A guide to SeeedStudio’s Fusion PCB Service

by luca
38 comments

Among the many online services for PCB manufacturing, I was impressed by the SeeedStudio‘s offering: they aggregate many orders to offer professional service at a very competitive price.

I tried out the service ordering 10 PCBs, maximum size 5x5cm, with a price of 9.90$ + 3.52$ for shipping (to Italy) – less then 10 euro. SeeedStudio doesn’t accept Eagle .brd files, so I thought to write this short guide with some hints to use Fusion PCB at its best.

Download from Fusion PCB webpage, two archives:

  • DRU for 2-layer board
  • Seeed Gerber Generater 2-layer board

Unzip the first one in dru subfolder of the main Eagle installation folder, the second in cam subfolder.

Open your Eagle project and focus on Board layout: to test PCB compliance to Fusion PCB rules, click on Drc button in the right toolbar, then click on Load… and choose the file Fusion_eagle_rule_v1.1.dru:

Click on Check, if everything is ok, DRC Errors window won’t show any errors; otherwise you have to modify your PCB following the error messages.

To export the project, from File menu click on CAM Processor.

In CAM Processor window, click on File -> Open -> Job… and choose the Seeed_Gerber_Generater_v0r95_DrillAlign.cam file:

Click on Process Job: Eagle will write some new files in our project’s folder.

Before sending those files to SeeedStudio, I strongly suggest to check their content with a Gerber editor/viewer: in my experience sometimes I found errors in the exported files (for example if you use proportional fonts, they may change size).

A great opensource software is Gerbv, which has been ported also on Windows platforms.

To open your project, click on File -> Open layer(s)…

Choose (pressing CTRL key, you can select more than a file at the same time) the 7 files you have to send to SeeedStudio:

  • .GTL  (top layer)
  • .GBL (bottom layer)
  • .GTS (solder stop mask top)
  • .GBS (solder stop mask bottom)
  • .GTO (silk top)
  • .GBO (silk bottom)
  • .TXT (drill sizes and positions)

Hiding/Showing each layer you can check if export was successful:

If everything looks good, prepare an archive with the files listed above.

Connect to SeeedStudio website, in the page where you can order the FusionPCB service.

Upload your ZIP file:

fusion-upload

and complete your order choosing PCB quantity and parameters; you can follow the order status in the customer area of Seeed’s website.

After some weeks, here are the PCBs…

Related Posts

38 comments

bobboteck Wednesday October 26th, 2011 - 05:00 PM

Molto interessante come notizia, ci sto facendo un pensierino. E grazie per la guida all’ordine.

Reply
luca Wednesday October 26th, 2011 - 06:26 PM

grazie a te per il feedback!

Reply
Roberto Wednesday October 26th, 2011 - 07:20 PM

davvero complimenti!
appena ho qualche momento di libertà vedrò di buttare giù uno schema e proverò il servizio il prima possibile!

p.s. sono arrivato qui da dangerousprototypes con grande piacere

Reply
luca Wednesday October 26th, 2011 - 07:32 PM

grazie, in effetti da quando DP ha messo il post il grafico delle visite si è impennato 😉

Reply
Fusion PCB service guide from the folks | Seeed Studio Blog Thursday October 27th, 2011 - 04:28 AM

[…] Read the full guide here. […]

Reply
Waar mijn printjes wegkomen. | Open Electro Friday October 28th, 2011 - 07:50 AM

[…] Guide. Dit bericht is geplaatst in Murv en getagd pcb. Bookmark de permalink. ← Voer hier bier in […]

Reply
lucadentella.it – PCB colorati! Monday October 31st, 2011 - 03:35 PM

[…] iTeadStudio ha un servizio di realizzazione PCB simile a quello da me descritto in un altro post. […]

Reply
FusionPCB ホームページ日本語訳しました | 花夢電科雑多猫 Wednesday November 9th, 2011 - 04:30 PM

[…] >>>Seeed Studio Fusion PCB Serviceの手引き  (Thanks Luca!) […]

Reply
Dario Friday November 11th, 2011 - 09:55 PM

Dogana? Tempi?

Reply
luca Friday November 11th, 2011 - 10:00 PM

tempi di produzione circa 6 giorni (SeeedStudio lavora a batch quindi dipende se sei “fortunato” e invii l’ordine quando stanno per mandarne uno in lavorazione); tempi di spedizione una settimana per arrivare in Italia (tracking su HKPost)… da qui l’enigma delle poste italiane: a me il pacchetto è rimasto fermo in dogana due settimane.
Per quanto riguarda le spese, se l’importo è basso (il mio ordine era da 10 euro) passa esente.

Reply
Is it safe to design board at fab houses minimum trace width? | web technical support Saturday November 19th, 2011 - 06:29 AM

[…] Seeed authorised user review and guide to using their Fusion service […]

Reply
muck Wednesday December 14th, 2011 - 05:37 PM

Hi, I work with Target 3001 and have a question about the data files for Seeed Studio. How should the drill file be structured? And on which layer should be the outline, and how does it work when the outline is on the silk layer ?Target 3001 all exported into individual files *.Drill, *.Outline… all other layers looks good.

regards from germany

Reply
Is it safe to design board at fab houses minimum trace width? | Q&A System Friday December 30th, 2011 - 10:46 AM

[…] Seeed authorised user evaluation and guidebook to producing utilization of the Fusion service […]

Reply
add4 Monday January 30th, 2012 - 05:21 AM

Hi,
when i do the DRC check, i get a bunch or ‘stop mask’ errors.
i have never seen that before, it seems that the error triggers every time there is a pad and silkscreen at the same place.
Do you have any idea how i would solve that? is it a problem at all?
thanks

Reply
luca Monday January 30th, 2012 - 09:11 AM

Hi!

You’re right, those errors mean that you have a silkscreen on the top of a pad… you can ignore it as it isn’t a problem for Seeed’s service.

Reply
Electronics-Lab.com Blog » Blog Archive » A guide to Seeed Studio’s Fusion PCB service Friday February 3rd, 2012 - 01:55 PM

[…] writes: Luca wrote a step-by-step guide to Seeed Studio’s Fusion PCB service. It covers how to export files from Eagle and get your PCB built. It’s available both in English […]

Reply
Daniel Monday March 5th, 2012 - 05:14 AM

I am a KiCAD user, and have not had any issues with any files sent on multiple orders. I do have the option to clip the silkscreen layers when generating Gerber files and have done this on my last two orders and stated on my email with file transmittal. Does this help reduce the pre-fabrication time needed, or do they clip back further than the solder mask?

As requested I also put the order number on the top silkscreen and then put a call-out leader pointing to the location outside of the board edge. Does the call-out help even though the call-out needs to be clipped prior to production?

I am from the school of the design for manufacture-ability and by providing files that are able to go directly into production reduces cost as the board house does not need to perform this task prior to making the screen.

It would be nice to get feed back on these two items if they help reduce pre-processes time and keep costs down.

Reply
peo Thursday March 8th, 2012 - 01:11 PM

Hi, i tried my Pcb on Gerbv 2.6.0. I used proportional text font but they look like vector font in Gerbv. So,some texts changed position. I designed my pcb in Eagle. Is it effects like this on real pcb?

Another Question: In cam processor what we choose outut device? Is it GERBER_RS274X ?

Reply
luca Thursday March 8th, 2012 - 09:00 PM

Hi peo,

proportional fonts don’t work well with gerber export, you’d better to use vector fonts.

In CAM processor, you have to choose the .cam file provided by Seeeds (Seeed_Gerber_Generater_v0r95_DrillAlign.cam)

Reply
Levas Tuesday March 13th, 2012 - 08:31 PM

Thanks for tutorial…. but not the PCB design example. It is switchmode device ant distance between L and swith MUST be short ant thick. And to the caps. 🙂

Reply
Get your PCBs made by Seeed Studio | Tehnik Service Friday April 13th, 2012 - 09:33 PM

[…] a good tutorial that was written by Luca, and that  shows step by step guide to Seeed Studio’s Fusion PCB service. So I’m sure plenty of people will be interested in this service. Why exactly Seeed Studio? […]

Reply
How to Get your PCBs made by Seeed Studio | Circuitish Wednesday May 2nd, 2012 - 10:32 AM

[…] a good tutorial that was written by Luca, and that  shows step by step guide to Seeed Studio’s Fusion PCB service. So I’m sure plenty of people will be interested in this […]

Reply
lucadentella.it – Stanchi del beige? Friday August 3rd, 2012 - 08:24 PM

[…] i limiti della versione free di Eagle e con le dimensioni massime dei service più diffusi (es. FusionPCB di SeeedsStudio). Sono definiti sia per PCB rettangolari (utilizzando la sezione aurea per il […]

Reply
ilias Tuesday August 7th, 2012 - 07:36 AM

Hi,
Very good guide.
CAM process generates more than 7 files you say, should I ignore the rest? (using seed studio cam file)
thank you.

Reply
luca Friday August 10th, 2012 - 04:59 PM

Hi!

Yes, FusionPCB needs only the 7 files listed in my tutorial: you can ignore the other ones.

Reply
Mike Grimwade Wednesday August 15th, 2012 - 03:32 PM

Hi Luca

I followed your excellent tutorial and submitted my zip file to seed studio however I have just had an email saying that my design doesn’t include drill sizes. The *.TXT file was included in the zip and when I view the drill layer in Gerbv I can see a lot of circles with a forward slash through them as well as a few egg-timer type symbols. Could you tell me where I’m going wrong please?

Thanks

Reply
lucadentella.it – Confronto tra service PCB Friday August 24th, 2012 - 01:16 PM

[…] FusionPCB di SeeedsStudio […]

Reply
lucadentella.it – PowerLED Driver Wednesday November 7th, 2012 - 01:59 PM

[…] tramite il servizio FusionPCB di SeeedStudio: l’esperienza è stata la base per scrivere il tutorial su come utilizzare tale […]

Reply
lucadentella.it – Service PCB: confronto tra i prezzi Wednesday January 30th, 2013 - 02:50 PM

[…] come utilizzare il servizio FusionPCB di SeeedStudio, […]

Reply
Alain Parent Thursday October 3rd, 2013 - 04:21 AM

This tutorial is great! Thanks for doing it.
I use Eagle 6.5.0 and gerbv 2.6.1

Is it normal that the dimension lines are on all layers?

Reply
luca Thursday October 3rd, 2013 - 07:04 PM

Hi Alain, yes.

Reply
goingmad Monday September 22nd, 2014 - 04:04 PM

Grazie per le preziose info Luca, utilissime per chi ha a che fare con seedstudio per la prima volta!

Reply
kevenlaker Thursday November 20th, 2014 - 04:23 AM

Here’s another cheap PCB service, starting from $9.9, choose the color yourself.
http://www.elecfreaks.com/store/pcb-service-c-39.html

Reply
luca Thursday November 20th, 2014 - 02:05 PM

thanks!

Reply
shuyang Tuesday March 17th, 2015 - 07:05 AM

Hi Luca & everyone,
This is Shuyang from Seeed fusion.. Thank you for that wonderful guide. I would like to put this link on our website. What do you think?

Please feel free to contact me in shuyang@seeed.cc for any question.

Thanks!
Shuyang

Reply
luca Thursday March 19th, 2015 - 11:27 AM

Hi! Of course I’m happy if you link my tutorial on your website! Thanks

Reply
FlatCam Mac OS X 10.9.5 Mavericks - Mauro Alfieri Elettronica Domotica Robotica Elettronica Monday May 2nd, 2016 - 08:34 AM

[…] anno fa, l’amico e blogger, Luca ha pubblicato un tutorial su come utilizzare il servizio Fusion PCB da Eagle che è senza dubbio un punto di partenza per la produzione dei tuoi file […]

Reply
lucadentella.it – SeeedStudio, 3 PCB a 1$ Thursday August 23rd, 2018 - 02:02 PM

[…] Se volete imparare ad utilizzare il servizio Fusion PCB, ecco il link al mio tutorial! […]

Reply

Leave a Comment

5 + sixteen =