TVM920 Pick and Place Machine

Elemental Electronics · June 20, 2018

Our TVM920

01. Setup

Our TVM920 setup consists of the machine with an FRL unit to ensure the air pressure isn’t higher than 5 bar. The machine sits on a sturdy bench, this is important as the machine can “wobble” when placing components at higher speeds.

02. Run Speed

We found our optimal running speed is around the following, you can see some of the boards we assembled against there PnP time (note this is just the PnP of parts and not reflow time etc).

Board Components Approx PnP Time
Image Description ~200 10 minutes
Image Description ~180 5 minutes/side

03. Cut Tapes, Tubes and Bulk Packaging

Our machine is used to run prototypes (not high volume) and low volume sourcing means that some components come on cut-tape, tubes or bulk packaging. We’ve tried in the past to use re-reeling services from digikey and element14 etc, however we found that the metal joiner/splive that connects the component cut-tape to the cut-tape extender tends to get caught in the pneumatic feeders fairly easily.

04. Cut-Tape Holders

For 8mm cut tapes we 3D printed the following part. The holder is capable of holding ~ 100mm length of cut-tape, and the idea behind the design was to keep it as modular as possible. This meant we could always add extra cut tape lengths when needed.

Image Description

05. Custom 3D Printed IC Tray

What was just as useful for us was to print a custom tray to suit each PCB we were assembling. For example, one of our PCB’s has the following components:

  • TQFP48 x 1
  • SOT-23 x 6
  • SOIC8 x 4
  • SOT-223 x 1
  • MSOP-10 x 3
  • TSSOP-16 x 1

Image Description

For the above components (all active btw) we 3D printed an IC tray that fits the exact quantity required. The assembler would then manually load the IC tray with the corresponding components and place it into the machine prior to assembling a board. Once the board is complete we then reload the tray. It might seem like a tedious process but for sample qty’s and low volume we find it works really well.

If your interested in the 3D Step files for the 8mm cut-tape please feel free to contact us, and don’t forget to leave a comment below.

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