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Browse Prior Art Database

Universal Fixture System for PWB Profiling

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000106372D
Original Publication Date: 1993-Oct-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-21
Document File: 4 page(s) / 171K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Garza, JA: AUTHOR [+4]

Abstract

Disclosed is a developmental profiling process that is being implemented in the Austin ECAT area. The process is named UNI-FIX for short. The UNI-FIX represents a completely new profiling process from the present system (BAU). The UNI-FIX features a "pinless routing" technique that utilizes a panel's generic tooling holes instead of card tooling holes for panel positioning. This eliminates the need for unique fixturing for each part number. Another feature is the use of high force clamping along the panel periphery. A high degree of accura cy can be achieved because the panel's tooling pins are "soft tooled" by the router spindles, and, because the pins are taper and taper diamond. Another feature is the programming methodology which involves the use of multiple pass cutting to reduce the load on the panel being machined.

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This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 33% of the total text.

Universal Fixture System for PWB Profiling

      Disclosed is a developmental profiling process that is being
implemented in the Austin ECAT area.  The process is named UNI-FIX
for short.  The UNI-FIX represents a completely new profiling process
from the present system (BAU).  The UNI-FIX features a "pinless
routing" technique that utilizes a panel's generic tooling holes
instead of card tooling holes for panel positioning.  This eliminates
the need for unique fixturing for each part number.  Another feature
is the use of high force clamping along the panel periphery.  A high
degree of accura cy can be achieved because the panel's tooling pins
are "soft tooled" by the router spindles, and, because the pins are
taper and taper diamond.  Another feature is the programming
methodology which involves the use of multiple pass cutting to reduce
the load on the panel being machined.  The overall direct benefits
derived from this developmental profiling process of routing are: 1)
new product introduction is 1/24th the time of the old system, and 2)
profiling quality is improved 28,000 times.

      In Austin ECAT the primary measurement of quality in the
Depanel or Profile process are the measurements of card tooling holes
to finished card edges.  Our efforts in achieving Six-Sigma goals
focused on improving our precision and accuracy as given by these
measurements.  The initial plan was to a) study the present process,
b) develop an improved process if possible, and c) measure the
results.  Additional experiments, if necessary, would follow.  Below
outlines the steps taken:

o   It was found through a tolerance study that problemsexisted in
    our method of fixturing panels onto therouters and the capability
    of our tooling plates.  Themain problem was that the card tooling
    pins were simplymispostioned.  This pin positioning directly
    attributed to 50% of the process variance.

o   In order to have a simplified more manageable method offixturing,
    a fixturing system needed to be developedthat would utilize
    common positioning pointsirregardless of part number.  An
    additional benefit sought was improvement in new product
    introductiontime, which would also follow from such a

o   A  verification test run directly comparing the BAUprocess with
    the new fixturing system (UNI-FIX).  Thistest used the same
    conditions for both the old and newsystems: the same product was
    used, the same machine, spindle, and time period.  The results of
    the test yielded a Cp of 1 for the BAU method and a Cp of 3.3 for
    the UNI-FIX.

      A number of problems were evident with the business as usual
profiling process (BAU) some prior to the above mentioned tolerance
study: 1) The fixture's pin registered to the card tooling holes on
the panel making it necessary to have at least one set of fixtures
for each P/N, 2) the pins were undersized in order to allow th...