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Generating Gerbers from EagleCAD
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Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.

Generating Gerbers from EagleCAD

by WBVenom on Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:14 pm

How does one create the gerber filetypes from EagleCAD that ladyada has provided?

I've searched high and low on the boards and in readme's for this information, and have been entirely unsuccessful.

The problem is: I am unable to generate the same gerber file types that are available for download and that have been created by the likes of bushing for his v1.0b_fixed boardset. When I run CAM Processor, and go File -> Open -> Job -> gerb274x.cam, and click "Process Job," EagleCAD creates these file types:

*.cmp
*.gpi
*.plc
*.sol
*.stc
*.sts

But the file types available for download and the files created by bushing are these types:

*.gbl
*.gbo
*.gbs
*.gtl
*.gto
*.gts

How do I create these file types, and not the ones in the first list? :?

I've used GC-Prevue to look at both sets of gerbers, and the second list (the official ones) look much better aligned and more precise than those in the first list (the ones I created). But more important than this is simply being able to create the gerber file types that Limor and bushing seem to have so easily generated.

Bushing created his v1.0b_fixed revision, but he created gerbers for each board by itself. (EDIT: I now realize he must have done this because he couldn't rename the main board's misnumbered parts to their correct numbers because they already existed on another of the boards. When combining the three boards into one .BRD file, EagleCAD must have renamed the duplicate part numbers, beginning with the highest existing number. The way around this is to add a period or apostrophe to the end of the main board's correct part numbers).

What I am attempting to do (without using a gerber merge program) is correct the silkscreen issues but create a gerber file set for the 3-board single-panel, rather than three separate panels (which, if I'm not mistaken, would be far more difficult - read: expensive - to have done at a boardhouse).

If someone helps me with this, I will gladly post the new, silkscreen-corrected panel, for those who want the single panel instead of bushing's three separates. I have already mimicked bushing's fixes and have a few improvements of my own.

Thanks in advance!
Last edited by WBVenom on Sun Apr 13, 2008 2:10 am, edited 4 times in total.
Disclaimer: I have not, will not, and do not work on or manufacture any device not in compliance with FCC regulations. Any involvement here is strictly a matter of education. No intent or actions expressed have been or will ever be realized.
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by WBVenom on Sun Apr 13, 2008 1:54 am

I think I may have solved my own problem, but if I am wrong at any point in my explanation, please let me know.

It is now my understanding that gerbers are simply very detailed image files. Their file extensions don't matter. You can make the file extension whatever you like to help you identify to what the gerber corresponds. The file types

*.gbl
*.gbo
*.gbs
*.gtl
*.gto
*.gts

therefore correspond to individual layers of the board that the board house needs to construct it. Namely, "g" to gerber, "t" or "b" to top or bottom, and "l" or "o" or "s" to perhaps "layer," for the copper layers, "overlay, for the silkscreen layers, and "soldermask" for the soldermask layers. When viewing the gerber files with a gerber file viewer, this letter association becomes evident. Sweet. :)

In EagleCAD, then, I believe I will attempt to select the "gerb274X.cam" job file, and then use a single tab in the window to create each of the gerbers above, one at a time. I will select each copper layer, each silkscreen layer, and each soldermask layer, and then, one at a time, export them to their respective gerber types above.

Please let me know if I need to modify any of the radio button or checkbox options in the CAM Processor window while doing this. Thanks.
Disclaimer: I have not, will not, and do not work on or manufacture any device not in compliance with FCC regulations. Any involvement here is strictly a matter of education. No intent or actions expressed have been or will ever be realized.
WBVenom
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 3:33 am

by powerpants on Sun Apr 13, 2008 6:28 am

I use this cam file from sparkfun.com to export gerbers:

http://www.sparkfun.com/tutorial/Beginn ... rb274x.cam

I got this cam file from their awesome Eagle tutorial:

http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/presen ... 9-EaglePCB

Anyway, it exports 'em all at once to the same directory. You might have to tweak it a little to make sure the boad outline layer shows up where you want it, though.

When I'm trying to combine boards, I simply open the board I want to add to the panel, show all layers, select everything with the drag-box, and hit cut, and then press little traffic light button. This is Eagle's equivalent of copying something to the clipboard. Then, create a new board file, and hit paste. This gives you an instantiation of what you just cut(copied) that you can move around to your liking. Save your new board file, and rinse and repeat for the other stuff you'd like to add into the panel you're making.

I think that the area of all three boards put together might be bigger than the maximum allowable area for the free version of Eagle, but I'm not sure. If you get weird "unable to place component" errors when trying to move stuff around, this is probably what's causing it.
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by WBVenom on Sun Apr 13, 2008 8:48 am

Thank you for the awesome info! That cam file is precisely what I needed.

From ladyada's gerbers, it looks like the outline layer should be in both the top and bottom silkscreen gerbers. Is this correct? This cam's default is the top copper layer.

I also had to add in tnames and tdocu to the silkscreen layers to include everything properly. Also, had to add 200bmp to the bottom silkscreen (the logos layer).

I think I would encounter part numbering problems if I attempted to combine the boards (the same problems that ladyada's main board's silkscreen has). I'll just use the new cam file on the 3-board panel .BRD file. Also, yes, the lite version of EagleCAD prevents me from moving components, so building my own panel is out anyway.

Thanks again for the sweet info. Sparkfun's tutorial is quite nice indeed. :)
Disclaimer: I have not, will not, and do not work on or manufacture any device not in compliance with FCC regulations. Any involvement here is strictly a matter of education. No intent or actions expressed have been or will ever be realized.
WBVenom
 
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Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 3:33 am

by powerpants on Mon Apr 14, 2008 4:19 pm

I've ordered from different boardhouses, and my impression is that it doesn't really matter what layer(s) the outline is on, as long as it is clear that it is the outline. Last time, I ordered from Gold Phoenix (which is awesome, btw), and they wanted the outlines on a separate mechanical layer. However, I've also ordered from pcbfabexpress and I think that time it was on the top layer, so YMMV.

http://www.daycounter.com/LabBook/Prote ... ions.phtml
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by WBVenom on Mon Apr 14, 2008 10:55 pm

Perfect. Glad to hear yet another positive review of Gold Phoenix, considering their low prices for the excellent array of options.

I'll add the outline to a separate .GM1 gerber, as well as keep it included on the top and bottom silkscreens (if only for the vanity's sake).

I kinda want to hug you for being so helpful.
Disclaimer: I have not, will not, and do not work on or manufacture any device not in compliance with FCC regulations. Any involvement here is strictly a matter of education. No intent or actions expressed have been or will ever be realized.
WBVenom
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 3:33 am

by powerpants on Tue Apr 15, 2008 12:54 am

lol. perhaps electrical engineering is the key to solving the world's happiness problem.
powerpants
 
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 8:55 pm

thanks

by keen101 on Sat Aug 16, 2008 1:36 am

That script from sparkfun really helped me out. I was trying to get one of these made: http://www.harbaum.org/till/lcd2usb/index.shtml

and i could not get it exported right. It kept getting mirrored. It was a pain in the *** until i used that script.


-keen101

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Location: Colorado

Re: Generating Gerbers from EagleCAD

by grigori on Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:27 am

Thanks for that script )
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Re: Generating Gerbers from EagleCAD

by sbobetwork on Tue May 28, 2019 5:30 am

thank you for sharing this nice code
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Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.