Once a printed circuit board is fabricated, work has really only just begun. Manufacturers must mount components onto the PCB in a way that meets the requirements of the product and follows best practices as they range from one industry application to the next. After all, a PCB is only a foundational component of a big-picture product.
To help you make sure that your manufacturing partner is on track with the optimal processes for PCB assembly and surface mounting procedures, let's look at a few key elements of this important stage.
Review and analysis
Prior to performing any assembly or SMT process, a manufacturer must go through a full review of the existing product parameters, and determine the requirements of the final product. According to an article from Digital Journal, there are a few important steps that a manufacturer must take in the review and analysis phase:
- Checking Gerber files to determine and envision the design of the final build
- Examining BOM list to identify the items and materials necessary for the project
- Analyze the characteristics and properties of the PCB to ensure quality
- Mapping out and scheduling the assembly process from end to end
"Your partner must be on track with optimal assembly processes."
By verifying specifications upfront, a manufacturer drastically decreases risk in the production process and gives you the peace of mind that your final product will be in close alignment with your requirements. Make sure that your partner adheres to quality standards such as ISO 9001 and 13845 (for medical devices), or whichever industry regulations impact your business.
Procurement and assembly
When it comes time to finally enter the assembly and surface mounting stages, there are several technical capabilities you want your manufacturer to have. Let's run down a few of the key technologies that help ensure an exceptional SMT process.
- Multiple MYDATA lines for component mounting
- Jade Handex Selective Soldering Solutions
- Dedicated Leaded & ROHS lines and wave soldering
- Dedicated System Assembly Cells
- High Resolution X-Ray
Procurement is also a vital part of the manufacturing lifecycle that many firms overlook. Your partner should have methods in place to source a sufficient quality and quantity of components so that your final product shipment is complete and top-notch.
"[We] use an advanced and sophisticated SMT mounter for turnkey SMT assembly. During this process, we also need to work in close coordination with our purchase team so that the components needed can be manufactured in-house or sourced from domestic manufacturers in advance", explained a quality analyst from RayMing technology, according to Digital Journal.
Finally, your manufacturer should put all assembled PCBs through a rigorous inspection and testing process to ensure that the final product fulfills the original written requirements. Tests should be tailored to the specific industry application, whether it is a high-heat, high-speed or high-pressure environment.
At VR industries, we have the experience, expertise and equipment to facilitate best practices in both PCB manufacturing and SMT assembly. Contact us today to out more about how we can help you bring you closer to your electronics manufacturing goals.