Author Topic: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine  (Read 37649 times)

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Offline Jackster

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #50 on: December 01, 2022, 01:22:43 am »
I can't imagine they use much air though , so a small & cheap compressor would probably be enough

I have a 100L tank and the air compressor turns on every 20-30 mins when I have my machine going full whack with around 30-40 components loaded.

Dave will need one of those "silent" dental-style ones for sure.

Online nctnico

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #51 on: December 01, 2022, 01:57:18 am »
I can't imagine they use much air though , so a small & cheap compressor would probably be enough

I have a 100L tank and the air compressor turns on every 20-30 mins when I have my machine going full whack with around 30-40 components loaded.

Dave will need one of those "silent" dental-style ones for sure.
And these are oil-free as well AFAIK. Dirt cheap too but they do have a limited life span.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline MakeIt

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #52 on: December 01, 2022, 08:44:19 am »
I use this compressor for the Loader, Printer, PnP, and Unloader.



They also have a 60L in a cabinet. That reduces the sound even more.
The great city of Antwerp!
 

Offline coppice

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #53 on: December 01, 2022, 04:06:11 pm »
I can't imagine they use much air though , so a small & cheap compressor would probably be enough

I have a 100L tank and the air compressor turns on every 20-30 mins when I have my machine going full whack with around 30-40 components loaded.

Dave will need one of those "silent" dental-style ones for sure.
And these are oil-free as well AFAIK. Dirt cheap too but they do have a limited life span.
Every time I see a proposal for energy storage based on gas compression, one of the alarm bells they ring about viability goes back to this point. Simply compressing a little air for a workshop has real problems of reliability, life, maintenance and noise. How could that scale?
 

Online nctnico

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #54 on: December 01, 2022, 06:01:58 pm »
I can't imagine they use much air though , so a small & cheap compressor would probably be enough

I have a 100L tank and the air compressor turns on every 20-30 mins when I have my machine going full whack with around 30-40 components loaded.

Dave will need one of those "silent" dental-style ones for sure.
And these are oil-free as well AFAIK. Dirt cheap too but they do have a limited life span.
Every time I see a proposal for energy storage based on gas compression, one of the alarm bells they ring about viability goes back to this point. Simply compressing a little air for a workshop has real problems of reliability, life, maintenance and noise. How could that scale?
That is a different discussion. You can buy compressors that have a long life but you'll pay a lot of money for those. It just isn't worth it to spend that much if you need a little bit of compressed air every now and then (especially when you retrofit a compressor with a better cut-off switch and pressure reducer valve). OTOH I doubt you'll ever see one of those cheap compressors in a workshop or garage for example. They'd probably need to replace it every year while a quality compressor from Atlas Copco will easely last 20 years with very little maintenance. However, that Atlas Copco is about 10 times more expensive.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2022, 09:57:34 pm by nctnico »
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline jmelson

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #55 on: December 02, 2022, 01:14:39 am »

You can buy compressors that have a long life but you'll pay a lot of money for those. It just isn't worth it to spend that much if you need a little bit of compressed air every now and then (especially when you retrofit a compressor with a better cut-off switch and pressure reducer valve). OTOH I doubt you'll ever see one of those cheap compressors in a workshop or garage for example. They'd probably need to replace it every year while a quality compressor from Atlas Copco will easely last 20 years with very little maintenance. However, that Atlas Copco is about 10 times more expensive.
I have a Quincy compressor that I think was built in 1968 or so, and was used to run wire wrap tools at a phone exchange.  I found it upside down in a scrapyard.  It had a pneumatic unloader. so the motor ran all the time it was turned on, likely 8 hours/workday, so about 2800 hours/year.  It still runs fine!  It has a pretty small tank, so it runs about every 10 minutes, as there are some air leaks.  When my P&P is running, it cycles on every couple minutes.
Jon
 

Offline EEVblogTopic starter

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #56 on: December 02, 2022, 02:19:53 am »
I have a dumpster compressor.
 

Online Doctorandus_P

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #57 on: December 02, 2022, 04:32:38 am »
I have a dumpster compressor.

On top of the compressor there is a large suck hole with thread in it. There should be an air filter / silencer combination in there.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2022, 06:06:55 pm by Doctorandus_P »
 

Offline EEVblogTopic starter

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #58 on: December 02, 2022, 06:43:13 am »
On top of the compressor there is a large suck hole with thread in it. There should be an air filter / silencer combination in there.

Yes, I've replaced that and am getting a new guage. Probably going to be too loud for this use, but we'll see.
As for the compressor pressure, how is that regulated on a PnP machine? Does the pump have to do that or does the machine do it?
 

Online MR

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #59 on: December 02, 2022, 10:43:43 am »
There's usually a pressure regulator on the PNP machine (even on my poor Mechatronika machine, which I have reverse engineered and wrote my own software for it).
Vacuum is generated via a venturi module that is driven by a solenoid.
 
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Online nctnico

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #60 on: December 02, 2022, 05:08:57 pm »
On top of the compressor there is a large suck hole with thread in it. There should be an air filter / silencer combination in there.

Yes, I've replaced that and am getting a new guage. Probably going to be too loud for this use, but we'll see.
As for the compressor pressure, how is that regulated on a PnP machine? Does the pump have to do that or does the machine do it?
The small gauge on the right is fitted into a pressure regulator valve. You can turn the knob (after lifting it up to unlock) to increase / decrease the output pressure. Clockwise is typically a higher pressure. The big guage will read the tank pressure, the small guage the output pressure.

Oh, and always use the shut-off valve to switch a compressor on / off. On yours you have to push or pull the red knob. When it shuts off, the pressure on the valves is released so these are not continously strained. There is some hissing involved, but don't worry, Karen won't hit you.

What is missing, is a water seperator & filter unit. It is a good idea to add one but ideally this is placed before the pressure regulator.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2022, 05:21:42 pm by nctnico »
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline Kleinstein

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #61 on: December 02, 2022, 07:16:28 pm »
The switch part is a pressure switch and mains switch. It should turn off at some 8 bar and on again at some 6 bar. Normally the cap should have srews to hold in place and the knob on top is the on/off switch. No solonoid - just pure mechanics to operate a kind of contactor and the relief valve (see below).

The small valve near the leakage area is the over pressure safty valve. I would not expect that one to leak at low pressure - they may get an issue just before engaging, but usually not at low pressure.

To be on the safe side, maybe have a good look at the tanks for corrosion / cracks near welds. A failing tank can be pretty dangerous, though the usual regulations ( not so sure about China) require them to use mild steel so that it should fail in a less spectecular way (usually just a leak at a weld ot the lower side so that it sprays a mix of water and oil).

Under the pressure valve there is a relief valve to help the motor to start. This valve may leak a little at low pressure. If not too much this would not be an issue to really worry about, as this would be only rather temporary on start.

The input air filter is missing and this causes quite some additional noise. That one is relatively easy to replace.

A point to check if the compressor itself is still reasonable working is to run it until the pressure switch turns off. From the time an vessel volume one can calculate the speed. From a rough calculation it should take some 2 minutes. Even if the pump part still runs and makes noise, it may not pump well anymore.  Other common failure modes are a bad motor capacitor (rel. easy to fix) and the check valve, so that the relief valve will let to much air out when off (also often fixable).

The left pressure guage is for the pressure in the tank and the right one is for the output, after the reduction valve.
 

Online MR

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #62 on: December 02, 2022, 11:03:40 pm »
Use an oil free compressor only, also to protect your health.
 
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Offline DeepLink

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #63 on: December 13, 2022, 11:01:11 am »
I've been looking at these pnp machines for some time now
Found the TornadoSMT from openpnp.cn - but I can't seem to find any info about it, not even on EEVBlog

Is it only for the chinese marked?

/Hans
 

Offline NF6X

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #64 on: January 29, 2023, 06:21:17 pm »
I'm curious about the low-end desktop pick and place machines as a mechanical starting point for building an OpenPnP conversion. Yeah, I know they are not suitable for contract manufacture. I'm a hobbyist who might decide to make a handful of things to sell on Etsy for beer money, with no expectation of recovering the cost of the machine. At the moment, I'm particularly curious about the Zhengbang ZB3245TS, iTech PPM-A320VB, and YX SMT330-X. Does anybody here understand how all of these different brands relate to each other?

Given that the iTech store listings on AliExpress self-identify as Zhengbang, it's apparent that the iTech one is the same machine as the Zhengbang one with a different coat of paint. I presume iTech is just a brand they created to sound more western. Is Zhengbang the actual manufacturer of these machines?

What about YX? Do they manufacture anything, or are they just a reseller of rebadged machines? Do they offer better/worse/different after-sale support than the manufacturers of their machines?

As a USA person who would run the machine once to see if it's DOA before starting to rip stuff out and rebuild it as an OpenPnP machine, would it make any difference at all whether I bought from a Zhengbang, iTech, or YX listing?

I understand that there is a US-based Neoden reseller, and that's kind of appealing. But I don't like design features of the YY1, and their more capable machines are out of my price range at this time.

Based on Unexpected Maker's experience, I do not want to give money to Charmhigh. Their behavior during his ordeal went beyond poor customer service; the "you're making us look bad" position was downright sociopathic. Does Charmhigh stand out as being particularly bad in that respect, or is that mindset common in the manufacturers and sellers of these low-end made-for-export machines?

Restoring and possibly converting a "real" commercial machine might be fun, but I don't have room for one of those beasts right now. Maybe someday.

Is AliExpress the preferred place for a USA buyer to start the ordeal adventure of owning one of these machines?
 

Offline EEVblogTopic starter

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #65 on: January 30, 2023, 01:12:13 am »
Given that the iTech store listings on AliExpress self-identify as Zhengbang, it's apparent that the iTech one is the same machine as the Zhengbang one with a different coat of paint. I presume iTech is just a brand they created to sound more western. Is Zhengbang the actual manufacturer of these machines?

I believe that's the case but don't quote me on that.
 

Offline 48X24X48X

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #66 on: January 30, 2023, 02:34:10 am »
All made by ZhengBang. The rest are just reseller. Earlier in their business, ZhengBang even OEM from HWGC for their larger machines.
 
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Offline Jackster

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #67 on: January 30, 2023, 09:56:53 am »
What about YX? Do they manufacture anything, or are they just a reseller of rebadged machines? Do they offer better/worse/different after-sale support than the manufacturers of their machines?

YX resells HWGC machines. They are a little cheaper and use a few lower-quality parts.

Offline NF6X

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #68 on: January 30, 2023, 04:27:49 pm »
The worst complaints I see about the Neoden YY1 seem to be about the cover tape peeling mechanism being fiddly, inconsistent, and unreliable. Is the YY1 any worse in that regard than the other drag feed systems with a single motor for a whole row of cover tape peelers, or is that just a general failing of all of them?

What machine might be considered the cheapest non-sucky machine with CL-style feeders? Obviously, that Charmhigh machine is right out. Are the cheap CL feeders from China acceptable when driven by a machine with better pneumatic control and more secure mounting than the Charmhigh machine, or are they all junk?
 

Offline NF6X

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #69 on: January 30, 2023, 07:46:07 pm »
The SMTmax QM1100-B is listed at $10k on eBay, which is twice Dave's budget and also the price range I've been looking in. It's not clear whether that price includes any feeders. I don't know how much their QM1100 drag feeder machine costs yet. They claim it's made in USA, and it turns out that their headquarters where they say they make it is a short drive from me. Hmm, I should see if they're hiring.  ;D

Those machines don't look very fast in their YouTube videos, with very noticeable pauses after each motion, particularly over the camera. The mechanical portion doesn't look too cheesy, so I wonder if they might make a good foundation for souping up with better motion control, faster machine vision processing, etc.?

Edit: I asked SMTmax about their eBay listing, and they replied that the listing price does not include feeders.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2023, 08:45:39 pm by NF6X »
 

Offline EEVblogTopic starter

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #70 on: January 30, 2023, 10:57:16 pm »
The SMTmax QM1100-B is listed at $10k on eBay, which is twice Dave's budget and also the price range I've been looking in. It's not clear whether that price includes any feeders. I don't know how much their QM1100 drag feeder machine costs yet. They claim it's made in USA, and it turns out that their headquarters where they say they make it is a short drive from me. Hmm, I should see if they're hiring.  ;D

Those machines don't look very fast in their YouTube videos, with very noticeable pauses after each motion, particularly over the camera. The mechanical portion doesn't look too cheesy, so I wonder if they might make a good foundation for souping up with better motion control, faster machine vision processing, etc.?

Edit: I asked SMTmax about their eBay listing, and they replied that the listing price does not include feeders.

Does seem a bit pedestrian. But I see Festo branded railing, that can't be cheap, hence the price tag for what is an average looking desktop entry level machine.
They don't say if the feeders are Yamaha or other compatible.

https://www.smtmax.com/pdf/QM1100-BDS.pdf

 

Offline NF6X

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #71 on: January 30, 2023, 11:21:52 pm »
The feeders look like Yamaha CL clones to my inexperienced eye. They quoted 8mm feeders starting at $165 (US) when they replied to my question on eBay, so I assume they're probably typical China CL clones like I see on AliExpress for $75 and up, with shipping and duties and US market markup.

They offered to have me drop by their plant to see their machines since I'm close. I don't want to waste their time since I'm not ready to drop $15k+ on a machine right now. But I've been thinking of getting a CL clone or three just to play around with and understand them better, so maybe I'll buy an already-imported one from them, and go to their factory to pick it up and see their machines?

Anyway, as long as I was talking to them on eBay, I asked if they need another engineer. He said he didn't know if they were hiring, but I could send in my resume and he'd hand it over to his supervisor. Applying for a job over eBay may be one of the weirdest things I've done so far.

Regarding the machine's performance in the YouTube videos, it's the pauses between motions and especially over the camera that make me wonder if it's just stopping to think about its next move. Maybe its motion control isn't too sophisticated, and the machine vision stuff is slow? That seems like stuff that might be improved a lot as long as the mechanical parts are solid. I especially wondered about the pauses after placing each component, since it's not like it has to dwell in the air to prevent knocking the part off the nozzle.
 

Offline girts

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #72 on: January 30, 2023, 11:31:27 pm »
Forget about these QM-s.
Had a previous version since 2011.
1) Actually that is Chinese software they use,
2) very heavy moving part which shakes everything around like earthquake,
3) stupid vision strategy with a lot of pictures you must take for each feeder,
and so on.
 
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Offline NF6X

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #73 on: January 30, 2023, 11:40:58 pm »
The Chinese software doesn't surprise me, since one of their optional items in the price list they sent me is "Windows 7 desktop computer". (!!) Even if they have developed their own software in the USA as they claim, this makes me question how well maintained it is.

If I were to buy one of the SMTmax machines or one of the $5k China import machines, I just take it for granted that I'd begin an OpenPnP retrofit immediately. That might include ripping out cameras and motor controllers to replace them with ones that will work with OpenPnP on a Linux machine, and I wonder whether it's worth using one of those machines as a mechanical starting point vs. making a machine from scratch?
 

Offline jmelson

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Re: Choosing a Desktop Pick and Place Machine
« Reply #74 on: January 31, 2023, 05:00:19 pm »
Regarding the machine's performance in the YouTube videos, it's the pauses between motions and especially over the camera that make me wonder if it's just stopping to think about its next move.
WOW!  FIVE whole seconds for the vision capture!  My Quad QSA30A does the alignment on the fly while moving from feeder area to board area in a fraction of a second, and EVERY component is centered with the vision system.  I don't think I'd want any less.  The vision inspection also detects flipped/sideways component pickups, too.
Jon
 


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