PCB PRIME FAQs
Order Cut Off Time
We are based in the Denver Colorado area. Orders placed before 9pm EST/6pm PST, will be counted as placed that day (Day 0). Orders placed after that time or on weekends or holidays, will be counted as placed the next business day.
Since our factories are in Asia, orders can be placed anytime during normal business hours and it still counts as Day 0. Of course, the sooner we receive our order, the sooner we can review the purchase order, files and any other instructions, so we are sure we have everything we need to get your order submitted to CAM for engineering review.
I Have An Urgent Order And I Don’t Want It Delayed
For those orders that are extremely time sensitive, or if you just like hearing from us at all hours of the night, please give us an after-hours contact for any engineering questions that may arise. An email address and phone number is best. There’s no guarantee that questions will be found early enough in the evening to prevent a delay, but urgent orders are processed first, so having an after-hours technical contact may help us get a quick answer so we can get your order started right away.
How Do I Pay For My Order?
We accept major credit cards: VISA, MasterCard, and American Express. Credit card is the default payment method when ordering online, or if it is your first order with PCB Prime.
If you’d like to open a line of credit on Net 30 terms, please download the credit application below and return it to us for review. Since it may take several days for references to respond and setup your account for credit, your first order will need to be paid via credit card to avoid delays.
When will I receive my order?
Our quotes show the number of days required for the factory to build or assemble your order in business days (weekdays). If 10 day turn is ordered on a Monday, the order will ship in 2 weeks per the examples below.
- There are 5 days in a standard work week. A simple way to think about manufacturing times is to remember that ordering a 5 day turn will ship the same day of the week the order is placed, just 1 week later. Order on Tuesday, and a 5 day will ship the next Tuesday, assuming no holidays or engineering questions. A 10 day build time will ship in 2 weeks… shipping on the same day as the day the order was placed.
- If you are in Colorado or if you select overnight shipping, you will receive your order the next business day. Here is a chart showing approximate UPS Ground transit times from Colorado within the United States.
- The day an order is placed is day 0. This is because a full 24 hours of manufacturing time = 1 day. Your order will ship on the last manufacturing day.
- If there are engineering questions preventing the start of the order, day zero cannot begin until the questions are resolved.
- If an order is placed for bare boards and assembly, there is 1 additional day required to ship the bare boards to our assembly facility, assembly is performed at a different location than the bare board fabrication.
Most orders ship from our headquarters in Aurora Colorado, a suburb of Denver. By default, we will pre-pay and add the standard Domestic UPS shipping cost to your order. We never charge handling or other additional fees. Orders shipping from our home office can be shipped on your account. Our preferred shipper is UPS since we have a daily end of day pickup. We can ship on your FedEx account, but please be aware it may cause a day delay since we do not have a daily FedEx pickup and they may not pick up your package until the next business day.
Usually, orders on an expedited build time will be shipped directly to you from one of our factories in Asia. We use UPS’s World Ease ® system so our shipments immediately begin the Customs clearance process as soon as the tracking number is created. All customs paperwork is electronic, expediting shipping times so we can offer “overnight” shipping even when shipping from Taiwan or China. Because of this, we cannot ship on your account for these types of shipments, not that you would want to. We have negotiated discounted large volume international rates with UPS, so we can ship your package internationally, next day air for about the same cost as a domestic overnight shipment. You will never have to pay the published UPS international overnight rates.
The actual amount of time it takes to “overnight” a package from Asia is approximately 36 hours. Since Asia’s time zones are ahead of the United States by roughly 15 hours, (give or take a few hours depending on US Daylight savings time or your particular time zone), the package will usually arrive the next calendar day from the day it shipped in Asia.
For instance, Monday 5pm in Taipei, Taiwan is actually 2am (MST) Monday morning in Denver. A package shipped on Monday evening Taiwan time, will arrive in the US on Tuesday. Try not to overthink manufacturing and shipping transit times. You can always count manufacturing days per the examples given in the How To Count Manufacturing Days, but if you get confused, please ask. We know it can be a mind bender so we’re glad to answer any questions you have.
Shipping Multiple Orders Together
We strive to ship multiple orders in the same shipment to keep your shipping costs as low as possible. If several orders are placed on the same day, this is easy to manage since we can setup orders with the same expected ship date to ship together and remove extra shipping costs from your invoices. Even if all parts don’t manage to ship together, we will not change your invoice to bill for additional shipping costs.
When orders are placed on different days and happen to be completed on the same day and ship together, it’s harder to track and reverse charges on invoices that have already been processed. If you find instances where you were billed separate shipping charges on parts that arrived in the same box, please let us know and we will gladly update your invoice or credit card.
Unfortunately, we don’t yet have a unified shopping cart, so each order placed online is treated as a unique order. If several orders are placed online with the same expected ship date, we will remove shipping costs from all but one order and apply the correct shipping cost based on the combined weight of the shipment. We are working on making this automatic.
PCB Prime Qualifications
We have partnered with some of the top printed circuit board manufacturers and assemblers in the world. At a minimum, all our partners are ISO 9001:2015 certified and UL registered. By default, we follow the current IPC Class 2 build and inspection criteria and continuously strive to maintain and improve quality through various methods. Employee training, in process inspection, scheduled equipment maintenance and investment in new equipment and infrastructure, and statistical analysis to prevent problems before they happen.
Since 2008, we have been qualifying, and maybe more importantly, dis-qualifying Printed Circuit Board manufacturers based on a variety of metrics.
- Technical Capabilities
- On-Time Shipping Record
- Corrective Action Responsiveness
We work very closely with our partners. We have developed a proprietary system where our factories can enter daily status updates, notes and upload tooled engineering files directly into our database. Due to our purchasing power, we have negotiated very low standard pricing so we can pass these savings on to you. Since we have established a fixed pricing structure, we can turn around quotes for most bare board designs in only a few minutes, or you can quote directly on our website for even faster quote turnaround times.
If we are given no instructions regarding added factory markings, we will not add markings to your board as our default. Many customers don’t approve of added markings, so we have found this to be the safest standard. We will gladly add the following markings to your board if instructed.
- Factory UL Registration Number or Certified Logo
- Date Code, format (WWYY)
- 94V-0 laminate flame resistance rating
- RoHS marking per request
- Electrical Test Stamp per request
- Any other markings can be added per request
We electrically test every bare board we manufacture at no additional cost to you. There are 2 primary types of electrical testing equipment. Smaller orders will be tested with a flying probe due to the relatively few number of total test points and the likelihood of changes being made to the design on the next order. Larger orders will have a test fixture made to expedite the testing process. Both methods will reliably detect opens and shorts.
The electrical test program is created by importing your Gerber data into the testing system and a test program is compiled. In cases where are also given a net list, we will compare the Gerber to your net list to ensure it matches. We will hold the order to confirm with you if something doesn’t match.
A HiPot electrical test can be performed upon request. Unlike standard electrical testing that checks for unintentional breaks in a circuit or bridges between 2 different nets, HiPot testing ensures the electrical insulation or dielectric separation is sufficient to prevent unintended electrical flow at higher operating voltages.
Bare Printed Circuit Boards
We know trying an unknown PCB shop is a gamble. The last thing you want to do is pay money upfront, wait 10 days and then get something so poorly made you can’t even use it. Order with confidence. All our bare boards are 100% electrically tested free of charge, and inspected to meet a minimum of IPC Class 2 standards. If a problem is discovered, we will immediately address the situation by restarting your order to correct the problem to get you corrected boards as soon as possible. Our top priority is taking care of you.
At our discretion, we will replace or credit any PCBs that are found to be defective up to 6 months from the original shipment date. Covered defects include materials, order accuracy, or workmanship. Credits or refunds may be dependent on returning the rejected boards for laboratory analysis. In the event the PCBs need to be returned for evaluation, PCB Prime will cover all shipping costs. We will issue an RMA to return the boards via our UPS account. Our bare board warranty does not cover any losses resulting from missed deadlines, labor, or lost components.
When we build your bare boards and assemble them, our warranty extends to cover the entire PCBA and all components we placed on the board. Our PCBA warranty also covers a period of 6 months from the original shipment date. If you discover a missing part, incorrect part, wrong orientation, poor workmanship, or any other assembly process related issue, please let us know and we will immediately issue an RMA so you can return the boards for rework or replacement. We will cover all shipping costs and get the problem corrected immediately.
We take your privacy very seriously. PCB Prime will never sell or give your contact information to a 3rd party. Your information will only be used in the course of conducting business directly with you. We hate spam more than anyone!
Your company’s confidential information is of paramount importance to us. We will gladly review and sign your NDA agreement, we’ve signed many over the years. If you don’t have an NDA in place, we have you covered. Just download, sign and date the last page and return it to your sales person and we will return a signed copy from PCB Prime to you.