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Clone PCB's and Forum Rules

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delta-9

New Member
Where is the boundary of forum rules, when asking questions regarding recreating/altering a circuit from an electronic product that somebody never designed.
Is it ok to get advice or assistance in relation as long as not posting full schematics or routing.

Google search of legalities of pcb copyright was not definitive.

quote

"copyright is basically for the "art work" layout internal to integrated circuits or layout of multilayer PCB.
copyright is not for how the circuit functions, and it should be pretty obvious that other "artists" could layout similar non-identical patterns and not be infringing.
patents are granted for unique new circuit inventions."


This is my situation, I have damage to a pcb, It's dual layer copper. It is not possible to buy a replacement board.
The cheapest option is to have a new pcb fabricated. there is no copyright logo anywhere on board.

The pcb is all through hole components, I'm thinking of modifying one with smd components. according to some people. altering the trace routing would not be infringement.
Is this true or not?

I am currently learning cadsoft eagle. can anybody recommend a cheap pcb house, united kingdom post.
 

JonSea

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
To build a replacement board for your own use, not a problem. If you sold it as a replacement board for an existing product where no replacements are available, that's probably still not too far afoul of the law.

I recommend Elecrow.com or SmartPrototyping.com as inexpensive Chinese fab houses that do quality work. For roughly US$15 total (plus shipping) you can get 10 copies of a board that's up to 100mm x 100mm in size - 2 layers, soldermask and silkscreen top and bottom.
 

delta-9

New Member
Thanks, elecrow seems good value. would it be possible to have my gerbers approved, incase of any mistakes
 

JonSea

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
A handy site to check your Gerber is 4PCB.com. If you send your Gerber here, in a few minutes they send back a message. Either there are no major errors (hopefully) or they will show you things that don't make sense. Maybe a layer is flipped or the drill drill doesn't line up with the pads. It's pretty good at catching dumb mistakes. They don't analyze your circuit of course, but just find errors in the Gerber.

People here are more than willing to critique your board. Best to post images of it so it's easy to view no matter what software you used to create it.
 

JimB

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
delta-9

Speaking as a moderator here on ETO, I don't see any problem with what you are trying to do.
Effectively you are just trying to repair some equipment.

What is frowned upon is offering or seeking "cracked" software, and similar activities, but that is not relevant in this case.

Welcome to ETO, good luck with your project.

JimB
 

alec_t

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
according to some people. altering the trace routing would not be infringement.
The situation may well depend on which jurisdiction you come under, since copyright law varies from one country to another. In the UK, for example, copyright for any textual, musical or artistic work is automatic and does not have to be applied for/registered; whereas in some other countries this is not the case.
 
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