3D view not opening (after >2h) - anything I can do?

I’m working on a HUGE board for a while now and would love to see it in 3D. But whenever I open the 3D view of this board, the 3D viewer essentially crashes. Or at least it’s unresponsive. I’ve waited as longs as 2h but it’s not responding, so I gave up.

The board is large, so you can download it here:
[ removed ]

Is there anything I can do to make 3D view work for this board? I can’t even get into the view settings because the window that the 3D view opens up in is never responsive. Is there maybe a way to change the settings in the project file to make it less to render or something?

nightly 7.0 linux 16Gb mem. 4 core cpu, at least the pcb seems fine… opens in fiew secs.

Oh cool! Can I ask how long it took to open the board?

Btw, the hardware doesn’t have 3D models assigned (yet) as well as some SMD components on the backside. But this shouldn’t keep it from rendering, right?

Also, older revisions of this board openend but that was anywhere between KiCad 3 and KiCad 5…

KiCad needs about 6 seconds to start and open the PCB.
It also takes less then 10s to open it in the 3D viewer in KiCad V7.0-rc1 and it even shows some LED’s and a few IC’s:

In KiCad V6.0.10 however I can not show a 3D view. In the bottom of the 3D viewer there is a message with Simplifying 2 copper layers It used up 16.6% of my cpu (probably 2 threads of my 6 core 12 thread 5600G) and after a few minutes this dropped to 8.3%. I aborted after 6 minutes.

Application: KiCad PCB Editor

Version: 6.0.10-86aedd382b~118~ubuntu20.04.1, release build

	wxWidgets 3.0.4
	libcurl/7.68.0 OpenSSL/1.1.1f zlib/1.2.11 brotli/1.0.7 libidn2/2.2.0 libpsl/0.21.0 (+libidn2/2.2.0) libssh/0.9.3/openssl/zlib nghttp2/1.40.0 librtmp/2.3

Platform: Linux 5.15.0-57-generic x86_64, 64 bit, Little endian, wxGTK, xfce, x11

Build Info:
	Date: Dec 18 2022 19:39:35
	wxWidgets: 3.0.4 (wchar_t,wx containers,compatible with 2.8) GTK+ 3.24
	Boost: 1.71.0
	OCC: 7.5.2
	Curl: 7.86.0
	ngspice: 36
	Compiler: GCC 9.4.0 with C++ ABI 1013

Build settings:

Thank you for your feedback. My situation is similar, I see the Simplifying 2 copper layers message until I give up at some point (up to 2h). Thankfully, I don’t need the 3D view. It’s more that recently I really got into properly setting up all 3D models and enjoying a better overview over my boards before prototyping or production.

I didn’t know there is already a v7 cooking in KiCad’s kitchen! I can’t find a repo or anything… is this just the nightlies? Thanks.

yes, nightly-only party.

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You can try to disable the option to “show copper thickness”. Open KiCad 3D-Viewer first with a simple board and change the option (I suppose settings work globally?)

No, it doesn’t unfortunately… already tried that.

It is the intention to release a new KiCad version each year in or around January, so KiCad V7 is expected in just a few weeks. Development is done in “KiCad-Nightly”, (V6.99) and as preparation for the release of V7 it has already been renamed a few days ago to V7.0-rc1.

The geometry library got significantly updated in 7.0 so the above problem most likely is fixed as a result

Oh, what? KiCad 6 is only a year old? Feels much longer to me :sweat_smile:
Okay, anyway, this is all good news. I don’t need to have this board in 3D tomorrow and since other people can open it, there is nothing substantially wrong with it… So I’ll just wait for V7 I guess. And in case I DO need it in 3D, I’ll check out the RC. Thank you everyone for your input <3

The constant input/update cycle distorts the time flow. :wink:


Seems like it! But I’m so glad and thankful for KiCad, I’ll gladly wait any amount of time for the new version to come out :hugs:

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Just a quick update: I fixed lots of DRC errors on this board, updated footprints to be from the new(er) libraries including 3D models and now it actually does work very well. It’s still a huge PCB and can be a bit slow at times but nothing to blame KiCad for or needing the advice of a forum. Thank you all for your support.


So what could be actually the cause of it? What did you “clean up” ?

There were simply lots of different issues on this board, unconnected pads, missing 3D footprints, missing libraries, links to libraries, footprints and 3D models that didn’t exist, DRC violations, … all of it :joy: I guess somewhere inbetween all of this some thread got stuck and 3D viewer just got unresponsive. If you’d like to have the files for development or anything, let me know, I should be able to revert to that state via git.

But is it still relevant?

It seems unlikely that KiCad V6 is going to get an update in this regard.

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