Companion tool for panelizing PCBs

hi all,

If you are interested in a GUI based gerber file viewer and a panelizer tool, I would like to announce here that I started an open source project to create one, written in python.

I have gotten it to the point where it is useful and I have successfully had both OSH Park and JLCPCB create a working panel (2x1) for my own project, so I feel confident enough that it might be useful to the larger community.

Please see GitHub - halfmarble/hm-panelizer: a simple PCB panelizer for more info and I would like to invite anyone interested in making it better to contribute in any way possible.



Did you consider publishing it as PCM plugin?

have you tried kikit? I’ve found it pretty full featured and easy to use

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Even though I personally use KiCad and I wrote it primarily with KiCad in mind, I thought making it a standalone tool would make it more versatile and allow more users to enjoy it and contribute.

Yes, I have. In fact I was partially inspired by it and I have been financially supporting kikit every month even before I started working on hm-panelizer.

I fully support kikit, however, the reason I decided to write hm-panelizer, as opposed to using kikit, is that I prefer GUI tools myself and, at least at the beginning, it was a major pain to get kikit to work on macos.

I just noticed this instruction:

/bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL"

No, just no. Please don’t advice others to directly execute code from the internet. This goes against any good security advice. Download it first, check it (either with skim reading or check if you can trust the source. A “random” github project isn’t a source you should trust blindly) and then execute it.

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That is the official way to install homebrew on macos, taken right off the page, however, I get your point - redirecting the user to that website instead might be a better thing to do.


I’m missing the point, I guess. Why? Your example in the git has a lot of blank area you are paying for. Is it worth it?

I am personally annoyed when I plug in a board into the breadboard that only leaves me with one row of available connections on one side.

The primary goal I was trying to achieve, when designing my NEAToBOARD, was to maximize the available breadboard space for connections. The shape was the consequence of that principle - form follows function.

The inclusion of the extra panels with connectors, buttons and LEDs, around the main PCB, was in fact an attempt to utilize the otherwise empty space.

I’m not sure I can do much better than this and still achieve my intended primary goal.

And also please remember that I was constrained by rules dictated by PCB houses, to be able to have it reliably manufactured.

I knew I was missing something. I tabbed two boards once, but I had traces through the tabs with optional connections between boards.

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