Ethernet Expansion Card

Sorry, new repo. Messed with it and had to delete the old repo. New link:


I need your help. Does anyone know of a distributor for both the RTL8153 and RTL8156?

Alibaba or aliexpress?

Yep, but would everyone be fine with that as it’s a bit dodgy?

Also what kind of prices would everyone want this to be, remember I will use the best quality components, for example a Vishay, Nippon or Panasonic capacitor. I’m looking at around the 30 to 40 US dollar range if not 50 as I will be manually assembling these.

As noted in this thread by @nrp, with someone selling his framework laptop…

I know it’s in reference to the laptop, but the same could possibly apply here to expansion cards as well. I would also like to know how other people plan on pricing their creations here, along with forum rules, and how they will be enforced.

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Yep, I will most definitely need to make a profit personally to at least pay off the gear I currently own. Can I get a rough guess how many people would be willing to buy one for 40-50 US dollars?


$50 seems a bit high in my opinion. $30 is the ballpark I was thinking where the value proposition over a dongle makes sense.

As far as @mrwm’s concerns about selling/promoting on the community forum, I think that quote is slightly out of context. Nirav was responding to someone reselling their Framework laptop. Other threads (like the SNACK drawer) have been fine. This is the expansion cards forum after all :slightly_smiling_face:.

Maybe another option is Tindie or a DIY kit model? Print a bunch of PCBs and sell those with a schematic and BoM so buyers can save money on components if they want.

Maybe I’m just weird, but I would be more willing to buy a kit that I can consider a project for a higher price. Dirt cheap consumer electronics have made it hard for me to overcome the psychological hurdle of expensive pre-assembled niche devices. Though, if the board only has microscopic SMD components, then maybe DIY assembly isn’t achievable.


I agree.

I believe what Nirav and the team is trying to avoid is people buying something off of the Framework marketplace (store) and then turning around and selling it at a profit.
Low-volume production is inherently more susceptible to scalping, as the supply can be more easily reduced.

I’d imagine they’d be totally fine with people selling the things they develop and make (assuming it’s legal and within the appropriate policies, of course).

Totally agree with this one.
It can save some assembly time from @Josh_Cook and can let people have a small “project”.


By the way, do you have any 3D renders available?
I couldn’t find any, sorry if I missed them.

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@Joey_Galloway I have posted them somewhere above.

I saw these two guys.
Can you post of other views of the card?
3D view is convenient.

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So how would you like it to work? I supply everything and you assemble, I supply main components like the controller and ports and you get everything else?

The passives and ICs look a little too fine pitch for me to hand solder unfortunately. If you went the kit route, maybe sell the reflowed PCB with SMDs attached and end user can solder on the RJ-45 jack?

Would the case be a model the user can print?

Because there’s components on both sides of the board, I’m not sure if low-volume assembly will be cheap.

Yep, it’s 0402 mostly I will be using solder paste but I can supply all SMD assembled and the Ethernet can be soldered by the end user. I will be personally 3d printing the enclosures.

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May very well be easier for me. Probably will be easier for shipping aswell,

Have you looked into services like
Looks like PCB+SMD assembly would be about $5/unit + component cost at 50 unit batch. You’d still need to repack and ship, but maybe having a company with pick and place machines and a reflow oven would reduce risk of rework.

I would be getting a reflow oven for assembly.

Alright. Just make sure you factor in the cost of your time and rework of assembly when you compare prices of different options. This will probably be a small-volume product so investment in equipment may not be the best option from a financial standpoint.
That said, as a hobby, having more tools at your fingertips is great :slightly_smiling_face:

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Alright, as I’m getting quite close to being done with everything so I am able to prototype. I need to know what kind of demand I am looking at, for the 40 - 50 US dollar range how many people would be willing to get one? Also any recommendations for selling them, as I will have it on the Marketplace but would like my own store so does anyone know of a platform that can do it reasonably easily?