Why PCB assembly service quotes are essential for your PCB projects?
Once you have a PCB design in place, you need a competent manufacturer who can bring your design to life at a price point that works for your project. It is important therefore that you ask for a PCB quote before the fabrication can kick off.
To get an accurate quote, however, it is important that you provide the manufacturer with the relevant information. Let us look at what a PCB assembly service quote consists of.
PCB assembly service quotes
Essentially, a PCB quote offers an accurate estimate of the cost of fabricating a board as also the timelines involved. A quote can be made available for both PCB fabrication as well as PCB Assembly.
It is necessary that you give accurate information about the project for both the price as well as the timelines to be accurate.
A PCB assembly quote, for example, will come with vital details such as:
- Type of material
- Number of holes
- Number of layers
- Board dimensions
- Trace width
- Finishing of copper layer
- Space between traces, and more.
Required documents for PCB assembly quote
The accuracy of the quote depends on the availability of the following documents:
1. Bare Board Print or Fabrication Drawing
It offers information related to aspects such as:
- Board thickness
- Number of holes
- Dimensions, and more.
It is also important to include details of the component numbers in this document. Along with this you also need to make available the Gerber Files.
Pro tip- Ensure that design files are made available in a format such as ODB++.
2. Bill Of Material
Bill of material is yet another crucial document that among other things carries relevant information about the components. The more detailed it is, including aspects such as description of parts, part number, reference designator & more, the smoother the entire process.
3. Assembly Print
With an Assembly Print information about the location of parts can be conveyed. It also contains special markings if there are any.
4. Approved Vendor List
An approved vendor list along with part number of the manufacturer is ideal.
Information that is often missed when requesting for a PCB assembly quotes
The following are some of the information that is often missed:
1. Stack-up details
This comprises of details of number of layers, thickness of layers as well as of the stack-up.
2. Solder mask details
These details include the type of solder mask, its finishes and more.
3. Impedance details
With impedance details not being provided; their implications are felt on several aspects of the board.
The dimensions as well as the position of the cut-out are imperative in receiving an accurate PCB assembly quote.
Where to apply silkscreen & its color are also essential details.
6. Surface finish
The type of surface finish has a strong bearing on its cost. It is therefore imperative that it be clearly mentioned.
Factors that affect PCB assembly cost
Some of the other factors that impact PCB assembly cost include:
1. Mounting Technology Used
The use of SMT (Surface Mount) or through-hole PCB assembly technology has a bearing on the cost. Also, Surface Mount technology is faster as it uses a lot of automation.
2. Lead Time
In case your lead times are short, it has a bearing on the cost of the PCB assembly. The two clearly are inversely proportional.
3. Shipping Costs
Large PCB quantities may come with additional shipping costs.
4. Number of Layers
It typically costs more to assemble multilayer PCBs (Printed Circuit Boards). This is because the number of production steps has increased significantly.
5. Surface Finish
The choice of surface finish as already indicated has a strong implication on the cost. Some of the surface finishes come with longer shelf life and at a higher cost.
To Sum Up
While a PCB assembly quote is important for you to plan the efficiency of your project, its accuracy depends on a whole lot of factors. It is important that the details must be correctly provided so that the PCB assembly quote can be exact.
Needless to mention, however, that the quote cannot be the sole reason you go with a certain contract manufacturer. It is imperative that you ascertain the experience and quality offered so that there are no costly errors to deal with at a later stage.
To avoid such errors, you can contact Technotronix at email@example.com to get innovative PCB assembly services. With an experienced team, Technotronix provides reliable PCB services including PCB fabrication, assembly, and PCB design. Get a quick PCB assembly service quote for any kind of requirements.