Elements of a Complete Technical Data Package

What is a complete Technical Data Package needed for your quote and subsequent fabrication and build?

New customers often ask me what we need to effectively quote and build their products. While we have the obvious as listed here 1 through 4, the fifth item, ASCII design data,  are what really allow the product move through our facility with efficiency and accuracy. Please note that providing the ASCII file at the time of the quote will greatly affect the quoted NRE price of the build as it eliminates the time and cost of manually programming the machines and producing manually produced placement aids/drawings.  As critical to the build documentation and data are the Terms and Conditions of the customer in the contract, as well as applicable Quality Notes and Provisions. It is important that these items are available, reviewed and addressed when we are producing a quotation.

Here is the list of items in a complete data package:

1)      Bill of Material (BOM)

2)      Assembly Drawing

3)      Fabrication Drawing (used to do incoming inspection on your PWB)

4)      Gerber files

5)      ASCII Output file(s)*

6)     Customer Terms & Conditions

7)     Quality Notes / Provisions

*When we request the ASCII design files, very often the reply is “I already sent you the gerbers”. Well, that’s not what we’re referring to . The ASCII design file(s) are an output file or file set that the PCB designer exports from his layout software (Altium, PADS,Mentor), that contains a collection of smart data we use to CAM our equipment and visual aid drawings. This ASCII design file includes the XY coordinates of each component, the geometries of the component, and if the designer uses a structured library that generates the BOM, it will have a package and component part number. This is key since CircuitCAM merges the component designators with the package and part number. There is no manual entry of information. Product drawings and automated equipment is programmed is verbatim to your design and bill of material. To identify what ASCII file we need from each design platform  and how to export the file, click ” Aegis CAD Import Guide