Duplicate components along a DXF file path

Hi there,

I’m using Version 7 - I need to know if there’s any plugin, script or base functionality to either place or duplicate components on a PCB along a path, just as the Fusion 360 feature allows you to click a DXF line to choose that as your path to then duplicate the chosen ‘body’ aka component from your project.

See example below (F360):

We do not have the functionality but you are welcome to request it at GitLab. In KiCad, choose the Help Menu and then click “Report Bug”

Thanks for your reply!
Sure, would be great if it’s implemented!

In the meantime, do you have any recommendations for a way round it?


If your graphic program can distribute objects along a curve, then you can let it distribute some kind of placeholders, and then use those as reference points for manual placement.

Next step is to figure out a python script to recognize those placeholders, and let it put the footprint in the right location and orientation. This can probably be done with half a page of python, but it may take a day or two to figure out how to do it.

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I think I can swindle something like that with F360, one problem is that i’ve never bothered learning py!
Never had a use-case, now it appears I do! :rofl:

Well at least you have a semi easy starting point. The problem is that for most people their first need is slightly further than what can be done on your first script. Therefore its best to start before you have your first problem.

Hopefully you know how to deal with affine transformations.

FYI - may be of interest to those not using F360. Plotting nodes along a path using Inkscape

Be sure to click the blue ‘Attachments’ icon in last post to see the detailed steps to doing it…
Then, as paulvdh suggested, in Kicad (after importing) place desired items on the nodes

UPDATE: Added Video
If User’s have a basic familiarity with FreeCAD and it’s KiCadStepUp Workbench to Load PCB, Parts and Pads/Tracks, then making a Path with selected items is very easy.

Video shows doing it, although, to reduce file-size for posting, I did pre-load the PCB and created a Bspline path (Bspline because it can be the most difficult path to follow).

The order of Selection is perhaps the Most Important aspect for FreeCAD (video shows what happens if not correctly selected, then with correct order of selection).
Not shown is the full window with tweak of number of items… And, there are Alignment/orientation… tools if needed… The Path-Array uses the Draft-Workbench.

Hi there,

Thanks for you reply, I completely missed it. This looks promising and interesting!

From what I can see here (and correct me if I’m wrong), you’re essentially plotting/doing what I did on F360 but the footprint itself isnt duplicated nor the nets?

Looking forward to the reply!

@Aye Correct - Once taking the PCB into FreeCAD it looses association with Kicad and Net’s. At that point, it’s a FreeCAD file.

julianteuber/kicad-vias-along-path: Place vias evenly spaced along a selected path in KiCAD. (github.com)
Maybe you can refer to this plugin

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