Othermill: kickstarting a desktop 3D computer-controlled mill for circuit-boards, jewelry and more

McArthur Genius Grant winner and maker hero Saul Griffith and his friends have a fully funded Kickstarter on the go for the "Othermill," a computer-controlled mill for creating your own custom circuit-boards -- and for milling decorative or functional shapes from "metal, wood, wax, and plastic." It's a compact desktop tool designed for home use.

With our mill, you can produce custom circuit boards quickly and cheaply. You can make all your projects light up, beep, and move. Wearable circuits, custom guitar effects pedals, and quadcopter electronics are all within reach - without waiting for boards to come back from the manufacturer. Even though the Othermill is optimized for cutting circuit boards, it can also cut metal, wood, wax, and plastic. It is great for engraving and milling 3D shapes for jewelry or mold making.

The Othermill was designed with PCBs in mind, and they were the very first thing we tested when we had a working machine. The precision and accuracy of the Othermill allows you to reliably cut 10 mil trace and space on FR-1 PCB stock. You can create custom circuits that fit into odd 3D printed parts, seamlessly integrate electronics into your clothing, and free up your Arduinos for other applications.

The Othermill: Custom Circuits at Your Fingertips (Thanks, Alice!)

Discuss

7 Responses to “Othermill: kickstarting a desktop 3D computer-controlled mill for circuit-boards, jewelry and more”

  1. dragonfrog says:

    A somewhat similar product was a successful Kickstarter project a few years ago:
    http://www.mydiycnc.com/

    It lacks the easy portability of the Othermill, but it looks like you can buy one now.

  2. It’s worth noting that it can only print 1-sided PCBs, and only at 10 mil trace/space. 4-layer and 7 mil trace/space are about the minimum to implement a compact, complex design.

    • Mike Estee says:

      Hi Max!

      Currently the smallest micro-endmill we have tried is a 10mil. Our machine will do 2 sided boards quite nicely, but like all board mills one still has to solder the vias by hand.

      You are correct that 4 layer boards would probably be to much trouble for a machine like ours and would be a better job for a production board house.

      Thanks,
      Mike

      • I checked the KS page before posting, and it says:
        “We are working on double sided PCB functionality for Othercam. It probably won’t be ready for the initial release but it is in the works.”

  3. Al Billings says:

    How is this better than the much larger and cheaper Zen Toolworks CNC mill? The Othermill mainly seems to have portability and ease of use going for it but has sacrificed working area extensively.

  4. openfly says:

    This is pretty damned expensive compared to bigger better mills coming out of hong kong / china.

  5. classic101 says:

    Way too expensive!!!

    The two best USA manufacturers that have been in business for decades are http://www.sherline.com and http://www.taigtools.com  these two machines can cut steel and are one of the best desktop semi portable mills you can buy.

    SHERLINE and Taig are fantastic machines for the money. Grab their CNC ready version and a set of motors and drivers out of ebay. and you are good to go. 

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