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PCB manufacture

Discussion in 'PCB Layout, Design and Manufacture' started by a.mlw.walker, Nov 15, 2011.

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  1. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
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    Nov 15, 2011
    Hi,
    So Im not an electronic engineer, Im a mechanical engineer, but i need to get a simple circuit made up. I have designed the pcb in DesignSpark software, however I dont know how to export it - i mean what format etc.
    Also how does it work with where the holes need to be drilled? Do I need to make up another file explaining where the holes are or can a manufacturer just see that from the pcb design?
    Lastly, I need larger pads as they are not solder points for components, but again, how would I tell the manufacturer to drill holes there too?
    Sorry might sound like a vague question...I'll upload an image
     

    Attached Files:

  2. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

    690
    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Hi, and welcome to this forum.
    The standard file format file to be used for export is Gerber. You need to generate a gerber file for each layer used. Indeed you need a NC drill file, with all holes positions and diameters. Your undrilled pads just need to have 0 as hole diameter.

    Olivier
     
  3. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
    0
    Nov 15, 2011
    Hello, thanks for answering. Have you used designspark? I havent made my PCB in a project - just a pcb file. I actually want those large pads to be drilled, but a larger size. Can I set that? For the NC Drill file, do I need to tell it where to drill or does it know, and just generate a file?
    I have a dropdown called Ouput with the options DXF IPF and LPKF. mean anything?
     
  4. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

    690
    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Hi,

    No i am not with designspark. Just having a PCB file should be OK

    The NC drill file is "self contained" no need to tell anything, see here under:
    http://www.apcircuits.com/resources/information/nc_sample.html.

    If you want the large pads to be drilled you must place pads with holes not a fill area or something alike. You should be able to edit both pad and hole size in the software.Then it will be integrated automatically in the NC Drill file.

    You can google a bit for a free Gerber viewer to have a look on the files before sending them to the PCB manufacturer.

    DXF is an AutoCAD format (usefull to integrate you PCB in CAD deigned enclosure)
    Don't know for IPF
    LPKF is a CNC engraving machine making PCB from bare boards

    Olivier
     
  5. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
    0
    Nov 15, 2011
    Dangling track

    hi
    Thank you very much
    I get a "dangling" track error when running checks, is this really an error or just a warning, because it looks right to me?
     
  6. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

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    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Hi, looks more to be a warning. Just double check with a gerber viewer.

    Olivier
     
  7. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
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    Nov 15, 2011
    cool. thanks for your help. I have finished the pcb and I got it to auto generate the gerber files and drill files. One of the files has the board outline in. I rang the board manufacturer and they want to charge me to check the files for me. I wondered if someone could have a look and see if it seems right. Sorry to ask but Ive never done this before and really dont want to mess it up!
    Thanks Alex
    P.S I have attached a zip folder with the .pcb file and all the generated gerber/drill files
     

    Attached Files:

  8. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

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    Oct 2, 2011
    Hi Alex,

    I have a quick look on your files. Unfortunately you put the tracks on the top layer. This will be OK electrically put a pain to solder. better to select all the tracks and to set them to bottom copper layer.

    Olivier
     
  9. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
    0
    Nov 15, 2011
    Try again!

    Thanks for looking, I have fixed that. Please could you have another look now. Do you know what to look for in terms of whether the drill files are going to be drilling in the right place and etc etc?
     

    Attached Files:

  10. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

    690
    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Alex,

    Looks to be OK now. The two holes in the square pads are in the drill file which is looking conform.

    Olivier
     
  11. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
    0
    Nov 15, 2011
    Thanks so much Olivier for your help. I am quite worried about sending it off as the manufacturer doesnt care one bit if it comes out how I expect.
    Last two worries:
    Is the edge of the board included correctly - so they know where to cut it
    Is it definately set up as a single layer board (to make it cheaper)
    ?
     
  12. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

    690
    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Hi Alex,

    For the mechanical layer it's on a separate file and looks OK. You have a plated and an unplated drill file, so probably set as double side pcb. When corrected I will submit you files to my PCB manufacturer for (free) check purpose.

    Olivier
     
  13. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
    0
    Nov 15, 2011
    Oh Thanks Olivier!
    Oh Ok. Do I need it to be double sided - will that make manufacture more expensive - because I think its quite a simple circuit. If it is double sided and doesnt need to be thats because Im new to this not because I wanted it that way??
    EDIT Sorry Olivier I can see if I go into Settings for Drill Data, I have unplated Holes and Plated Holes Selected, however Im not sure how to set a double sided pcb - Is it to do with the solder pads - What side should they be on - the same side as the track (i.e bottom layer)
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2011
  14. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
    0
    Nov 15, 2011
    Ok...

    Ok Olivier, I have moved two tracks to the top layer, so now it should be a two sided pcb I think. I removed default silkscreen layers, and solder paste layers because this is not surface mount.
    I have again included a screen shot so you can see what it looks like. All the pads except the rectangle ones go through both sides - is this ok?
     

    Attached Files:

  15. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

    690
    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Hi Alex,

    sure single side it 's OK. I don't know how to set single/double side on you CAD package but if you are able to add tracks on both side then it's double side setted.

    Yes in single side PCB both track and pads are on the same layer (the bottom one) and you will only have 1 NC drill file.

    Olivier
     
  16. a.mlw.walker

    a.mlw.walker

    39
    0
    Nov 15, 2011
    Did you see my latest post? with the attachment?
     
  17. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

    690
    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Oups no Alex, I will chk that tomorrow morning

    Olivier
     
  18. OLIVE2222

    OLIVE2222

    690
    25
    Oct 2, 2011
    Hi Alex,

    The large rectangular pads are "drilled" on one top side only and . You have very few components on your boards so to save abit on manufacturing you can maybe redraw the board on a single side basis. I can also only submit the bottom solder + bottom mask + drill from you previous file to do so.

    Olivier
     
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