1 Reply Latest reply on Feb 19, 2009 10:14 AM by strangd

    Fablink XE Pro 2005, Break Out Tabs, Contours and manuals that dont help?




      Not sure if this is the right place to ask as the forums are new and dont have a lot of content to guide where one might ask a question   Also I apologise now for it being a mini rant

      Anyway. I'm trying to layout a panel in Fablink XE Pro 2005.3. I have been struggling with the manual, well I say manual more of an appendix in the Expedition 2005 manual. I have also downloaded the Fablink XE Pro 2007 users guide which is more comprehensive but seems far from complete and probably isnt truly relevant to 2005 Fablink.

      The problem I am trying to resolve is how to create contours around pcbs in a panel. I have an array of small pcbs (less than 20mm square.) Each of which needs to be routed out with Break Out Tabs. I have created panel cells of Break Out Tabs  following the instructions in the 2007 manual. I can place these items using the Place Cells > Panel Cells window. I can move, rotate and variously jiggle the Break Out Tabs. However I seem to be missing the point somewhere. There doesnt seem to be a process or technique by which one can then add a contour easily that snaps to the ends of the break out tabs and or follows the board outline of the individual pcbs. Is it really this opaque? Surely the whole point of using Break Out Tabs is to simplify their addition to a routing contour? If it is then why is it so hard to find out how to do it?

      There are a special set of tools to create Break Out Tabs but neither the old or new manuals make any reference to them or how to use them. Are they a feature thta has been included in both 2005 and 2007 but are still awaiting 2009 for the code to be added to actually implement them? Dont you just hate the "Oh that is / will be fixed in the next release sir..." answer

      Any one out there using this? Any and all help greatfully received.


      Thanks Mike 8-{>

        • 1. Re: Fablink XE Pro 2005, Break Out Tabs, Contours and manuals that dont help?

          This is a takeout of a 12/08/04 posting I made on the MUG forums:


          3. When placing a Break away Tab at the edge of a board and that Tab has drill holes the encroach into the boards far enough that copper with in the board is reached, there is no way to relieve the copper from around the holes. There seems to be no composite layer or image where one graphic element image can be subtracted from another element's image. This is the way that it is done in GerbTool when Tabs are added to a panel. Pre placing Tabs in the single image file is not the answer as the Tabs around the outside boards of the panel are not the same as the Tabs where the inner boards border on each side of the Tab. Also, Fablink XE Pro lets you import multiple different boards into one panel and having a single width Milling path that has matching Tabs built into multiple single image files is mostly luck.


          4. Speaking of Break away Tabs. It would be very nice that when you placed a Tab over a Milling contour that the software would automatically break the Milling contour into two paths ending at either side of the Tab. It has been a while but I believe that this is what PCB Engineer use to do when you placed a Tab.




          Sound familiar?