Custom USB connector (vertical) footprint. Trying to make the board layout understand the SH are common

I’ve made a custom footprint using the native tools in the footprint editor (i.e. shape offset etc) see below.

I would like the layout to understand the 3 SH pads (which are the metal shield) are common. I made the pad names all the same but haven’t figured how to link them together.

Any suggestions would be helpful.

I’m using the KiCad library connector symbol:

Set the pin number to all be the same - in this case, 6.

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Fyi. I’ve tried those vertical connectors and was not at all happy with them. Even a little force causes them to rock and break the connection. You should seriously be looking for something more robust.

Thanks for sharing your experience.

For this “input power board” my plan is to pass the vertical connector through an opening in my housing.
I’ve considered either some hot melt to the case wall or perhaps the ability of the board to rotate slightly.

I don’t know how successful this approach will be but it makes a very small package to allow a standard wall wart to connect to an already built board.

I’m still working on the integrated 5 to 3.3 V section.


What you’ve done looks correct. What do you mean by “link”? What are you trying to accomplish?

In this case, the pin “number” is SH, and he has done that.

I assume we’re talking about vertical Micro B connectors here. I haven’t tried a partially SMT one like the OP is using, but I’ve been very happy with Würth 614105150721, which is fully THT. I’ve found it to be rock-solid in the cases where I’ve used it.

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If you have room and aren’t too cost-sensitive, I love this jack for mounting a USB jack in an enclosure in a professional-looking way. It sounds like you’re more space-constrained, though.

Hot melt adhesion is temporary.
We’ve found vertical connectors to be ok so far, but the connector is only for firmware update in our case.

What you have made is correct.

KiCad has no way to know that the 3 SH pads are connected together in the connector itself.
So you can connect them in the layout with a track or zone, or you can be aware that the three pads are connected outside the board and ignore the non-connected message of the DRC.

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Typically those 3 pads get connections – traces or thermal stubs – while doing layout and some of them may be left unconnected to the net if it can’t be connected easily. It has seen many times that KiCad doesn’t have an easy ready made solution to tell that something can be connected or left unconnected or that some pads are alternatives.

But in this case there’s still one easy solution apart from ignoring the DRC errors and ratsnest lines: when you see in the layout that one pad is left unconnected, open the pad properties and delete the pad “number”. Then it’s not expected to be connected.


Thank you all for your responses.

I ended up doing it the easy way. I laid out the components the way I wanted them. Then went back to the schematic an connected the parts per the layout, using no connects where needed.


This one is a Amphenol, I liked it because:

  1. I could buy them on eBay.
  2. It has 3 “feet”. I’ve beefed up the mounting pads and considering a OSHPark 0.8mm board with 2 oz copper. I believe I will be able to twist the mounting tabs for better mechanical hold. Also I plan on having the connector face flush with the enclosure outside wall. A little silicone between the enclosure wall and the connector should make it robust.

BTW my goal is to have a small, easy to mount connector for input power to be used in my misc projects.


I love the jack you linked to :slight_smile:
The cost is no problem but the size after another usb plug is connected will make the assy too long for use in small enclosures. I may purchase one and see if I can cut it down and solder wires (for just power).

It sounds like you’re more space-constrained, though…

Its funny, I worked in Aerospace and Automotive for many years and have developed an unnatural drive to make my projects small :slight_smile:

THT would definitely be the right answer. There isn’t a easy way keep the connector from rocking.

You are likely right. I see them at Digikey but then I found: eBay breakout but then I’ll have to add another small board for the 5v to 3.3v.

Design decisions are never easy, especially when doing home projects. Too much flexibility and options.

I looked an the jack pin dimensions. It looks like they don’t make it through a normal thickness 1.8mm 1.6 mm board. Have you seen this? Perhaps there is pin length variation.

The datasheet recommends a 1.0mm board. Sometimes I’ve used a 1.0mm board, and then the pins make it through. Other times, I’ve used a 1.6mm board, and the pins are pretty much flush with the board, but I’ve still been able to solder them anyway.

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Hello John,

All you have to do is ensure the pin numbers in the schematic editor and the footprint editor should match. No assignment is required.

In the Footprint editor even though there are three through-holes since they have the same pin number, they will count as a single pin. This is shown in the image below.

The schematic representation for the pins above is given below:

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