Hi I am trying to get my prototype from kicad panneled to work should this go in manufacturing or layout?

Hi I am able to append my board with just opening pcbnew and save it and upload the single schematic to macrofab but the doubles of designation ex c101 the placement web app shows parts only going on the first board.

I would almost need to push from the panel to a schematic and annotate…??

I want 8 electrodes and there 50 and 20 setup cost so after the first 50 the rest of the 8 would be closer to 30. this makes a difference please help.

Setting aside your actual design, this is my opinion on Panelizing PCB’s…

I’m not a fan of Gizmo plugin’s so, I panelize the old-fashioned way.

Two options - which one depends on what your manufacturer wants.

I CNC mill my pcb’s so I do it both ways depending on the project.

The graphics below shows both ways.
1-Independent PCB’s
2-Attached PCB’s (attached using what’s called a ‘Holding-Tab’ - simply an unbroken physical connection between PCB’s)

You can make one PCB and Copy/Paste for as many as desired…

Screen Shot 2020-05-15 at 9.25.13 AM

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See I like what you did there with the short connections great if my board was not going to be assembled by a pnp machine.

So what I will try is:

  1. open the appended board file back to a coppy of the single board schematic renamed to the new board file what it expects.

  2. Then if I drop everything of the one pannel into a herarchal schematic and coppy that and then annotate…

  3. then the parts would be uneque and have part numbers and may pannelise and go into macrofab. ??

I tried it and my first board gets ex. c201 from c101 of being on the main sheet so when I put it in a herarchal the other shows as 201 and the placement for both would have to be redone.

keeping the placement would be good because re placing and freeroute wouldn’t be soo bad but knowing a good way to approach this could save a lot of time in future designs.

I know you don’t want to hear this but the first question you might want to ask yourself is if you really save money this way. After all your time really is not free (you could do something productive instead).

Next keep in mind that KiCad is not really meant for this task which is why you will need workarounds. So if you want to go down that route then possibly check out what alternative tools there are. Maybe it is even worth paying for a licence here (depends on how often you will do this task). This might be necessary as most hobby grade panelizers will not be able to generate position files.

Regarding the unique identifier problem, well do you really want that? If you have silk reference designators then these will be different for every board. If you can tolerate this then look into the duplicate layout plugin by @MitjaN.

Also take a look at this https://hackaday.com/tag/panelization/

One thing that’s always helped me to solve problems is to start at the Fundemental’s of it…

In this case, I suggest making a Very simple PCB like the one I show - doesn’t even have traces but you can add a few. Make it a very simple circuit. Shape the pcb using Edge-Cut layer. Don’t DRC (check).

Copy all of it and Paste it. Repeat 1 or 2 times to get something like I show.

That will help identify your problem(s). If that’s successful, try it with your circuit. You can Copy from one PCB to another PCB. Don’t fuss with the schematic (especially if the circuits are identical. Vendor won’t need those circuit repeats - they just want your Gerbers and the Gerbers will show all panels…

All was done in a single PCB file without appended pcb’s.

Below is the Contour (Edge-Cuts) Gerber - you see the individual pcb’s and the connected pcb’s. I can add the holding tabs in the milling software or use connected ones… again. that depends on what I’m doing. Ask your vendor what they want…

Whew ! lost a few features and it took a wile but used to be 54 for one now ~73 for 2 about 20 in savings and I need 8 to test my prototype. ~140 in savings.

The manufactuers parts # list does not coppy into macrofab when you upload the kicad board and schematic if you have herarchal schematics. (ones that go to lower levels and different sch fille)

So I copped the project folder because this is destructive so backup to google drive before you do this.

I put the entire projects schematic in a herarchal schematic and had to use netlist to update all the anotation to reconnect all. Slow and potential for errors so be careful.

then coppied the herarchal schematic anotated whats left appended the board and anotated the second schematic sheet then updated the appended boards references.

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