Box-build, which is also referred to as systems integration, is an assembly work other than a printed circuit board (PCB) production. It is an electromechanical assembly process, which includes enclosure fabrication
(plastic or metal), installation and routing of cabling or wire harnesses, and installation of sub-assemblies
and components. The box build can mean a PCB Assembly (PCBA) in a big cabinet full of wires, or a small
enclosure, or a complex fully integrated electro-mechanical system with electronics and other peripheral devices.
Box Build Assembly Services include:
- System Level Assembly
- Product Assembly
- Sub-Level Product Assembly
- Packaging & Labeling
- Software Loading and Product Configuration
If you are considering a box build assembly process, the following are some of the items that you should keep in mind.
- Bill of Materials (BOM): This is a very important requirement for any Electronic Manufacturing Services (EMS) provider. This helps them get an idea of all the key components and what is required and also
clearly mentions the materials to be sourced by the EMS provider and or the customer. As the customer,
you should decide whether you want to define the smaller items, such as tie wraps, adhesives, nuts and bolts,
heat shrink, washers, and so on. The same is applicable for wires and their identifiers. While these are
considered as consumables, you should always remember that they still have a price and need procuring and
assembly. Thus, they must be defined to avoid unexpected production delays and cost boosters. In the end,
the more information you have, the more accurate the quote is going to be.
- Assembly: If possible, you should provide 3D CAD models, top assembly PDF drawing, and bottom assembly PDF drawing. This helps to visualize the final product. There are a number of CAD packages that offer free
drawing viewers. A layout drawing with the information of key components should be included.
- Sample Unit: A sample unit is always helpful and can be the key source of data if the drawings are unfinished. In this situation, you will certainly need a EMS (electronic Manufacturing Service) provider that can plan and
create the drawings for you to guarantee reliable builds.
- Dimensions: You should always inform the EMS provider about the size and weight of the unit. This is essentialnot only for shipping, but also handling and storage throughout the complete build process. You should also
consider and decide how you need the completed product to be packed and transported.
- Testing: In case of electrical systems, you should specify basic electrical safety testing, such as earth bond and flash tests. Are you willing to perform certain functional testing, or factory acceptance testing prior
to shipment to an end customer? Or just the visual inspection sufficient? To answer these questions, you should
take advice from EMS provider if necessary, as they will have the proper knowledge and good experience of what