Oval or square hole in pad

I have generated an oval hole in a THT, because a sqare hole does not seem to be possible. But after exporting to Gerber it looks like the oval hole was replaced by a round hole. How can I get an oval or even better a square hole?

KiCad version? ------------

A square hole is not possible from a manufacturing point of view. The nearest option would be a round rect shaped hole but i doubt gerber supports that so you can only do it by making a square on the edge cuts layer (not a good idea if you want it to be plated)

Yes, you can make a Square/Rectangular Hole (recognizing the corners will be Round if Milling the PCB or, fairly Squared corners if Laser (or Waterjet) cutting the PCB. Depends on who’s making the PCB.

Ask supplier what layer they want the Cutout on and draw it on that layer.

For my commonly used BarrelJack, I drew Rectangular cutouts on the Eco1_layer and drew the PCB Shape on the Edge-Cuts layer (could have done them all on either layer).
I drew the cutouyts in the Footprint Editor so, they are always the same but, Could have simply drawn them on the PCB’s layer and gotten the same results. (the Hole can be single of two hole… doesn’t matter since I’m not drilling them).

I make my PCB’s on CNC Mill and use CopperCam - some experience/trial/error has served me well in getting what I want.

Images show BarrelJack portion:
PCBnew with BarrelJack
PCBnew with Eco1 layer exposed
Eco Layer loaded in CopperCam
Rendering (in CopperCam) (Horizontally Flipped for milling)
Final Result - Milled PCB with BarrelJack Contacts showing…

Screen Shot 2020-02-23 at 12.09.27 PM


It depens on the manufacturer, but I believe quite many of them understand what you mean if you have that edge.cuts slots on top of copper fill on both sides. Some manufacturers want it on a separate layer.

The main point in all of this: ask your manufacturer or find the information on their web site.

But as for the difference between gerber and pcbnew - we need more information from you. “Oval” or stadium shaped holes are standard stuff. They can be plotted to Excellon drill files and shown correctly. The big two cheap Chinese manufacturers have made them for us on dozens of different boards without any questions.


BTW - if you have seen a square slot for a pin in a land pattern recommendation in a datasheet, it doesn’t mean you should make square slots in your footprints. They are just “minimal” holes where the pins can fit into. Use oval holes.

DRC now uses the edge cuts layer.
This is what i meant with my post. In most cases if one wants a plated hole, then one wants to be able to connect a trace (or zone) to it, but if there is an edge cut then KiCad will not allow that.

Edge.cuts doesn’t limit pads. That’s how castellated holes can be made, too.

It is a known problem that one can not connect to castellated pads without DRC error.

It is a well hidden secret that I can.


Screenshot taken after DRC check.

The point is that the pads don’t trigger DRC errors.

If you snap to the center of the pad and the center isn’t there then I suspect this might cause the DRC error?

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