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PCBmodE update: drills and no more pads

Saar Drimer

I've just pushed an update to PCBmodE in the development branch. It adds support for drilling, and removes the pad files that were included in earlier designs. 


The 'drills' design (a PNG taken of the SVG PCBmodE produces). You can't quite see it, but each drill has a tiny diameter text so it's only visible when you zoom in.


For the drills, there's a new -e / --make-excellon option that will produce an Excellon file. While it displays well with 'gerbv' I still need to test that I got everything right, and that's why the feature is still in the 'development' branch. The Drill index is added automatically if you ask the tool to do so. You can also choose whether you want soldermask around the drill and so on. Here's how it looks in 'gerbv':


A view from 'gerbv'; the Excellon data is in yellow.

You can see the input JSON file that created the board above here.

Regarding the removal of pad files, my initial thought was that pads could be reused between part definitions and therefore it would be useful to have them as standalone files. However, based on my board design experience, it's rather rare to have the exact same landing patterns across parts, even for boards with dozens of components. For PCBmodE's more artistic designs, some of the pads would be unique anyway, so are not that reusable. Finally, it makes more conceptual sense for the entire footprint definition to be enclosed in a single file. So, from now on, pad prototypes are defined inside of the part definition.