Important Milestones In Prototype Pcb Assembly

When it comes to the question of when to build and when to buy or outsource prototype PCB, there are a number of key points that a company is required to consider while identifying its suitable design service partner. Once you have selected your prototype PCB assembly service provider and plan to move forward with a new design – here are a few suggestions that might maximize your experience and ensure you the best quality results.

Master schedule – as one of the best project management tool, has been beneficial for both the PCB assembly services and the clients. A master schedule is typically generated by the program manager of your design service provider and should typically include all major development milestones like phase wise completion, review and acceptance of design document, schematic design and printed circuit board layouts, ordering the prototype, firmware completion, bringing up and integration of hardware and firmware, system validation and finally delivering the manufacturing process.

Though the list of things to be included in the master schedule that we have compiled here cannot be considered as an exhaustive one but almost all common phases of the development process are covered in it. Design documenting is unquestionably one of the most important milestones in the prototype PCB assembly process and includes specific description of the product that is going to be built and also the purpose that it is intended to serve. This actually serves as the basis for all subsequent product reviews and validations and precisely defines that the final design fully complies with the actual requirements. If the process is outsourced, inputs from the clients play a crucial role in this design documentation and also serve as a mode of communication between the client and the service provider.

After the review and approval of the design document schematic design of the product is prepared. The primary goal of schematically designing a PCB is to ensure that at the start of each milestone all required information is made available for avoiding any false start or extra work. If both, you as the client and the service provider are satisfied with the schematic design of the prototype PCB then the PCB layout is started and once again there are a number of different items that are required to be considered here.

For PCB fabrication and prototype PCB assembly, most service providers depend upon third party vendors and proper communication and coordination plays important roles in this phase. After the completion of hardware/firmware integration and system validation the manufacturing package is delivered to the client. In reality there is no magic formula for successfully designing and manufacturing prototype printed circuit boards but there are a few key ideas like proper planning and communication, early identification of possible changes and quick response can be instrumental behind success. Outsourcing projects and using external designing resources add more flexibility to the engineering process and no wonder that third party circuit card assembly services are enjoying good business nowadays.

About The Author

David Fischer is an Engineer and has a special interest in the world of circuit board. He is also a part of the lab testing teams in various companies. He loves to write and share his extensive knowledge & experience in this field. He highly recommends for building electromechanical and prototype PCB.