Outline Fill (G36, G37)

Making PCB Layouts, Manual routing, Auto-routing, Copper pouring, Updating from Schematic, Manufacturing Output
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mkwired
Posts: 4
Joined: 13 Jul 2012, 17:22

Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#1 Post by mkwired » 13 Jul 2012, 17:58

I'm new to DipTrace and PCB Layout. I have been doing a lot of research about how PCBs are manufactured mainly because I received some mild negative feedback from our photoplot vendor about how my Gerber files looked "ugly." I didn't speak to the vendor directly. I got this feedback from our PCB department which sent my Gerber files to the vendor. Because making PCB layouts is new to me, I decided to learn as much as I could about the topic. I still have more to learn, but I think I may know what the vendor was talking about. It doesn't appear DipTrace generates Outline Fill (G36, G37) commands in the Gerber files. It is "painting" the pads and copper pours. According to the quote below, PCB vendors don't like Gerber files created using this method. As a programmer myself, it seems like creating Gerber files using the Outline Fill method would be easier than using multiple passes of an auto generated aperture. Are there any plans to use the G36 and G37 commands in future versions of DipTrace?

Quoted from the linked document below:
Painted or stroked pads and areas. This is
especially troublesome. The CAM operator has
to replace all the painted pads by flashes and
the painted areas by outlines, a time-consuming,
tedious and error-prone process. Painting is a
hang-over from the vector plotters of the 1960's
and 1970's. There is no valid reason why it is
still used.
http://www.ucamco.com/Portals/0/Documen ... 201110.pdf

lindquist
Posts: 45
Joined: 22 Oct 2011, 17:58

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#2 Post by lindquist » 14 Jul 2012, 06:26

I've noticed this as well. The software I'm writing which generates milling code from Gerber files, also need much more time to generate proper outlines. Further, some inaccuracies are sometimes introduced, meaning small holes occur in what is supposed to be a completely filled shape. I'm working around this by have an area-threshold, so very small features are simply discarded, but this problem would not exist if outline fills were used instead.

I can only say +1 for following recommended Gerber practice (besides the document posted here, see section 6 "RS-274X Best practices").

mkwired
Posts: 4
Joined: 13 Jul 2012, 17:22

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#3 Post by mkwired » 14 Jul 2012, 16:46

lindquist, is your software available to the public? Are you using the ACE Converter?

lindquist
Posts: 45
Joined: 22 Oct 2011, 17:58

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#4 Post by lindquist » 15 Jul 2012, 17:28

mkwired wrote:lindquist, is your software available to the public? Are you using the ACE Converter?
It's not yet available anywhere, but it's starting to work quite well. I'm still considering my options regarding publication ;-)

Alex
Technical Support
Posts: 3142
Joined: 14 Jun 2010, 06:43

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#5 Post by Alex » 17 Jul 2012, 03:00

I have added the suggestion to the list, we will consider it for future versions.
Sometimes customers use hatched copper pours. Then G36 and G37 codes are not able to use in Gerber files. Our method is convenient for both solid and hatched pours, but maybe it is not the best method for solid copper nowadays.

mkwired
Posts: 4
Joined: 13 Jul 2012, 17:22

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#6 Post by mkwired » 17 Jul 2012, 11:15

Our photoplot mask vendor, Mega Circuit, had a problem "arraying" my design. Could someone look at my DipTrace PCB layout that is attached to this post and tell me what I could be doing that is causing a problem?

-- 17 Jul 2012, 16:05 --

I ran the generated gerbers through Advanced Circuits's FreeDFM service and it don't find a problem. I ended up buying the boards from Advanced Circuits instead of making them inside. I still don't know why Mega Circuit had a problem with the gerbers.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Alex
Technical Support
Posts: 3142
Joined: 14 Jun 2010, 06:43

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#7 Post by Alex » 19 Jul 2012, 04:01

The board looks ordinary. I don't know what could cause a problem in Mega Circuit.

novarm44
Technical Support
Posts: 317
Joined: 09 Jun 2010, 06:24
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Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#8 Post by novarm44 » 25 Jul 2012, 07:41

DipTrace uses G36/G37 apertures for polygons (pads and shapes).
Copper pours in DipTrace are made from lines at the moment, so they are exported as lines.

babbler
Posts: 2
Joined: 06 Aug 2013, 16:12
Contact:

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#9 Post by babbler » 06 Aug 2013, 16:49

Any progess on this stripping?
I'm just started using Diptrace (v2.3.1). Everything went fine with my design except the last step: the printing. Because of hand drilling of the prototype I had to modify the drill sizes on the finished layout. Because of this instead of directly printing the board from the PCB layout designer I made an export to gerber, then modified the diameter of the hole in the header. Then tried to print the gerber but without success. The filled areas are made of strips on the printout no matter of what software used. Even with backimporting into diptrace fails. The import looks good on the screen but the printout is bad.

Looks like there is little misalignment of the stripes. Is this a bug? Of course the outline fill could resolve this issue automatically.

Alex
Technical Support
Posts: 3142
Joined: 14 Jun 2010, 06:43

Re: Outline Fill (G36, G37)

#10 Post by Alex » 07 Aug 2013, 08:54

No progress at the moment because we have other tasks.
You can change drill sizes in DipTrace before printing. It will take couple minutes if you use "Apply to" option in pad properties.

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