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How to Design and Publish Electronic Boards – Everything You Need to Know

Follow Aug 09, 2020 · 7 mins read
How to Design and Publish Electronic Boards – Everything You Need to Know
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The Kitspace, formerly known as Kitnic, is a registry of open-source hardware electronic projects which are ready to order and build.

This means that they could be described as thingiverse for electronics.

The most important element of a Kit Space project page is what you are allowed to design for it to be actually manufactured.

You need to provide a preview of the printed circuit board and prominent link to download the Gerber manufacturing files as well as have the ability to quickly add the required components to a distributor shopping cart.

How to Make a Circuit Board

To create a circuit board, you first need to find a diagram.

After that, draw your schematics and plan your board layout. Order your components, and start assembling the board by soldering the components onto it.

There are three basic methods to make a PCB such as: • Iron on Glossy Paper • Circuit by hand on PCB • Laster cutting edge etching

The PCB design is done by converting circuit schematic diagrams into a PCB layout using PCB layout software such as Autodesk Eagle or PCB Wizard.

Take a printout of the circuit board layout.

Take the mirror print out and select the output in black both from the PCB design software and the printer driver settings while making sure that the printout is made on the glossy side of the paper.


Cut the Copper Plate for the circuit board and transfer the PCB print onto the copper plate.

Iron the Circuit from the paper on to the PCB plate and Etch the plate.

By drilling holes using a PCB driller, solder all of the control components onto the board and your board should be ready.

Keep in mind that there is a lot more that goes into the creatio nof a cirtuic board, however this should be enough to get you started and once you are done with its creation, if you happen to create something truly magical, which I am sure you have, the next step is to share that creation with the world.

Sharing that creation can be done in a correct way, or in an incorrect way, so, in order to do everything right and as it is intended to be done, make sure to follow this guide and publish your electronic board efficiently and effectively, and who knows, you may even gather the attention of thousands of people through your perfect creation.

How to Add Your Project to Kitspace

Previewing the board.

Plot Gerbers or RS274-X and data drill from your CAD program need to be added.

To do this, put the files in a publicly accessible Git repository which can be done either through GitHub or GitLab for example, and preview your board by entering the repository URL.

If you think it has not found the right gerbers, you can add kitspace.yaml with a gerbers field.

gerbers: path/to/your/gerber-folder

Once you are satisifed with the preview you can publish it and it will be visible to the community, however, what if you wanted to add multiple projects in one repository?

I am happy to report that adding multiple projects in one repository is supported by Kitspace.


When it comes to the terms and conditions, Kitspace developers do not claim any ownership of your work, and it remains yours, which means that if you create something, you have full ownership over that item and it will never be taken away from you or stolen in any way, which is exactyl what you want.

By submitting a project to the site, you give them permission to host copies of your files for other people to download.

If you were to change your mind, the project can be removed at any time by removing the public git repository and sending a pull-request to remove it from boards.txt.

Previewing the bill of materials.

You can add a bill of materials to your repository which can be done in a csv, tsv, Excel or LibreOffice spreadsheet with fields that are recognized.

You can add a kitspace.yaml with:

bom: path/to/bom.csv

Reviewing the readme.

Add a README.md to your repository where you will carefully explain more about the project.
It needs to be written as a Markdown, so you can add a summary and a link to your kitspace.yaml that will appear on the top of your specific page.


site: https://example.com

When it comes to the kitspace.yaml format, it makes use of the following fields, including:


summary: A description for your project site: A site you would like to link to (include http:// or https://) color: The solder resist color of the preview rendering. Can be one of:

  • green
  • red
  • blue
  • black
  • white
  • orange
  • purple
  • yellow

•	bom: A path to your 1-click-bom in case it isn't `1-click-bom.tsv`.
•	gerbers: A path to your folder of gerbers in case it isn't `gerbers/`.
•	eda:
•	type: kicad
•	pcb: path/to/your/file.kicad_pcb

readme: A path to your README file in case it isn’t in the repository root directory.

multi: Identifier field only used if the repository contains multiple projects.

The paths need to be in an UNIX style, which means that you need to use “/” and not “\”, as well as remain relative to the root of your repository.

On the other end of the spectrum, if you used KiCad for your design, you can specify a KiCad PCB file to use by adding an eda field.

•	eda:
•	type: kicad
•	pcb: path/to/your/file.kicad_pcb

If you project has a KiCad PCB file however, the interactive assembly guide for the board can be created using the interactive HTML BOM plugin from the Open Scope Project.

If both the eda and the garbers are present, the Gerber files will be used.

To check out the repo links of the projects listed on kitspace.org already, the minimum required file tree is as shown here:


├── 1-click-bom.tsv

└── gerbers

├── example.cmp

├── example.drd

├── example.dri

├── example.gko

├── example.gpi

├── example.gto

├── example.plc

├── example.sol

├── example.stc

└── example.sts


A more advanced example should look something like this:


├── kitspace.yaml

└── manufacture

├── advanced-example-BOM.tsv

└── gerbers-and-drills

├── advanced-example-B_Adhes.gba

├── advanced-example-B_CrtYd.gbr

├── advanced-example-B_Cu.gbl

├── advanced-example-B_Fab.gbr

├── advanced-example-B_Mask.gbs

├── advanced-example-B_Paste.gbp

├── advanced-example-B_SilkS.gbo

├── advanced-example.drl

├── advanced-example-Edge_Cuts.gbr

├── advanced-example-F_Adhes.gta

├── advanced-example-F_CrtYd.gbr

├── advanced-example-F_Cu.gtl

├── advanced-example-F_Fab.gbr

├── advanced-example-F_Mask.gts

├── advanced-example-F_Paste.gtp

└── advanced-example-F_SilkS.gto

With kitspace.yaml containing:

• summary: A more advanced example • site: https://example.com • color: red • bom: manufacture/advanced-example-BOM.tsv • gerbers: manufacture/gerbers-and-drills

Multiple Projects

Kitspace can also support multiple projects with one repository with the multi field as-well.

assets/images/electronicboards/eboard5.jpg When multiple projects exist, multi will be the first field in the kitspace.yaml, always, and with the paths to your projects folder underneath it.

An example will look something like this:

├── kitspace.yaml

├── project_one

│  ├── 1-click-bom.tsv

│  ├── README.md

│  └── gerbers

│  ├── example.cmp

│  ├── example.drd

│  ├── example.dri

│  ...

│  ├── example.stc

│  └── example.sts

└── project_two

├── 1-click-bom.tsv

├── README.md

└── gerbers

├── example.cmp

├── example.drd

├── example.dri


├── example.stc

└── example.sts

And kitspace.yaml will contain:

• multi: • project_one: • summary: First project in a repository. • color: blue • site: https://example-one.com • project_two: • summary: Second project in a repository. • color: red • site: https://example-two.com

You can alos use custom paths for readme, bom and gerbers.


  • GitHub https://github.com/kitspace/kitspace
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