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Borad profile as contours Vs tracks

shaik , 08-18-2020, 04:05 AM
Hello All,
My PCB fabricator wants board profile layers as tracks, they say my board profile is supplied as contours. I am confused between contours Vs tracks for profile.
i use altium, supplied gerbers X2, asusual i have a mechanical layer assigned for board profile. what i did is design>board shape> create primitives from board shape and drawn on this mechanical layer.

Could somene tell me the difference and let me know how to create profile as tracks if it is different.

Thanks in advance...
WhoKnewKnows , 08-18-2020, 07:46 AM

I searched Google for ' "Gerber" "contour" vs "track" '

The top result was Ucamco's guide to Gerber X2,

A topic Robert recently covered in one of his videos.

You can search this document for the term contour. Ch. 3 appears to give an explanation of contour.

Perhaps your fab shop is expecting original Gerber format but you are sending Gerber x2 format?
shaik, 08-18-2020, 10:29 AM
Thnaks for this now understand the definition of contour and gerber x2 provides this. however i need to know is there any way of doing board profile as tracks in gerbers x2. Thanks...
WhoKnewKnows , 08-18-2020, 12:33 PM
Yes, I believe this is original Gerber method. It's likely that your fab shop is expecting original Gerber and you are sending Gerber x2. I recommend confirming with the fab shop whether they are expecting original Gerber or Gerber x2.

If they don't expect Gerber x2, then re-export as original Gerber, not Gerber x2
robertferanec , 08-24-2020, 04:12 AM
what i did is design>board shape> create primitives from board shape and drawn on this mechanical layer.
- I normally just draw a line around the board. Maybe the "create primitives" feature will create the outline as a different kind of object (?) not a line (?). I am not sure, but maybe check that.

I am not sure what they mean by contour. I searched the gerber specification, there is nothing about contour.

PS: as @WhoKnewKnows suggested, maybe just try to send them gerber files.
WhoKnewKnows , 08-24-2020, 04:19 AM
Hi Robert, See chapter 3 of the document linked in my first reply for info about what contour is
robertferanec , 08-25-2020, 12:02 AM
@WhoKnewKnows you are right, nicely explained there.
shaik , 08-26-2020, 04:30 PM
Thanks for the messages... all this time I was sending them board profile on a mechanical layer. However I noticed that Gerber x2 creates default layers for profile, NPTH and PTH. I am guessing creating board profile through premitives on a mechanical layer might be confusing them. I will resend them gerbers without that mechanical layer to see what they say. I will update you guys when i get reply. If this doesn't work then normal gerber files is the hope.
robertferanec , 08-28-2020, 05:16 AM
yes please, let us know then. thank you
shaik , 09-04-2020, 06:49 PM
Like I guessed the fabricators were getting confused with board profile on mechanical layer. I think board profile on a mechanical layer is not required as gerber X2 generate a profile layer
robertferanec , 09-07-2020, 02:00 AM
Thank you @shaik for clarifying this.
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