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Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders

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#85224

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 16 July, 2020

I am trying to understand why most manufacturers don't offer mechanical feeders anymore? I find them easier to use, easier to maintain/fix. Most importantly they are A LOT cheaper! Electronic feeders are very expensive especially when you need 100+ feeders. When I look at new SMT pick place machines they force you to upgrade from mechanical feeders. I think that's where manufacturers make their killing. Is there any manufacturer that still uses mechanical feeders other than China?

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#85228

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 17 July, 2020

Electronic feeders are faster, more accurate & fully programmable. Potentially (although they don't always make it possible) they mean you don't need dedicated feeders for 2mm pitch or at the other end can do 4,8,12&16mm using the same unit. The feeders might be cheap arguably compressed air is not.

There was a special offer in the UK for Hanwha machines in June, the packages being offered came with pneumatic feeders. I can only assume this means they will happily still sell you those feeders unless the distributor was sourcing knockoffs to keep the price super juicy. I'm sure the datasheets for Yamaha suggest they also still take older feeders on new machines and I would think that means they still sell them too.

I like what electronic intelligent feeders bring to the table, I wouldn't have it any other way. I would quite like them to be cheaper tho' some definite gouging going on.

If you want a true example of a killing tho' I think ASM is where you need to look, every new range or sub-family of machines seems have its own exclusive feeder range. When you upgrade you have to change the lot.

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#85240

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 20 July, 2020

Just purchased a new KE3020 from Juki with mechanical feeders. They do offer electronic feeders but did not try to push them on us, they are not cheap.

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#85252

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 21 July, 2020

As part of the evolution, electronic feeder has a lot of advantages - precision, programming and speed. If you build low volume easy boards you can probably stick with the mechanical feeders. For challenge and volume, I would suggest you move on to the electric feeder.

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#85257

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 21 July, 2020

I would have thought the other way. We are currently using 2 CP642s for high volume and they are doing an excellent job. Electronic feeders are too expensive and we don't see any benefit for that expense. I imagine it makes sense for some applications but it seems overkill for others.

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#85259

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 21 July, 2020

You have some of the 642s still running? This is impressive. I used to have coupe of these 11-12years ago and I used them for exclusively for simple assemblies with passive components bigger size even back then. Even 0402 was challenge for these based on their cameras and mechanical feeder.

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#85260

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 21 July, 2020

Each one of our panels has 2200 0402 parts and we run one panel every 3-4 minutes without any hiccups. I agree, its ancient technology to modern machines but everyone who sees it falls in love with them. Currently we are only able to run our machines 80% speed.

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#85267

Mechanical feeders vs Electronic Feeders | 22 July, 2020

> I would have thought the other way. We are
> currently using 2 CP642s for high volume and they
> are doing an excellent job. Electronic feeders
> are too expensive and we don't see any benefit
> for that expense. I imagine it makes sense for
> some applications but it seems overkill for
> others.

I'm with you there, the only place where I would be happy to run dumb feeders would be on a line that runs a single product or very similar ones where you didn't need to rapidly change the machine loadout.

As it is, like most developed nation manufacturers we do lots of small batch high changeover work with a continuous stream of new parts and ever more complicated BOMs. Smart feeders are basically a must, they are inexcusably expensive, granted but they also don't need all that much maintenance, if anything I would say our Essemtec ones need more than most others.

I have seen a very high end manufacturer have massess and masses of trolleys of smart electronic feeders and then use them like dumb ones ones. Every lane was permanently labelled with the part loaded on it. But they were aersospace and the normal rules do not apply.

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