The engineers primary function is to ensure data integrity from customer supplied information (most formats can be accommodated) into manufacturable information packages.

We encourage face to face discussion at our office in Hertford, or as some customers prefer, meetings held at their premises. We aim to find the best possible design solutions available for your products.

  • DRC (Debugging)
  • CAD data validation
  • Design For Manufactureadvisory service for ALL customers
  • Gerber manipulation (customisation of data)
  • APQP & PPAP document provision


Design for Manufacture (also known as design for manufacturing or DFM) is an engineering term for designing PCB’s in such a way that they are easier to manufacture.

The idea exists in almost all engineering applications, but of the details will differ widely depending on technology. This design practice not only focuses on the design aspect of a part but also how the design affects the manufacturing process. In simple terms, easier is more cost effective. DFM describes the process of engineering a product in order to reduce manufacturing costs. DFM will allow potential problems to be fixed in the design or CAM engineering phases, this is the least expensive place to address such issues. The design of the PCB can have an enormous effect on the cost of manufacturing, in particular panel layouts and circuit orientation. Other factors may affect the manufacturability such as the base material, solder masks, dimensional tolerances, profiling process and secondary processing such as surface finishing and packaging.

If DFM guidelines are not followed, it can result in iterative design, loss of manufacturing time, extended manufacturing time which has an overall effect of delaying the product going to market. DK Thermal have therefore adopted the concept of Design for Manufacturing.

Depending on various types of manufacturing processes there are set guidelines for DFM practices. These DFM guidelines help to precisely define various tolerances, rules and common manufacturing checks related to DFM.

DK Thermal can provide vital input into PCB designs at the concept and design stages to help reduce manufacturing time and cost. We are happy to arrange one to one meetings to go over your requirements.

If you would like to review your PCB portfolio and the PCB manufacturing process please contact us and we will be happy to help.


We offer the full range of in-house solderable  finishes including HASL, lead-free HASL, immersion gold, immersion silver, immersion tin or OSP.

All PCB finishes are applied in accordance with IPC to offer the maximum shelf life and optimised solderability across a wide range of assembly process profiles.

When a PCB is designed for a specific application, a number of factors need to be considered to offer you the very best assembly performance, manufacturing yield and long-term reliability.

One area where we can offer you considerable guidance and expertise is in selecting the most appropriate solderable finish to match your assembly method and equipment. The topography or flatness of the solderable finish will allow small surface mounted components to be more accurately placed for example, and here we would recommend the use of an immersion finish such as ENiG (Electroless nickel, immersion gold).

However, for conventional technologies using through-hole components or larger surface mounted components, a lead-free HASL finish might be better matched to the consumables being used within the assembly process.

There are many factors to consider when choosing a specific solderable finish. Aesthetics can often play a large part in the choice made, such as a gold finish on products where the circuitry might be visible on the finished item. Other factors may include matching the solderable finish specifically to the temperature, component choice or use of consumables selected to populate the board.

Shelf-life, aesthetics, resistance to handling, solderability and the temperature required to successfully assemble a board will all come into play, and our engineering team can give you the best advice.”

Quite often, some finishes are specified on the submitted Gerber files and/or engineering drawings that are not always the best match for your assembly line or assembly partner. We will therefore recommend options to you that maximise efficiency, guarantee the best solder joints, storage and operational life for the product.

Our consultative service is free and can be carried out as part of an NPI or a change of assembly process.