Rout PCB manually

good morning everyone
I am starting to learn KICAD and find it difficult to rout the PCB. Is it possible to remove the elastic lines that connect the various pids? Being a beginner right now they just confuse me.
Thanks for your attention

Sorry. System decided you ‘typed suspiciously fast’ for a new user. It’s single biggest fail.

Under view, ‘show ratsnest’.

What does that mean?

It’s a spam/bot catcher. If a first time user types in ‘too fast’ and I don’t know the metric used, the system flags and holds the post. If English isn’t your first language and you use something to translate you would do a cut and paste, just like a spammer would. But, that’s a guess. I don’t care enough to research it. I’ve thought about installing the forum software for another project. That might help me understand the software a tad better.

OK, get you.
But be aware that there are users that use their own editor (WordPad, FeatherPad), etc. to compose questions/responses and then paste the text. I’m one sometimes, if it’s a complicated topic that needs a bit of thought.
I have doubts that this is an appropriate metric to catch spam bots.

On the other hand it catches relatively often real spammers, and it’s easy to manually accept a pending post every now and then.

Yeah, it’s a knife’s edge. I’m glad I’m not a moderator. :slight_smile:

Thanks I solved! Instead of uploading footprints with netlist Insert menu → Add footprint

Do your future self a favor, always use netlist.

If ratsnest lines get in the way you can just turn their visibility off as hermit explained in first reply. But you want that netlist there or you will always have to swim against the flow.

This is just plain horrible:

This is just about 60% less horrible, and using the netlist (export/import) has been deprecated for … about 4 years now.

The recommended method is Schematic Editor / Tools / Update PCB from Schematic [F8], and with this method you create links between the symbols on your schematic and the Footprints on the PCB. Without those links it is almost impossible to to make any PCB. KiCad depends on these links for a whole lot of functionality to work properly. It is so important, that trying to ignore this is simply not an option that should ever be considered.

There are two ways to control the visibility of the Ratsnest lines in the PCB Editor. Via the main menu, and via the toolbar buttons on the left.

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The OP just asked how to hide the Rat lines, so he must have been following the recommended procedure in the first place. The OP just found an incorrect way to hide those lines.
@hermit was a little brief… barely made 20 chars.
@qu1ck was just a prompt to continue the recommended method.

I realized that, but apparently previous explanations were not clear enough, so I attempted to explain why his workaround is not a good idea, and post a screenshot to make the “proper” way a bit clearer.

When I say netlist I mean actual list of nets, i.e. connectivity information, not the netlist file used in kicad v4. When you do update from schematic the netlist is still transferred, just without a file. The linking and other metadata is important, sure, but only because of netlist.

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Thank you, sometimes too succinct answers combined with my lack of knowledge of the language can lead you astray.
I have Kicad 6 and the Netlist no longer exists.
My tutorials referred to Kicad 5, now I understand the whole flow of the procedure


Sorry I was too brief. I was a little too pressed for time and a little irked the system had held the post and wanted to get an answer out.

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You got the answer how to hide them but…
That lines are to help you with routing and not to confuse you. They specially help during placement allowing you to place components to minimize total connection length to be done and arrange elements to make future routing as simple as possible.

I realize their usefulness. In fact, I activate and deactivate them when I need them
Thanks Frank

Aye, indeed.
When the footprints are first imported on the PCB, the ratsnest looks … like a ratsnest (or a birdsnest?), anyway, it’s a big mess. I usually start by sorting the footprints in the PCB editor into a bunch of small groups that have interactions with each other. That makes ratsnest lines shorter and keeps (most of them) inside each group. I usually do this even before a PCB outline is present, and it is just a rough sorting.

A second step is to roughly define the relative location of those groups. Ratsnest can help here, but it can also be a bit misleading. Knowing how those groups interact from the schematic helps here.

In a following step you can decide on relative positions between the parts in each group The goals are a bit contradictory. It is a compromise between making short connections (PCB wiring takes up PCB area, it’s not about the length itself but about the PCB area), and connections not crossing each other, because those are more difficult to route. It is also a combination of how the parts in the group interact both with each other, and with connections with other groups. The ratsnest does help quite a lot here.

Once this is done you can start moving the groups closer together, and get them organized in such a way that they will fit on the PCB. This is also the time to draw the PCB outline and place mounting holes.

After this roughly 50% to 70% of the PCB design is already finished, and that is before even a single track has been drawn. A good footprint placement is a very important part of the PCB design. It can easily be the difference between “easy to route” and “impossible to finish”. One of the common problems is placing footprints too close together and not leaving enough room for the copper tracks.

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