pcb-rnd knowledge pool


How to merge two boards

board_merge by Tibor 'Igor2' Palinkas on 2016-10-08

Tags: howto, merge, boards, pcb, copy, paste

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Abstract: Sometimes two board files developed idependently need to be merged int a third, combined board. This mini-howto describes three different methods to merge boards.

  Imported from the mailing list archives.

Let's call the two boards i1 and i2 and the final board fin . For simplicity let's assume i1 is almost the final board, needs only a=20 small section from i2 .

Method #1: import

1. open i2 , delete everything except the small section needed, save as=20 (e.g. tmp.lht)

2. open i1 , menu: file/import/Load layout data to paste buffer, open=20 tmp.lht

3. if the layer stackup of i1 and i2 does not match, you may want to=20 change the layer binding recipe while tmp is still in the buffer with=20 menu: buffer/layer bindings

4. paste the buffer wherever you want

5. save as fin.lht

Note: if you prefer side-by-side view, you can run 2 instances of pcb-rnd in parallel and do step 1 in one instance and steps 2, 3, 4 and 5 in the other one. This could be usaful if you want to transfer in a lot of small portions.

Note: this does not work at the moment due to the bug John reported;=20 will be fixed soon.

Method #2: transfer one through buffer

1. open i2 , select the parts you want to transfer; if it's a complex=20 section that is hard to select, you can also remove uninteresting parts=20 first

2. copy to buffer

3. now that you have the interesting part in your buffer, you can just=20 load i1 , discarding the changes to i2 . The content of the buffer is=20 preserved.

4. do the buffer layer recipe changes if needed

5. paste

6. save i1 as fin

Note: there are actually 5 paste buffers; you can select the active one in the buffer menu. This means you can even take and transfer 5 different sections by repeating step 2 and 4 and 5 with different buffer while doing only one of step 1 and 3.

Method #3: transfer both through buffer

1. load i1 , remove the uninteresting part and save as tmp1.lht

2. load i2 , remove the uninteresting part and save as tmp2.lht

3. start a new board

4. load tmp1.lht into the paste buffer (same as method #1, step 2)

5. if needed, do the buffer layer recipe revision (same as method #1, step 3)

6. paste

7. repeat steps 4, 5 and 6 with tmp2.lht