Friday, October 28, 2016
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Constant Expansion at Saline
Saline's President, Mario Sciberras with new Juki FlexSolder W510.

At 110,000-ft.2, the very large static-controlled manufacturing floor at Saline Lectronics is constantly humming, and has recently been upgraded by the addition of new equipment from Juki.

Founded in 2002, Saline Lectronics, Inc. is a printed circuit board (PCB) contract manufacturing firm located in Saline, MI a small city just south of Ann Arbor, and not far from Detroit. As such, the company is ideally located to serve a number of major markets. It services a wide variety of clients in the medical, after-market automotive, aerospace, military, and oil and gas industries. It provides the latest manufacturing expertise including THT, SMT, BGA, microBGA and different bottom terminated component capabilities, as well as other challenging mixed-technology assemblies.

The company specializes in mid-volume, high-mix electronics — PCB assemblies that require thorough process and documentation control as well as challenging opportunities for the production team. In addition to manufacturing, the company's other strengths include electromechanical assembly, design for manufacturing, project engineering and new product introduction including the prototyping lifecycle. With a strong emphasis on quality and customer service, its goal is to exceed customer expectations throughout the assembly process.

Continuing Expansion
Even with today's precarious economic climate, the company has been quite fortunate over the last couple of years — continuing to grow and even exceeding its sales goals. We think there are several reasons for this continued growth, including the general reversal of the decades-long trend to outsource overseas; electronics manufacturing is returning to our shores, and a lot of it is right here in Michigan. Added to the still weak dollar, and U.S. manufacturing has become highly attractive to not only domestic companies, but also businesses in the Euro zone.
Part of the company's production floor.

To maintain the influx of consistent demand, we had to expand our facility to accommodate the growth in our customers' requirements. We are not only allocating more space to crucial manufacturing areas such as surface mount and test engineering, but we also are expanding our mechanical assembly area to fulfill the increased demand for completed box builds. Many of our customers have chosen Saline to complete their pack-out requirements, so instead of manufacturing only the PCB, we actually build all the way to the completed unit with various housing, cable and boxed requirements.

As part of the expansion, we have added a FlexSolder W510 from Juki Automation Systems. The W510 is the third selective soldering system in our facility. The new machine allows greater flexibility to our production demand. Generally, the selective soldering process is much more customizable to various assembly requirements, more so than the wave solder process. Many of the assemblies that we manufacture require selective soldering because of the specific components used on the boards, and this third selective solder machine allows us to accommodate those needs simultaneously without slowing the production process. The FlexSolder W510 is the latest in selective soldering technology and has improved our accuracy and throughput volume significantly.

High-Speed Line
We have also installed a new FX-3XL from Juki that is part of our second high-speed line. This new high-speed system allows us to process kits at faster rates than before because it places more than 60,000 parts per hour. The new machine is not only more efficient, but also incorporates the latest technology for placing surface mount components. The addition of this high-speed line has given us increased flexibility within the surface mount area, and has given our manufacturing team increased and more accurate throughput.

For now, we are where we need to be as far as equipment requirements. Our inventory fully supports our current customers and nicely matches our workload. However, as we continue to expand and take on new customers, we're obviously going to look at adding necessary equipment. As technologies change and evolve, we also will move forward with new equipment purchases to remain on the cutting-edge.

As an added value, Saline Lectronics' production and engineering teams are well versed in transitioning prototype runs into full production. The company works very closely with customers during the prototype stage, suggesting needed manufacturing improvements as well as helping with any design or functional concerns that may arise. At the customers' request, the company provides feedback on the prototype runs throughout the manufacturing process, and the necessary changes that need to be made for production volumes.

IPC Certified Trainers
We currently have two IPC Certified trainers on staff. Since they have formal training and certification, they hold training sessions for other employees throughout the year. All incoming employees are required to attend training classes in order to identify their aptitude and place them in the most appropriate position. In addition, we provide ongoing sessions for current employees to keep current on their skill set as well as learn any new electronics standards.

Circuit Design Revisions
Revisions are a natural progression for most assemblies because of the ever changing nature of the electronics world. We encourage our customers to include us in their decision-making process for the required revisions, not only to keep us informed of how they may impact production, but also for us to assist in how they might affect the manufacturing end of things. Our talented team of engineers, buyers and technicians bring a wide range of perspectives to the table, which truly can enhance the revision process for our customers. This is important to ensure the product's manufacturability as well as to keep a lid on costs.

The company is certified to AS9100, ISO13485 and ISO9001, and meets ITAR requirements.

Contact: Saline Lectronics, Inc., 710 North Maple Road, Saline, MI 48176 734-944-2120 fax: 734-944-2005 E-mail: Web:

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