This week I’ve finalized the PCB design and BOM. An order from AdvancedCircuits is on the way (Bare Bones).

Some reflections: Ground-planes are neat! I was also inspired by Mark’s mixtape-alpha to create the touch-button, and some Sparkfun breakout boards design for pads layout and power-circuit design.

The BOM at the moment is:

Parts to manufacture 10 units are already in from DigiKey, some resistors were added after the order so they are now en route.

The components cost for 100 units is ~$3.8/unit. That’s pretty cheap, but the total electronics cost including PCB manufacture, servo and battery is going to be >$10. On top of that I have some laser-cut material, some nuts and bolts, packaging and shipping. Final numbers will probably only be ready for next week, but a ballpark estimation is ~$25/unit to make 100 units. That’s getting a bit expensive…

With these numbers, I can’t see how a modest markup (x2) will be attractive for both consumer and producer. Any change in markup will either impair profitability for manufacturer, or attractiveness for consumer. I think added value services for the consumer (online database, community, support) at the same price can tip the needle in favor of attractiveness, but will require a long-term commitment from the manufacturer, so this will definitely not be a one-off project.

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