What information should the production documentation contain?

Companies providing EMS services - assembling electronics, PCB manufacturers or producing cable harnesses, fulfil the orders of their clients. Then, the selection of components and assembly method are issues dependent on the individual expectations of the customer. To make the production run quickly and efficiently, one must take care of several issues. The most important of these is the production documentation that will allow you to properly complete the order. What information should the ordering parties place when providing the contractor with such documentation?

The list of materials is the basis

Each production documentation should describe in detail all materials needed to assemble the ordered product. The specialist name used in the industry is BOM, or Bill of Materials. The list is usually prepared in a spreadsheet, which greatly facilitates entering data into the contractor's system. The list of materials includes not only components for the PCB, but also assembly products, e.g. glue, silicone, fuses, spacers and connectors. For individual components, provide all information that is useful for the explicit specification of the material-namely;  the designation of the components to be included on the board, component type, size and type of housing, manufacturer's name, MPN number, tolerance, etc. The idea is to minimize the risk of error or wrong selection of electronic components that will fail to meet the client's expectations after they have been installed.



PCB documentation - 'Gerbery'

The customer also provides detailed PCB documentation in the form of "Gerber" files, which allows you to order a PCB from the PCB manufacturer. This also provides information on drilling and grommets between individual layers. Production documentation includes a list of all technologies that must be used in order to create the target product. Of course, you should consider the tools offered by the manufacturer. This section of the documentation should include, among others: tile and panel dimensions, laminate layer thickness, solder mask colour, copper thickness, coating type and description colour.

P&P assembly documentation

P&P documentation allows the contractor to program an SMT rope. It shows, among other things, how individual elements are arranged on the PCB.

Test documentation and additional production requirements

If the customer wants to receive a functional finished product and avoid problems related to the nonfunctional product, he should prepare test documentation or commission it to the contractor. Experienced contractors are often able to prepare

methods and ways of testing themselves, but they need guidelines from the product's designer in order to do that. The situation looks the same as far as non-standard processes required during the production of the product go. We are talking here about procedures such as components glueing, varnishing or resin pouring.

Files delivered in the correct format

Manufacturers often make clear requirements available to customers that tell you what the full production documentation should look like. Factories have an automated production line that requires diagrams and files in specific formats. If you do not have a format supported by the manufacturer, you will need to convert them.

For what purpose do we prepare production documentation?

The production of electronic circuits is a very complex and complicated process. A range of information is needed to get the expected product. The customer's task is to provide the necessary information needed at each stage of PCB assembly. The customer may also ask for the use of appropriate quality control tools to obtain a guarantee that the manufactured product will be of high quality and durability.


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