Gerber generation should not modify layers

Something off-topic. It struck me that one option sticks out as a sore thumb: ‘Substract soldermask from silkscreen’. Of course it is a necessary function, but it does not belong in the Gerber output, but it belongs to the KiCad editing functions.

One would expect the Gerber file to be a serialization of the design, not to change it. And indeed, all the other options do not change the design but govern options within the Gerber format.

well… true in a ideal sense but in the real world ‘Substract soldermask from silkscreen’ is an operation done on a regular bases by the pcb manufacturers (without telling you, usually)

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Indeed, fabricators correct errors such as legend on pads, or NPTH hitting copper, etc. Good of them.
However, this does not invalidate my point, I believe. You could argue that KiCad does not need this function as the fabricator will fix it anyhow, but I suppose we want KiCad to be able to create a proper design.
Whatever, KiCad has this function. I believe it sits in the wrong place.

Except that in some older thread someone posted a photo of a board where, guess what…

Let me guess. Someone sent a design with legend on the pads, the fabricator made the board according the the data he received, and then got blamed for the scrap?

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Do after generating gerbers with ‘Subtract soldermask from silksceen’ you have it subtracted in KiCad PCB file? I have never checked it.
If not then it is the same kind of action as ‘Plot footprint values’ or ‘Plot reference designators’ or any one of checkboxes from ‘Plot on All Layers’. All they just change how gerbers are generated and not modify your design.

I beg to differ. The legend is part of the design. Making sure no legend is on the pads is an essential DRC. The final legend must be visualized in the design. If the legend is modified during output the designer does not see what is sent to the fabricator. For instance, he cannot judge whether the legend remains readable.

The job of the Gerber output processor is not to change the images, but to serialize them faithfully,

If someone gives up using the Gerber viewer, it’s their own fault :slight_smile:

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