Fritzing

Fritzing is an open source free downloadable PCB design tool for hobbyists that only allows you to design and export gerbers for two-layer boards. It runs on Linux, Windows, and Mac.

If you’re getting into more complicated, fine pitch, densely packed, four layer, or high frequency PCB designs, then we recommend taking a look at KiCad or Eagle.

Design Rules

Fritzing requires you to set the same rules for the autorouter as for the design rules checking. You can set the rules with the Autorouter/DRC Settings option from the Routing menu. We recommend checking your settings by clicking on Custom. The following default values are well inside our design specs for 2 layer boards.

Fritzing 'Custom' Autorouter/DRC Settings

Generating Gerbers and Drill Files

We can’t process Fritzing .fzz files directly, so we’ll need a zip file containing the gerber layers and drill file.

The most important thing is to make sure you’ve created a watertight board outline that meets our rules on the board outline page. It can contain notches and cutouts if you follow the rules on our cutouts and slots page.

Next, run the Design Rule Check and clear any errors.

Go to File > Export > for Production > Extended Gerbers (RS-274X) and create a folder for your gerbers. Common names are gerber, plot, and fab. Then save to that folder.

Open that folder using your operating system and you’ll see your files. If they look like the following set of files, you can zip them up and submit them to us at http://oshpark.com.

Fritzing gerbers

Board Outline Check

Pay close attention to the Board Outline preview image when you’re uploading your design. It should look like the image below, with no extra symbols or measurement lines. The fab uses this layer to mill out your board, so extra symbols can sometimes end up as cuts through your board.

If anything looks weird, definitely send us the zip file at support@oshpark.com. We’ll get it fixed up.

This is a good preview image.