Unicode Symbol not Rendering

Hello, I’m using the text tool to annotate my schematic in KiCad 6, I’m running on Windows 10 and I wanted to use a Unicode arrow to indicate the point on the schematic the text was referring too. The symbol renders perfectly fine in the text box when I’m typing.
But when I click OK and go to look at the schematic itself the character renders as a question mark.
Is there some setting I need to change or something I need to install? Any help would be much appreciated!

At the moment KiCad uses its own font in a specific format. It just doesn’t have all unicode characters.

There’s a good chance that v7 will support normal system fonts, then the limitations will be in the 3rd party font files, not in KiCad.

Thank you for the clarification. In the meantime I suppose the easiest work around would be to use the bitmap image tool to place an image of the arrow I want on the schematic?

If it were me I’d type <- or <= depending on what looks better in the stroke font, but I guess the bitmap tool would work too.

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Get stuck in one mode of thinking and forget the easy solution!

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Which arrow are you using? Unicode “Leftwards Arrow” and “Rightwards Arrow” work for me.


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How strange, I had copied [← - Leftwards Arrow: U+2190 - Unicode Character Table](https://Leftmost arrow) from this website to make sure and still had the error. I’ve just copied and pasted again and now things are rendering correctly.

In your first screenshot, in the Properties dialog, it looks like it could be 🠔, with “Equilateral Arrowhead” which doesn’t work.

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Bonus points for Constant Fraction Discriminator usage…

ahh that makes sense

Haha, I’ve just started learning about them for this project! Can’t claim any great expertise, in fact if you could point me to any resources about them I’d be much obliged!

I have worked with and designed both analog and digital (FPGA- based) CFDs and TDCs. Is this a high-energy physics application? The Knoll and Leo radiation detection books the first place to look.

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It’s actually an implementation of Tom McEwan’s tank level monitoring system, which is a guided wave radar. You need the CFD to do some time domain reflectometry. I’ll definitely take a look at the radiation detection books!

Ah, interesting. If you are a student (or not), it would be worth joining the IEEE (ieee.org). You will get access to their library of conference papers, which is another of the best resources anywhere. Search papers for CFDs:
IEEE Xplore Search Results

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But that’s for the fonts used on the board, e.g. on the silkscreen, right? OP’s placing text in the schematic. I guess the right chracter was pasted the second time around.

KiCad uses the same stroke font in the schematic and in the board.

Just for fun: if you need a right or left arrow to copy but don’t want to go to a specialized web page for it, just write -> or <- in this forum text editor, and you’ll get → or ← . It works when pasted in KiCad. @gkeeth already had to use “Preformatted text” to avoid real arrow. :slight_smile:


This forum’s editor understands XML character entities too, e.g.: ← → ≤ ≥ ° Ω © ® which were all entered using the & + name + ; notation, e.g. & leftarrow ; (without the spaces).

If you need a specialised character it can be entered as the code point: :wink: which was entered as & # x 1F609 ; (without the spaces). Or course : wink : is easier to remember.

So this forum serves as a character code converter, as long as you remember the name of the character. :smiley:

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