Questions to Ask When Working with a PCB Fabrication Company


pcb fabrication

Working with a printed circuit board (PCB) fabrication company can be a great and efficient means of having circuit boards mass produced and at maximum profit. However, with so many different companies out there offering pcb fabrication and similar services, it's important for all circuit board designers to find the company that best suits their needs and budgets. Specifically, there are a few questions that should be asked to any prospective fabrication company in order to narrow down one's options and ultimately make the right decision.

pcb fabrication

Is There an Order Minimum? Depending on the size of the company the specific project, some fabrication companies will require a certain order minimum. This is to help ensure that they turn a profit, as fabricating a small number of printer circuit boards is a much more expensive per-unit cost than if they were to fabricate hundreds or even thousands of the same circuit board. Therefore, it's important to ask this question up-front--especially for those who are looking to place a small order or prototype order.

How Secure Are Files When They're Sent Over? PCB designers spend a great deal of time coming up with the designs for their boards, so it's important that their designs are as safe and secure as possible when they're sent over to the fabrication company. For added peace of mind, it's a good idea to ask a company representative about the security measures taken to ensure that their design files are safe. If the employee doesn't seem to have a straight, confident answer, then this may be a sign that it's best to move on to other fabrication companies.

pcb fabrication

Which Factors Go Into Calculating Costs? Finally, if budget is a concern, it's always a good idea to find out exactly which factors go into determining the overall cost of the project. Often times, the most influential factors include the number of PCBs ordered, the number of layers needed, the sizes of the holes that need to be drilled, and the specific type of laminate used on the board itself. By being aware of the factors determining cost, it may be possible to save money by designing the board accordingly. With so much to consider before hiring a PCB fabrication company, it's a good idea to start by asking these questions. Doing so can help immensely when it comes tie to make a decision.