Custom PCBs from PCBWay

A project log for Limrose Compukit 1

Recreation of the Limrose Compukit 1 from 1970.

deftcoyotedeftcoyote 03/12/2023 at 21:080 Comments

I'm a few weeks behind on updates! I was offered free custom PCBs from PCBWay over a month ago in order to try out their service (I had never ordered my own PCBs before). The process was easy and I just used the gerber files generated from the Kicad files on the project. I couldn't resist going for the purple boards in order to have something flashy. I got them a few days later and they are beautiful.

Here are the back and front together.

I had to order the single pin posts, which took a week or so. I was not expecting the vertical alignment of the pins be so difficult. I should have used combined pin mounts to make this easier, but I was trying to stay close to the original design, which were all single posts. You can see the finished board below. In order to ensure I didn't bend the pins after solder, I added a dab of super glue on top. This worked great until I accidentally smeared it over the board. This is why there are white smudges on top. I scrapped off as much as I could. I should have only messed with it after I had finished all the pins. Well, lesson learned.

Here's a picture of the rough prototype and the finished board. Next I'll get a case made and do some testing. 

I realized one important thing after getting the boards: I didn't include any holes for mounting the PCB in a case. I guess these are the things you lean with experience. I'm going to make a case with a slot design to adjust for this. 

Within the next few weeks I'll update about the 3D printed case, and some testing to make sure everything is working as expected. This was such a wonderful experience. Thanks again to PCBWay for sponsoring the project and the help throughout the process.

Finally, a closer look at the center graphic because I want to.