Smaller silktexts for new components

I found on this forum how to make all silktexts smaller. Kicads default size for SMD is too big for me. Anyways, I always do the board setup, set the default silktext size to half the usual, but every time I add a new component, the new silktext is big. Than I have manually make the text small again.

Here I swapped out a uController for an other one… big silktexts.

Some mouseclicks later…

aaandd… it is good again.

How do I prevent from getting big texts in the first place?

I also don’t know exactly how I can alter the ‘global’ board setup. Every time I start a new project I would prefer not to do the exact same steps in the board setups. I also need to add new trace widths. I really need to master this :zipper_mouth_face:


Kind regards,


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The reference designators belong to footprints and the text properties are there. You have to edit the library footprint and save it to the library (copying it first to your own personal library if it was in the official read-only library).

Otherwise a “filter” would be needed which would make some changes to the inserted footprint on-the-fly, but that’s not possible at least for now. It might be interesting to have some kind of event mechanism for python plugins, so that when something happens, a script is called automatically. I don’t know if that’s feasible.

Indeed, if you the default text size to be different, then you have to edit the library symbols (after copying them into a personal library). Another possibility is to write some script that iterates of all (or a part) of KiCad default libraries, and then identifies the texts you want to modify and change it’s size. You will have t re-run the script when KiCad updates it’s own parts. KiCad uses an S-expression based format for all it’s files, and most scripting languages will have some library available to read such a file into memory with a few lines of code. It’s also human readable text, so items are easy to identify.

For the default settings of a new project…
This has been a wish for several people for years already, and has been mentioned on gitlab several times (although I can not recall if there is a real issue created for it), but it’s not a high priority. It’s a compromise because of limited available development time and many aspects of KiCad that can be improved.

But there is a template system in KiCad. You can save any project as a template, and then use that template to start a new project. You do have to add some extra information for a template. It needs a description in html format, and it needs a picture to be used as an icon to click on. You can use one of the existing templates (Project Manager / File / New Project from Template as an example. It is possible though that these templates are not installed by default on your system.

I have my 'Default Project" and start each new by copying this one (I copy and rename with file manager, not with KiCad).
In theory I should save my Default Project as template to be used starting new project but I failed when I tried it once (during KiCad V4). As I remember it wanted from me to have something (may be html file) that I just didn’t know where from I can get it.

Thank your for your answers.

I’ll have a look in the templates,

Kind regards,


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I like my silk ref des to be 0.64mm H, 0.64mm W, and 0.15mm thick. I build my footprints and define it there but if you are grabbing existing footprints into your own library, you can open them with a text editor and find/replace as needed. Or figure out a script; whatever is faster.

I see on a pic of yours above that you have silk line thickness set to 0.075mm – most fabs will complain about this being too thin. 0.15mm (about 6 mil) thick is a good minimum for silk.

See my post on Templates

Read through the several posts - info of how/where to place the HTML… (you don’t get an HTML, you Make It…)

ADDED: the HTML is in step#2

In my opinion saving the project as template should require only to write its name. Why symbols and footprints don’t need htmls associated with them?
Until it is so I will probably not have my templates but of course I’m not defending others.

I totally agree!!! IMO, Kicad’s file system is about the Worst file management system I’ve experienced

I agree … only partially.
I really do like to have a html description with a picture of what a template is and does. Especially with templates made by others. And I can also understand needing an Icon.

But it could be much better then it is now. (However I have not checked if KiCad-Nightly has improved in this regard in the last two years).

Having to manually create directories, look though the example templates and copy parts from them and modifying them is definitely not how it should be.

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