Instructables user Mikey77 has shown that 3D printing can be used for more than producing plastic toys. Rather than going down to his local electronics store to get a circuit board, Mikey77 used 3D printing to create one that flashes three LED’s in sequence.
The circuit board was produced on a MakerBot Replicator 2 in PLA filament and was designed on 123D Design. It works via trace channels that are filled with a conductive material (conductive paint in this case). Before Mikey77 filled the channels with the paint, he inserted the desired components in the board by bending the leads over so they touched the channels.
While Mikey77 believes his 3D printed circuit board is not as resistant to vibrations as traditional soldered boards, he does think it could be used to create experimental circuits or prototypes. Mikey77 doesn’t see his idea replacing soldered circuit boards anytime soon, but hopes this could be a new beginning for 3D printed circuit boards.