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Made PCBs on KiCad and Fusion PCB


I'm using Sanken SLA7078MPRT IC for stepping motor driver in my self-made 3D printer, but there was a problem that the package is ZIP (Zig-zag In-line Package) and it can't stick in general universal board. I can bend the legs of the IC a little bit and force it to insert, but it's not good enough.

I found out about the "$7.9 board sale" at Fusion PCB, a board manufacturing service. The board size is less than 100 x 100 mm, the quantity is 5 pieces, and there is a limit to the board specifications, but it is sufficient for my application. And even if I used OCS (ANA group carrier) for delivery, it was only $12.9 including shipping, so I decided to order it. (If I choose Singapore Post for delivery, I get free shipping, but it will take 15-30 business days.)

The picture below shows the finished board.


Flow of PCB production

The general flow of the board manufacturing process is as follows.

  1. Schematic Design in CAD
  2. Generate netlist with schematic CAD
  3. Load netlist in PCB CAD
  4. Parts placement and wiring in PCB CAD
  5. Gerber Data Output from PCB CAD
  6. Send Gerber data to the board manufacturer
  7. The PCB manufacturer manufactures the boards
  8. Delivery of completed boards

This time, KiCad was used as the schematic CAD and PCB CAD for the above 1.~5. Fusion PCB is the manufacturer of the boards 6. and 7. and OCS is the distributor of the boards 8.

From order to delivery

I'll leave the usage of KiCad to others, but I'd like to record the progress from ordering to delivery in chronological order.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

First, output the Gerber data from the PCB CAD and upload it to the Fusion PCB site. I was confused for a moment about the options for Gerber output and what data I should send, but I decided to follow the detailed procedure for each CAD in this page (How to output Gerber file).

Next, select and fill in the specifications of the board. For the $7.9 board sale, I can only choose the color of resist. In this case, I chose the general green color. Also, the dimensions were filled in according to the Gerber data.

I chose OCS as my shipping carrier. They charge $5 for shipping, but it will be delivered in 3-5 business days. (If I choose Singapore Post for delivery, I can get free shipping, but it will take 15-30 business days.)

Payment is made by credit card to complete the order.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

The status of the post-order process could be found on the Fusion PCB website.

By the morning of the day after the order was placed, "Your order has been confirmed and we have started the production process. This was the case.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Board manufacturing has been completed and shipped. The Tracking Number was displayed, so I was able to check the status of my shipment on the OCS website thereafter.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

It arrived in Japan before dawn. The import license was granted on the same day and it was taken over from OCS to Sagawa Express.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Delivery was completed. It was 9 days after the order was placed.

This is the first time I have ordered PCBs on my own, and I am satisfied with the quality, short turnaround time, and low cost, with no problems.