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65

I was trained at Tektronix to be an electronics draftsman. They had classes for it. It's quite similar to drafting for construction. You had the usual pencils, sharpeners, specialized erasers and paper, a tilted table, T-square, triangle, etc. The same basic tools of the trade for any draftsman. There were some additional tools added, such as some nice ...


52

And now you can do that inside a reasonably modern browser with CircuitLab. The community version, which is free, is somewhat limited on its library of components, but the simulator running in the browser is a testament to the power of current JavaScript engines. Update Jan 2015: CircuitLab is not free anymore; there's only a time-limited demo without a ...


29

In my first job in 1975 at Bristol Aerospace (now Magellan) we had a good aviation and NASA qualified draftsmen, but one kept making D and E size drawings so microfiche would not create false dots from optical blurring, so I had to convince him to use A, B, and C size maximum by condensing symbol gaps and reducing font size. Because I often had to work with ...


28

"Invoke" command resolves this. I've got only Eagle 5.11.0 in front of me at the moment. But, this haven't changed in 6.3.0 @ScottSeidman had beat me to the answer, while I was annotating the screenshot.


26

As I understand it, AutoCAD Electrical is normal AutoCAD, but with some features that support electrical designers. In this context, 'electrical designers' means people designing low-voltage motor control centres, industrial plant, control cubicles, and so on. Note the distinction between electrical design and electronics design. Electrical design is ...


23

Having designed a few PCBs in my time, including some with components at weird angles, I'll give you a quick summary of my experience. As I see it, there are several reasons to stick to 90 degree angles. Grids - If you are trying to route everything nicely on a grid, then having off-angles is a pain in the neck as stuff no longer lines up with the grid. ...


17

This is a stupidity of Eagle. Unfortunately you get these warnings when a supply pin is connected to a net with a different name than the pin. Even worse, Eagle will implicitly connect a supply pin to a net of the same name. I and many other people, judging from the Cadsoft forums, think this is stupid too, but Cadsoft has so far refused to fix this. Don'...


13

Just learned (as of March 2012) of a new web-based schematic drawing tool called "Scheme-It" that uses HTML5 to enable drawing of schematics online, and it also allows export to PNG & PDF formats. Apparently it's supported by Digi-Key, I'm sure it's intended to drive you to buy components from them but there is no registration or anything required, no ...


10

The IPC-7351 standard defines a coordinate system origin for surface mount parts, as well as a standard orientation. There is a summary of the orientations on the last page of this document: http://landpatterns.ipc.org/IPC-7351BNamingConvention.pdf, and illustrations in the full standard. For most surface mount parts: The origin is at the centroid of the ...


10

Some that I recommend for small projects and prototyping is Fritzing. They are very good to convert the schematic to a prototype board. And very easy to use. And the best, it's free!


10

I use Eagle. When I need to do things like this I write a program that generates a script. The program does the sines, cosines, and other math to determine the coordinates, then writes those into the script. This comes up often enough that I've created a generic host program module that has subroutines for writing coordinates in Eagle format, for writing ...


10

Some components are mechanically significant, as the O.P. have already gleaned. But majority of the PCB component (resistors, capacitors, small signal transistors, OpAmps, logic ICs) aren't mechanically significant. With these non-mechanically-significant components dense and convenient packing is often the goal. Most PCB components can be approximated ...


10

You draw symbol the way your circuit is best readable and understandable. Techniques used are: grouping pins into busses; having space between pins groups per their purpose, usage or their connect destination; making comprehensive labels on the pins and on the devices. From my experience reading circuits drawn using packages is a nightmare. Packages belong ...


9

You use the INVOKE button. It looks like four AND gates with an arrow on the lower left one. It will let you hook up pins that are attached to default nets.


9

In addition to templates there were drafting machines... and the Leroy lettering system patented in 1925.


8

The Eagle autorouter is a decent tool, and I use it a lot. However, like any tool, you have to know how to use it well and understand its limitations. If you are just expecting to throw everything at the autorouter, you will be dissappointed. No current auto router, and probably for a number of years to come, can do that for anything beyond contrived or ...


8

Altium prior to AD18, has a light design scheme. You can try to change bits and pieces of the UI, but you will continue to fight it. I'd recommend that you suck it up, stick to the defaults if you would rather be design-productive, and not fight the software at every step. This may not be what you were hoping for, but after 20 years of Protel/Altium, you ...


7

You are trying to place the DXF drawing on a mechanical layer? There are two issues here: One, there are two import commands on the file menu: You want the top one. Second, I've seen this issue with scaling errors. You can make your drawing 1000x too large, or 1000x too small very easily, depending on some bizarre vagaries of how your CAD software ...


7

Both methods are used, therefore both are "standard". Which one you should use is a matter of opinion, and a decision about which one better conveys the necessary information to the person reading the schematic. For the person trying to understand the logical operation of the circuit, grouping the pins by function is usually better. For the person using ...


6

Orcad, PADS and Protel all used .sch at one point and there is no standard implied with the file type. Orcad now uses .DSN. Check with the vendor. Most commercial products offer a free reader (aka viewer) or a free Lite version that limits modification but not the open, so users can view files. Orcad makes a free viewer. As a sidebar I also like ...


6

You can create a non-square PCB simply by defining whatever shape you like for the board outline. As for a non-flat one, PCBs just aren't made that way. There are some alternatives that you could consider: Flexible kapton circuits. These the orange ribbons you see connecting things like LCD screens. They often have a few small circuit mount components on ...


6

A bit of foreword; I work in an industrial site where, much like Li Aung has mentioned, uses CAD for schematic and termination drawings of our MCCs (Motor Control Centres, for those who forgot since reading Li Aung's post), Distribution system single lines, communication systems and control (instrumentation inclusive) drawings. See below for example of '...


6

As specified in the EAGLE manual on page 292, this is intentional. EAGLE uses 19 different drill symbols. The 18 symbols shown below are used for drills of a specified diameter. You can specify which symbol to use for which drill size in the Layout Editor under Options -> Set -> Drill. (image from EAGLE manual) Finally, the symbol Ø is used for drill ...


5

gEDA is a free and open source tool. The gEDA package includes a schematic editor, PCB layout editor, Gerber viewer, bill of materials (BOM) generation, etc. It also has a huge symbol library. Check gEDA/PCB Stuff for a bunch of projects designed using gEDA. A video game made using gEDA:


5

My personal favorites are: 1) EAGLE: While this software from CADSoft does not have simulation capabilities, it is one of the best schematic/PCB design programs I have used. The libraries are quite good and the documentation is excellent. Download link: http://www.cadsoftusa.com/download-eagle/ Image: 2) Multisim: This program from National Instruments ...


5

Unfortunately EAGLE doesn't have too many options when it comes to frames and titles. Actually, title blocks and frames are considered by EAGLE as symbols. You can find them in the frames.lbr library. So go to File - Open - Library and select frames.lbr. Go to Library menu then Symbol and select the frame you want to modify. Now delete the text variables, ...


5

With the latest version of eagle (8.4.1), on Windows 10 fall creators update, it works if you right click the EAGLE.EXE executable, go to Properties > Compatibility > check "Override high DPI scaling behavior." and set "Scaling performed by: System". Hope this helps, cheers!


5

A compelling reason to place two lead surface mounted components parallel with respect to one another and perpendicular to the printed circuit board travel into the oven is too prevent the tombstone effect. Tombstoning is when uneven heating melts solder at the leading lead pulling the surface mounted component into a standing position. The question was ...


5

An amateur could also produce a nice PCB using a handfull of thin packages from the local shop. No drafting table or other expensive supplies needed. You could buy tape that was the (scale) width of the traces, along with stickers that bears pads and such. This is placed on a clear plastic base, and either used directly as a contact print for the board ...


4

If you don't mind an online tool, may I sugest easyEDA: Also upverter and 123d circuits are online viable options.


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