread, but it seems more for parts and unbuilt kits, etc. What about a place to trade 1:1 finished modules? Must be loads of folks like me who order 5 units from china but only need 2 or 3.
I could even say : Must be loads of folks like me who order 10 units from china but only need 1 :hihi:

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by FetidEye » Tue Jan 14, 2020 9:56 am

I think most of us build the amount that we need and then trade the bare pcb's and panels.
those turn up in the trade thread you mentioned, or are traded with local friends?
I don't think a lot a people build all their pcb's and then trade them. too much work?

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by EATyourGUITAR » Tue Jan 14, 2020 11:47 am

FetidEye wrote:
Tue Jan 14, 2020 9:56 am
I don't think a lot a people build all their pcb's and then trade them. too much work?
more money in my pocket. I always build 10 modules and sell 8. then I sell the other 2 for food. then I get paid from my job and I rinse repeat. this is why my rack is usually empty.
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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by EATyourGUITAR » Tue Jan 14, 2020 11:54 am

FetidEye wrote:
Sat Jan 11, 2020 4:03 pm
I have yet to find out how to make oval holes and milled cutouts (for sliders and displays for example. If anyone has tips on that, please :)
in eagle you just put it in the milling layer. your PCB fab should see it. if you need through hole plating on your slots that is a bit more complicated. it requires a custom part. some PCB fabs are smarter than others. you may also need to add the outline of your milling stuff to the dimension layer. your fab actually has specs on min drill and min slot. read them. everyone wants the smallest possible milling bit. for your LCD cutout you have square inside corners. this is possible but you may end up paying a lot more for that feature. if you require square inside corners you must communicate with the factory that that is your requirement. or just submit the gerbers and they will either reject, modify, ask, or make a bad PCB you can't use.
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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by mrand » Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:08 pm

Lolo73 wrote:
Tue Jan 14, 2020 4:35 am
I could even say : Must be loads of folks like me who order 10 units from china but only need 1 :hihi:
ha, yeah no doubt. I was very happy when some PCB fab houses dropped their minimum to 5.
FetidEye wrote:
Tue Jan 14, 2020 9:56 am
I don't think a lot a people build all their pcb's and then trade them. too much work?
Isn't it only 20% slower to build two units than one? So if we could trade the extra, then we start to maximize our return.
--ssdp--

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by Altitude909 » Sun Jan 19, 2020 8:45 am

mrand wrote:
Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:08 pm
Isn't it only 20% slower to build two units than one? So if we could trade the extra, then we start to maximize our return.
um, I say its twice as long to build 2 instead of one and then why trade it at cost when you can sell it at a mark up and then just build the other module yourself

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by EATyourGUITAR » Tue Jan 21, 2020 11:35 am

PCB cart sent me an email
For your order (EDIT)xxxxxxxxx, part xxxxxxxxx, there is large PTH hole, we need to take it as edge-plating and charge you the extra cost of 30 USD.
We have send the paypal link of $30 to you on Jan 13, have you recieved it? We will resend the paypal link to you later today, please kindly check and make the payment asap. Or, you could pay $30 to our PayPal account"payment@pcbcart.com" and note down the order number xxxxxxxx.
The order was already finished and ready to be shipped, we are waiting for your payment to release the order to you. Kindly note we are taking the CNY holiday from Jan 23.
so I wasted a week because they never emailed me. then they leave for a week. but most important of all. we learned that you should tell them DO NOT PLATE holes larger than 4mm diameter. I already put a note "do not print batch number on PCB".

also I have a coupon code for %10
10% discount, up to $100 OFF. Coupon code: 2020SFP, valid from Jan 20th to Jan 31st, 2020.
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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by Troubleshooter » Mon Jan 27, 2020 5:35 am

Image

I recently used the x0xb0x DXF files and edited them in AutoCAD. Then I imported them in EasyEDA and edited some more. This is the result. Still waiting for the boards to arrive from JLCPCB.

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by guest » Mon Jan 27, 2020 10:58 am

that looks really good! is that going to be PCB or aluminum PCB?
openmusiclabs.com

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by Troubleshooter » Mon Jan 27, 2020 1:03 pm

guest wrote:
Mon Jan 27, 2020 10:58 am
that looks really good! is that going to be PCB or aluminum PCB?
Ordered regular PCB material. It should be stiff enough. Lets hope so....

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by brycecake » Wed Jan 29, 2020 4:34 am

mrand wrote:
Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:24 pm
There must be others who have arrived at the same conclusion to use 10x10cm panels?
VCOpanel2_.jpgVCOpanel1.jpg
DAAAAANG you just changed the game.

I didn't realize it would be so much cheaper but yeah, like $5 for 5 on PCBWay, $2 on JLC, that's nuts. That's practically free lol
Maybe I'm just getting excited, but I think synth diy-ers should highly consider this format.
Thanks for sharing, looks great!

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by cackland » Wed Jan 29, 2020 12:42 pm

Don't forget shipping costs. That's mainly your cost in smaller quantities.

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by EATyourGUITAR » Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:41 pm

it worked
Image
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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by mrand » Thu Jan 30, 2020 6:38 pm

brycecake wrote:
Wed Jan 29, 2020 4:34 am
DAAAAANG you just changed the game.

I didn't realize it would be so much cheaper but yeah, like $5 for 5 on PCBWay, $2 on JLC, that's nuts. That's practically free lol
Maybe I'm just getting excited, but I think synth diy-ers should highly consider this format.
Thanks for sharing, looks great!
Well, at least it's a nice prototyping format!
If you want files for panels or anything, LMK.
--ssdp--

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by rsholmes » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:34 pm

mrand wrote:
Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:24 pm
FWIW here are a couple photos of a recent JLCPCB panel. I designed a format dedicated to maximizing the low-cost, 10x10cm PCB offerings. It's a very cost effective solution, especially now that the minimum order is down to 5 units. At standard 1.6mm thickness, there is no rigidity problem.

There must be others who have arrived at the same conclusion to use 10x10cm panels?
VCOpanel2_.jpgVCOpanel1.jpg
If you haven't come up with a name for this format yet, may I propose "Sinorack"? :mrgreen:

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by KSS » Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:11 am

mrand wrote:
Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:24 pm
FWIW here are a couple photos of a recent JLCPCB panel. I designed a format dedicated to maximizing the low-cost, 10x10cm PCB offerings. It's a very cost effective solution, especially now that the minimum order is down to 5 units. At standard 1.6mm thickness, there is no rigidity problem.

There must be others who have arrived at the same conclusion to use 10x10cm panels?
Many PAIA 2700 and 4700 modules are 4x4". 2wx4"h is their smallest module.
What's .060" between frends?

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by mrand » Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:45 am

rsholmes wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:34 pm
If you haven't come up with a name for this format yet, may I propose "Sinorack"? :mrgreen:
Sinorack. I like how it sounds, is there a meaning I'm missing?
I've been informally referring to it as the SSDP format, but I think since it's a very DIY-rooted format, it can have many names :)
I'll leave you to guess the acronym.
KSS wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:11 am
Many PAIA 2700 and 4700 modules are 4x4". 2wx4"h is their smallest module.
What's .060" between frends?
I definitely was thinking of PAIA with this format!
--ssdp--

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by 040B » Tue Feb 11, 2020 1:58 pm

rsholmes wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:34 pm
mrand wrote:
Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:24 pm
FWIW here are a couple photos of a recent JLCPCB panel. I designed a format dedicated to maximizing the low-cost, 10x10cm PCB offerings. It's a very cost effective solution, especially now that the minimum order is down to 5 units. At standard 1.6mm thickness, there is no rigidity problem.

There must be others who have arrived at the same conclusion to use 10x10cm panels?
VCOpanel2_.jpgVCOpanel1.jpg
If you haven't come up with a name for this format yet, may I propose "Sinorack"? :mrgreen:
I’ve been considering this too for my diy plan. Square tiles can look pretty nice in a suitable rack.

Do back and front silk screening so you can use panels for different builds. For extra extra cheapness.

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by rsholmes » Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:55 pm

mrand wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:45 am
Sinorack. I like how it sounds, is there a meaning I'm missing?
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Sino-

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Re: PCBs as Front Panels ?

Post by rsholmes » Sat Feb 15, 2020 8:03 pm

This is an interesting discussion, but I'm still a little hazy on some aspects of it. A "worked example" would help. Would anyone be willing to post a KiCad pcb file for a typical, basic front panel?

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