PCB Design – How To Create Circuit Boards

To create a PCB Design you need to draw holes, pads and wires for your circuit. Then you send this drawing to a manufacturer or you etch it yourself.

Sounds hard? Don’t worry, there are many free tools out there that will help you do this.

Starting with schematics

Before you start drawing wires and stuff, you need to know what circuit you want to build. So you need to find or design schematics for your circuit. And you need a PCB design software. Then you are ready to begin the process.

Start by drawing your schematic diagram into the software you have chosen.

Screenshot of Eagle PCB Design Software

PCB design process

Preparing the board layout

Now it’s time to draw the board. You need to transfer your schematic diagram into a drawing of your printed circuit board.

Drawing PCB’s is artwork. Take your time, and make sure it looks good. Follow the design guidelines for drawing circuit boards.

Most PCB software will have tools that will help you draw your board from the schematic. I can’t cover them all, but I’ve written a PCB design tutorial for Eagle to help you learn.

PCB Design of an RFID Circuit

Things To Think About

Will you put the circuit board in a box? Remember that tall components might need to be laid down flat to fit. With a drawing of your components placed on your board, print it out on a sheet of paper. Use this paper version of your board to test that it will fit the box and that your connectors will fit.

Getting your PCB manufactured

When you are done drawing your board, it is time to get your PCB design ready for manufacturing.

This basically means you need to check your board for errors and convert your board layout to Gerber files. Then, choose a cheap PCB manufacturer and get your board made.

Detailed Instructions

This article is an introduction to circuit board design. I really recommend you to learn this stuff as it will help you tremendously in building projects. It’s because of this knowledge that I am now able to build stuff like quadcopters, LCD screens and other cool gadgets.

Click here to access my video training «Building Advanced Hobby Circuits»

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Return from PCB Design to Electronic Circuits

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