Yoshi, who you may remember from the New York Trip video, takes us on a tour of the Switch-Science.com open hardware design, manufacturing, and shipping office. The office is on the edge of Akihabara, Tokyo’s electronic component market. Check out our video report of Akihabara we made last year.
Switch Science is open source hardware manufacturer and distributor with offices located in the Akihabara Electronics market. They design their own boards, but also distribute Seeed Studio, SparkFun, Adafruit, and others to the Japanese market.
Due to Tokyo’s high real estate prices, Switch Science has crammed their entire design and manufacturing into a tiny office. The manufacturing process is pretty typical, but the space management is amazing.
Solder paste is applied with a stencil, then a pick and place machine adds parts. Boards are soldered in a modified toaster oven. They have a T-962A reflow oven, but actually like the DIY version much better. Since the oven can only cook a few boards at a time, they run the pick and place machine at a slow pace for maximum accuracy.