The process of assembling box build assemblies is quite simple. It involves a Bill of Materials (BOM), the customer providing Gerber files, CAD design, assembly, and delivery. Many customers assume that once the Gerber files are handed over, the Electronic Manufacturing Services (EMS) provider will take care of the rest. There are certain points that need to be discussed before any of the above mentioned steps can take place.
Points to Discuss with your EMS Provider
If you are getting an electronic manufacturing services (EMS) provider to design and produce your box build assemblies, then there are certain points you need to consider.
- Unambiguous Bill of Materials: The first point of discussion between the client and the EMS provider is the BOM. It is imperative that the BOM be clear in terms of the materials and components, which will be used to create the box build assembly. The BOM also needs to specify the materials that the provider will source, and those that the client will provide.
- Define the Components: As each component will make a difference to the assembly and operation of the product, it is important that you specify certain components. Although the provider can source the large components, you can specify on smaller yet important materials. Examples of these would be adhesives, fasteners, heat shrink tubing, wires, etc. Defining such components can help you to maintain your costs, and ensure delivery of the product on the expected date.
- Specify Characteristics: Aspects like finishes, weight, size, and tolerances are usually left to the freedom of the provider. However, if not properly specified these can lead to issues at the time of assembly and quality testing. Ensure that such aspects are also specified. Size and weight are also important points to consider for storage and handling purposes.
- Provide CAD Layouts: This is an option for customers. There are many reasons why providing a CAD model will help move increase the entire process speed:
- The designers do not need to visualize the product and its assembly.
- It can include a drawing where all the components will be placed.
- A customer’s personal design followed to the letter can ensure that the box build assembly is manufactured to industry compliances.
- Many CAD software offer free drawing options.
- Decide on the Build Method: You need to decide on the most optimum build method for the electrical systems. Consider methods like prepared cables, or point to point wiring, and create a schematic for the same. If possible, provide this in an electronic format as well.
- Enquire about the Testing Methods: If possible, ask the EMS provider if he can perform specific tests to ensure that quality and efficiency of the product. You can specify functionality testing, electrical safety testing, etc. Also, you can find out from your service provider the best choice of tests for the assembly.
- Request for Delivery Method: Depending on the type of box build assembly, you can specify the type of packaging and the mode of transport for delivery. You can ask for shrink wraps, or special boxes, or even pallets.
Outsourcing box build assemblies is a process that requires the customer and the EMS provider to work in unison. Providing the right information before any process is begun can help in the design, production, testing, and delivery of an assembly of world class quality.