Altium NEXUS Documentation

ToolsPanelize

Modified by Jason Howie on Apr 11, 2017

Parent page: CAMtastic Commands

The following pre-packaged resource, derived from this base command, is available:


Applied Parameters: None

Summary

This command is used to panelize the PCB board in the current document.

Access

This command can be accessed from the CAMtastic Editor by:

  • Choosing the Tools » Panelize PCB command from the main menus.
  • Clicking the  button, on the Fabrication Tools drop-down () of the Utilities toolbar.

Use

After launching the command, the cursor will change to a small square and you will be prompted to select objects that you wish to include in the panelization. Simply position the cursor over individual objects and click to add them to the selection, or use one of the many selection tools available. After all objects that you wish to include have been selected, right-click.

The Panelization dialog that appears initially contains information that is calculated based on the extents of the board that you are panelizing (defined by the objects selected). Use the dialog to define the size of the panel, and the number and spacing of the board images thereon.

Clicking the Show Preview button will open a preview window within the dialog, from where you can view how the panels will appear on the sheet. Changes to the panel spacing will be updated in the preview window, enabling you to obtain the spacing you require before proceeding.

After all options have been defined as required, clicking OK will effect the panelization, and the array of panels will appear in the main design workspace. The array starts with the original selected objects and is placed upwards, and to the left.

Tips

  1. You can precisely define the spacing for the array of panels, using one of two methods:
    • Offset - this method allows you to specify the spacing between rows and columns, in relation to the size of the image (i.e. the selection of objects). When you specify a value in an Offset field, you need to add the required spacing to the value in the Image Size field, and enter this combined value as the offset. For example, if the image size is 0.5 in and you require a 200mil spacing, you would need to enter 0.7 in the corresponding Offset field.
    • Gap - this method allows you to specify the direct spacing between rows and columns, and is therefore not dependent on the image size. For example, if you require a 200mil spacing, you would need to enter 0.2 in the corresponding Gap field.
  2. Use the Calculate option to determine the optimal part count based on specified Panel Size and Spacing.
  3. Enabling the Use Step & Repeat option will allow the use of embedded Step and Repeat codes to reduce the size of files that contain the same information multiple times. When used, only the original panel will be fully displayed in the design workspace, all other projected copies appear as blank frames.
  4. Whenever you use the panelize command, a new layer will be added to the layers list in the CAMtastic panel. This is the vent_border layer and is assigned the type Temporary in the Layers Table dialog (Tables » Layers). This border should be kept if you wish to quickly add venting to the panel at a later stage.

 

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