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Questions about the BatchPCB service

Moderator: robacarp

hi Guys,

i've just hacked up my first PCB and i'm looking for a bit of confirmation. Could you guys run your eyes over these filenames and let me know if i've converted them correctly?

I'm also not sure how the TopPaste and TopMask files map into the batch PCB file naming? are these the stencil files?



Dip Trace Files
Board.gbr --> not needed?
BoardOutline.gbr --> Outline
Bottom.gbr --> BottomCopper
BottomAssy.gbr --> empty, not needed?
BottomMask.gbr --> BottomSolderMask
BottomPaste.gbr --> ??
BottomSilk.gbr --> BottomSilk
Through.drl --> Drill
Top.gbr --> TopCopper
TopAssy.gbr --> (empty, so removed from Zip)
TopMask.gbr --> TopSolderMask
TopPaste.gbr --> ??
TopSilk.gbr --> TopSilk
hi shimniok,

a million thanks for the reply.

Board is just one big green square, where as boardoutline is the same dimensions, just not filled in, just the outline.

here is what i see in the viewer, there is obviously stuff there, but not sure exactly what they map too?
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
The paste layers are used to create stencils. Since this is a thru-hole board, I wouldn't expect anything there, except possibly vias, unless you really are thinking of soldering using paste-in-hole. This would not be sent to the board house unless they are also making stencils.

The assembly layers are used to drive pick-and-place machines for autmatic loading of parts. It may also have text on it (component values, assembly notes) to help manually load the board. These would not be sent to the board house

The mask layers represent where holes are in the solder mask. These do get sent to the board house.

So I would send in the copper, silk, and mask layers, the board outline, and the drill file. Depending on the tool and board, there may be two drill files (one for plated holes and one for non-plated ones).

A couple of issues on the board itself:

- You may want to add mounting holes
- I would double-check the hole diameters; mini-fit connectors tend to have larger pins than IDC headers
- Are you running power or ground on this board? It doesn't look like there are any traces wide enough
- Are all connectors polarized? If there are some that can be plugged in either way, I would add a pin-1 indicator. Likewise, I would use square pads for pin 1 to make it easier to orient yourself if you have to do any probing or debugging from the bottom side.
- There are a few places where vias are very close to pins (ie, the 24-pin mini-fit, top row, third from the right). Since both the via and pin are not masked, it will be easy to get a solder bridge. Likwise, there are a few traces that run very close to connector pins that could easily be moved over, like at 6p_Gun3
- You may need to move the connector labels in the silkscreen so they won't be hidden by the connector body
- There are parts labelled U1 - U5. If these are ICs. do they need any decoupling caps?

Hi Mike, many many thanks for the reply and tips!

i didnt even think about the mini-fit pin sizes, whoops! you're right, the pin is about 1/4 of a millimetre larger, so i will need to very very carefully fix that when it comes back :c)

The purpose of the board is for an old pacman arcade cabinent i have. I'm going to use a PC power supply instead of using the usual ones. So what i had planned to do was to use the mini-fit to break out 5v, 12v, 24v, -5v @ ~2-5amps power lines out to a number of different spots on the board. Those U1--> U5's are just molex plug sockets, i just forgot to change the names :)
The via's, yep, i will need to be very careful when soldering the sockets. on v2 of the board, i will move them around, thats good advice :)

Again Mike, thank you very much for your response, i appreciate it.