Rounded tracks using "Melting" plugin

Wonderful write up with impressive results. Haven’t had a chance to try it but will soon if it works on V6.99.

Article part 1: Melting KiCad - mitxela.com
Article part 2: Melting KiCad, part 2 - mitxela.com

Available via the plug in manager.

Github location: GitHub - mitxela/kicad-round-tracks

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A very cool tool. Using 6.0.4. DRC triggers a lot of clearance errors, but maybe not too bad.
What would be the best way to save the unmelted “source” file separately from the melted final?

This seems indeed quite necessary. I did the track rounding on a few PCB’s just for fun and it does seem to work quite good, but it does make later edits more difficult. In general I’m more with the path of least resistance here, and therefore I’m not likely to do this on real PCB’s.

One way to keep them separated is to just make a copy of the .kicad_pcb file and only round the tracks on that copy. A similar way is to first open the PCB directly in the Pcb Editor in Standaloe Mode, then experiment with the rounding, and use File / Save As to save the version with rounded corners to a separate file.

You might want to ask by filing an issue on the project’s Github link.

There is a check box to make a copy when you round the tracks.

image

I’ve been using this for a while and quite like it. I have found that it can be a bit tedious at first, because the rounding will create quite a few bugs in the traces if you don’t set them up correctly.

So, I try to make sure all of my traces are correct by making sure it passes DRC with no issues and then has plenty of space between traces at bend points and that the bends are not too close to a footprint at the bend. That tends to give the best results with minimal fixes after running DRC again on the rounded board.

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