Snowman – NYC Blizzard 2006

Monday, February 13th, 2006


Originally uploaded by miles_meow.

Here’s a photo that I took on the corner of Lafayette and St. James in Brooklyn. We just had a huge snow storm. Weather reports say that we got around 26.9 inches of snow…which would make this the biggest storm in NYC history.

“In New York City’s Central Park, the National Weather Service said 26.9 inches of snow had fallen, the most since record-keeping started in 1869. The old record was 26.4 inches in December 1947.”

Eagle and Gerber Files (easier!)

Monday, February 6th, 2006

I’ve been doing a little more experimentation with EAGLE and the included .cam files. I found that these should be more than sufficient for my needs (two-layer PCB, top and bottom soldermask, top and bottom solder stop and top silkscreen.) I just processed the and the job files, uploaded my design to FreeDFM and they recognized all of the file contents. FreeDFM will analyze your design and correct or suggest fixes before you submit it for production.

To run these .cam job files:

  1. open up your .brd file, then
  2. from the menu: File -> CAM Proecessor (a new window will popup)
  3. from the menu: Select File -> Open -> Job…
  4. EAGLE should already be showing the contents of the ./cam directory under the main directory where EAGLE is installed, if not, navigate to it. Choose the file
  5. (Click through the tabs and make sure “mirrored” is not checked! I made the mistake of submitting the files with the top layers as normal and the bottom layers as “mirrored” and the boards came back wrong.
  6. Click on the Process Job button
  7. from the menu: Select File -> Open -> Job…
  8. Choose the file (make sure “mirrored” is not checked)
  9. Click on the Process Job button

List of files created from the two jobs:

  • combined3.plc – top silkscreen
  • combined3.cmp – component side copper (top side)
  • combined3.sol – solder side traces (bottom side)
  • – top soldermask
  • combined3.sts – bottom soldermask
  • combined3.gpi – Photoplotter info file
  • combined3.drd – NC drill file
  • combined3.dri – Drill station info file

You should download GC Prevue from This is for Windows only. After you install, run the program and from the menu “import” all of the files that you generated above. You should see all the layers and the drill holes in the right place. (One way to make sure that your top and bottom layers are correct is to write text on the top and bottom traces layer…this way you know your GERBER files are right when you see the top layer text as normal, but the bottom layer text as reversed)

Here’s an article about the history of the Gerber PCB making process and the file format.