Solder mask aperture bridges error

So, I am new to this and can’t find how to fix my 70 errors if rear/front solder mask aperture bridges items with different nets.

I attached my PCB and a view of a handful of the errors. I have searched and found topics on this but nothing on how to fix it that has worked for me.

I did not create a schematic first I did not know how. I used parts from the preloaded software.


I am afraid you need to change your work flow :slightly_smiling_face:without a schematic how does Kicad know what is connected to what ? With schematic Kicad will then draw lines (ratlines) on the PCB for you and you follow that. At this point may I suggest that you read some Kicad Starting guides or just as good you could watch some you tube videos of which there are plenty.

So, everything the board is connecting to is a row of 2 headers with 19 pins each with an outline for the device I plug in. I then manually connected everything I need. It snapped to each item like it was supposed to. The way I look at it Kicad would have no idea what should connect to what since it will be blank headers. If I make a mistake, it will never know I will have to check my work. It was harder to learn and understand the schematic side of it then it was to just put it together. So are you telling me I will always have those errors unless I have a schematic first. Does it mean it won’t work, or the errors will just stay?

Attempting to design a PCB without a schematic in KiCad is a folly. Very big parts of KiCad do not work properly without a schematic and the netlist it creates. Sure, it does take some time to learn to draw a schematic and assign footprints, but once you’ve gotten used to it, it’s quicker to do with a schematic, than without it. Without a schematic you’re constantly rowing upstream in KiCad.

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I am trying to start out new with a schematic but none of the basic parts except resisters have a part loaded. I have 2 1×15 rows of heades for the esp32 and a handful of 2pin block connectors. I cant find them in the schematic library but they are in the pcb one.

I’ve had this error before. The problem is that there is no solder mask between the pins - if you plot a gerber and zoom in on the pins I expect you’ll see that there is no mask between the pins. This means if you were to manufacture this PCB in a production environment you’d possibly end up with solder bridges between the pins - the solder mask is kind of pointless.

Depending on what you’re doing you can probably ignore this error. If you want to fix it you’d need to make some of the board settings tighter - make it so that the solder mask more closely follows the pad. Have a look at File → Board Setup → Board Stackup → Solder Mask/Paste menu for “Solder Mask Expansion” and “Solder Mask Minimum web width” (these are menus for software V8.0.2).



It should help.
Without schematic you give up 90% of KiCad’s functionality. As KiCad don’t know what should be connected and what not it can’t keep clearances between tracks. If it knows when you route new track then tracks that should not be connected with this new one are automatically moved out of the way.

I have started with KiCad from making my own symbol and footprint libraries before trying to design first PCB. All my symbols have footprint attached so I have never even seen how the footprint assigning process in schematic looks like as I don’t need it.

What is this with the weird pin numbering in your screenshot:


23, 22, 1, 3 ???

KiCad’s editors for both symbols and footprints are quite good and easy to use. There is a small complication because you have to create your on libraries (although you can have the symbols in the schematic only, and footprints in the PCB file), but that has some limitations.

To get started with the symbol editor, a low threshold way is to first put a connector on your schematic that looks sort of similar to what you want, and then press [Ctrl + e] while hovering over it. This loads it in the symbol editor so you can modify it. After modification, just close the symbol editor, and KiCad prompts you whether you want to update the schematic with the modified footprint.

Modifying footprints goes in a similar way. But when you use this method, the library system is bypassed, and KiCad is not very happy with it. Reloading symbols or footprints from libraries for example erases the changes you made. And therefore, to do it properly, you also need to learn some library management.

That is one of the pin headers for an esp32 dev kit. The numbering is the pin number referenced to the esp chip.

I wasn’t kidding when I said start at the beginning. There is little point in discussing the finer points of Kicad until you understand the concept of a schematic, you can find everything you need in the standard Kicad libraries on a fresh install so no need to reinvent the wheel. Open the schematic editor and draw the circuit and @Piotr has given you all the information you need, then you can use the forum and the software properly and you will very quickly learn, you will be surprised how fast if you read the DOCs then you can ask us relevant questions :smiley: