Making a PCB Business Card

Many of you may have seen the Adafruit PCB ruler (also used by the awesome Voltera).
The design was actually adapted from my own design back in University!

To improve on the original idea, I have created a reference business card.

Here is a computer render of the design:

PS. The dots on the front are the phone number in braille, the dots and dashes are Morse for the website, cause who doesn’t surf the web by Morse?

Business Card Render

I wanted to show every common component I could think of, and how they relate. Often when zoomed all the way into a digital design, you can lose track of what 5 mils really means. It is TINY!

Here is what it looks like in real life:

Business Card Reality

The PCBs were made by Dirt Cheap PCB and overall look pretty good. The silkscreen can be a bit fuzzy or misaligned, but at ~2$ per card, this is great! The slight annoyance is that they plated the AWG holes, even though this was not specified.

Another tip: You can see the maker’s code on the front of the card (white text below the braille). Manufacturers will often put this on the “back” side of your design (bottom layer) so for next time, I will swap the layers to place the mark on the less pretty back.

Feel free to fork the project on the Circuit Maker main site (free login needed)

Or download the gerbers and source files Here

You can also buy yourself one here:
I sell on Tindie


16 thoughts on “Making a PCB Business Card”

  1. Nice business card !
    Regarding holes at dirtypcbs, I noticed that sometimes they are platted, and sometimes not, even if you reorder the same PCB you never know how they will come. They even plated my mouse bites last time.
    I don’t know if we have a way to tell them…

  2. This is amazing, what thickness, did you use for you card? is it apropiate for carring it around? Do you happen to know of an alternative to Dirty cheap boar that might do the thickness of the boards and the silkscreen right?! I usually use OSH park however they dont even let you chosse the tickness of the board

  3. The cards look really nice! The size of your card is ~85mmx45mm, that means you could make panels with two cards. In addition, you can add a small “throway” piece to the panel that the boardhouse may use for their makers code, maybe placing some text like “PLEASE PLACE MAKERS CODE HERE” on the silk screen might help.

    1. Yup, though DirtyPCB doesn’t really do panelization, and other board houses have additional fees for panelized and separated boards.

      Also, most rock bottom prices shops like this do not read notes of any kind, it is all automated.
      So it almost certainly wouldn’t help 🙁

      1. They don’t create a panel for you, but if you send them your layout that includes the break tabs and the holes for the mouse bites they will produce it.

        1. Yes, that’s another way to do it. The issue there is you lose the smooth straight edges of the ruler, and get dimples from the left over mouse bites.

          You could then file this down, but at that point, filling down 20x cards to save ~$10 just isn’t worth it, nor does the result look very good.

  4. You wrote that Dirty PCBs plated the AWG holes. I’m not sure, but I guess they were plated because you have placed a small copper dot in the middle of each hole on both sides in your layout.

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