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Unmasked margin around board perimeter?
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mdredmond 1 year ago
Hi folks, I have a slightly irregularly-shaped board (it's not a polygon - it has some slight curves) and I would like to have a margin inside the board outline that solder mask doesn't cover.    I have DXF files for the outer (same as board outline) and inner (same shape but inset a couple of mm) outlines of the area I want unmasked. I've played around can see that I can draw polygons on the mask layer that aren't covered with mask, but I can't figure out how to not mask the area in between two nested shapes.  I have also simply reduced the outline of my solder mask to a few mm inside the board outline and that doesn't seem to work either, which I find perplexing. Here is a decent example of what I'm trying to do:   [https://electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/293387/purpose-of-bare-copper-perimiters-on-hf-pcbs](https://electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/293387/purpose-of-bare-copper-perimiters-on-hf-pcbs)<br> <br> Ideas?
Comments
andyfierman 1 year ago
In Std if you draw a line (Track) in the mask layer then an aperture will be created in the shape defined by the outer boundary  of the track. In other words a 1mm wide by 5mm long track will create an aperture of the same dimensions in the solder mask layer. Also in Std, the board outline is defined by the centre line of the track used to draw it. So the board outline is the same irrespective of the width of the track used to draw it. Therefore, if you copy the board outline onto the solder mask layers and then set the track width to twice that of the gap (inset) you wish to create, then, assuming it works the same way in Pro, you will have a suitably shaped, positioned and dimensioned soldermask-free gap all round the board. Try it out on a simple dummy PCB design. :)
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mdredmond 1 year ago
Wow.  That worked great (in Pro).   A whole lot easier than what I was doing.  Thanks!!
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