Abd ul-Rahman Lomax wrote:

> At 01:56 PM 2/7/2002 -0500, [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
> >"Many users will not want to have to convert all their libraries to include
> >3-D information"
> >This is my point exactly. Some PCB designers have no interest in the 3D
> >world, so let's not create a proverbial white elephant inside of Protel.
> Lloyd missed my point. A good implementation will not require users to
> provide 3-D information. It will merely allow them to attach a 3-D model to
> a footprint. Thus there would be no legacy issues.

Although this will certainly work, and may be the best arrangement for the
package, it might be more general to have different component names in the
component library that use the same PC board footprint, but have different
This would be very common with radial lead caps, for instance.  The 3D
definition could be in one of the extra component fields.

> Yes, pretty flakey. It is routine for me as a PCB designer to be
> considering vertical interference issues. Most of the time they are simple
> enough that, yes, I don't need interference checking. But we asked for a
> way to deal with height information a long time ago, there was broad
> consensus that it would be useful.

While I don't use 3D tools to handle this at present, (mostly because
Protel doesn't have an interface that is obviously useful for this purpose
that I'm aware of) I sure do have to consider this, as I do multiple PC boards
that stack and/or nest on occasion.  This interference is a real nasty surprise

when you have boards fabbed and assembled, and THEN the problem is

> There is a height field already assigned in the PCB file format. This is
> enough for simple checking, but some components are pretty complex in shape
> and a single height won't cut it. What I'm asking for does not require a
> database change. Instead, a text file could associate 3-D models with
> footprint names. If the file does not have an entry for a footprint, the
> height attribute would be used. We need to have editor access to the height
> attribute, both in the footprint library editor and in the PCB.

Presumably, then, given just component location, rotation and type, an external

package could do the job.  It also needs PC board outline info.  Probably a
spreadsheet output would be sufficient, then a custom program to convert
to form acceptable to a 3-D tool.


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