Phantom keep-out zones after Altium import

I seem to have some phantom keep-out zones in my layout after importing from Altium. Had some phantom ratsnest lines that I posted about below that I ended up having to edit the pcb file in Notepad to get rid of.

Haven’t been able to figure out how the keep-out zones are denoted. Can someone enlighten me on this so that I can fix the file? I tried searching for “keepout” without success and am not seeing anything in the blocks for the components that looks like a keep-out directive.

I’ve tried deleting the components around these areas and they’re still there. Traces get blocked when I try to route through those areas. Not seeing anything with all layers turned on that would indicate a keep-out area…

Yellow line denotes approximately where it spans:

If I try and route a trace, I get that error message if I try to start on the GND via, or either of the pads on the 0402 components. I cannot even get close to the via to the right, but don’t get that error message.

Do you have any arcs on the edge cuts layer? Version 5.1.2 has a bug regarding them. Should be fixed in 5.1.3 that will come out in a week or so. (Some platforms already have it available.)

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Yes, the board outline has a bunch of arcs in it.

You might try to delete and re-create the filled zones.

Save before actually doing.

Regarding the bug that @Rene_Poschl mentioned, a quick workaround is to temporarily move the edge cuts to a different layer - e.g. Move off to Eco1, do your routing and then move the edge cuts back.


Did you answer on the wrong topic? There is no mention of copper zones in this topic.

The image provided certainly appears to have copper zones in it; on both layers in fact. And, they are weirdly shaped, making me think that they may not have imported correctly

Yup, that did it! And I only needed to move a few of the segments on the right. Thanks!

They really need to add a feature to be able to do an operation on multiple entities. It gets pretty tedious to change something on dozens of things manually.

But you can - simply use the ‘Edit’ >> ‘Edit Text and Graphics Properties’ menu, selecting ‘Graphic items’ on the layer of interest and then moving to an (empty) target layer. Repeat in reverse to undo. Worth having a play with this menu item as it is quite flexible.


Now when I bring it back to the Edge.Cuts layer, its telling me something is not intersecting and it won’t create the board outline. How the heck do you set the origin in this program and why is the Y axis backward? And yes, it is backwards for a CAD program! It’s following the convention of drawing programs like Paint… How do you fix this? It makes trying to re-import the board outline and line it up with existing stuff a real hassle!

More control over the coordinate system of the user interface is planned for v6. So for the next two years or so we will need to live with what we have. (There were simply more pressing issues in past releases. Especially the inverted y axis is something one gets used to quite fast.)

Run DRC it should point you to where the problem is (assuming you are on version 5.1.x)

The board outline is probably going to change and it’s a complex shape, so I need to be able to update it.

I’m sure it’s fine for most hobbyists, but if they want KiCAD to be widely accepted by people who do this stuff for a living (like Linux is), they need adopt industry standards. It’s not a minor thing at all, it’s a huge bug/hole in the program that makes it inefficient to use when you’re constantly having to convert coordinates for mechanical related tasks (3D models, placing thing that have precise mechanical locations, importing complex outlines).

Nobody said kicad is perfect. No tool is. Whining about this will not help you or others. The devs are aware of it and support for coordinate system control is worked on right now. (see the mailing list or search this forum for details.)

Working with complex outlines is much more efficient by using a proper parametric mechanical cad tool and import the result into your electrical cad tool.
One option is by using dxf as your exchange format.

Another is direct integration into the mechanical cad tool like shown here (for the open source tool freecad): Kicad StepUp: a Seamless ECAD/MCAD PCB Data Integration


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