Copying Pads

Now that we know how to create, size and accurately position pads, we can go ahead and add the rest of our pads to the package.

You can of course continue to do things the same way we describe in previous pages, but if you are placing a lot of identically sized and shape pads and you know the distance between the center points on either axis, there's a quicker way to do things:

Cloning Pads with the Copy Tool


The 'Copy' tool -- shown as a creepy human cloning icon in the left-hand toolbar -- is your friend:
... or you can access it by right-clicking the pad or object you want to clone, and then selecting the 'copy' option from the popup menu:
This tool lets you make a copy of your pad (or whatever else), and keep all it's current settings (size, layer selection, etc.).

Just click somewhere else on your package to place a copy of it in approximately the right position. You can then precisely update the position the way we did with the first pad, via the Properties dialogue.

Copy and Place Pads in the Right Order!

Eagle automatically assigns new pad names based on the current pad name, so you should place the pads in the same order as they are numbered in the datasheet!
The first pad you placed will be named P$1, so the first time you copy this pad (or next time you create a new pad), it will be named P$2 (etc., etc.).

Take advantage of this time saving feature by placing your pads in the same order they are labelled on your package, counter-clockwise from pad 1 in the upper-left hand corner in this case: pin 1, then 2, then 3, then 4.

This will save you time later since you won't have to go in and rename parts manually, which can be annoying since you need to avoid duplicate names during the rename process.

Results

With a bit of cloning effort, you should end up with the following. We've added in the exact co-ordinates and names just for reference sake:

Essential Eagle Skills

Take Advantage of that Grid Tool!

What's great about having a Best Friend? You can call them up anytime to help you out when you have some particularly dull, monotonous task to do like moving!

If you have to copy or place a lot of identical pads at a known distance (such as an entire row of pads on an LQFP part), the best way to do things is the accurately place the first part in the row, and then use the grid to your advantage!

If you know that the center of the pads are consistently 0.5mm apart (often referred to as 0.5mm 'pitch'), go into the grid Dialogue and set it to 0.5, then copy and paste away. Every part will then snap to the next 0.5mm spot, and you can quickly place a whole row of parts accurately!
This guide was first published on Apr 22, 2013. It was last updated on Apr 22, 2013. This page (Copying Pads) was last updated on May 04, 2015.