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When is the best time to achieve automation?

Sep. 04, 2019 Source: 微信公众号 actSMTC

      If your PCB company is moving forward, you will end up with this confusing question, “What can I do to keep increasing production to meet market demand growth while maintaining reasonable operating costs?” Once you start thinking about this, you will inevitably start to look at every aspect of the production process and see what steps you can take to save your time, money, and problems. Turning the entire process and steps of your entire production process into a fully automated assembly line. Although this comprehensive conversion seems attractive, it may be more beneficial to start with small batch assembly and then gradually switch to high volume assembly.

     Either way, when you find that the demand for your product has begun to exceed the actual monthly production capacity of your various production units, it is time for you to consider the automation option.

     Depending on your production needs, an automated prototype line may be the right solution for you. The automation of small batch SMT work cells is often the first step towards a comprehensive automated production plant in the future. The resulting increase in production far exceeds the manual assembly on site, so you can keep up with the ever-increasing demands of your customers without having to invest too much money or floor space. If you are currently purchasing the board you are assembling from overseas, a small batch production line may not be able to meet your current production needs, and you may need to upgrade this line to a larger production line. However, a small batch production line can provide you with a fast and reliable prototyping solution and a method that does not involve external production resources to better form a variety of small batch production operations. These lines are not the whole of SMT production, nor the ultimate goal of SMT production, but for on-site prototyping and R&D, this is a convenient and convenient option. For companies that need to meet small batch production needs, this may also very effective.

When is the best time to achieve automation?cid=22

   One of the downsides of transitioning to this type of production line is that it may not increase your production as you would expect, and may even be seen as a temporary replacement before upgrading to a fully online solution. While small-volume prototyping lines have their own advantages, if you are currently purchasing boards from an external manufacturer and intend to move the assembly back to your own company for production, you might want to consider a fully automated production line.

   The transition to a fully automated online solution will inevitably increase your production capacity. For companies that intend to move their production from external sources to internal production, although this type of conversion is the ideal solution, it may also be the correct transition from manual production or production of small batch work units to fully automated online production. Upgrades depend on the uniqueness of the industry and situation in which they are located.

    If you want to upgrade to medium-scale production, or plan to move a medium-sized PCB assembly from an outside contractor back to the company for production, you should be prepared for an online automation solution. It's important to keep in mind that if you're transitioning from manual assembly to fully automated production, it's important to make sure you have the requirements that match your new production capacity, because your recurring expenses will follow. A significant increase.

    Before you switch to an online solution, you must consider your software, facilities, and personnel requirements to keep this line up and running so you can meet your production standards. The obstacles you may face include improving the layout of your facility, taking the time to adjust and evaluate the equipment, and improving the ability of your employees to keep up with the demands of increasingly complex operations. Be sure that you fully understand the specifications of the product you are planning to purchase, the specifications of the product you are manufacturing, and the machine in your production line that meets your expected production capacity.

    However, there is some good news on financing. If you think that a fully online solution can meet your requirements, but you are worried about the upfront cost or total expenses of running the project, then as long as you do a full investigation, you will find many options. For example, banks are likely to give you loans and other lines of credit to buy loans for physical assets. From the perspective of creating jobs and stimulating the economy, you can even incite greater leverage when seeking incentives from governments and local governments to compensate for their own capital costs. Before deciding how you want to advance a production line, be sure to study the various options possible.

      Whether you can benefit from the conversion to a small SMT unit or a fully automated SMT line is a matter that needs serious consideration. When making the decision to turn to automation, it's important that you don't indulge in the excitement that production and sales may increase. Keep in mind that increased overhead and ongoing costs associated with new employees may offset your new production capacity. Take a moment to study the capabilities of any of the production lines you may be investigating, as well as the personnel and training needs required to start the production line. Converting a production line into an automated production line, like the time and money initially invested, may be the right choice to take your assembly capabilities to the next level.


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Zhuhai Bojay Electronics Co., Ltd.