September 25, 2020

3 Tips to Customize Electra for Faster Electrical Circuit Design

Did you know that your Electrical Schematic Software is infinitely and easily customizable? Listed below are three tips that we hope will get you started right away:

1. Customizing your own New Drawing template.

If you have worked with Electra for a while, chances are, you will have some stencils of your own. Wouldn't it be great if every time you started a new drawing, Electra would automatically load all your stencils for you? Here's how:

  • Create a new drawing by clicking "Create" and select "New drawing".
  • In drawing, click stencil menu to expand all the stencils and click on the stencils you want to load.
  • To make the drawing as template. Go to dashboard right, click on the drawing and select "Make Template".

From now on, when you need to start a new Electra drawing, click on "WiMy New Drawing" and Electra will start up and automatically load all your stencils, ready for your usage.

2. Assigning Default Components to Symbols.

When you drop a standard symbol from a stencil that is supplied by Electra, the symbol would already have a default component attached to it. For example, if you drop a contactor symbol, the default component will be a generic contactor. While this is all good and dandy, we fully understand that most of our users will have their own preference on a brand or model for their contactor. Therefore, rather than manually assigning your own contactor to the symbol each and every time you draw a circuit, you can customize the symbol to default to your own custom contactor.

To customize your symbol to default to a custom component, simply drop the symbol onto your drawing, assign your own component to it, and then drag and drop the symbol onto your custom stencil. That's it.

Drop a symbol onto your drawing, right click and select Edit Reference
Drop a symbol onto your drawing, right click and select Edit Reference
Click on the Component button to edit component information as required
Click on the Component button to edit component information as required
Drag and drop symbol to save into custom stencil
Drag and drop symbol to save into custom stencil

From then on, if you drop your contactor symbol from your custom stencil, the symbol will default to your selected component instead of a generic one.

Note: To edit icon of your custom symbol, right click on the symbol, select "Edit Icon" and change it to your desired icon.

3. Customizing your own default pin sets.

Let's say you wanted to use Omron's MY series relay for a large project, and if you look closely, it's pins are numbered 5-9, 6-10, 7-11, 8-12 for normally open (NO) contacts and 1-9, 2-10, 3-11, 4-12 for normally closed (NC) contacts. Plus, it has only 4 contacts, therefore, ideally you should be notified, if you exceed this limit.

Electra's default NO and NC contacts has it's pin numbers starting from 13-14 for NO contacts and 11-12 for NC contacts. Here's how to customize your own pin sets and have Electra do the hard work for you:

  • Drop a contact onto your drawing, right click on it and select "Set Pin Names".
  • Right click on the "13, 14" pin set and select "Edit Pin Set".
  • Modify the pin set by typing in "5, 9", then press Enter.
  • Repeat the same to change "23, 24" to "6, 10" and "33, 34" to "7, 11" and " 43, 44" to "8, 12".
  • Right click on "53, 54" in set and select "Delete Pin Set" to delete.
  • Repeat the deletion for pin sets "63, 64" and "73, 74" and "83, 84" and "93, 94".
  • Press Enter to complete editing of pin sets.
  • Drag and drop your modified symbol onto your own stencil.

From now on, if you wanted to use NO contacts with "5, 9" as default pin sets, just drag and drop your modified symbol onto your drawing. If you drop 5 of them onto your drawing, and name them all with the same reference name, the 5th symbol will automatically show you pin names displayed in red, indicating that you have exhausted all NO contacts in your relay.

Pin sets automatically and correctly assigned by Electra
Pin sets automatically and correctly assigned by Electra

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AUTHOR

Thomas Yip

Founder at vecta.io, created Electra, engineering nerd.

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