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"Scan" to Gerber?

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Don Y, Dec 24, 2013.

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  1. Don Y

    Don Y Guest


    Are there any tools (interactive or batch) that will
    accept a high resolution scan (this shouldn't matter!)
    and produce a "normalized" Gerber photoplot format
    (that I can subsequently post-process) from existing
    films or an actual (bare) board?

  2. Ether import a bitmap into Eagle, or import a DXF file.
    You can convert a pdf to a DWG file, then export a DXF out of Autocad.
    Or just import the Bitmap into Eagle, fix the layers and create


    I could give it a shot if you like. I just need a good scan.

  3. Don Y

    Don Y Guest

    Hi Martin,

    <frown> I think that's just fiddling with graphics.

    What I want is to get to valid gerbers and, from there,
    rebuild the connectivity map (netlist) and, eventually,
    Thanks, but I'm looking more for a toolset than a "one-off".

    Happy Holidays!
  4. Don Y

    Don Y Guest

    Hi Mike,

    Yes, this looks like it does the "back end" of the process.
    But, it expects a "gerber" as inputs. I.e., there's already
    some connectivity information present in the photoplot file.
    It doesn't appear that it would be able to take a "bitmap"
    (e.g., TIFF) and deduce the connectivity from that -- essentially
    build a gerber from a TIFF. Then, the netlist from the gerber.

    But, it looks promising! I will DL their trial if only to see
    how well it does what it actually does do!

  5. Don Y

    Don Y Guest

    Hi Mike,

    TIFF is essentially a compressed bitmap. So, not a straightforward
    conversion to a vector-oriented format (which I think is true of
    most plotter formats, e.g. Gerber) where they are actually trying
    to "steer" a marking element (aperture) around a surface.

    [Of course, that's not to say there aren't algorithms to do exactly
    this sort of conversion]

    I think what makes Gerber to netlist/schematic much easier is
    that you already have the connectivity implicit in the "motions"
    of the plotter (i.e., if it never goes to a certain (x,y), then
    there is no connection to the object located at that (x,y)!)

    Thanks, I'll investigate (busy trying to finish up "year end"
    stuff... always too much to get done in too short of a window!)

  6. Don Y

    Don Y Guest

    Hi Jim,

    [apologies for delay in replying... end of year is even more hectic
    than normal :< ]

    On 12/30/2013 4:31 PM, WangoTango wrote:

    [attrs elided]
    Yes. It seems a pretty common feature of photoplot editors et al.
    OK. Trick will be if they can use these for *electrical* connectivity
    vs. just silk screen legends, etc. And, if they allow them to be
    "electrical conductors", if they do anything more than letting your
    "add/remove copper" free-hand.
    Thanks! I've bookmarked it and will pursue it once I get some "free
    time" (another oxymoron :< )

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