PCB uses – weird, wonderful ways PCBs are used

Published Tuesday 11th September, 2018

Anything electronic that you have in your possession is powered by printed circuit boards (PCBs), but we thought it would be interesting to see if there were some other PCB uses aside from the more usual ones... and we weren’t disappointed with what we found!

As people look for ways to reduce waste, there are plenty of projects that use recycled PCBs and turn them into something beautiful – while for others, the focus is more on fun or useful tech gadgets.

So if you’re interested in electronics, or fancy recycling your old PCBs, here are some brilliantly creative alternative PCBs uses that may just provide you with some inspiration.

PCB jewellery for electronic engineers!

A fab idea as a DIY project, or as a gift for the electronic engineer in your life, there are lots of different jewellery items using PCBs around, and guides to create your own.

We found these gorgeous PCB cufflinks, this rather appealing necklace and these easy to follow, step-by-step instructions for making PCB earrings too. Artist Amanda Preske is also making real waves with the jewellery that she creates from old PCBs.

Credit: Not on the High Street

PCB footwear

From the old to the new, we have a great example of recycled PCBs used for the purposes of fashion here, with Steven Rodrig's fancy high heels - and he's created a bevy of beautiful works using outdated PCBs, and we love them all to be honest!

Credit: Steven Rodrig

Other designers have also seen the beauty in circuit boards for footwear, such as Gabriel DiShaw's trainer sculptures.

Credit: Gabriel DiShaw

For the more gadget-minded among you, you may also recall Nike's use of PCBs in their self-lacing trainers - flexible PCBs used to their greatest effect!

PCB furniture

Again, there are lots of examples around, but if you've been stripping out PCBs from your old electronic gadgets and you fancy crafting yourself a bit of furniture for nostalgia's sake, here's a guide to making your own circuit board table.

Clothing accessories

We've all seen novelty hats with flashing lights, which will have some kind of basic PCB power inbuilt, but we love the idea of this super-smart self-fastening belt!

So if you're a fan of a food feast, put this on your Christmas wish list and you’ll never feel uncomfortable after a big feed again!

PCB drone project

Want your PCB to act as both brains and design? Well now you can, by building your own quadrotor - the ideal project for tech-heads!

It only requires a single PCB which acts as the base for the rotator blades, as well as the motherboard to get it airborne. With an added camera, you have a drone with recording capabilities that you’ve built yourself - cool.

Mood lighting for cats

Yes, you read that right - we couldn't resist including our furry friends, with this ingenuous idea that converts an old Macintosh computer into a special cat basket complete with changing LED lights. Definitely one of the more inventive - and arguably pointless - PCB uses we've come across!

LMFLMANatWestGoldman SachsMake Uk