Contract Electronics Manufacturing and PCB Assembly Blog

Tips For Cutting Costs On PCB Assemblage

Posted by Stephanie Weaver on Fri, Mar 10, 2017 @ 11:00 AM

 

pc board assemblyIt really doesn't matter what type of business you're in - money is a common stressor for all of us. The majority of American industries are constantly looking for ways to scale back their costs and improve profit margins without sacrificing the quality or integrity of their work. Still, this is often much easier said than done. Finding areas where you can safely and effectively reduce spending while still keeping your customers happy with excellent products and services isn't as simple as it may seem, and it can be especially problematic in the electronics sector.

The issue that many electronics companies have in cutting expenses is that technology never remains the same for very long. The consumer marketplace refuses to be satisfied with the status quo, and, as a result, our electronic devices continue to evolve into increasingly complex products. Technological companies, then, must evolve along with these devices, finding new processes for developing the products that end-users are demanding. Despite this, though, there's one thing that continues to remain a constant in the world of electronics: PC boards. These remarkable boards are essential to our world's technology. Shouldn't it naturally go to follow that by cutting costs to PC boards, electronics companies could start saving more money?

Although this may be the case, businesses like your own must be careful and smart about any changes made to the assemblage of PCBs. Finding savvy ways to make boards more price-efficient and cut costs is a far cry from "cutting corners". Still, it can be done. In an effort to help you start raising your profit margins and enjoying a higher level of success, we've put together the following tips for saving money without sacrificing the quality of PCB assemblage.

#1: Smart Design

The design and planning that goes into assembling PCBs is one of the smartest and most effective ways to scale back spending. The strategic engineering of these boards can result in the need to utilize fewer parts and components which will immediately begin to lower the cost per PCB. In the long run, this can begin to add up to significant savings.

#2: Develop Relationships

Developing a strong and ongoing relationship with one or two parts suppliers is much more cost-efficient than spreading your business out amongst a wider range of businesses. When you develop a rapport with your parts supplier, you'll often be given the opportunity to enjoy better deals and savings, and you may also be entitled to discounts for prompt payments, amongst other things. 

#3: Avoid Fines - Stay Americanpcb assemblage

Thinking about taking your PCB assemblage offshore? You might want to re-consider. Overseas contract manufacturers often appeal to smaller businesses because of their cheap services, but if the price seems too good to be true, it probably is. Many times, these companies make use of counterfeit parts that don't comply with American industry standards. The use of these parts in your boards could result in your being fined, or being dragged into a lawsuit should the part(s) cause serious problems or malfunctions. 

#4: Repair vs. Replace

If something goes wrong with one of your boards, it can be tempting to offer a customer a warranty replacement rather than taking the time to troubleshoot for the problem and repair it. In reality, though, the latter is the much more affordable and cost-efficient option.

#5: Consider Hiring a Contract Manufacturer

Although hiring a contract manufacturer may initially seem more expensive, a partnership can give you access to a team of experts without having to pay their salary, and to advanced equipment without having to purchase or maintain it.

Saving money on PCB assemblage doesn't mean that you have to sacrifice the quality of your product to your end users. By following these tips, you can cut your own costs while keeping your customers happy with your boards and services.

 

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Topics: pcb assemblage

Tips For Cutting Costs On PCB Assemblage

Posted by Matthew Turpin on Wed, May 14, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

 

pc board assemblyIt really doesn't matter what type of business you're in - money is a common stressor for all of us. Despite the fact that the economy is improving, the majority of American industries are constantly looking for ways to scale back their costs and improve profit margins without sacrificing the quality or integrity of their work. Still, this is often much easier said than done. Finding areas where you can safely and effectively reduce spending while still keeping your customers happy with excellent products and services isn't as simple as it may seem, and it can be especially problematic in the electronics sector.

The issue that many electronics companies have in cutting expenses is that technology never remains the same for very long. The consumer marketplace refuses to be satisfied with the status quo, and, as a result, our electronic devices continue to evolve into increasingly complex products. Technological companies, then, must evolve along with these devices, finding new processes for developing the products that end-users are demanding. Despite this, though, there's one thing that continues to remain a constant in the world of electronics: PC boards. These remarkable boards are essential to our world's technology. Shouldn't it naturally go to follow that by cutting costs to PC boards, electronics companies could start saving more money?

Although this may be the case, businesses like your own must be careful and smart about any changes made to the assemblage of PCBs. Finding savvy ways to make boards more price-efficient and cost costs is a far cry from "cutting corners". Still, it can be done. In an effort to help you start raising your profit margins and enjoying a higher level of success, we've put together the following tips for saving money without sacrificing the quality of PCB assemblage.

Tip #1: Smart Design

The design and planning that goes into assembling PCBs is one of the smartest and most effective ways to scale back spending. The strategical engineering of these boards can result in the need to utilize fewer parts and components which will immediately begin to lower the cost per PCB. In the long run, this can begin to add up to significant savings.

Tip #2: Develop Relationships

Developing a strong and ongoing relationship with one or two parts suppliers is much more cost-efficient than spreading your business out amongst a wider range of businesses. When you develop a rapport with your parts supplier, you'll often be given the opportunity to enjoy better deals and savings, and you may also be entitled to discounts for prompt payments, amongst other things. 

Tip #3: Avoid Fines - Stay Americanpcb assemblage

Thinking about taking your PCB assemblage offshore? You might want to re-consider. Overseas contract manufacturers often appeal to smaller businesses because of their cheap services, but if the price seems too good to be true, it probably is. Many times, these companies make use of counterfeit parts that don't comply with American industry standards. The use of these parts in your boards could result in your being fined, or being dragged into a lawsuit should the part(s) cause serious problems or malfunctions. 

Tip #4: Repair vs. Replace

If something goes wrong with one of your boards, it can be tempting to offer a customer a warranty replacement rather than taking the time to troubleshoot for the problem and repair it. In reality, though, the latter is the much more affordable and cost-efficient option.

Tip #5: Consider Outsourcing

Although hiring a contract manufacturer may initially seem more expensive, a partnership can give you access to a team of experts without having to pay their salary, and to advanced equipment without having to purchase or maintain it.

Saving money on PCB assemblage doesn't mean that you have to sacrifice the quality of your product to your end users. By following these tips, you can cut your own costs while keeping your customers happy with your boards and services.

top-10-questions-you-should-be-asking-your-electronics-contract-manufacturer

Topics: pcb assemblage

PCB Assemblage - What All Is Involved In It?

Posted by Laura Austin on Tue, May 28, 2013 @ 07:00 AM

A Printed Circuit Board is a foundation used in the design of electrical gadgets. It plays two important roles:

  1. Providing mechanical support to components in the design

  2. Electrically connection the components through conductive pathways

In the current electronic world, the leveraging of a PCB can result into a simple yet compressed electronic gadget design or the creation of Very High Scale Integration designsPCB-assemblage important in the creation of microcontrollers and processing units.

PCB assemblage consists of a series of intricate steps that must be followed to the latter if the product is to be of any use in the electronic design and creation fraternity.

Readying the board that will eventually be the PCB

The preparation of the board and the type of material chosen for the board varies depending on the quality of product the designer desires to achieve. The first step is in the creation of the laminate, which is achieved by pressure curing layers of cloth or paper with thermoset resin to create a final uniformly thick panel.

The type of material used in the curing determines the laminate classification hence the job it can do. Characteristics considered in classification include fire resistance, dielectric constant, loss factor, shear strength and tensile strength.

Printing the circuit into the board (etching)

This is a dynamic step whose approach varies depending on the end product desired. Most PC Board assembly procedures however cover the laminate with copper on both sides and then proceed to remove the copper from unwanted places resulting into the wanted fine copper traces. This method, referred to as subtractive method, is cheap to implement but more environment polluting than the more complex additive method.

Additive PCB assemblage procedure electroplates the copper traces onto the laminate to form the desired circuitry. Though it uses less copper and creates fewer residues, it comprises of several intricate steps making it a more complex approach in comparison to the subtractive approach.

Individual approach to the etching procedure

Whatever etching approach you decide to settle for, there also are other choices to make in the implementation mode. Major approaches are

  • Large volume approach: This consists of the silkscreen printing approach, which is the main commercial approach and the photographic option used when fine line widths are needed.

  • Small volume approach: This involves printing onto a see-through film and using a photo-mask along with photosensitized boards then etch, using laser resist ablation or using a CNC mill with a spade shaped cutter or tiny end mill to gauge off undesired copper from the laminate.

  • Hobbyist approach: This uses Laser print resistance technology that laser prints ontoPCB-assembly transparent layer before heat, transferring it with iron or bespoke laminator onto exposed laminate and then touching it up with marker before etching it. Other approaches are hard to achieve in mass productions.

Drilling holes into the PCB

The next step is in drilling holes through which the components in the design have to go into. This is achieved by the use of tiny diameter drill bits prepared from coated tungsten carbide. This is accomplished by the use of high-speed automatic drills to keep away from marring and tearing up the copper tracks.

After this, the PCBs are rinsed and exposed copper coated with some other anti-corrosion coated. The contact ends that have to remain open are coated with a viable solder composite to ensure that the PCB will remain conductive without suffering from problems of copper oxidation.

Adding the circuit components into the PCB

After all this, the designers then have to do the actual PCB assembly by putting in bits of circuit components into the PCB. This can be done manually or by the use of automated machines. This only works well after the PCB has been taken through its actual PCB assembly manufacturer and is usually done by a different factory from the one that did the actual PCB printing

Topics: printed circuit board, pcb assemblage, pc board assembly