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From: "red rover"
Subject: Re: 1523 joints
X-Newsreader: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2800.1106
Date: Tue, 22 Oct 2002 21:06:52 -0400
NNTP-Posting-Date: Tue, 22 Oct 2002 21:06:48 EDT
Organization: Bell Sympatico
I agree with several of Ken's observations.
It certainly would be easier if the design had considered
manufacurability. Can you open up the holes on the panel
to give you more tolerance on the BNC and LED placement?
If it is more of a vertical thing you may need a small jig.
Your quantities are so small you need to talk to the shop to see
if they are willing to give you a good hand-assembly person
(you provide the panel if required) and see what it will cost.
Be wary of your comments about your own techs or feelings since you are
not anonymous and they may read this NG. Some may surprise
you if you present them with the challenge but few react well to
criticism (most people don't). Your master builder may feel he made
his bed and now he must lie in it (ie: he doesn't want to come back to the
old job) but if you are not satisfied with what the contractors offer maybe
you could give him a contract to do the work. This might be a win/win
situation. You get the man you want/trust. The master builder doesn't feel
he's admitting he made a mistake in leaving, instead he sees that you admit
you're having such time replacing him you have to contract him back.
"Ken Taylor" wrote in message
> "Christopher R. Carlen" wrote in message
> > Hi folks:
> > I have a design in the works, and it looks like it will involve two PCBs
> > with a total of 1523 solder joints per assy. I will likely need to
> > produce between 4-10 of these over the next few months.
> > The objectional quantity of solder joints is making me consider having
> > them manufactured by a local custom electronics assembly shop.
> > But I dread the thought of something going wrong, and having to waste
> > time figuring out what went wrong, and straightening it out with the
> > possible cost of wasting my PCBs or having to salvage them. Plus, the
> > time to document the assembly procedure and kit all the parts probably
> > will equal at least one or two assembly times.
> > Finally, the main PCB has the active stuff on one side, and the other
> > side has a bunch of BNCs and LEDs, that have to be placed in the board,
> > and then the board has to be placed into the panel in which it will
> > live, before soldering the parts, so that the LEDs will stand off at the
> > right height, and the BNCs will not get soldered with little tolerance
> > errors that would make it impossible to get the PCB into the panel if
> > they were soldered without first mating to the panel. Trying to
> > describe this and then hope they do it right, is also dreadful.
> > In short, the thought of other people doing my work and screwing it up,
> > is dreadful.
> > But I'm sure those among us who are used to manufacturing have learned
> > to deal with this. For me it represents a substantial obstacle to
> > opening up my mind to outsourcing some of my assembly work--something
> > which I have never done before. The sadder part is that there are
> > terribly few techs. here at the lab who can do this work with the kind
> > of care that I would hope for, and none in my immediate facility. The
> > only master builder we had left. Then he regretted it, but couldn't
> > bring himself to reverse the error.
> > Oh well. Any comments welcome on your experiences and wisdom with
> > getting jobs outsourced, how to describe what to do, how to cover one's
> > buttocks if there is an error, etc.
> > Good day!
> > --
> > ____________________________________
> > Christopher R. Carlen
> > Principal Laser/Optical Technologist
> > Sandia National Laboratories CA USA
> > email@example.com
> Hi Christopher. Without having too much of a dig at you, should you have
> considered the manufacture stage during the design stage? Is the board
> suited to reflow? If it really has to be hand-assembled and soldered you
> need to take a look at a few assembly shops and their work to make
> happy with their output. Outsourcing can work but it takes a fair bit of
> preparation, investigation and ultimately confidence on both sides. Can
> provide a fully assembled one which you *are* happy with so they have a
> model? What about if you maybe only get one side done externally, leaving
> the fiddlier bit on the 'non-active' side done internally, so that maybe
> automated process can be used for the bulk of the joints.
> What are the chances though of taking one or more of your lab tech's
> your wing' and bringing them up to your standard? They have to learn
> somewhere, and if they currently are not up to spec then here's your
> to improve things! :)
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