Tips to Reduce PCB Lead Time
Lead time is always a concern for anybody selling product. Short lead time gives you advantage on the competition because a client always prefer to be delivered quickly. Below are a few tips about how you can attempt to reduce lead time when manufacturing PCBs in China.
Increase Parts Production
If you are manufacturing plastic or metal parts and that your parts are made with a tooling, you can simply increase the output of a production by increasing the number of cavities into your tooling.
For example, if you are performing injection molding with plastic part, then producing 4 parts instead of only one at each shot made by the plastic press will make you save a lot of time on production lead time (it will also diminished the unit cost of the produced part as you reduce the amount of time needed to produce individual parts). This is also true for metal sheet stamping and any other processes requiring machine with a tool.
Run Several Production Lines Simultaneously
A good way to reduce lead time is to run several production lines in the same time to spread the work in process on several lines. In this case, you need to identify which process is the bottleneck and then you need to work on it to ask yourself how you can increase throughput about this process.
In China, when a factory is overloaded and doesn't have enough production capacity, quite often they would subcontract the production to another factory in parallel. To avoid this situation, you should make sure the factory you cooperated is not overloaded and have enough production capacity, or products you got may be not exactly the same.
To be continued…