Prerequisites to consider for the rapid PCB prototyping process!
With a competitive market with large number of players, the key to success is to offer innovative products that meet consumer needs. Speed is clearly of essence. To maintain your competitive advantage, it is therefore important that PCB prototypes are built quickly and that they adhere to the highest quality standards.
Getting a PCB prototype with speed as well as precision is a specialized job. A fine balance needs to be maintained between manufacturability and electrical performance. In order that the board goes through the rapid PCB prototyping process, the following prerequisites need to be maintained.
Aspects that you need to complete before you submit your design for rapid PCB prototyping:
Proof of concept: Prior to building your prototype, a design proof of concept needs to be fully developed. Additionally, the circuitry should be verified on the proof of concept. This will ensure that when it comes to the prototype, you do not have to spend a lot of time in testing. What you will also save on is on costs as well as on costly redesigns.
Ready for manufacturing: The PCB layout should be such that it is compliant with the Design for Manufacturing requirements. You sure do not want a situation where you need to completely redesign the prototype. This will involve a lot of time that will in turn delay your go-to-market plans and impact competitiveness.
Select the components carefully: In the rush towards having your prototype ready, ever so often you could miss proper selection of components. You need to be mindful of the fact that you need to select components that aren’t likely to be discontinued. In such a scenario it will be hard to either find replacements of components or to altogether redesign the board to accept new parts.
Robust BOM: Your PCB design has to be very well documented including having a robust Bill of Materials. The documentation will go a long way in helping the contract manufacturer adhere to your requirements and create a product without any manufacturing mistakes.
Other than the above aspects, one crucial prerequisite to consider is to spend time and energy looking for the right contract manufacturing partner.
Here are some things that you should look for in making the choice of partner for rapid PCB prototyping:
Prototyping capabilities – It will be worth your while to do enough research to choose a vendor who is known for his prototyping capabilities. Someone who has high mix low volume capabilities works exceptionally well when it comes to prototype development. Make sure that the CM has the right certifications that will assure you of receiving high quality product. In addition, if the CM also has the requisite experience in your industry, it will be an added advantage. In this case they will have access to industry best practices that will ensure that you do not have to re invent the wheel. Speaking to clients, checking out the testimonials can all be good ways to figure out the CM’s reputation when it comes to prototypes.
Robust network of partners – Do ensure that the CM has a robust network of partners including raw board fabricators, component manufacturers and distributors. With a wide vendor network, you can be sure that the CM will deliver a quality product in the agreed timelines.
Engineering capabilities – A strong engineering team is a major prerequisite since they can resolve any issues that may be related to mechanical or electrical issues. In house competence will ensure that such issues are speedily resolved.
Production capabilities – Additionally once the prototype is done, the contract manufacturer must have the ability to mass produce the boards. You need to with a CM who is equipped with the latest technology and has experienced and skilled staff.
To Sum Up
To ensure that the PCB prototyping process is carried out with speed and accuracy there need to be enough checks and balances at your end. Right from choosing the right contract manufacturer to having the proof of concept in place and having robust documentation, can go a long way in rapid prototyping and offering a unique competitive advantage.
As a leading PCB manufacturer, at Mer-Mar Electronics, we offer rapid PCB prototyping services with superior facility, adherence to strict industry standards, best practices and faster lead times. If you have any queries regarding to our PCB prototyping services or need an urgent assistance, then please don’t hesitate to contact our team of skilled personnel’s. Send us an email with your queries at email@example.com or call us at (760) 244-6149.