Robert,
        you will see that I indicated that Protel/Altium needs a
mechanical/assembly layer pairing just as most packages have or have had for
many many years. I think that I heard on the DXP forum that this is a
reality in DXP, no guarantees. Not that I care, DXP is a very distant glint
in my eye at the moment.
        
        Using the mechanical layer for assembly on bottom assemblies. It can
be done, but no, it is not clean or easy and can be loaded with
possibilities for errors.

        With all of your parts placed and the board completed. Assumes that
you normal mechanical layer is top assembly. Select all the components that
were placed on the bottom layer. Unlock the primitives of those selected
components. Select the unlocked primitives of the mechanical layer (should
only be the ones for components on the bottom layer). Use a global edit to
transfer the selected primitives to a bottom mechanical assembly layer. Use
a global edit to lock all component primitives again. Done! Do your assembly
prints or gerbers with the layer inverted and you will have an as seen from
the bottom assembly view. Not too bad but still more cumbersome then we
should have to deal with in this day and age.

        Ooops forgot, if you use the .designator string as we do on the
assembly layer, you have to mirror the .designator strings when you transfer
them to the bottom assembly layer. There is no easy way to do this,
basically one by one is the only acceptable manner.

        PADS did it automagically 6+ years ago, PCAD did it approx. 3 - 4
years ago in a slightly different manner but it worked. Protel has never
done it since ver 1.0, what is wrong with this picture?

Sincerely,
Brad Velander.

Lead PCB Designer
Norsat International Inc.
Microwave Products
Tel   (604) 292-9089 (direct line)
Fax  (604) 292-9010
email: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
http://www.norsat.com
Norsat's Microwave Products Division has now achieved ISO 9001:2000
certification 



> -----Original Message-----
> From: Robert M. Wolfe [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]]
> Sent: Tuesday, September 10, 2002 12:01 PM
> To: Protel EDA Forum
> Subject: Re: [PEDA] You can't get there from here (I think)...
> 
> 
> Brad,
> The only problem I still see with this is the fact that this ONE
> mechanical layer is in fact still one layer and not easily
> if at all able to be separated out for the bottom assembly view.
> If there is a way I would love to hear it, I have in fact used
> a mechanical layer in my library for an assembly layer in 
> hopes of future
> enhancments from Protel to actually use this layer properly.
> For now I use as you stated, but there really needs to be an 
> association
> with two layers for this to work right. If there was a way to change
> all bottom parts using this machanical layer to another layer 
> that would
> work but again not clean, this should all happen as soon as you push
> the part.
> Bob Wolfe

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