For users:

The newest software release (Latest update 03.11.2016)

Recent additions and changes (during last couple of months or so):

New features

  • It is now possible to use coordinates directly, bypassing optical measurements. This feature can be used to support feeders and jig based IC placement for placing small pitch parts. See this page about the latter.
  • Place fast is now the default method.
  • Made X, Y, Z, A labels on Goto section to buttons, allowing precise moving, one axis at a time
  • Added reminders to home the machine at startup and error recovery
  • Added Z and A jogging: * = A+ (CCW), / = A- (CW), – = Z- (up), + = Z+ (down)
  •  Automatic nozzle change support: A new page to set this up, nozzle data in tapes and job table, two nozzle vision operation tables
  • Tapes can be set up with custom width and pitch

Significant changes

  • References to “needle” changed to “nozzle”
  • Nozzle measurement now uses smallest circle found (was: nearest to center)
  • Find Circles now shows smallest and closest to center:
    – if closest and smallest are the same, it is drawn in magenta (pink)
    – if not, smallest is aqua (light blue) and closest is lime (green)
    – other circles are drawn in orange

Bug fixes

  •  Fixed issue on machines with multiple serial ports, improved connecting diagnostics
  • Fixed saved tapes file loading issue, introduced on 10/28 release
  • Moved tape measuring and nozzle change deeper into the process, eliminating some unnecessary operations
  • Added back return to previous position to test buttons
  • Reset Zs on selected rows on Tape locations did not work as intended
  • 2mm part pitch and fast placement issues fixed
  • More robust circle measurement

Release notes and old revisions

Example project (“Hello World”) files

Tape measures

Calibration help figure

Example of expected startup message and a settings dump (For now: Please note that this is from an earlier software revision, and the startup messages details are different. I will update this file soon.)

The supported TinyG firmware versions are 438.02 and 440.20. The upgrade instructions are here, although you should not need to update the firmware. The older version (438.02) is available here. Right-click the link and select Save as.

For developers:

Software source code is here.

The software needs AForge.NET framework, downloadable here, as well as Math.NET Numerics.

The hardware design files (Geomagic Design package) are here (6.6Mb, last updated 19.2.2015). A customer created .OBJ conversion is here (4.2MB 7z archive). I don’t have software to open it, so I haven’t reviewed this and don’t know how much of the original assembly data was preserved.

The parts list (BOM) is here (last updated 24.2.2015).


The hardware is licensed under Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

The Creative Commons licenses don’t apply well to software, so the software license is here.

To summarize the license contents and clarify my intentions:

You are free to make modifications and add-ons to the hardware and software. I don’t require you to share these, although in cases where they might be useful in broader audience, it would be nice. As an example, adding support to other PCB CAD packages is likely usable by others, while adapting the software to your obscure machine / in-house pick and place files that nobody else uses, likely not.

The licenses restrict commercial use. By “commercial use”, I only mean selling pick and place machines or software as a business. Selling boards made by the LitePlacer is perfectly ok. Selling add-ons to LitePlacer is fine. Selling your LitePlacer or other pick and place machine using LitePlacer software is ok when liquidating assets, getting rid of unused equipment and so on. But if you want to clone the LitePlacer hardware to sell it, use the software on your company’s pick and place product or sell your modifications to the software, talk to me! I’m sure my commercial license terms will be reasonable.

There are no warranties, and you bear the consequences. You did the electrical connections and you assembled the machine. The responsibility of assembling and operating a moving machine is on you.