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Best Practices of Open Source Mechanical Hardware
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Best Practices of Open Source Mechanical

Best Practices of Open Source Mechanical Hardware

This document is aimed at providing practical guidance on:

  • what the term “open source” actually means for mechanical hardware;

  • how to make a piece of mechanical hardware open source.

If you are member of an open source hardware development team, this will tell you how to document your product in order to enable others to:

  • study it;

  • replicate it;

  • contribute to its design.

This document emerged out of the research project “OPEN! Methods and tools for community-based product development” dedicated to open source product development (to find out more about this project, see our Wiki). The first official release has been published in open access here.

This is a working document reflecting the current state of the emergent practice of open source hardware. In that sense, it may progress along the evolution of those practices. Don’t hesitate to help improving it and therewith to participate to the exchange of best practices in open source hardware!

How to contribute

Whether you’re an active member of your local maker scene, experienced open source hardware developer or newcomer in the realms of homegrown engineering, you are welcome to contribute to this guide!

If you have any experience in documenting open source hardware products, don’t hesitate to share it here so it can be passed further to the community. You are welcomed to fork this repository and suggest improvements. Feel free to also to open issues to share your comments and thoughts about what you think is missing or should be improved.


Use this contact form or contact us directly here on GitHub.


This document is published under a CC BY-SA 4.0 licence.

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