Prototypes or small runs: Consigned kit or full turnkey projects, lead-time can be from 1 day turnaround to 2 weeks depending on the availability of the components.
Prototypes or small run projects can be initiated in two ways: SMT-ASSY can offer the assembly service of a consigned kit that the customer supplies to us or we can quote you for our full turnkey assembly solutions. For the quote, we will source your parts according to your bill of materials, which we will source as quickly as possible from distributors, including obsolete or hard-to-find components. We get these components from suppliers who carry a lot of stock such as Digi-Key, Mouser, Newark Electronics, and from other suppliers such as Arrow, Avnet and Future; on occasion, we get the “odd ball parts” through brokers if necessary. Most of our US customers use full turnkey services; therefore, we source the components and bare boards, and then assemble the components and ship the final solution to the customer.
Prototypes or small run projects use the regular SMT process, which uses stencil and reflow; however, in many instances, due to the low number of cards and the urgency of the work, we will do all the placement by hand. While we do the assembly, we generate a report for design and for manufacturability in order to give some feedback to the designer of the card. Feedback could be regarding sourcing or component vs location and footprint, thermal observations or shadowing expertise, etc. At this stage, we try to unlock the BOM and the layout in order for it to be bulletproof. To better prepare for the next revision run, no stone is left unturned; we feed all this information to the designer, engineer or project manager responsible for the livelihood of the project.