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An "Interesting" JLCPCB Assembly "Feature"

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Visitor

Well-Known Member
I'm working on a circuit board design for my own use. Since it will have a pretty limited application, I decided to go with the QTY 2 assembly option instead of 10. This board has 5 ICs from the extended list, as expensive as $4 each.

I was kind of shocked when I submitted my files, and the cost to build two boards was over $100. I looked through the BOM, and one line totaled almost $40. Huh? Reading the fine print, there were minimum quantity requirements of 5 or 10 pieces for some of the extended parts.

Ok, so what's the cost to make 10 boards? Not quite $10 more! This is a no-brainer. For $10 more, I'll get 10 boards instead of two, and I'll have some to share if somebody is interested.

This will only be the situation if some relatively costly extended components are used.
JLC Assembly Quirk.jpg
 

DerStrom8

Super Moderator
This is pretty typical of board fab/assembly houses. The amount of time it takes to put reels of components on the pick and place machine and program in the XY files, etc. is not much different whether you do two boards or 10 boards. In many cases it is actually less convenient to do low volume because you have to load up the P&P machines and promptly unload them after 2 boards are assembled. That wastes quite a bit of time, so the price is not reduced.
 

Visitor

Well-Known Member
I'm definitely not complaining about the cost of the service, which is a fraction of what most places charge.

The basic charge for assembly is $13.50, which covers the cost of producing the circuit boards and stencil and engineering sevices for programming the pick&place machines and etc. If you ordered the boards and stencil to diy, you'd be out-of-pocket $12.

Beyond that, if you select components from their huge "basic" collection which covers the most commonly used parts, you only pay the LCSC price for the components. Components in the basic group are always loaded on row after row of p&p machines.

If you want to use components from the "extended" group, there's a $3 setup fee to load it into a p&p machine which you pay in addition to the component cost.

If you use components not included in their library, which is extensive, your boards will arrive with an empty, virgin footprint – they cut the solder paste stencil only for the parts they will install.

It's a remarkable service for what it is (SMT parts only, selected from their library, installed on one side of the board only, in your hands in about a week from the time of order), and far cheaper/easier/faster than traditional turnkey or "you supply the parts" assembly services.
 

DerStrom8

Super Moderator
I wholeheartedly agree, JLC has continued to impress me, both personally and professionally.
 
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