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PCB Manufacturing, Assembly & Test Blog

16 May, 2014

The Business Of Supply Chain Issues

Posted by Michael Ford

Michael Ford

At APEX this year, I was talking about material inventory integrity across the factory shop-floor and warehouse infrastructure, and the huge effect that it can have on the bottom line of any manufacturing business. You can see this on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGBIFL_RXkw&noredirect=1 The ERP system is one of the largest investments made in electronics manufacturing. It is responsible

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Material Turns, Inventory Accuracy

14 May, 2014

Build Globally

Posted by Mark Laing

Mark Laing

Hi there My latest webinar has just been posted on the Mentor.com web site. I have posted the link below to get you there directly. Being able to manufacture PCB products around the world provides a number of advantages to the manufacturer. The challenge is being able to move those products to different locations efficiently even if the lines are the same, never mind if the lines are different machine

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30 Apr, 2014

Mark Laing

Hi there The Valor Process Preparation suite currently supports a large number of SMT, AOI, SPI, ICT, FPT and AXI machine models however there are always new machines coming to market that will need to be supported in the future. I would like to ask for your input on new machines or technologies that you are considering or have already committed to in your facilities. For low volume and high mix production,

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AXI Programming

17 Apr, 2014

Mark Laing

Hi there Great show this year in Las Vegas for Apex. Hall was full of exhibitors and the traffic was good on all days. One of our themes this year was reducing the chaos of all the many part and package libraries that are created and managed to support PCB manufacturing. I spoke with Andy Shaughnessy on the iConnect booth about this. Please click on the link below to view the interview. Please let me

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3 Apr, 2014

Mark Laing

Hi there It was a great three days in Las Vegas last week for the IPC Apex Trade Show. We met many new and existing customers at our booth. The attendance seemed to be higher than last year though I don’t know the official numbers. I presented at the PCB Designers Forum on the Monday morning on simplying all those part and package libraries that you need to manage. This was also one of the areas

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20 Mar, 2014

Michael Ford

At APEX this year, I will be presenting a poster in the poster session on Wednesday at 3pm , talking about counterfeit materials and the importance of traceability. The use of counterfeit materials can be a critical subject where safety critical products are concerned, or where brand integrity is important. Quality and environmental issues are also a likely consequence where materials have been used

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19 Mar, 2014

Come Talk With Us At APEX

Posted by Michael Ford

Michael Ford

APEX is in Las Vegas this year, a great place to have fun, and if you are so inclined, have a little bit of a flutter as we call it in the UK at the gaming tables. What is not so much fun however is the daily gamble that the majority of electronics manufacturing still seems to be taking. Chasing ever increasing demands from customers for higher mix, more product variations, shorter NPI time, more flexible

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27 Feb, 2014

Mark Laing

Hi there IPC Apex 2014 in Las Vegas is only a few weeks away, being the week of March 23rd. I'll be presenting at the PCB Designers Forum on the morning of Monday 23rd and then be attending the Exhibition for the following days at Booth 617. I hope you will be able to make the trip to Las Vegas and attend the show and the presentations. If so please stop by our booth and introduce yourself so we can

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10 Feb, 2014

Want To Be A Boy Racer?

Posted by Michael Ford

Michael Ford

In the UK, late in many evenings if you go to a large supermarket, you will see them in the car park. Boy racers gathered with their friends, showing off their cars. I remember my early cars, old rusty death traps which, nonetheless, I was proud of, even though they frequently they left me standing at the side of the road….in the rain….  I wish that I had the skills and confidence to be able to enhance

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21 Jan, 2014

Mark Laing

Hi there In previous postings I have asked about assembly variants and the management of the data associated with them. For this posting I am interested to hear about your feedback on a similar but different topic. This is particularly common in the automotive market but I suspect it occurs anywhere a single PCB design board supports many different variants and these need to be managed dynamically on

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Variant management

18 Dec, 2013

Mark Laing

Hi there We have just posted 12.0 Update 1 to SupportNet for those users who have already downloaded and installed 12.0 which came out a few weeks ago. This update includes the first release for the IPC 2581 Revision A format as a CAM reader in Process Preparation. Although not common, we have had some requests to support this format so we have released this now as part of the Process Preparation suite. For

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20 Nov, 2013

Productronica Was A Great Show

Posted by Mark Laing

Mark Laing

Hi there Productronica was a great show last week in Munich, Germany. We met a lot of existing and prospective people there. This gave us plenty of opportunity to discuss our latest software offerings, which were received very well, as well as getting new ideas for future releases. Furthermore, with so many of the PCB manufacturing vendors at the show, it was also an ideal time to discuss industry trends

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6 Nov, 2013

Mark Laing

Hi there I hinted a few weeks ago at new capability to reduce the programming time for AOI machines that we recently released in Valor MSS 11.3 Update 3 but I wanted to provide further details on this. With the introduction of an enhanced programming format for the Cyberoptics AOI machines, it has enabled the Valor MSS Process Preparation team to update the interface to this machine taking advantage

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5 Nov, 2013

Jay Gorajia

What if you had a tool that could prevent problems in your processes and products before they occur? Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA) is that tool.  FMEA is a formal process of identifying all the ways a process or product can fail, and then determining how to reduce or eliminate them. Product development groups and quality groups work tirelessly to identify ways their products and processes

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5 Nov, 2013

Michael Ford

You think that you have seen it all before, but you feel the need to go to a trade show, just in case there is something interesting, right? Technology continues to evolve, but we wish it would go faster. Mostly you see things like minor machine enhancements, that are probably not particularly relevant to most people, or, you see yet another solution claiming to be the “ultimate”, having been “re-engineered

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