Welcome to the CADSTARguys Blog - Information, hints, tips and my waffle on the CADSTAR Printed Circuit Board design suite.

Please note that all names used are completely fictitious and any thing written is my own personal opinion or knowledge and not related in any way to either my employers or their customers (or Zuken).
Also this is not a replacement for proper Maintenence/support and you should read the help files before asking anything techy:).

Saturday, 6 December 2014

My car is broken - what's wrong with it?

A message from support teams all over the world.

Here is a picture of a car, it does not work - what is wrong with it?
Can you fix it for me please? I need to drive somewhere quickly.

Well of course it does not work - its only a toy one, but if you asked these questions to a car mechanic they would want to know a little more about what is wrong with it, has the wheel fallen off? does the engine run? has it run out of petrol? and so on.

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Imperial or Metric - Does it really matter?

There often seems to be discussions about which unit of measurement to work in, they pop up on the web several times throughout the year. Questions are asked on whether someone should use Millimetres or Thou as a measurement unit.

Which side of the fence are you on?

Friday, 12 September 2014

CADSTAR 15 is out - but will you like it's new ribbon interface?

This April saw the release of CADSTAR 15.0 with a major change to the Design Editors GUI - the toolbars have been replaced with a ribbon menu bar.

Those of you that favour the ability to use toolbars for single mouse click access to commands may, like me be disappointed with the new GUI, not wanting to upgrade because we like our toolbars and do not appreciate now having to click the mouse 3 times for what was previously a single selection.

I have heard several others tell me that they will not upgrade because they do not like it, that they want the old toolbars back.
Unfortunately there is not a legacy mode so there are no more toolbars.

Or are there?

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Library version control.

Would you like to be able to keep records of what changes are made to your library symbols/components and parts? Who created them, when were they made, why they were changed, what their change history is etc?

Well you can, it does not need any external programs, OLE or version control software - you can do it all within CADSTAR using various attributes in the libraries.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

CADSTAR Touch - how to use it.

In 2013 Zuken released the free CADSTAR Touch, the first PCB program related app which can be used on both IOS and Android.

However, like most free apps support is very limited -even if you have paid support for the main CADSTAR programs. Mind you - its a very simple app that once working should be very easy to use.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Adding teardrops to PTH pads in P.R.Editor.

Pad with broken track
Pad with broken track
When you have a component such as a terminal block with PTH pads that are likely to move during use (i.e. when tightening the terminals) the pad can rock and if that pad has a thin track exiting it there is a potential for the track to break at the junction with the pad as shown
(slightly exaggerated) on the right.

This problem is prevented by exiting the pad with a thicker and slowly reducing to the width of the track piece of copper, this copper item is referred to as a teardrop (due to its shape).