ArduCopter Factory Update....
Jordi showed his electronic 3D Robotics facilities some weeks ago and Chris posted some more after he visited there, now It's time to give quick look on how Fah Pah Electornics facilities looks like and where the magic happens for ArduCopter frames and other parts.
Small history about early dates and today: Earlier Beta frames were made in smaller scale and without proper production facilities on my friends office but now that we are doing them in a bigger scale and we want to provide good and reliable service to all DIY Drones customers, we needed to have proper production and storage area. So me and my partner created another division under Fah Pah Elecronics Co., Ltd. (Btw. Fah Pah means Thunder/Lightning in Thai language).
We had a possibility to get another office area from same building where main office is, so we got it and did move all Drone/UAV production/packing/shipping there. Also to make life a lot easier on people on main office where all electronics design and assembly is done, I was driving them crazy running CNC's all day long.
And now finally we can start show how things looks like and where the magic happens. There are another factory that does all fiberglass/polycarbonate parts for us. On this area we make all smaller parts and packing/testing/shipping.
Picture: 3 weeks ago when first furnitures started to arrive:
Because we were in hurry to get production up and running so people can start flying their ArduCopters as soon as possible, we created temporary walls around CNC machines to keep voice down.
Picture: CNC cuting room where all small parts are made. Even tho there are automated machines, a lot of hand work is done to get them ready
There are now 3 table size heavy duty CNC machines running constantly and doing various parts. Covers are still missing around CNC routers so it's rather noisy room when all three are running at full speed.
Material size that we can use on those is 30 x 60 x 7 cm and they cut even 3 cm stainless steel.
(Mr. PIK examining cut quality on motormounts or something else parts)
Other tools that we do have is milling machine, grinding machines and polishing machines. Plans are to have few more tools to help on some production issues. Like belt saw, air compressor etc.
Picture: Preprocessor software for CNC routers, Mach3
Softwares that we are using on production floor are:
- Mach3 - CNC processing
- ArtCAM - CAD/CAM drawing and design
- Cut2D - CAD/CAM drawing and design, mainly for importing simple customer drawings
and few CAD programs to do initial drawings like TurboCAM 5 for Mac, AutoCAD for Mac, Solidworks for Win.
Picture: Storage shelfs are starting to get populated (filling up more every day)
Picture: Closeup for motors and other parts for ArduCopters
Picture: Packing are is used to unpack nuts/screws and propeller shipment that arrived today (16th of Nov)
Picture: People always says that it's hard to find CW & CCW propellers, not anymore.. We have them now and more will come :)
Video: Last but not least... Quick video tour to production floor. (Watchout, loud noises)
There are still many things to do before shipping will start, but it is close only few items are missing and they should arrive this week Thursday.
Many things are still looking their places on this production floor and many issues still needs to be resolved but over all it's looking rather ok.
After shipping has started there will be time again to do experimenting and prototyping for other nice add-on parts for ArduCopter like camera mounts, IR Sensor mounts and all other things that our users would ever need.
If you have a good idea or needs, share it, maybe some one else has similar needs.. Also if you have special needs, just ask and we can look what we can do.
Few more picture will come after packing has started to show how new packets and contents will look. Not any major changes on beta frames but still :)
Happy flying guys & gals...
and remember.. fly safe.