Gerber

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the current state of freeform manipulation of PCB Gerber files is a big mess. below you can find some other attempts and solutions, but this chapter is dedicated to the Inkscape/cenon.app workflow

Svg2Shenzhen

notes wip

SVG2SHENZHEN --> convert pcb art design in inkscape to kicad --> gerber file

Buzzard

online tool for eagle users wiki

cenon

this is free/open software, running on Linux and Macs.
an Ubuntu VM with some tearing of interface will do the job, arch Linux didn't go so well.
boot to ubuntu (a virtual machine is fine) then install cenon

sudo apt install cenon.app

linux version is behind the macOS , it depends on GNUstep, which has diverged beyond compile.


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worksflow

  • do art in Inkscape
  • prepare for export
  • import to cenon
  • prepare for export
  • export to Gerber

DXF does not know Beziers, so you have to flatten them. to preserve your shapes you will have to break everything into paths (no shapes, no objects) and add lots of nodes.

inkscape

using Inkscape to "flatten" any file to be used. original instructions from svg2poly eagle ULP

  • In Inkscape 0.47 or newer
  • File > Preferences > Input/Output > SVG output > Path data then select Allow relative coordinates from the dropdown
  • Type out the text, draw the path, but keep it vector only.
  • Lock the height/width ratio
  • Change height to 100 (this helps with changing the ratio)
  • Ctrl-Shift-C (Object to Path)
  • Select all (w/ Node Cursor)
  • Extensions > Modify Path > Add Nodes (Default settings are alright)
  • Extensions > Modify Path > Flatten Beziers (Default settings are alright)
  • For the closed loop letters O,o,D,d,etc...
  • Draw a rectangle dividing the letter ( O => ([)] )
  • Select the rectangle and the letter
  • Ctrl-/ (Division)
  • Repeat with all closed letters
  • Select all (w/ Node Cursor)
  • Ctrl-Shift-K (Break Apart)
  • Save As > Plain SVG

for self-made shapes with holes

video

2KLaY8el.png

  • File > Preferences > Input/Output > SVG output > Path data > Allow relative coordinates from the dropdown
  • if you have strokes
    • select stroked objects
    • Path > Convert Stroke To Path
  • Ctrl+Shift+g (ungroup )
  • Ctrl-Shift-C (Object to Path)
  • F2 (nodecursor)
  • Select all w/ Node Cursor
  • Path > diffrence
  • Ctrl-Shift-K (Break Apart)