MDC ECM97 pick and place system

I bought this machine in 2013 to assemble DiscFerret PCBs. It's turned into a project in itself!

The control PC is an old Pentium PC, with a Kumagai KP422 motion control card and an MDC custom 16-bit PC I/O card.

Unfortunately MDC Co. now appears to be out of business (as of late 2019), so parts availability is precisely nil. I am looking into the possibility of machining new nozzles.

  • Hard disk images from ECM series machines – a “dd” image or similar.
    • MDC accidentally left the source code for the ECM software on the drive of some machines, as a series of deleted PowerBASIC files.
    • I hope that with a few more disk images (especially one from a lightly-used machine) I can reconstruct the code.
  • Documentation and/or software for the Kumagai KP422 motion controller card.
    • Japanese or English is fine!
    • May also be known as the HD422 or HD411
  • Spare nozzles – the entire ECM series uses the same nozzles (ECM93, ECM95, ECM97, ECM98, ECM99, ECM Luna).

Please email if you have any of the above.

  • ECM97 Console variant with Cyberoptics LaserAlign HD component alignment system, top-down teaching camera and automatic fiducial sensor (EYE sensor)
  • Two feeder mounts (front and back) for a total of 48 feeders
  • Mix of 8mm, 12mm and 18mm feeders
  • Vibratory feeder
  • PCB conveyor

Specifications according to this page:

  • Accuracy ± 0.1mm
  • Air supply 60psi (4.14bar, 4.22kgf/cm2)
  • Min PCB size 2 x 2 inch (50 x 50 mm)
  • Max PCB size 14 x 17.5 inch (355 x 445mm)
  • X/Y axis drives: AC servo motor, 1/100mm step
  • Theta axis drive: Stepping motor, 0.2-degree step
  • Z-axis drive: Stepping motor, 0.05mm step
  • Chip sizes: 0201 to 0804, SOIC/PLCC up to 20mm in length. Fine pitch to 20 mils (0.5mm).
  • Placement rate: Manufacturer's spec 3600cph, 4000cph under optimal conditions. (Realistically? Probably about half that)

Component documentation:

I have a complete hard drive image of my ECM97's PC, with various versions of the ECM software. I am working on extracting the necessary parts of the ECM driver software.

The ECM hard drive image contains the following additional tools:

  • Panasonic PANATERM servo driver configuration software
  • LaserAlign LA_VIEW software configured for the LaserAlign HD
Nozzle number Part number OD ID Part suitability
1 074966 0.9 0.5 0402, 0603 chip packages.
MDC: 1005, 1608, “Super mini”
2 074954 1.2 0.8 0805, 1206 chip packages. “Case A” tantalum.
MDC: 2125, 3126, “Mini Mould”, “Tantalum D”
3 074970 2.0 1.4 Small SMD diodes, “Case B” and “Case C” tantalum.
MDC: “Mini Power”, “Tantalum B”, “Tantalum C”.
4 Slot reserved for nozzle changing or expansion nozzles
MDC: n/a
5 074955 4.0 2.0 SMD diodes, SOP, “Case D” tantalum.
MDC: “Mini Power”, SOP, “Tantalum A”
6 074956 7.0? Quad flatpack ICs. Two-part nozzle; has a nozzle and a collar which enlarges the OD to 7mm.
Part number OD ID Part suitability
074965 0.8mm radius 1/16W and 1/8W MELF
074969 1.2mm radius 1/4W MELF
076596 0.5 0.25 0201 chip components (0603 metric)

To configure the servo drives or retune them (e.g. to fix control loop instability), you need a Panasonic DV0P0790 serial cable kit and the “PANATERM” software. These have not been available for some time, but the cable is easy to make, and PANATERM is easy to run on a DOS PC.

DB25 (PC serial)   ->   RJ12 (servo drive SER connector)

  Pin 2 (TX)       ->   2 (RX)
  Pin 3 (RX)       ->   5 (TX)
  Pin 7 (GND)      ->   3 (GND)
  Pin 4 (RTS)  ----+
  Pin 5 (CTS)  ----+
  • KP422 I/O card
    • IDEC JM series, 20 and 40 way (discontinued, now produced by KEL)
      • Alternative: KEL 8800 series
      • PCB-mount right-angle
        • 8830-020-170L-F right angle PCB mount, 20 way
        • 8830-040-170L-F right angle PCB mount. 40 way
      • PCB-mount straight
        • 8830-020-170S-F straight PCB mount, 20 way
        • 8830-040-170S-F straight PCB mount, 40 way
      • Cable-mount receptacle
        • 8822-020-171-F receptacle cable side, 20 way
        • 8822-040-171-F receptacle cable side, 40 way
  • MDC PC I/O card
    • IDC, ?? way

Mekko was the UK sales/support contact for these machines, but no longer supplies them.

Manncorp sold them under alternative names, but will not provide any support without a service contract.

Possible addons/improvements:

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  • Last modified: 2022/04/15 11:18
  • by philpem