Early look for forum members


This is a new series I’m starting for beginners who want to try building their own boards in KiCad from a Raspberry Pi. I’m calling it:

"Shine on you crazy, KiCad" (yes, a Pink Floyd reference)

Please let me know what you think!

Chris Gammell Build Log

Great idea, by the description I thought you were going to show people how to use KiCad on a Raspberry Pi, but building a simple board that will work on a Raspberry Pi is probably a good way to introduce people. The only thing I think you could have done was show people they had the option to use through-hole parts, thinking back to when I got started I think that would have been less scary since all the kits I had done up to that point were all through-hole.


Ah, that’d be a cool idea. Build a board on KiCad which is running on the distro on an RPi?

I recall the last time I looked at doing that it hadn’t been ported to Raspbian, but i think that has since been remedied.

As for through-hole, I’m not so sure. I guess it would make some people comfortable, but I plan to make a follow up video showing how easy this all is. Hopefully that’s enough to get people motivated.


You’re probably right… I know it took me a while to make the jump from through-hole to surface mount, but that was a few years ago and people might be more ready for it now.

I was going to try to get my daughter to attempt her own GTB, but I think this one might be a better starter, we’ll see how it goes and I’ll share her opinions when I get them.


I did this a couple years ago. I ran KiCAD on the Raspberry Pi and created a full size Raspberry Pi demo HAT. I used the Ubuntu MATE distro and it had a version of KiCAD ready to go.

Here is a link to the slides from my talk:

I don’t think I ever published the KiCAD design files, but I can share those if anyone is interested.


That’s cool, I’m sure that would be of interest for many… Maybe a little Build Log?


I would love to see them! I think you told me about that design.


Another part posted tonight:


@Eric, did you post those files anywhere?


Turns out that I never posted the files after my talk, I’ve fixed that now. Here are the KiCAD files on github: https://github.com/LowVoltageLabs/PiDemoHAT



Thanks for sharing that. The readme.md is excellent. I appreciate the included screenshots right on the main project page. Nice job putting all of the metrics right on the board too. Great idea for a prototype.


Thanks, but I have to admit the idea for the readme.md came from Sparkfun. They usually include a photo of some sort. I linked the photos from Flickr but this morning I had the thought that maybe I should include the photos in the repository, that way it’s all in one place.


Well done! I just watched all 4 videos. I’m really happy to see you build upon the concept behind Getting to Blinky and make it more streamlined and appealing. Another great tool for KiCad advocacy!