M Squared Electronics - Quote Details

By: Mark Robinson
Request a QuoteThis is the first in a series of white papers intended to inform potential customers of M Squared Electronics as to the best way to interface with us. They will allow your company to gain the greatest benefits when utilizing our contracting and Electronics design services.

This paper will take you through the steps necessary to obtain a valid price quote for your electronics design and assembly. After reading the paper, feel free to call us to discuss the specifics of your products and any special considerations not covered here. We can offer many different service options for manufacturing your product. These include:

    • Assembly (both printed circuits and cable/wiring harnesses)
    • Parts procurement
    • Testing
    • Electronics Design (hardware and/or software)

Call us to discuss your needs and we will be glad to assist you.
We look forward to hearing from you.

Over the years, we found that the single item that causes the most problems in obtaining an accurate price quote for electronics assemblies, is the lack of clear, correct, and complete documentation. Time spent providing good documentation will pay dividends to all involved in the quotation process. If the documentation is unclear, many questions will be required to clear up inconsistencies. Worse yet, it can result in incorrect pricing. This can turn the quotation process into a very frustrating affair for both parties. With this in mind, here are the characteristics of an ideal documentation package.

You should provide a complete and up to date bill of materials for your assemblies.  The bill should contain, the part manufacturer, manufacturer part number, part description, quantity, and reference designators.  Additional details that can be helpful are a line item number (this allows quick reference when any questions arise), and any in-house part numbers.  Note if there are any critical items that may not be substituted.  Second sources for non-critical parts are also helpful. If a part is an industry standard and/or generic, use this part number and “ ANY “ as the part manufacturer. This allows us to get the lowest pricing and the best availability for these "jelly bean" parts. For cable and wire harnesses, a wire chart listing terminals, connectors, wire color, gauge, and length are required.  If possible, a tested and up to date sample of the complete assembly should be provided. This allows us to see how the unit will be assembled and if any special operations are required. Along with this, a 1:1 or 2:1 assembly print is very helpful. In the case of printed circuit boards, this can be as simple as print/plot of the PCB silkscreen layer.

Provide any ECN/ECO’s that could be helpful, as well as any special assembly instructions that may not be obvious. If there are cuts and jumpers required on a printed circuit board, make sure they are on the sample and documented in ECN/ECO’s. If testing is required, a detailed test procedure and fixture is required. Note that M Squared, can develop custom test procedures and fixtures for your product. If we will be responsible for printed circuit board fabrication, a complete set of artwork documentation is needed. This includes all circuit layers, silkscreen solder mask, drill, and fabrication drawings. Even better, would be a complete set of Gerber(c), Excellon(c), or similar format files. If the board is already tooled, provide us with the name and address of the PCB vendor.

Make us aware if the design has special cleaning or handling issues due to the use of fragile parts, high voltage sections, or very high impedance’s. Contact us in advance to discuss the correct procedures to insure that the finished product will function properly. These types of operations can have a large impact on cost.