SMT Equipment List for Your New SMT Manufacturing

SMT Equipment List for Your New SMT Manufacturing

How to Reflow Solder Double Sided PCB? Reading SMT Equipment List for Your New SMT Manufacturing 7 minutes

Whether you are using SMT equipment for the first time to build final products in-house or expanding your new SMT production line, this article will help you get started and quickly evaluate the equipment you need.


The Surface Mount Technology (SMT) line, also known as the Surface Mount Assembly line or Surface Mount Production line, is a manufacturing process used in the electronics industry to assemble electronic components onto printed circuit boards (PCBs).


Here the 8 types SMT machines for the full SMT line.

* The final production capacity is subject to the actual PCB size and the number of components per circuit board. The above data are calculated based on a PCB width 30CM and 200 components per board.

1. Pick and Place Machine

The SMT pick and place machine, also known as chip mounter, plays a crucial role in the Surface Mount Technology (SMT) production line. It is responsible for accurately placing surface-mount devices (SMDs) onto printed circuit boards (PCBs). – making sure all components are perfectly aligned and ready to be soldered together.


There are various types of placement machines available on the market, ranging from compact desktop models with 2 or 4 heads, ideal for prototyping and small-scale production, to larger, more advanced production line models with 6 or 8 heads designed for high-volume manufacturing. Additionally, some high-end models feature 10 or more heads, offering even greater efficiency and throughput. These machines are meticulously developed and designed by manufacturers to cater to diverse market demands, ensuring that there are suitable options for businesses of all sizes and production needs.


Well-known brands of placement machines, such as Samsung, Hanwha, and JUKI, often come with high price tags that can be prohibitive for newcomers. However, as the world's largest manufacturing nation, China has seen significant advancements in the technology of its domestically-produced placement machines in recent years. Over the past decade, these machines have demonstrated exceptional stability and reliability in operation. Consequently, Chinese-made placement machines now offer an outstanding cost-performance ratio, making them the most viable and economical choice for new factories seeking to balance quality and affordability.


The first SMT machine for new factory, I recommend a 6 heads pick and palce machine PPM-C400GS+. As production capacity demands increase, new 6-head or 8-head placement machine can be seamlessly integrated into the existing production line to enhance efficiency and throughput, as illustrated in the figure below. This addition allows for greater flexibility and scalability, ensuring that the production process can adapt to higher volumes without compromising on quality or speed.


2.Reflow Oven 

The reflow oven is another critical component in the SMT production line. Its primary role is to permanently solder the placed surface-mount devices (SMDs) onto the printed circuit board (PCB).


Long heating zone reflow soldering machine provide more precise control over temperature profiles. With extended zones, the heating and cooling phases can be more gradually adjusted, reducing thermal stress on components and PCBs. The extended length allows for a more gradual ramp-up and ramp-down of temperatures, which helps in achieving better solder joint quality. I recommend a 12 zones reflow oven RF-C1235C.


3. Solder Paste Printing Machine 

For a new factory, I suggest to purchase a semi-automatic solder paste printing machine PTR-B500. You just place the circuit board manually on the platform, and the scraper on the machine will automatically apply the solder paste onto the circuit board. It takes about 10 seconds to complete the printing task of a circuit board. The production capacity is 360 boards per hour, I think it’s enough for the starter. Of course, if your company needs a completely intelligent production line that requires no hands, then purchase a fully automatic solder paste printing machine. Although from an investment perspective, I don’t think it’s cost-effective. You purchased an expensive equipment but rarely used it, this resulted in a low return on investment (ROI) due to underutilization. The equipment remained idle most of the time, leading to wasted resources and inefficient capital allocation.


4. AOI (Automated Optical Inspection)


AOI  plays a crucial role in the SMT production line. Its primary function is to inspect printed circuit boards (PCBs) for defects and anomalies after the soldering process.


AOI systems inspect PCBs for various defects, including missing components, misaligned components, soldering defects (such as insufficient solder, solder bridges, or solder shorts), polarity issues, and foreign objects. By identifying these defects early in the process, AOI helps ensure that only high-quality boards proceed to further stages of assembly. Recommend offline AOI ZB-500A


5. Solder Paste Mixer 

Solder paste is a mixture of tiny solder particles, flux, and other additives. To ensure proper application and solder joint quality, it's essential that this mixture is uniform. The solder paste mixer mixes the components thoroughly to achieve a consistent viscosity and particle distribution. By ensuring the solder paste is properly mixed, the solder paste mixer contributes to the overall quality control of the SMT production process. Consistent solder paste quality leads to more reliable solder joints and reduces the likelihood of defects in the finished PCBs. Best Solder Paste Mixer MIX-A500


6. PCB Handling Machines 

PCB handling machines include PCB loader and unloader, and conveyor. These machines are responsible for automating the movement and management of PCBs, facilitating efficient assembly processes, and ensuring high-quality output.


PCB Loading and Unloading: The handling machine typically handles the loading of bare PCBs onto the assembly line at the beginning of the process and unloading of finished PCBs at the end. This automation reduces manual handling, minimizes the risk of damage to delicate components, and improves overall efficiency.


Transportation Between Stations(PCB Conveyors): In a typical SMT production line, PCBs undergo various assembly processes at different stations, such as solder paste application, component placement, soldering, inspection, and testing. The handling machine transports PCBs between these stations seamlessly, ensuring that they move through the assembly line in a timely manner.


All listed above, the assembly capacity of circuit boards largely depends on the placement speed of the pick-and-place machine. When establishing a new factory for the first time, it is advisable to start with the purchase of a single placement machine. As production demands grow, you can gradually scale up by adding one or two additional placement machines to accommodate the increased capacity requirements. This phased approach allows for flexible expansion and efficient utilization of resources, ensuring that the production line can adapt to changing market demands and achieve optimal performance over time. 


If you are planning to build a factory in the near future, we would be delighted to assist you.  At ITECH, we simplify this entire process, selling direct with all prices available to view online and full equipment support. Start PCB or SMT Assembly at Your Facility Without the Hassle, Contact Us Now. :”)