component alignment

Making PCB Layouts, Manual routing, Auto-routing, Copper pouring, Updating from Schematic, Manufacturing Output
Post Reply
Message
Author
jgmdesigns
Posts: 58
Joined: 18 Oct 2012, 22:09

component alignment

#1 Post by jgmdesigns » 04 Apr 2016, 23:33

I would like to know if there is a way for me to align a group of components without having to count x/y coordinates and manually place the parts.

For example:
In the attached picture I have 12 relays that I would like to space/arrange 5mm apart in the x and y axis. I have tried grouping the parts but I cannot find anything to allow me to set up the spacing.
Capture.JPG
I thought selecting the parts and using the Arrange feature, but all that did was put ALL the components in the design in a grid evenly spaced.

So my question is, can you select a group of parts as shown in the picture attached and have the software align them or am I going to have to keep doing this painful manual process?

Jim
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Tomg
Expert
Posts: 1436
Joined: 20 Jun 2015, 14:39

Re: component alignment

#2 Post by Tomg » 05 Apr 2016, 07:14

jgmdesigns wrote:"...can you select a group of parts as shown in the picture attached and have the software align them or am I going to have to keep doing this painful manual process?..."
There is no special alignment tool in DipTrace. The closest work-around I know of is...
1) Set the grid spacing to match the desired spacing of the components.
2) Select/highlight all of the components that you want to align.
3) Right-click on one of them, choose Snap to Grid in the pop-up menu and then select either By Pads or By Origin in the fly-out menu.
4) Return the grid spacing to normal.
Tom

jgmdesigns
Posts: 58
Joined: 18 Oct 2012, 22:09

Re: component alignment

#3 Post by jgmdesigns » 05 Apr 2016, 07:55

Wow, good thing I am second guessing paying for the 'upgrade'. It's pretty sad that basic functionality is left out of an otherwise nice software suite. The grid dots are barely visible to begin with, there is no way to increase the size of the cross hairs for alignment, and the suggestion above does not work on the relays I highlighted. Closest work around I could come up with is to create a table with the row and columns sizes to match the positions I want the relays in, then manually place the relays in the upper left corner of each cell. WHAT A PAIN IN THE NECK!

I can get component alignment in the free software from the PCB vendors. Sadly, I am confined to that board vendor. I can get alignment in DipTrace, but it's for EVERY component! Why? The alignment utilities in DipTrace perform the task on EVERY component.

Achilles heel is an understatement.

JIm

Tomg
Expert
Posts: 1436
Joined: 20 Jun 2015, 14:39

Re: component alignment

#4 Post by Tomg » 05 Apr 2016, 08:18

jgmdesigns wrote:"...there is no way to increase the size of the cross hairs for alignment..."
If you mean the grid points, no. The addition of an optional graph paper style to the grid display has been requested in the past, but nothing has come of it. If you want to enable an all-encompassing cursor cross-hair, press "X".
Tom

jgmdesigns
Posts: 58
Joined: 18 Oct 2012, 22:09

Re: component alignment

#5 Post by jgmdesigns » 05 Apr 2016, 09:39

If you want to enable an all-encompassing cursor cross-hair, press "X".
Well that certainly helps! Thanks!

The grid dots should be white, not gray as the gray is very difficult to see.

Overall I can live with some of DipTraces shortcomings, but the alignment may be a deal breaker.

JIm

Jiisuki
Posts: 12
Joined: 27 Apr 2014, 18:33

Re: component alignment

#6 Post by Jiisuki » 05 Apr 2016, 10:41

jgmdesigns wrote:
If you want to enable an all-encompassing cursor cross-hair, press "X".
Well that certainly helps! Thanks!

The grid dots should be white, not gray as the gray is very difficult to see.

Overall I can live with some of DipTraces shortcomings, but the alignment may be a deal breaker.

JIm
You can change the colours under View -> Colors. There you can change the grid colour to white if you want to.

marbol
Posts: 13
Joined: 23 Sep 2016, 22:31

Re: component alignment

#7 Post by marbol » 06 Feb 2017, 01:37

I have been trying to arrange a row of components using this method. But I can't make it work.

I've tried to set the grid to .3 spacing, and turning on the grid, but I cannot see the grid, even when toggling F11 or using the menu.

When I successfully can get the 'snap to grid' menu option to work, which is rarely, it doesn't snap to anything. It's as if the command does nothing.

What am I doing wrong?

How can I arrange the components so they have the same origins?

Alex
Technical Support
Posts: 3143
Joined: 14 Jun 2010, 06:43

Re: component alignment

#8 Post by Alex » 06 Feb 2017, 08:06

What units are used? Please open View->Units and make sure units are inches.
If you cannot see the grid, press F11 to turn it on. After that try snap components to grid.

marbol
Posts: 13
Joined: 23 Sep 2016, 22:31

Re: component alignment

#9 Post by marbol » 06 Feb 2017, 15:12

Once I quit the program and re-started it, the F11 key began to work again. I don't know why it wouldn't work at first.

Post Reply