New video by Michael; The Factory | Design A Product With Us Part 3: PCB Design In KiCAD

New video! It’s time for some hardware design! In this episode we’ll go from schematic design to PCB layup and somehow we’ll cram seven connectors plus a driver chip onto a tiny board. Follow along and, as always, try to spot the bugs before Michael does!


Hi Michael
Just a small point.
Is there any reason the design for this type of thing cannot have the mounting holes on a 2.54mm grid. Preferably the same grid as any header pins are on.

Core is not the only one not to do this, most of this type of thing is the same. Even the micro controller etc mounts do not line up. It is a pain if you are trying to support this type of thing on a parent board which has already been drilled on the 2.54mm “standard” grid. you find yourself trying to drill holes between existing holes or in the centre of a group of 4 and a lot of the time you finish up with a hole larger than a screw head or spacer and have to use washers etc. Much easier to open out an existing unused hole.

The space between the female sockets on the larger Arduino boards is a bit of a classic. If you want to plug anything into these it has to be an Arduino proto board or similar as nothing else fits.

Just a thought.
Cheers Bob


Hi all

Not addressing anything on behalf of Core but for all of my personal projects I like to shoot for a metric mm grid (Aiming for 10mm then 5, 2.5 and 1 increments where possible).
Is there any reason you like 2.54mm in particular Bob?

Awesome video - I think breaking out some additional pins for more servos down the bottom (or on the sides) like other PiicoDev modules would make for a nice middle ground,


Hi Liam

2.54 is 0.1 inch. The “standard” PCB grid pattern. If you pull up a blank grid in KiCad or any other PCB software the grid will be 2.54mm (0.1") or multiples/submultiples of that.

2.5mm seems to be a newer pin pitch that has crept in on JST and some other connectors. All proto boards are 2.54mm.
Cheers Bob
PS. If you go for those spacings in your boards they won’t match up with anything else including pin headers and such. What might look like 5mm on terminal blocks is actually 5.08mm. One might be OK but you won’t be using many more before they don’t line up.


If only I could go back in time, Bob :slightly_frowning_face:
This goes back to the first PiicoDev module, and now that the pattern is established I can’t see it changing any time soon.

We’re doing everything we can to make sure every feature on Makerverse hardware aligns to a 0.1" grid - it’s just too useful to ignore.


Hi Michael
Thanks for the reply.

Don’t feel too left out, I think just about everything of this type purchased these days is the same.
I am just playing with the Adafruit rotary encoder seesaw boards and while the mounting holes are indeed on a 2.54 matrix ie; 20.08mm centres they are positioned with regard to the 6 pin header position offset by 1.27mm so when positioned over a matrix board the mounts fall between 2 holes as I described above.

The mind boggles it really does when it would have just required a bit of brain power to fix it before production. All OK I suppose if you always use the little connectors but sometimes this is not the case.

I am not much of a believer in leaving things mounted by the soldered header pins but this sort of thing just makes it a bit harder to do properly. If I ever find one of these breakout style board manufacturer that lines everything up I will stick with that. Like finding a butcher that makes good sausages.
Cheers Bob