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  • I'll have a bit more of a look at it... The nRF52 looks to be about the same pitch as that RN4020 so you're in for similar levels of pain :)

    I did use Ragworm for some prototype PCBs in the past and found them to be a bit on the pricey side, but the assembly is new to me - it might be different. I'll have a bit more of a look around.

    My issue really is the volumes - to make it cost effective for a CM to set up their machines I have to get 1000 or so boards made, which is a big investment each time I need to restock.

    As an example I'm getting some Espruino-powered badges made for a JS conference at the moment (in the UK) - it's costing me at least £4 a badge to make 250 badges - just for (partial) assembly... I'm still putting through-hole bits on myself! It means it's very hard to justify doing smaller production runs (like badges or custom sensors) which might otherwise be quite a good way to grow the business.

    If I was selling more expensive things then it wouldn't be such an issue outsourcing the manufacture - but at least it seems to me that there's a lot of price pressure on the kind of things I'm selling at the moment. I've just been looking around at a lot of the smaller Open Hardware companies that seem to have done well - Adafruit, Sparkfun, Olimex, Pimoroni, Pololu, Seeed, etc and they all seem to be doing the same thing - basically being very vertically integrated - manufacturing and selling the devices themselves.


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