i started using kicad almost an year ago. Could someone help me to find out how to panelize mouse byte and v groove in kicad. Where can i find actual procedure to panelize and import if any such modules are available in the kicad 4.0.7
This has been asked and answered multiple times. Here the first two results when i search the forum for the term “panel” (The dropdown already showed enough usable results after entering panel):
Click on the links to get to the topic in question.
Maybe I am missing something. Why do you want to panelize the PC boards? The PC houses I use, do this from the Gerber files. I am only on my fifth PC board layout, so, I am still learning!
There is really no easy way of doing it still. As far as I know there are two ways of panelizing a board:
Use append board functionality. It is pretty awkward since you would have to start a PCBNew as a stand alone (not from the project menu), then you would need to start a new board and keep appending your single boards. Spacing them precisely is challenging because at one point of time one of the developers arbitrarily decided to clamp the max size of the grid, so you can’t just set the grid to the panel spacing size and then move the newly added board to the required position. On top of that it is hard to control original position of the appended board so you can do a relative move later. With bigger size of the array the whole thing keeps bogging down, because PCBNew is still trying to build all the nets connections instead of just creating a gerber file array.
Use function in GAL mode “Create an Array”. With this tool you would need to create a new board, copy your board to the new board and then highlight everything and use “Create an Array”. A new menu will pop up and you can select number and spacing of the panels. This could’ve been a great tool if not for all problems associate with it. Per the developer’s comments (happens to be the same developer mentioned above, who clamped down the max size of the grid) this tool hasn’t been designed to penalize a board specifically, but rather create arrays of footprints. Beats me why would anybody want to do it, but that’s besides the point. So it is pretty awkward to use for paneizing a board. On top of that if you create an array big enough (don’t remember the exact count, but it wasn’t something unreasonable) PCBNew will crash every single time, so there is a limit on how many panels you can create with this approach. And again, as the array grows, it bogs down the program considerably, since it is trying to create one giant net rats nest.
So, in short, yes you can create an array in KiCad and I’ve done a lot of them over the years but it is a painstakingly slow process and if, at some point, you change anything in your design you have to start it from scratch again. To create a mouse bite tabs you would have to create a separate footprint and then add it and position it manually. The same goes for routing and v-groves - you would have to draw them manually on one of the layers and then when you upload your files to the manufacturer specify that it is a routing or a v-grove layer.
Multiple reasons - depending on the manufacturer they can charge you for creating an array from a single board. You have limited control over the final product (placement of fiducials tabs, mounting holes etc can be different from what you plan it to be.)
PCB fab houses will often (but not always) panelise for you, but when you then go to an assembly house they will want the panel gerbers for making their adhesive & solder silkscreens. If you had the panelising done by the board house those gerbers may not be readily available to you.
I’ve previously done my panelizing using the “Append Board” in PCBNEW. The next time I do it, I’ll try the PCB Panelizer that works directly with the Gerber files.
hai sir ,
thanks fr your reply, it helped me a lot
but may i know how to install PCB panelizer since the folder which i downloaded consist of to many tools with .exe extension.Could you please tell me the steps to import my gerber files and panelize
The executable you want is GerberPanelizer.exe in the Panelizer folder. After opening the program:
File => New starts a new panel.
Board Placement => Add Gerber Folder is used to select the directory where your Gerber files are stored.
Right-click in the panel window to place an instance of your PCB.
That’s as far as I got. The program doesn’t seem to work on my Win7 PC. Good luck!
OshParks ProtoSnap article shows a mini-panel with mouse bites.
The panelization plugin has been updated… Since the author does not post updates to the general repository, I decided to write here
It is not a good idea to resurrect six year old threads.
Please post this sort of information in a new thread to avoid members having to scroll through endless outdated posts to find current information.