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PCB assembly business ....

Discussion in 'Hobby Electronics' started by bobi, Sep 3, 2003.

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  1. bobi

    bobi Guest

    Ok

    I am a bit young and I want to start a business.

    I bit thinking of purchasing some SMT component placement machines.

    I am not running a business at the moment I work for pay.

    Sooo .... good idea or not ....:)

    Any success stories out there ??
     
  2. Stay young and dont start this particular business
    A lot of money here.
    Keep working and fully research the costs of running a business. Also
    investigate how many other people out there do what you want.
    In AU i doubt it. There is not one decent contract manufacturer in AU. Maybe
    you could do it, but we just don't have the market here in australia for
    contract manufacturing, unless you can find a niche market.
     
  3. You are never too young to give something a go...
    Do you have the $$$$$$ required for that?
    Do you have experience with the processes involved, and the industry
    in general?
    Think about how many boards you'd have to assemble to get your $$$$$$
    back... and how many years it would take...
    Working for one boss can often be better than working for hundreds of
    bosses (your customers)...
    Nope, bad idea.
    Make your first business a zero capital outlay one, and do it part
    time. If it takes off then quit your job and go full time.
    A huge percentage of small businesses (80%+ or something like that)
    fail within the first year, there are many reasons for that...
    The board stuffing industry in Aus is a mugs game. It requires huge
    captial and the industry is unstable, not a good combination.

    If you want to get into this business then why not get yourself a good
    hand soldering system and start a small part-time business assembling
    boards by hand. At least you won't have to fork out the capital, and
    you'll have nothing to lose.

    Regards
    Dave :)
     
  4. Mike Harding

    Mike Harding Guest

    He'll only be able to make slave labour money at that David.

    Mike Harding
     
  5. Yep, he'll have to learn the hard way :->
    I do actually know some people who make a worthwhile side business of
    this though.

    Dave :)
     
  6. Adam Seidel

    Adam Seidel Guest

    Having just purchased seven SMT placement machines at work, they are very,
    very expensive.


    Adam
    | Ok
    |
    | I am a bit young and I want to start a business.
    |
    | I bit thinking of purchasing some SMT component placement machines.
    |
    | I am not running a business at the moment I work for pay.
    |
    | Sooo .... good idea or not ....:)
    |
    | Any success stories out there ??
    |
    |
     
  7. Alex Gibson

    Alex Gibson Guest

    Really ?

    Depends what you call slave labour money.

    So what amount do you call slave labour money ?

    Alex
     
  8. Mike Harding

    Mike Harding Guest

    First off he'll have a hard time _finding_ any work. The
    more professional companies won't use him for a number
    of reasons which leaves the back street boys as the main
    market. Most of them will already have arrangements with
    ex. industry mums working from home and fitting it in around
    the kids. They work for peanuts don't pay tax etc. Very
    hard to compete with that.

    I don't know what current rates are for this type of home
    based work ($8ph?) and I'm sure there are people who
    started out this way and now own multi national companies.
    But most of them stayed poor.

    Mike Harding
     
  9. Steve

    Steve Guest

    Maybe a few decades ago, yeah! One aussie product we still use came
    from BGE, but they are LONG gone. I can't imagine there'd be much
    call for it, given the price of japanese electronics. You'd be
    sailing into a niche market that already has its niche product
    provider!

    My girlfriends godfather built his business on populating PCBs, but
    that part of it died out in the late eighties.
     
  10. Garry Allen

    Garry Allen Guest

    We have heard this from you before.
    You have tried every single Australian contract manufacturer have you?
    I know there are some absolute shockers out there but i have dealt
    with companies in the past whose results we were very happy with. It
    cuts both ways. If you are dealing with good manufacturers and
    expecting them to do all your engineering work for you because you
    have given them crap in the form of
    (a) boards that have not been designed for manufacturability - e.g.
    surface mount resistors mounted vertically, boards that aren't
    panelled, no fiducial marks... Get guidelines for manufacture from
    them and put the effort into giving them stuff that can be
    manufactured.
    (b) inadequate documentation
    (c) crap components
    (d) no test information
    (e) no placement files
    (f) crap stencils
    (g) some or all of the above
    you will probably get crap back. Good manufacturers are out there and
    they are happy to give you feedback in order to revise your designs to
    make your designs easier and cheaper to produce (and more reliable
    and..). But if you expect them to do all the work for you all the time
    you will continue to get poor service and a crap product. And if your
    designs are crap in the first place then it is quite probable that you
    are going to have high failure rates. (e.g components have tolerances.
    Design for them)

    Go to some of the SMCBA conferences. Do a course on Design for
    Manufacture. Get feedback from your manufacturers
    Garry Allen
    I have never dealt with AEMS. I had very good results with Tresmine
    and Benetron in Sydney and I was impressed with the information that I
    got back from Puzzle Electronics in Newcastle. (talking about moderate
    volumes - several hundred boards with fine pitch SMT e.g 208 pin QFPS
    and TSSOPs and 0603 capacitors and resistors on both sides) Tresmine
    is set up for bigger volumes and they were happy to quote very low
    failure rates
     
  11. bobi

    bobi Guest

    thank you people.

    well no one is dragging me by the neck to do anything I am just
    investigating whats out there.

    I went to some Electronics shows in Darling Harbour the other day and spoke
    to some representatives
    of component placement machines.

    I did work for 6 months in a PCB assembling place 9 years ago. (hand
    placement, through hole, hand soldering).

    Then I got caught up with the IT industry and now IT is dead and now back to
    electronics stuff :)).

    To the guy that bought 7 machines. What kind are they?? How much.
     
  12. Tried enough to know that for volume you are better off going off shore.
    I expect nothing from AU manufacturers, because thats what you get. The fact
    is, most employ morons that don't know shit about electronics. Some are
    incapable of even operating a PC for automated testing.
    I work to an international standard. I design boards for minimum
    manufacturing cost, to manufacturers guidelins. I use plenty of fiducial
    marks, even though decent manufacturers only require 3 on the whole panel
    these days.
    I write documents that a primary school student could understand.
    Where in AU here, c'mon give me a break.
    All my testing is automated
    I prefer the manufacturer to do this, but will supply them if need be.
    Where in AU can you get decent stencils, in fact, where can you even get
    decent PCB's??
    In TW and China, the manufacturers will take an 80% complete design and
    finish it for you at no extra cost. The will do electrical design
    verifiction, hardware (ie cases) verifiction. They will provide EMC and
    electrical compliance. They will design your looms...the list goes on.
    Can you give me more specific yield rates? Failure rate per volume??

    The point I try to make is that the Australian market is simply just not
    geared up for electronics manufacturing. Processes here are to expensive.
    What I look for is someone to make the process as least painful as possible.
    I want to give someone a design and I want to see the product. I dont want
    to be on the phone 50% of the day talking some dipshit uni graduate through
    the process of turning on a computer and running a batch file. I dont want
    to have to be visiting the manufacturer each week. I dont want to be chasing
    them when the product is six months late.

    Let me give you a recent example. One particular contract manufacturer in
    Sydney rejected a stack of PCB's because they were V-grooved not routed.
    Give me a break, why can everyone else manage V-cut PCB's?? This mob is
    about 8months late delivering the product. A manufacturer in China has
    already turned out the product and they were given their order AFTER the Au
    manufacturer. This is the second time this has happened, both different
    companies to the first..

    Anyway, small runs I have no choice but to do in AU, so I guess I'll have to
    continue dealing with the shit.
     
  13. Yep, that's how it work most of the time.
    Employee quits (or keeps working there) and then does the boards at
    home for half the cost that the company was paying a sub-contractor.
    You can actually make a very profitable business out of this,
    especially if the (usually big) company was being charged a motza by
    the sub-contractor.
    Yep, its almost always a side or very small business thing, and hardly
    ever amounts to much. The steady work often runs out within a few
    years. It's only really suitable for people with good industry
    contacts who have little or no overheads, are retired, stay at home
    mums and dads etc
    Most people I know who do this charge a fixed cost per board/product.

    Dave :)
     
  14. You should have asked the price, you would have been out of there like
    a shot!
    They are fun to watch though, I want to the Austronics expo today and
    now I want one too :->
    If you *really* wanted to do this, you'd be a mug to buy the machines
    new. There are companies being liquidated all the time, and their pick
    and place machines get auctioned off. For the last few years I have
    probably averaged 2 liquidation aution pamphets in the mail per year
    that have pick and place machines.

    Dave :)
     
  15. Adam Seidel

    Adam Seidel Guest

    Yep, liquidated machines - Samsung CP33 series, optical placement blah blah
    around the $US150k + mark i think, considering we bought only one new
    several years ago at close to this price. They came out of singapore. Have
    recently purch also ovens, tray loaders all from the US (another
    liquidator)

    Adam

    | thank you people.
    |
    | well no one is dragging me by the neck to do anything I am just
    | investigating whats out there.
    |
    | I went to some Electronics shows in Darling Harbour the other day and
    spoke
    | to some representatives
    | of component placement machines.
    |
    | I did work for 6 months in a PCB assembling place 9 years ago. (hand
    | placement, through hole, hand soldering).
    |
    | Then I got caught up with the IT industry and now IT is dead and now back
    to
    | electronics stuff :)).
    |
    | To the guy that bought 7 machines. What kind are they?? How much.
    |
    | | > Ok
    | >
    | > I am a bit young and I want to start a business.
    | >
    | > I bit thinking of purchasing some SMT component placement machines.
    | >
    | > I am not running a business at the moment I work for pay.
    | >
    | > Sooo .... good idea or not ....:)
    | >
    | > Any success stories out there ??
    | >
    | >
    |
    |
     
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