Low cost automatic pick and place| 18 February, 2010
First post here. I am completely new to smt as well. We are a small startup and would like improve our in-house smt assembly capability from manual assembly.
We are looking at small production runs, initially about a total of 200 boards a month consisting of a mix of 3-5 different boards, ranging between 20 and 120 components per board and one board having a couple possible configurations. We would also be using this for prototype assembly. Component sizes down to 0603 necessary, 0402 desired, but not critical.
We want to go to automatic pick and place, and possibly automatic solder paste dispensing, but need something for a very limited budget. We are targeting in the $10k range. With solder dispensing, a couple k more could probably be justified. We also don't want something that is completely out of date, such that it would be unreliable, impossible to upgrade and use, and difficult to get parts for and maintain. So ideally, we would like a new, slow, but reasonably accurate and reliable machine. But used, not too old machinery would be ok too. But I have had a hard time finding such equipment.
What is out there in this range? Any suggestions? Experience with the machines would be great too.