After the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), many PCB & PCBA suppliers have problems such as unstable production capacity and unable to complete delivery on time, especially for companies with small production capacity, and even risk of bankruptcy. So if your company has PCB needs, you should look for other reliable PCB manufacturers in addition to existing suppliers to make quotations in case of unexpected needs. However, before you start to swipe your credit card, please consider asking the following 5 questions to potential PCB and PCB patch manufacturers to see if they are suitable for you and your recently completed PCB design:
Question 1-When can I get my printed circuit board?Before the outbreak, the answer to this question boiled down to a unified principle of life – how much do you have? Although some low-cost circuit board manufacturers may have completed the delivery quickly, the facts may be very different after the epidemic. PCBs that can be manufactured and shipped in a few weeks may take several times. Because their factory personnel are not uniform, it may be that under the circumstances of traffic control, the previous logistics service cannot operate.
In this case, if you do not change suppliers, your own industrial chain will be affected, and you may need to pay more. Need to stabilize your PCB supply chain and ensure that your PCB is received within two or three weeks? Then you must contact more PCB suppliers and make more preparations to achieve this goal. Here are some reputable PCB manufacturers to ensure that your circuit board supply returns to its original state within an appropriate time:
Stariver Circuits – is an excellent choice to reduce costs. Since its establishment in 1997, Xinghe Circuit has maintained an efficient and stable production mode. The advanced management of the company and the high degree of automation of the production line have made our impact during the epidemic much lower than the industry average. In Shenzhen, Fujian and Huangshi have factories in three places to ensure the stable production capacity and stable delivery period of Xinghe Circuit during the epidemic. At present, the delivery period of our 2-6 layer board is two weeks. If you have special requirements, you can also achieve fast boarding, which is your best choice.
JLCPCB – one of the largest and most famous PCB prototype factories in China. During the epidemic period, it can still provide 1-5 days of delivery on the 1-10 layer board, of course the price will be much higher than the normal price.PCBWay – For the ponds in the Chinese market, PCBWay is another highly rated circuit board factory. Before the outbreak, 1-16 layers can be delivered within 2-7 days. Now it is affected by some, but still has quality Delivery guarantee.
Question 2-Can you purchase all the mounting materials for me?You will want to save a few hours of production time and avoid the hassle of managing the bill of materials (BOM), so please check if the PCB manufacturer you choose has an internal purchasing department that can handle all BOM work.
If you choose this route, you may need to spend a little more money. However, it is totally worthwhile to be able to hand over the BOM and let others handle the purchased and potentially unavailable parts.
Question 3-Can you meet my circuit board design needs?This issue is very important for suppliers who require low cost, because they usually limit the amount of data they accept in your board specifications. Instead, they usually build PCBs according to their standard tolerances and guidelines, which may not work.
If you need to pay special attention to circuit board specifications, make sure that your circuit board factory can handle all supplementary documents, including:
You will include any special copper material requirements for the design.
Your hole Engineering drawings will outline the number and size of each hole on the board. Use the hole chart to let your supplier know about each hole on the board.
In addition, please make sure to include all other specifications you may need to include, such as copper thickness, plating requirements, etc.
Question 4-Where do you source materials?Are your potential PCB manufacturers only sourcing materials from the cheapest suppliers? If they buy in bulk from any supplier, you can definitely expect that the consistency and quality will vary greatly between each design you make from them.
Your circuit board may also need to meet the requirements of specific regulations that govern various hazardous substances restricted in manufactured electronic products, including lead, mercury, cadmium, and some other flame retardants. Make sure that your manufacturing plant can provide a UL certified circuit board that meets one of the following requirements, depending on your location, and whether you have relevant certification qualifications in the industry, such as:
RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) – This regulation governs the content of hazardous substances allowed in manufactured electronic products worldwide
REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals)-The goal of this European program is to assess the environmental and population impact of each chemical used in manufactured electronic products.
Question 5-How do you test my PCB board?Have you ever seen your circuit board before, and found that some products are not working properly. An immature PCB manufacturer may not care about the yield rate of the product, and you will receive a box of waste products, resulting in poor operation of your factory. If you plan to establish a long-term cooperative relationship with your circuit board factory, then we recommend that you find a company that provides specialized engineering support. In this way, you can find layout errors through some convenient connectivity tests to avoid returning to the factory and repair problems. Xinghe Circuit has various testing methods such as electrical testing, slicing testing, manual testing, flying probe testing, etc., which can ensure you get the best PCB service.
During the epidemic, remember to find new circuit board suppliers. It is best to ensure that there are two suppliers who can provide services for you to avoid unexpected situations, and Stariver Circuits is always your best choice.