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OpenMaze shield

Printed circuit board (PCB) designs

You can design your own circuit board and have it printed by a manufacturer, often for a pretty low cost. We've printed shields this way, which saves a lot of time in the wiring stage.


You can also just order the PCBs directly from a new site, OSH Park, without downloading any software, if you don't want to edit anything in the design. See some notes about this below.

Current OM PCB Versions:

December 2017


4-wire stepper control (lose a few IO pins but have more flexibility for H-bridge use). 

5V/12V/5V* power jumpers for H-bridges and ULN2803.

Plug for RFID reader (Sparkfun ID-12LA).





Design files

If you want to design your own PCBs, here are the steps of the process:

  1. Install DesignSpark PCB. We recommend this software because it's free and it doesn't have a board size limitation.

  2. Load the PCB files that we've provided below, or design your own from scratch.

  3. Generate a Gerber-formatted zipfile using the Export function in DesignSpark. 

  4. Upload the Gerber-formatted zipfile to a PCB manufacturer. We've made several recommendations below.


We've also provided Gerber-formatted zipfiles, which would allow you to skip right to Step 4 above. However, if you want to view the design or edit it yourself, it's probably easiest to start with the PCB file.

  • (now see "OpenMaze shield PCB files" below for versions by date)

  • We made this PCB file using DesignSpark. It contains one copy of OM6 and one copy of OM7, as well as an old, out-of-date copy of OM4. Here is the Gerber-formatted zipfile of the same design.

  • Here is the PCB file for the current version of OM4, as well as a Gerber-formatted zipfile.




Here are some PCB vendors we've used

  • Advanced Circuits. Good industry reputation. Try the $33 special. With an academic affiliation you can order just a single board.

  • Sunstone ValueProto.

  • SeeedStudio. The cheapest vendor per board, but the minimum order is 5.

  • PCB-Pool. More expensive, but they'll work with your DesignSpark files directly. All the other vendors require gerber-formatted zipfiles.

  • OSH Park (see below)


The easiest vendor to work with is probably PCB-Pool. The cheapest is SeeedStudio. And the best brand name probably belongs to Advanced Circuits.


We've now provided instructions on using the DesignSpark PCB design software to print circuit board through Seeed Fusion PCB manufacturing. Just download the .zip Gerber files from below and submit for printing.


We've recently found another service that we really like, OSH Park. They are based in California, so faster shipping than Seeed. Supposedly the turnaround is 10-12 days. The price is good: $5 per square inch no matter the shape or size, and you always get 3 copies of your design for this price.


Also, most importantly they have a really nice website with a ton of info on how to use all kinds of different PCB design tools. I've emailed them a couple of times with technical questions and they've been super helpful.


Finally you can share your PCB designs if you want and people can directly order them without having to install anything. Here's my updated version of OM4. I added some rows for pullup or pulldown resistors to the DIO pins, and I fixed the layout of the barrel jack legs.

$33 for 3 copies.


The only downside is that you can't download the files for editing...


OpenMaze shield PCB files

This is a list of different versions of the OpenMaze PCBs, by date:

Links to files for .pcb file (DesignSpark) and .zip file with Gerber files for printing.

NEW: links to OSH Park ordering will now be standard. Please contact us if you want the original design files.

December 2017


4-wire stepper control (lose a few IO pins but have more flexibility for H-bridge use). 

5V/12V/5V* power jumpers for H-bridges and ULN2803.

Plug for RFID reader (Sparkfun ID-12LA).




Dec. 24, 2015

OM24 boards, and IR beam break add-on



Now putting in jumpers for power choice on OM2&4.

This is first version of OM4.


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