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Trackless holding area for components (Read 5868 times)
DaveJS
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Trackless holding area for components
Jun 15th, 2015 at 10:23pm
 
Hi Roger,
Way back in June 2011 (I didn't think it was that long ago - time really flies for us oldies!) I suggested that some sort of holding area for components that didn't generate connection errors would be a nice feature to make layouts easier, especially at the start of a layout when rat lines and error blobs abound.
Well I think one of your latest features, namely the Track Editor, has produced this as a side effect.
The attached pdf shows how I achieved creating and using such an area.
Many thanks.
Best regards
Dave
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Roger Lascelles
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #1 - Jun 16th, 2015 at 12:25pm
 
Hello Dave
  • Thank you for taking the time to document your technique. i know others will find it helpful
  • VeeCAD needs something like this as a built in feature. For example, a side panel that you can drag parts to. I can't say if or when I can work on it, due to tricky circumstances.
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HELLI
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #2 - Jun 16th, 2015 at 12:32pm
 
Hi Dave,
At times I have wanted to have a component overhang the edge of the board and I had to allow an extra strip to do this. Usually something like a coin-cell holder. Now with the editor you can move all the tracks left/right or up/down by using the drag select and moving them.

Great work Roger!
Thanks!

Hamilton
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Roger Lascelles
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #3 - Jun 16th, 2015 at 2:49pm
 
Hello Hamilton

It must have been you who asked for components to overlap the board edge. I knew the Track Editor would solve that problem for free.

I have just realised that if VeeCAD were to allow parts to go off-board, it would achieve the effect that Dave is talking about, without needing to use the Track Editor. Parts off-board is a matter of reworking the movement limits in the code. I'll put it on the list of good ideas. I am very aware that my imagination ran out years ago, and that it is only user suggestions that give me a new insight.
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DaveJS
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #4 - Jul 2nd, 2015 at 8:57am
 
Hi Roger,
I've only just seen your reply on the 16th to my original post and I do hope that your "tricky circumstances" are not too awful for you.
I think I speak for all users of VeeCad when I say it is one of the best and most useful pieces of software that I have used in years and your support for it has been second to none.
My very best regards
Dave
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Roger Lascelles
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #5 - Jul 2nd, 2015 at 10:19am
 
Thanks Dave. Nothing serious. Just can't find uninterupted time or a quiet place to get much work done at present.
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Mnementh
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #6 - Apr 7th, 2016 at 12:36pm
 
HI all,
a very interesting side effect and a comprehensive PDF showing "how it's done".

I tried it and found it worked well but I noted one minor issue.

That is that when you "achieve" the blank area, you're basically stuck with the tracks as you've set them.

Yes, you can "stretch" the track lengths back to full width but when you resize the board, all you generate is "blank" space with the tracks unchanged.

The only way I found to re-set the board to "normal" is to select "Stripboard" again as the default.

It's no big deal as the blank area serendipity is probably worth the very minor bother.
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Mnementh
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #7 - Apr 9th, 2016 at 5:04pm
 
Hi again,
I've noticed another problem when you make alterations to the track lengths.

It basically "kills" all the ROUTE features !

The ROUTE menu"Greys out" and even re-setting the track lengths back to "normal" does NOT enable the ROUTE functions again.

No big deal if all you're doing is a fairly simple board that you can route manually but worth noting.

Sandy.
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Larry Bradley
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #8 - Jan 10th, 2022 at 3:31pm
 
This just solved a problem for me. I have a design where there are off-board components, such as pots, LEDs, switches. But I want these on the schematic to make it complete. I use connectors in TinyCad/VeeCad for these, then also put the components on the schematic, connected as they should be. Then when I import into VeeCad, I move the off-board components to the holding area. No errors show up anywhere.  Thanks!
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Roger Lascelles
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Re: Trackless holding area for components
Reply #9 - Jan 12th, 2022 at 1:41am
 
Thanks, Larry!

Schematics used to explain "how a circuit works" and would include off-board items.

These days schematics are more a manufacturing document that defines only what is on the board. Unfortunately, that makes it harder to know what connects to the board, and harder to understand how it works.

My solution is to put connectors on the schematic and add say an external pot or switch as a TinyCAD drawing using lines and shapes. That way TinyCAD ignores the drawing when creating the netlist and bill of materials but the human eye can see what connects where. I would draw a potentiometer with 3 lines going near the connector as an indication of what will go there. The drawing looks different to the TinyCAD wires and components and I don't confuse them.

In the electronics manufacturing world you order a board assembly company to send you a batch of boards loaded with components, then you put those boards in the product. In that case you only want your Bill of Materials and netlist to contain the on-board components, because you will supply the off-board components separately. Of course when making something for pleasure, you can have a different system.

This forum thread is so good that I will add some of the ideas to the help file, and mention the issue of on and off board components.
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Roger
 
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