I have a lascar LCD volt/ammeter that has 10 pins. What I want to do is design a simple PCB that has a few resistors, connects to a battery and an aircraft then send off a Gerber file to a manufacturer to have about 10 made.

The problem is I can't seem to find a simple PCB program that lets me make a few holes for the resistors and LCD pins, then lets me connect them with a few copper tracks. All the programs I have used want me to make a full schematic before I can design the board which is unnecessary. Then they show me a parts list with thousands of parts that I don't need.

I literally want to make some holes with pads around them so I can solder the resistors, etc and have a few copper tracks. Does anyone know of a simple program that can do this and export the board to a Gerber file?

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    \$\begingroup\$ You won't find many serious people that would actually call that "design". If that's all you want then use a CAD program. \$\endgroup\$ – Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Sep 22 '15 at 6:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ I think many PCB CAD programs will let you place parts and tracks manually (without netlist/schematic) if you turn off the Design Rules Check (DRC). \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Bennett Sep 22 '15 at 16:53

Use DesignSpark PCB its free and simple, and used by many people ,their forums are active too.

file -> new->pcb design for directly design PCB without schematic

You can also try Kicad, it is also free and less simple as DesignSpark.

  • \$\begingroup\$ IIRC Kicad is rather tedious for someone impatient and/or no experience with it or similar software. There are some reviews around (youtube etc.) for this and similar pieces of software. \$\endgroup\$ – Fizz Sep 22 '15 at 6:34

Geda PCB will also let you draw your layout directly, sans existing schematic (this is in fact an essential part of Geda philosophy, being a toolbox rather than mega-does-everything-in-one-program), although it kinda wants you say what parts those things you place are going to be. Looking at the datasheet of your volt/ammeter it seems it uses a single row of pins, so you can probably fake that with quite a number of other parts if you're impatient and don't want to add/define a custom part. I can't find the pin spacing in the datasheet though, so you're on your own for finding substitutes.


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