Collin Cunningham on How to Design, Mill, and Paint Custom PCB Pins

Collin Cunningham’s custom PCB pins.

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.

As part of the Adafruit Learning System, Collin's project walks you through all the steps: design your vector art in SVG format in Adobe Illustrator, import it into our software, mill, paint (with acrylics), glaze (with two-part epoxy resin), dry, and mount pin posts. Since you get to make the design of your choice, the possibilities are endless. 

Note: We recommend milling FR-4 only if using the FR-4 Milling System, in order to reduce unhealthy fiberglass dust.

Here's a visual synopsis of the process. Check out Collin's full how-to for detailed instructions.

Collin Cunningham’s custom bird pin is ready to wear!

If you end up making custom PCB pins of your own, we'd love to see them! Tag us on your social posts with #bantamtools and @bantamtools, or send your pictures in via