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tape splicing pros and cons

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Hello all, I am looking for a general opinion on splicing t... - Sep 20, 2005 by gregp  

#36730

tape splicing pros and cons | 20 September, 2005

Hello all, I am looking for a general opinion on splicing tapes. It has always been my opinion that splicing was an after thought for the machines that did not allow feeder removal and replacement during machine operation. If the machine has the ability to recognize that a feeder has been removed and dynamically re-optimize, isn't it easier and more efficient to remove the feeder and replenish it offline? What are the pros and cons to tape splicing (tape feeder jams, wrong part, etc.). Thanks for your responses...

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#36738

tape splicing pros and cons | 20 September, 2005

Some machines provide for replacing feeders while placing components.

Search the SMTnet Archives for background discussion on tape splicing, while you're waiting for others to respond.

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Rob

#36747

tape splicing pros and cons | 21 September, 2005

Hi Greg,

Remember, splicing isn't just for when components run out - it's also for when you have to pull a part reel from stock, swap it across machines with different feeders, or when the tape snaps.

Cheers,

Rob.

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#36756

tape splicing pros and cons | 21 September, 2005

Hi Rob,

I'm not sure I know what you mean. Are you referring to adding leaders to cut tapes in order to minimize component loss? Also, I've never heard of tapes snapping. Is this something you see regularly on a particular piece of equipment?

Thanks in advance for your reply...

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PWH

#36758

tape splicing pros and cons | 21 September, 2005

Splicing for us has been a rough go as we haven't really found a tool that works well/fast. We have a few different machines = different feeders. They all react different to a splicing "style". The best so far is a crimp tool that crimps a brass shim. You them add sticky tape sections to tie everything together. The most handy splicing item we use is lead extenders. We use them on all builds as we do small volume, high mix kits that are issued with some scrap added. Putting leaders on the component tape is simply for pulling cover tape and allows us to waste only a couple of parts during set-up. Some feeders jam when short leader tries to turn the corner to the exit end of the feeder. We apply the brass shim splices "over the top" of the parts strip to create a bridge to alleviate jamming. Works well for us. Machines with auto tape cutters (i.e. Universal HSP) are best in my opinion as empty tape jams during corner turning are non-existent.

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Rob

#36763

tape splicing pros and cons | 21 September, 2005

Hi Greg,

We've used lots of machines over the years & seen lots of different tape related issues - the main one being snap off of the cover tape, usually due to too much glue, over entusiastic heat seal, or a feeder requiring maintainance.

Also there are the low volume builds that require leader tape to reload the feeders (especially if you've been using agilis feeders & you're going over to another type of machine.

Also tape chewing has been evident - either through bad set up or worn feeder on a flex placer, or blunt chipshooter cutting blades.

We have never needed to splice in action, as on high volume jobs that are time critcal, you could run change over on the Fuji's.

Obviously not everyone has this, especially these days. On Flex/fine pitch placers we usually had a lot of spare feeder locations (due to the chipshooters handling the lions share) so we could load up extra feeders to handle reels running out, then do a pick from x feeder if no joy on x attempts.

How are you looking at approaching this?

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#36779

tape splicing pros and cons | 22 September, 2005

Hello Rob, We have reel hangers on our feeders as opposed to "buckets". The reels cannot be removed while the feeder is mounted to the machine. Thus splicing is not currently an option. As mentioned above, we felt that it is easier to remove the feeder from the machine, bring it to the feeder loading station and replace the reel there. The machine continues to run without that part number and will place those parts when the new reel is re-introduced to the machine. Our China distributor is asking for an option for splicing tapes. I think it is a mindset that will be hard to change. I'm just wondering if I am missing something regarding tape splicing. Regards, Greg

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Rob

#36785

tape splicing pros and cons | 22 September, 2005

Cheers Greg,

It's unusual to have such direct access to manufacturers & their opinions.

I'll tell you what really does get us, and splicing doesn't work well on these occaisions - big SMD connectors, requiring deep pocket feeders. You only get max a couple of 100 on a reel, so in high volume you are always changing reels. We do get around it by using multiple feeders per machine, but it costs as the big feeders (72mm +) are not cheap.

How about a spare couple of slots at the end of the feeder bank where you can load in any replacement feeder when a part is running low? Then a small software patch to tell the machine to identify the feeder & to pick from there whilst the normal location is replenished? it will mess with the optimisation a little, but you never know.

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#36788

tape splicing pros and cons | 22 September, 2005

Thanks for the reply Rob, This we already do. The machine will pick from the most efficient available feeder (assuming multiples of the same part number)...so when you remove the primary it will seemlessly move to the next available. When you re-introduce the primary the machine will go back to picking from the primary. Regarding the deep pocket parts, could you do the splicing off line (before hand) and put the longer tape on a larger reel or homemade floor standing spool? This would eliminate the need for another feeder and splicing on the fly. I'm still waiting for someone to point out why splicing is a mindset that needs to be carried through on the current flex machines available today. There must be some small reasons? Regards, Greg

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Base

#36794

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 September, 2005

Hi All,

I think you're adressing this issue from the wrong angle: What I'm reading is an equipment vendor who has an idea about what the best way of working is (replace entire feeders), and a (potential) customer who thinks otherwise (splicing). There is no right or wrong here, each side has good reasons for their preference. So if I were you Greg, I would make a minor change to the feeder-design that enables both ways. You've gone the extra mile to tackle the software side of it and I can imagine the solution you offer is a winning argument, but I think the times have changed a bit. In 'the old days' the equipment vendor 'dictated' the way of working by the way his machines are designed. Nowadays the industry has matured and roles are reversed: the user dictates what the vendor should build. So if the splicing request doesn't hurt your concept and it is not too costly to develop: why not build it and have it both ways!

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Rob

#36798

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 September, 2005

Hi Greg,

A larger floor standing spool would seem a good way to go, but on the larger plastic tapes, trying to accurately join them to feed through without jamming or coming apart is a total pain.

Cheers,

Rob

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#36804

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 September, 2005

Base, You are absolutely correct. This is what I intend to do. In fact, our feeders at one time had reel hangers that would allow for reel removal and thus splicing. Sometimes it is frustrating when people are set in their ways and won't consider change because they aren't aware of the advantages of other methods. But with the option to splice or not to splice, the end user can make their own choice. As a side note, our 8mm feeders have an option for a large reel hanger (13 inch dia.) and a tether on the cover tape take up spool to minimize the component loss without a cover tape leader. We have high capacity feeder banks to allow for extra lanes of the high runners. These things help to reduce the need for splicing. But our current feeders do not have pinch roller style cover tape removal mechanisms. Without them you can splice a couple of 7" reels but the cover tape spool will then fill up and have to be emptied. So every other reel you will have to slide the feeder back 6" or so to empty it (disengaged but still on the machine). Is this a major drawback in your opinion? I still welcome more input on this subject (and splice reliability with pinch roller mechanisms). Regards, Greg

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Base

#36808

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 September, 2005

Hey Rob,

I've seen operators splicing large tapes not just by sticking them together with a piece of splicing-tape, but additionally they overlap the tapes and (forcefully) insert the last pocket of the leaving reel into the first (empty) pocket of the entering reel. They say this overlapping splice works better than the regular splice. Have similar experiences?

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Base

#36809

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 September, 2005

Hey Greg,

As you already pointed out yourself: unless you can do away with covertape pickup-spools (or can figure out a way to empty them without loosing tension on the covertape) your feeders will not be suitable for several consecutive splices.

Since I'm not a Contact user it is hard for me to say if sliding a feeder back for cover-tape removal is a drawback. I guess it at least reduces refill-time compared to taking the feeder completely offline and refilling it at a loading station, provided you still have decent access to the feeder if it remains on the machine.

I think one of the reasons people are reluctant to pull out a feeder from a running machine is the risk of damaging the nozzle in case the machine was just picking from that feeder. (I can remeber some remarks made in several Mydata threads about pulling out magazines while the machine was picking from them). Splicing doesn't have this risk because it doesn't affect the pick-position. Maybe that's the reason...?

Base

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#36813

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 September, 2005

On our machines, the feeder release latch is designed such that the feeder goes offline (machine will not pick from it) before you can actually remove the feeder. This makes it virtually impossible to damage a nozzle or spindle. I'm not sure about the newer MyData machines but I remember reading about head damage done while removing magazines a while back. The pinch roller is probably required for splicing applications but you lose the cover tape tether that minimizes component loss when a cover tape leader is short or nonexistent (common with digi-key components commonly used for prototype or low volume applications). Oh well, I guess you can't have it all. Flexibility, splicing, low cost--pick two. Ciao, Greg

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Rob

#36814

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 September, 2005

Thanks Base,

Yes, we did use the overlap method but we still have problems. Thankfully that product is now obsolete, so until next time....

Cheers,

Rob.

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Richard Robins-Bird

#42231

tape splicing pros and cons | 16 June, 2006

Not all splicing tapes require the use of specialist tooling or splicing plates to make a join. Please see wwww.fujismt.com where a complete range of SMT splicing tapes (Joint Tapes) can be found for use with chip mounters such as Assembleon, Europlacer, Fuji Machine NXT, iPulse, Juki, Panasonic (complete range for CM, MSF,MCF) series Siemens, Tenryu, Yamaha, etc., Joint Tapes such as FC8A, FC8B and FC1272B have built in guides, are self-adhesive and require no tooling or splicing plates. They are quick and easy to use and in widespread use throughout Europe and USA.

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#42405

tape splicing pros and cons | 23 June, 2006

Dear Greg and PWH,

I see from your comments above, that you are still unsure whether splicing is for you, and mention that you have yet to find a "good splice tool." QTEK Manufacturing Ltd. based in Ireland, Mexico and Hungary provide a unique tool to use with all our splicing products, and we provide single splice and double splice tape such as those discussed above. Feel free to check out our website http://www.qtek.com or to contact me, Kevin De Barra, directly at kdebarra@qtek.com for more product information or a free sample of QTEK Splice Tapes.

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Richard Robins-Bird

#43289

tape splicing pros and cons | 14 August, 2006

Visit http://www.fujismt.com

Most of our splicing tapes do not require specialist tooling or splicing plates.

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