This is how we make sure your Spencers are A-okay

Hi fellow makers,

Right now, we are working on a quality control procedure for manufacturing Spencers and I wanted to tell you a bit more about how and what we’re doing.

Quality control is a very important step of every product’s manufacturing process, but many people forget it exists. When making complex electronic products like Spencer, high-volume quality control becomes a skill in itself.

The most important part of every electronic product’s testing procedure is the test jig.

The magic test-o-machine

A test jig is usually a custom-made tool that performs a set of diagnostic procedures that determine whether a newly-produced electronic product works as expected or not.

The test jig for Spencer that we are working on will perform the following actions:

  1. Flash Spencer’s firmware
  2. Test Spencer’s electronics via special test pads that are placed on Spencer’s PCB
  3. Inform the operator whether the board passed all test or not

Fun fact - the jig has a Raspberry Pi 4 in it and that’s how it flashes the firmware onto Spencer’s circuit boards.

Active cooling woooow

This test jig is quite polished, but we’ve come a long way from my first test jig back in 2017.

Here are some of the test jig designs we’ve made over the years for other products:

A test jig for Ringo DIY phone from 2018

We've been using this the past year for testing CPU boards for Ringo. Boy, this one was ugly

Anyways, stay calm and keep making! 

- Albert and the rest of CircuitMess