We're so glad you’re reading this ode to fixturing. Why? Because fixturing your material to the machining bed is one of the most important steps of using the fast, easy, and reliable Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine. Fixturing, also known as workholding, is the means of securely attaching your material to the machining bed. Fixturing unlocks a whole world of good stuff, ensuring that you maximize the high level of professional precision the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine affords you.
With the professional precision and reliability the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine offers, it can singlehandedly turn your classroom into an electrical engineering lab. We're giving out PCB Synth Kits to the first 30 educators who sign up. We're confident that once you see what our easy, fast, and affordable Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine can do, you'll want one in your classroom.
There's something infectious about 80s synth music. You almost can't help but to get visions of classic Atari games. Bantam Tools content developer Emily Coker was intrigued by a synth project we put out about four years ago and wanted to give it a healthy refresh. The result is our new 8-Bit Capacitive Synth project (click link to see full project), a super fun build for anyone with a Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine, from seasoned pros to students.
Educators: Be sure to sign up to get your free synth kit as a sample of what the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine can do.
A while back, we spotted a gorgeous infinity necklace with matching wooden box that community member Riley Porter had milled on the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine as a gift for his wife. We had to find out more, so we reached out and chatted with Riley, who happens to be owner of Synthetos and co-creator of TinyG, the motion-control system used in our mill. We found out that the necklace itself is made from reclaimed copper, the box top is a beautiful unstained amaranth wood, and the box top inlay is actually made from tinned PCB. Neat!
There’s a fairly new electronics publication called Diyode across the pond in Australia, and apparently, it’s “the first new magazine supporting electronics enthusiasts and makers that Australia has seen in 30 years.” Issue #8 just came out, and we’re thrilled that they did an in-depth review of our Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine and loved it.
Editor's Note: A solder mask is a thin layer of polymer applied to the copper traces of a printed circuit board (PCB) for protection against oxidation and to prevent solder bridges from forming between closely spaced solder pads. Community member, physician, and technologist Craig F. Feied has developed a great technique for applying solder masks to boards milled on his Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine, which he has documented and shared here.
Adafruit's super-talented Collin Cunningham shared a great how-to for making custom pins using copper PCBs as the base material—double-sided, copper-clad FR-4 boards, to be exact. Collin used not just any mill, but our reliable little PCB mill to make the project. We got a sneak peek at these neat pins in our recent roundup of community builds.
We're constantly inspired by the creativity and ingenuity of our community members. There's no telling what amazing things they'll make using our small-but-mighty Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine. We love that it's precise and reliable enough for professional-grade builds and affordable enough to be accessible. It's been a few months since we did a roundup of neat community projects spotted across social media, so we offer a vast array here. What are you milling? Be sure to tag your posts with @bantamtools or #bantamtools. We'd love to see what you're making!
With the wealth of materials our Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine can handle with ease, the potential of what you can make is endless, but the area where our small-but-mighty mill shines the brightest is in milling PCBs. After all, PCB is our mill's middle name. We put professional precision and reliability directly on your desktop, so the rate at which you prototype is only limited by your imagination, not the return rate of the board house you use. To boot, we've got you covered with a full library of support guides, detailing all aspects of milling PCBs. Here we offer an overview of our PCB-specific guides.
Adafruit made it easy to add intelligent LEDs to your projects with their NeoPixel LED strips, which integrate LEDs alongside a driver chip into a tiny surface-mount package controlled through a single wire. NeoPixels use a single Arduino pin, are cross-compatible, and can be used individually or chained into longer strings. And now, thanks to a project by CrashSpace co-founders Tod E. Kurt (@todbot) and Carlyn Maw (@carlynorama), NeoPixel strips can take even more shapes and sizes using NeoJoints, angled solder connectors you can quickly mill on your Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine.
As 2017 comes to a close, we reflect back on the past 12 months and set our sights on the year to come. Our aim has always been to dramatically increase the accessibility of CNC machines, and we're deeply inspired and driven by what our machine has been helping folks accomplish out in the wild. In particular, we're proud that the Bantam Tools Desktop PCB Milling Machine is an integral part of the tool array of many an educational institution. We hope to increase that access in 2018. To celebrate, here are six of the many schools who have used our mill to teach, learn, research, and discover in 2017.