program to generate schematics

Grant Lenahan glenahan at
Fri Sep 21 19:46:59 PDT 2007

VAMP inc (McCad) and National instrument (electronics workbench) both  
give away free, or really cheap versions of their schematic  
capture/layout/spice programs.  They are extemely limited in terms of #  
of components / memory.

On Sep 21, 2007, at 4:40 PM, Huw Powell wrote:

>>> Need a drawing or drafting program to do automotive wiring diagrams
>>> (there's the Audi content). Best price is of course free, but I'm not
>>> averse to shareware as long as it is reasonable.
>>> I need to create some automotive and motorcycle schematics to  
>>> illustrate
>>> a manual. Don't need schematic capture, PCB/Gerber conversions or  
>>> parts
>>> lists, so most of the electronic schematics programs are not really
>>> suitable - no ICs, but I do need alternators, diodes, various  
>>> switches,
>>> lamps, etc. The electronics drawing programs have IC pinouts, etc.,  
>>> but
>>> not the automotive components. (One of them was $500+, still no
>>> alternators!)
> A simple image editing program should suffice - I have made many
> schematics in PSP 6, for instance.  It's handy to make little
> "boilerplate" images to copy from for frequently used symbols.  If I
> want a fancy symbol (alternator, starter, etc.) I usually scan an old
> car manual and clean it up (enough cleanup that it's not copyright  
> anymore).
> Just using 8 colors you end up with a very small file size gif quite  
> easily.
> The various headlight relay diagrams on my site were made this way  
> (link
> 1), as were the crossover schematics found here and there on my  
> business
> site (link 2).
> I also made the wiring diagrams for my loader this way (link 3).
> I might also suggest inkscape, it's open source and you can make them  
> as
> .svg files.
>> Mike, have you considered Microsoft Visio?
>> I wouldn't be surprised if you could find Visio "shapes" that were  
>> electrical images.
>> Ask around for one of the older versions. Someone might have updated  
>> to a newer version and still has the old CD and license sitting  
>> around unused. Sometimes you can find it on eBay.
> I've used a very old Visio for this, it's kind of cool in that when you
> move things around, the connecting lines stay attached, usually, to the
> objects.  Although they sometimes snap to dumb locations.
> The fusebox diagram on my web site was made this way, then converted to
> gif (link 4), as well as the diagrams I put up next to the load centers
> in my building.
> --  
> Huw Powell
> fusebox.gif
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