About PCB assembly companies...

Thread Starter


Joined Nov 30, 2021
It's been a while since I've started a project in Kicad, but I'm not making much progress because when I look for the components in JLCPCB library, I just can't find the majority of them for creating the blueprint. When I contact them and ask if I can use components that are not in their library, they'll just tell me that I can't because they won't provide those. They don't tell me something like "Give us your design and we'll get the missing parts with third party providers.", also, PCB Way seems even worse. Am I missing something here? This project was supposed to be finished already, but then I decide to create it with data that I find online and the JLCPCB company acts like that guy from Gillette comercial,


Support will just tell me that they can't do the assembly because they don't have the components.

I'm not sure if I'm being able to explain everything properly, but there's probably someone out there that experienced the same problem.

Jon Chandler

Joined Jun 12, 2008
Use this app described at Hack-A-Day that keeps a complete inventory of components available at JLCPCB to find available parts to use. It makes things a lot easier.
But be aware, there is a worldwide shortage of components at this time. You may have to alter your design to fit what's available. As an example, run-of-the-mill Microchip PIC18F series micros are nearly impossible to get now.

panic mode

Joined Oct 10, 2011
it all depends on the volume. if you are only doing minor projects such as prototyping or hobby, then you can forget about someone stocking parts you want. in that case do design with parts that they have or offer to supply the required parts yourselves in suitable packaging (reel, tube, tray) or... get the boards partially assembled and finish them yourself. this is pretty much what works for me, bulk of tiny SMD parts are done by them. anything special (hard to get or that they do not have, including through hole components) i place myself.
the other option is to make design modular where each module is another smaller PCB. this way you can source them from different suppliers. right now the chip shortage is a real pain. using older or higher voltage chips may get you out of jam. or if stuck, you may choose to redesign one particular module instead of entire single PCB.

Jon Chandler

Joined Jun 12, 2008
If you want them to source the parts, look for a company offering turnkey assembly. I have used Elecrow to do this in the past. But the cost will be considerably higher than JLC. They are also subject to unobtainium parts.

You can also source the parts yourself for a place like Elecrow and send them the parts. Shipping TO China is much more expensive than shipping FROM China, and it can be nerve-wracking wondering if the package will make it.

I had to return a batch of boards to China for rework. The only affordable way to ship was by USPS. No tracking once the box left the US, but it did get delivered in a timely basis.