PCBs or printed circuit boards are the most crucial part of electronics today. They are used in almost all electronic devices such as mobile phones, laptops, etc. We need them in almost every project whether it’s a small project for hobbyists or a bigger industry-level project. PCB facilitates the formation of soldered boards for designed circuits that provide electrical connections through conducting pathways along with the needed mechanical support. PCB designing can be achieved both manually and automatically according to the convenience and needs of the user. However, the manufacturing of PCBs is an intricate process and requires skilled professionals. This is where fabrication houses come into the picture.
One such fabrication house where you can get your PCBs manufactured with excellent services and quality is PCBWay. They produce high-quality PCBs as per the specifications given by the customer.
Let me take you through the process right from submitting your designs and specifications to getting the PCBs delivered at your doorstep. It is going to be a cakewalk for you because they literally take care of everything and all you have to do is provide your designs.
Pre-requisites to place your PCBs order
Getting started with the process, be ready with your Gerber files, centroid files, and BOM spreadsheet.
- To generate Gerber files (ASCII vector format files), you can use software such as Eagle CAD or any other software that meets your requirements.
- The centroid files are used to provide specifications related to the position of the components on your PCB. PCBWay provides us with a feature of components mounted on both sides of the PCB.
- BOM or bill of materials has to be provided in accordance with the guidelines given by PCBWay and the file needs to be in xsls format.
Now that we’re done with all the pre-requisite files that we will be required to upload while ordering our PCBs, let’s dive straight into what the process and interface at PCBWay look like.
Step 1 – Submitting your designs for your PCBs
In order to submit your design, the first step is to create an account with PCBWay. After logging in from your account, visit PCB Instant quote tab on the top of the home page. The PCB specification selection section looks like in the picture below.
Step 2 – PCB Assembly
After filling out the necessary details, there are some add-ons available such as SMD-stencil and Assembly service. If you want to opt for any of them, go to the options available right beneath the PCB specification selection tab. After you’re done, select Calculate and it will provide you with an estimated cost for your order which is just an approximation and actual costs will be provided later via email based on the outsourcing of the components. The assembly service section looks like as shown in the picture given below-
Step 3 – Uploading Gerber and centroid files
After adding your order to the cart, you will be taken to a page that allows you to upload the pre-requisite files i.e. the Gerber files, the centroid files, and the BOM spreadsheet in zipped formats.
Step 4 – PCBWay will review your order
In this step, PCBWay professionals will check if the Gerber and centroid files uploaded by you are correct or not. If there’s any discrepancy, they’ll contact you to correct them and upload the files again via email. In this phase, they also send you an amended BOM which contains details about the parts and the manufacturer along with the prize. Once you agree to that, a PayPal bill is sent to you and after making the payment, just sit back, relax and wait for your order to arrive.
Why choose PCBWay for your PCBs?
- High-quality PCBs delivered at your doorstep – PCBWay has strict testing protocols and the boards are put to several tests using high tech equipment such as X-ray inspection machine, flying probe tester, automated optical inspection, etc.
- No minimum order requirement – There’s no limit to what minimum pieces you may order that saves a lot of money for most other fab houses only take bulk orders and customers often have to pay for extra pieces that are not even needed.
- Low costs – PCBWay delivers PCBs at very fair and nominal prices, the structure of which is completely transparent.
- Free DFM – They provide all their customers with a free engineering file review service from their technicians before the payment is made.
- Early shipping and deliveries – They usually ship your order in a few days as soon as it is ready. They work in three shifts to ensure timely deliveries.
- Returnable and refundable – If any of your boards is found defective due to their fault, they’re ready to send you the refund for the same in your PCBWay account which can be used later for future purchases.
- 24×7 customer services – Customer service executives are always available to assist you with any difficulty that you face along the process and provide satisfactory measures for the same.
Below are some of the best PCB designs of PCBWAY:
Click on the link below to check out article about Operational Amplifier Basics with 6 Circuit Examples