Author Topic: What are you using for PCB panelization?  (Read 988 times)

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Offline olkipukki

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What are you using for PCB panelization?
« on: June 30, 2020, 02:00:48 pm »
At the moment, I'm using Altium Designer to do eveything, but due to some upcoming changes and different gerbers output sources,
I would prefer to manage everything independently, so outside of PCB packages.

I'm after some tool/software what can put multiple designs on a panel and easy setup v-cut & mouse bites rules, PnP file prep etc.

The budget around max $1K would be ideal.

Any suggestions?

« Last Edit: June 30, 2020, 02:04:50 pm by olkipukki »
 

Offline geggi1

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Re: What are you using for PCB panelization?
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2020, 09:13:53 pm »
To do it in autocad is very simpel. just make a block of the pcb and use the array function to simplify the placement.
When the panel looks as you want it run ecplode a few times so that you are able to generate gerber layer by layer.
If it is possible to have the pcb outline during the cad file generation it will simplifie the making of the panel.
 

Offline olkipukki

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Re: What are you using for PCB panelization?
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2020, 01:13:20 pm »
Another tool, ViewMate

https://www.pentalogix.com/t/software-products/viewmate

It looks like can do panelize in a few steps, but either v-scores or mouse bites according their tutorials
I didn't try yet how it works actually

https://www.pentalogix.com/video_tutorials


 

Offline olkipukki

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Re: What are you using for PCB panelization?
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2020, 01:27:19 pm »
To do it in autocad is very simpel. just make a block of the pcb and use the array function to simplify the placement.
When the panel looks as you want it run ecplode a few times so that you are able to generate gerber layer by layer.
If it is possible to have the pcb outline during the cad file generation it will simplifie the making of the panel.

That's more like hacking than a smooth workflow  >:D
Also, I will need AutoCAD subscription in order to 'bent' a tool for unrelated work.

I would end up digging into gerber codes and write some scripts to make a v-scored panel on fly... rather than touch Autodesk & Co again  :o
That's was a plan (aka scripts) if mouse bites are not required.


 

Online nctnico

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Re: What are you using for PCB panelization?
« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2020, 10:46:29 am »
There is open source software to do this. I've used it to replicate a design multiple times for self-etched PCBs. However if you have the boards made I strongly suggest to let the PCB manufacturer deal with panelisation. They can do it quicker & better than you.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline asmi

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Re: What are you using for PCB panelization?
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2020, 03:52:10 pm »
There is open source software to do this. I've used it to replicate a design multiple times for self-etched PCBs. However if you have the boards made I strongly suggest to let the PCB manufacturer deal with panelisation. They can do it quicker & better than you.
Sometimes you have specific requirements for panels, for example from your assembler (or if you do assembly yourself), or if you want to place several different boards on a panel (this is especially useful if your boards have some odd shapes). Or if you want to add some non-standard stuff to the panel - like traces from each board to a panel-side connector so that you can program/test entire panel at once instead of doing tests at a level of individual boards.
 
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Offline olkipukki

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Re: What are you using for PCB panelization?
« Reply #6 on: July 04, 2020, 12:09:24 pm »
There is open source software to do this.
Any references you could share?

However if you have the boards made I strongly suggest to let the PCB manufacturer deal with panelisation. They can do it quicker & better than you.
No doubt, they can do it quicker and better... but for whom - me or themself?!

In past, I throwed some designs to PCB fabs and asked from simple "just here a few boards, do what ever you think is right" and detailed one -  "back and forward list of requirements and optimization". Usually, worked on 50/50 basis, sometimes I thought what on hell they're thinking or a time overhead so enormous to be involved, another extreme - brilliant job.
Overall, that's depends from PCB fab expertise and to be tied to a single place is not option, but each PCB fab has same machinery...
Since then, I do panel prep gerber in house, works for me.  :-+



 

Online nctnico

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Re: What are you using for PCB panelization?
« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2020, 12:22:45 pm »
There is open source software to do this.
Any references you could share?
It seems I have used Gerbmerge.

https://radrajith.github.io/gerbmerge/
« Last Edit: July 04, 2020, 12:25:58 pm by nctnico »
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 
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