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10 The PCB Magazine • October 2015 pATTy's perspeCTive Patricia Goldman is a 30+ year veteran of the PcB industry, with experience in a variety of areas, including r&D of imaging tech- nologies, wet process engineering, and sales and marketing of PWB chemistry. She has worked actively with iPc since 1981 and served as TaEc chairman, and is also the co-author of numerous technical papers. To contact goldman, click here. efficiencies to new techniques and best prac- tices. I think we can help with that right here and now in this issue. But if we do miss some- thing, be sure to check our sister magazines this month SMT Magazine and The PCB Design Maga- zine, which cover cycle time reduction in their respective topic areas. Our October issue begins with an in-depth look the new Whelen Engineering plant in New Hampshire, a brand-new, captive PCB manufac- turing facility. In fact, I believe it is the first new captive facility built in the U.S. in the last 30 years or so. When Whelen made the decision to reshore their PCB manufacturing operation and bring it in-house, they found the only way to do it successfully and profitably was by au- tomating the entire process. This in-depth in- terview conducted on-site by Publisher Barry Matties—including a couple of short videos—is impressive. The sidebars, which explore a cou- ple of their key suppliers, offers an even more complete picture. Now, how about your company? You prob- ably know what you need to do and where your problems are…or maybe not. So let's get you started down the road to CTR, which means getting the waste out of your processes. Insulec- tro's Jason Marsh has written a bang-up column, with actual case studies to illustrate the details, along with his summary of the overall picture. We get some nitty-gritty how-to from Kathy Nargi-Toth of NCAB, who wrote a down-to- earth discussion of Lean Six Sigma. Follow her instructions line by line and you will surely improve your process flow(s) and reduce your cycle time. Dave Becker of All Flex Flexible Circuits uses his column to further the discussion with much practical how-to on using Kanban in a high-mix operation. While he writes from a flex circuit manufacturer's perspective, most, if not all, is applicable to any PCB fabricator. The discipline of CTR is further illustrated by Renato Peres of Circuibras LTDA, a Brazilian PCB manufacturer. He speaks from firsthand ex- perience and the article title reflects that: "The PCB Marathon." Nobody said it would be easy, but they all agree the results are well worth the effort. Next up, Todd Kolmodin of Gardien Ser- vices provides guidance for reducing cycle time in electrical test. His methodology could be ap- plied to other processes as well. We also get the full scoop on what's up with MacDermid and their recent acquisitions in an interview with Directors Don Cullen and Steve Kenney. Much is happening there and you can also learn about their efforts at CTR. Omni PCB's Tara Dunn, in her regular col- umn, discusses cycle time from the customer's point of view, with a to-do list to make one's PCB order go smoothly through a facility. Per- haps you will want to include this in your fu- ture conversations with customers. And bringing up the rear, we have a concise piece by EchoStar's Andy Thomson on organi- zational culture and its influence on manufac- turing. No, it is not dull; rather, the four cor- nerstones discussed are very apropos to our fo- cus this month, not to mention just plain good info. In the end, reducing cycle time is absolute- ly necessary to stay afloat and profitable. It's a never-ending process, so buckle down and keep doing it! Next month, we follow up with an in- depth look at data collection and management. We're calling it The Power of Data. Subscribe if you haven't already and get it hot off the virtual press. PCB CyCLING AROUND

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