How to make a new pcb board?
Especially in the entrepreneurial field, making a PCB Board means adding new features and new benefits to your products: this increases their competitiveness on the market and, consequently, creates a new source of income for the company.
This is why the development phase of PCB Boards can prove to be a long and tiring process: each element must be taken care of in detail to offer added value to the company and to the final consumer. In this article, we will about the ideal process for developing a new PCB Board or proceeding with the revision of an existing board.
# 1 Consultancy and feasibility study
The starting point for the development of the PCB Board is always an in – depth consultation. In fact, to be able to carry out a winning project, it is essential to understand what the customer needs is: it can be a company that wants to put a new product on the market; or, it can be a company that wants to innovate the functionality of its products.
It is starting from this initial information that a feasibility study is carried out: the possibility of creating the PCB Board is evaluated based on the complexity of the project, the availability of components, the choice of materials, … Furthermore, the project must obviously fall within the budget that the customer makes available to his supplier.
# 2 PCB Board design
Once the feasibility study has been carried out and understood that the customer’s idea is feasible, we proceed with the design of the PCB Board. This is a delicate step: it is starting from the project that you can then proceed with a smoother production, without incurring significant problems that could alter the characteristics of the product, require an increase in costs and increase processing times.
During the design, the attention of the technicians must always be oriented to the User Experience. The goal is to put yourself in the shoes of the final consumer: which functions could you appreciate most? What elements could you consider irrelevant?
What difficulties might you encounter in using the product? Starting from the answer to all these questions, a complete project is created, which takes into account the needs of the company but also those of its customers, who in fact are those who will use the product. We see it in more detail in the article dedicated to software interfaces for machines.
# 3 Prototyping of the PCB Board
Before proceeding with the sampling and construction of the PCB Board, the production department interfaces directly with the customer. The goal is to offer him support to further improve the initial project.
Advice is then given regarding the materials and the type of components to be adopted. Starting from this consultancy, a prototype of the PCB Board is created, an indispensable step especially if production in large batches is planned.
With the prototyping phase, a limited number of PCB Boards are produced, which will then be thoroughly analyzed by means of technical tools to assess whether the result is satisfactory: in this case, the actual production proceeds; otherwise, elements and components are analyzed to understand where the anomalies are.
It is possible to identify errors even when the design phase has been carried out accurately, because each PCB Board can hide pitfalls that are only visible in practice. What matters is to go and correct them promptly.
And for the revision of a PCB Board?
It may happen that it is necessary to proceed with the revision of an existing PCB Board. This generally happens because:
You want to replace its components or innovate the board to offer the product new functions;
The components have entered into obsolescence and therefore become unavailable.
The final customer, who wants to improve the performance of the product, may request the revision; in some circumstances, it is the supplier who recommends this operation, if he has taken care of the design of the PCB Board. In both cases, we proceed to assess what type of revision is necessary: it may be some minor modification or change one or more codes of the bill of materials.
This last phase may involve the remaking of the Pick & Place machine program, the creation of new documents and so on: therefore, these are decidedly more invasive changes. Also in these cases it is necessary to proceed step by step, from design to prototyping, to avoid making mistakes that could later cause limitations in the performance of the board.
Proceeding with the development of PCB Boards is never a process that the provider of this service faces in complete autonomy. To give life to a winning project, it is necessary that there is an active collaboration between customer and supplier, who will always have the focus on guaranteeing a perfect user experience for the final consumer.
The Fundamental Phase of Manufacturing PCB board
The manufacturing of the PCB board is a fundamental phase for the success of your business: ensuring a safe device made with attention to the smallest details, allow you to guarantee the end customer a complete, functional and safe product.
FXPCB knows this well and, for this reason, for each commission it makes available all the experience gained in years of operation in the electronics sector.
Each project is followed and managed with extreme attention and attention to detail: all the steps necessary for the creation of each PCB board are carried out following precise steps, aimed at guaranteeing the customer impeccable products .
The flexibility of FXPCB allows the manufacturing of various PCB boards, both internally designed and designed by third parties. In this way, it is possible to successfully accept and satisfy any request that is made to us. In this article, you can find out how PCB boards are created in FXPCB.
Manual Soldering: The initial stage
Each PCB board has its roots within an initial project: whether it is commissioned directly to FXPCB, or whether it has been created by an external designer, it must be detailed and precise. Inside, in fact, you will find essential information to select and order the components necessary for the creation of the board, including specific brands to be used or certain elements to be mounted on the product.
At this point the BOM is compiled, which indicates the different components and the different positions in which they will be placed.
The bill is then transferred to the warehouse, which prepares all the elements necessary for the manufacturing of the card. A key word that describes FXPCB is “organization”, and it can be found at the base of every activity: even the warehouse is arranged in such a way as to be able to find the components quickly, thus allowing to significantly reducing product delivery times.
Assembly of PCB board: An Important Factor
Once the necessary components have been prepared, proceed with the assembly of the PCB board. First of all, you need to be clear about what type of editing you are planning. It is important to distinguish Surface Mount Technology (SMT) components from Pin Through Hole (PTH) components.
In the first case, the technology used is more advanced, in which the assembly takes place in a completely automated way through a machine called Pick & Place. In the second case, however, the assembly is carried out mainly manually by specialized operators.
The choice of mounting depends above all on the characteristics that the electronic card in question possesses. In most cases, the board is built through SMT mounting, as it is faster and more accurate. In spite of this, both by choice of the designer and by particular elements positioned on the circuit, the PTH method is still necessary.
Large Scale PCB Board Manufacturing
Before producing the PCB board on a large scale, we proceed with the prototyping phase: this step allows identifying in advance any unsuitable components for that project, or particular criticalities of the printed circuit. In this way, any imperfections can be corrected immediately and proceed more quickly with the subsequent manufacturing of the entire commissioned lot.
After the assembly of the elements by the Pick & Place machine in the case of SMT components, or by the operators in the case of PTH components, we proceed with the soldering.
At FXPCB it is made by means of a vapor-phase oven which is based on advanced technology: also known as the condensation soldering process, it guarantees high quality soldering ensuring that the entire board reaches a uniform temperature, despite the presence of elements with very different characteristics.
AOI control: Optical inspection and packaging
After having correctly soldered the components on the printed circuit, the PCB board is checked by a machine equipped with 3D control called AOI (Automatic Optical Inspection): through a program created specifically for that board, this machine checks the presence of tin, the positioning of the components and the general correctness of the work performed.
If the project foresees it, we proceed with the testing of the PCB board: through a simulator, it is possible to verify the correct functioning of the board on the final product. By doing so, any critical issues can be identified and corrected as soon as possible.
Finally, after this last phase, it ends with the packaging of the products. Each electronic card is carefully placed in cardboard packaging, designed to ensure optimal interlocking, capable of protecting the products in the best possible way during storage and transport.
In conclusion: Hire Professional PCB Manufacturing Company from China
The manufacturing of the PCB board is a delicate process, which requires the intervention of specialized and competent operators.
FXPCB employs a qualified team in each of its departments, from the design of the board to its packaging, in order to guarantee its customers safe work, made with precision in every detail. If you need an electronic card for your company, contact us: we are at your disposal for any request.