Investment with key suppliers Juki and Heller ensures quality solution
Newbury, UK, March 2009… AWS Cemgraft – part of the AWS Group, one of the UK’s leading independent Electronic Manufacturing Solutions (EMS) providers – has recently invested to upgrade its surface mount production line to handle large boards. In response to an enquiry from a leading industrial computer manufacturer, Cemgraft worked with key suppliers including surface mount assembly equipment maker, Juki Automation Systems and reflow oven manufacturer, Heller Industries supplier by ZEN Production Equipment to develop its automated line be able to handle boards measuring 663x145mm. Previously, the longest board that could be handled was 510mm.
Explains Cemgraft Operations Director, Jamie Maughan: “We try to work with our customers to ensure that their boards can be made on our automated production lines, rather than using batch production which is slower and more expensive. Sometimes, large boards can be accommodated by grouping all the surface mount components at one end of the board. However, in this case there was a high concentration of SMDs – BGAs, QFPs etc – all across the length of the board.”
Rather than risk losing a valuable long term customer or investing in new equipment, AWS Cemgraft spoke to its equipment suppliers to see if the extra-size board could be accommodated. By changing the software and altering some mechanical hard stops, Juki modified its KE-2060RE high speed fine pitch assembly machine to enable it to handle boards up to 680mm in length. The Heller reflow ovens were also able to be profiled with a suitable temperature profile, and screen printing equipment enhanced ensuring that Cemgraft can offer a full production process. Equally important is changeover time, which has been kept to just 20 minutes.
Adds Maughan: “Although we have a very efficient Fast Track process, mainly for prototype board assembly, here at Cemgraft which includes manual batch assembly work, 99 per cent of our production is fully automated. This ensures high quality and minimises costs. We are happy that by working with our equipment partners we have been able to extend our capabilities to handle larger boards for our customers.”
For more information go to www.awselectronicsgroup.com
About AWS Group
The AWS Electronics Group is one of the UK’s leading Specialist Electronics Manufacturing Solutions (EMS) providers, offering services for the whole electronic product life cycle from design through manufacture, to contract service and repair.
The Group operates through four UK based centres of excellence,
– AWS Cemgraft (Newbury) providing Surface Mount Technology and rapid prototyping,
– AWS Electronics (Newcastle-under-Lyme and Stone) undertaking full turnkey supply of complex assembled units and cabinets which is also supported by a cable/harness assembly unit
– AWS Jantec (Bedford) Whole life support and repairs.
Supporting this is AWS Slovakia (Namestovo) a low cost electronics manufacturing Production facility.
AWS Electronics Group has grown rapidly by responding to customer needs and providing specialist support when required. The Group brings together the high level technical capabilities and leading edge production technologies that are normally associated with multinationals, with an approach to customer service that is based on partnership and personal service.
AWS customers enjoy the benefits of dedicated account support teams who seek to fully understand the customers’ business and products to optimise delivery of EMS solutions that are both flexible and cost effective.
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