For CNC milling we have code such as Grbl Controller in the PC, and Grbl itself in an Arduino, and these handle the appropriate G-code files. Is there an equivalent package to handle Excellon files and drive a 3-axis drilling machine?

  • Most PCB software will export to Gerber-files. There is already software that does pcb milling, including hole-drilling. I'm not into this stuff, but a google search for "gerber cnc" might give you better results.
    – Gerben
    Jul 16, 2015 at 12:59
  • Thanks Gerben. I will look into the pcb milling packages. If there is one that will talk to Grbl and if it has a sub-menu that will handle a drill file as a separate operation, then that could be the easiest way to go.
    – Roger
    Jul 18, 2015 at 11:15

1 Answer 1


No, there is no existing Arduino library to parse Excellon format drill files in order to control a drilling machine. Looking at the specification it looks to be very similar to G Code, and some brief googling shows that there are various utilities for converting it to G Code that could be run from something like grbl.

  • Thanks Jake. See my comment to Gerben. If there isn't a direct pcb package, then yes, I guess I'll have to do an Excellon --> Gcode then through say, Grbl Controller --> Grbl.
    – Roger
    Jul 18, 2015 at 11:21

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.