Fine placing the ref and values at schematic

Hi all,

Stil in my first schematic.
After defining all my symbols in library and makeing the schematic one job left - to fine place all references and names of elements.
It would be very nice if I could just drag each of them using only mouse.
Is there sach mode that I would need not to use ‘M’ on each of them?
I don’t see.

Sure, use right click-> move value etc

It is not ‘just drag’.
After right click I have to select Move from menu.
Pressing ‘M’ is easier, but ‘just drag’ would be the best.

Using the index finger of your right hand is easier than using the index finger of your left hand?

Ok. I see what you mean.
Previously I supposed:

  • right click,
  • place the mouse on Move,
  • left click,
  • do the job.

Now I found using longer right click (with small mouse move betwean pressing and releasing the right button).
It is really close to ‘just drag’, only some attention is needed during ‘long right click move release’.


I am close to begin my first KiCad PCB.
I adopted all my footprints to the way I plan to do the PCB doocumentation (I have done some experiments few months ago to see what pictures I can get as output).
The only I am now afraid of is how I will get BOM.
I hope I will not have to learn how to use any scripts.

Even closer to what you want is to first do a single left click to highlight the text. (Release mouse button).
On the second click of the [LMB] you can drag your selected item around.

Even better would be to have a mouse with programmable buttons. Then you could simply program “m” under one of the buttons.

I have written that I saw what you mean, but reading once more I see that I misunderstood you.
Previously I read that sentence like it would be without question mark :slight_smile:

I was just being sarcastic. :wink:

As for your original question, the problem with simple left-click dragging is that when you try to draw a selection box around a group of items you would need to be careful not to click directly on any item as you would inadvertently start dragging that item. As it is you have to specifically select, by mouse or keyboard shortcut, a move or drag operation.

It doesn’t work for me (KiCad 4.07, Windows 64). We are in schematic editor.
First click doesn’t select anything.
At element I can click, small move (I see little rectangle), release and then element moves with mouse (need not second click).
But at its identifier or value it doesn’t work.

It is why I originally asked “Is there such mode”.
I understand that if it would work that way always it makes more problems than solves.

During schematic design I can accept text being placed not good. But when schematic is ready I switch grid from 50 mils to 5 mils and then correct all texts positions. In my opinion it would be useful if I could on that time set some flag - ‘now mouse drags texts (and only teksts - elements can’t be dragged)’.

In EEschem it does not work for me either.
I tried it in PCBnew.
I also have V4.0.7 (On Linux).
Sorry about the clutter.

But this close to the release of KiCad V5 it is probably not a good idea to spend much effort on such small things.
Besides, I like the keyboard shortcuts myself, because they give me something usefull for the other hand to do. When moving a lot of field values you can simply permanently keep one finger on the “m” button and don’t have to look at the keyboard.
Take a few minutes to get used to it, and you will work faster after it.

I have done it that way (it is my first schematic) and you are right I get used to it but…
My other question was about flag to force all texts being horizontal. As there is no such flag during my fine text placement I need two fingers (‘m’ and ‘r’) and it is less comfort :slight_smile:

I am thinking of moving to KiCad since a year.
I considered to wait for V5, but I have read someone estimated (based on V4 history) the V5 to be at about july and as I found some time I decided to do my first PCB with V4.07. I believe if for more PCB design route steps I will find ‘my best way to do it’ I will be more ready to fast switch to V5.
I expect most changes in schematic library. I noticed in 4.07 some files done the same way for schematic lib like for footprint lib but not used yet.

My left hand fits quite comortably on the keyboard with my pinky on “r” and my index finger on “m”.
Right hand on the keyboad does not fit as well.
Workaround is to (temporarily?) move the shortcut keys to a better position.
EEschem -> Preferences -> Hot Keys -> Edit Hotkeys -> Schematic Editor

If you get more practice with EEschem, yo will learn to first place a component (almost) the way you want it, Rotation, placement of field values) and the simply "c"copy it for most of the other components.
This works well for resistors and capacitors.
I rarely take these directly from the libraries, but usually make a "c"opy of a vertical or horisontal one, depending on what I need at that moment.
If you also assign a value to the Footprint early in the schematic design, then the Footprint gets copied also, which saves work later on.

V5 has big changes in Library management and a more coherent interface between EEschem and PCBnew, but I haven’t used it yet myself.
Untill V5 is here, try to focus on the big picture. Get your schematic done, don’t focus to much on shortcuts or details to work faster.

Unless you have a very big and complicated schematic, moving and rotating the field values is probably done in 10 to 15 minutes. It just is not worth it to make a big issue out of it. It works reasonably well as it is now, and time saved by learing something complicated is minimal. Not worth the effort.

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My way of working is: symbol = full description of element so each my element in schematic library has just one footprint assigned.


“My way of working is: symbol = full description of element so each my element in schematic library has just one footprint assigned.”

To each his own, but there are a lot of N-MOSFET footprints. The Symbol-Footprint association technique is fine for an individual or group who will likely use only a few footprints. But for a public library, it would cause an explosion of symbols. I prefer the “late binding”, but YMMV.


Doesn’t this discussion re-appear on the Forum every 6 months or so?


I think it is in the Terms and Conditions :smile:

I never read them…

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You never read the “Terms and Conditions”, or never read the discussions about “atomic” parts?


I try to avoid both!

I’ve always wondered why people argue about that sort of thing, recently I think I found the answer.