I moved over to Aisler USA for PCB manufacturing about 8 months ago. Back in July, Aisler added a free “Smart Test” service which uses a flying probe machine to test for shorts and opens between nets. The service is free. But I keep getting some interesting results from their testing.
One which is pretty consistent is it cannot handle net ties. For instance, I have a Kicad sheet with a Texas Instruments buck converter but then I run the sheet’s outputs through three different net ties – power rails. The flying probe marks these as all short circuits because its confused with two net ties being connected but they really are not. The blog on Aisler’s site says they generate IPC-356 data. If I use a net tie, is there anyway the data could be resolved to one net on an export so my tests would resolve?
Another situation I ran into was if I had a via in a pad. So, I offset these vias from the center of the pad or moved the vias off the pads where I could. This significantly reduced the testing errors from the flying probe machine. In this case, not really a Kicad issue but a design flaw.
I was using OshPark before. But about 20% of the boards had real short circuits and sometimes the ground planes were etched through in droplet spots. Also, I suspect they would throw the boards into the bag and scratch them. Often, I had scratches There are sharp edge studs from the pcbs being cut out. Maybe they had lots of volume and were rushed to deliver. You get what you pay for.