Restrict dimension-tool to X/Y dirs?


I there a way to restrict the dimension-tool to measure dimensions only in “ortho” directions i.e. along the X or Y directions?
Datasheets rarely specify dimensions in any other directions, so the ortho-mode would be useful and avoid having to carefully align the dimension, to avoid a “tilted” measurement, each time.


There is the measure tool inside the inspect menu. It gives you the orthogonal dimensions in addition to the direct dimension. However this is only implemented in current nightly (Meaning this is how v5.1 will work)

KiCad is not really capable of creating proper dimensioned drawings of a footprint. It does not only lack the option to restrict to horizontal and vertical direction but it also lacks the option to snap to interesting features. (V5.1 will be a bit better here but only for the part outline. One can still not snap to corners of pads for example.)

A better option in my opineon is to import your footprint into freecad using stepup and dimension it with its powerful tools. This is what i use to review every contribution to the official library.
My workflow for this is described in this tutorial: How to check footprint correctness?


At the very bottom of the viewport of pcbnew there are X 155.100000, Y 101.400000 in the units you chose on the left-hand-side, either inches or mm, followed by dx 41.85000 0 dy 50.200000 dist 65.356, for example.

X value increases going from left to right. Y value increases going from top to bottom.

If you only want to see the vertical coordinate, just ignore the x value. If you only care about the horizontal coordinate, just ignore the y value.


Does holding Ctrl while drawing not work? (Might be v5.1 feature only, don’t recall atm)


I’m just having 5.0 open, Ctrl down works with the Measure tool. Ctrl down works also when drawing graphic lines.


In 5.0.2 both measure and dimension tool support hold CTRL to lock 45° degree mode.


yes! thanks, that works for 45degree direction-snap. a mode with permanent 90-degree snap would be a slight improvement IMO…


If you’re talking about drawing, not measuring, that will be improved in 5.1. It doesn’t draw a 45 deg “tail” for horizontal/vertical lines.