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DI-145 Data Acquisition Starter Kit Developer's Diary

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1/13/2011 Note #10 Pre-release orders

As the DI-145 development effort draws nearer to concluding we’ve been inundated with requests to order the instrument. While we understand the desire of those following the project and anticipating its release to simply “order it and forget about it” we want to do everything we can to ensure delivery within reasonable expectations (generally sometime in Q1, 2011). The best way to accomplish this is to hold off accepting orders until more ducks are in line. We’ve been at this for 27 years and like to think that we’ve learned a few things about best-laid schemes, mice and men (apologizes to John Steinbeck).

Currently the anticipated sequence of events is to get the revision C board (which is also the first production run candidate) in house, built, and approved by both marketing and engineering before the end of January. A foul-up at the revision C level may require another prototype, and at least a two-week delay. After the final engineering prototype is approved, we’ll order production quantities of the printed circuit board, which generally carries a lead-time of four weeks. Then there are a few days to a week to kit all the components for production, and then finally the actual production run. Special attention is given to the first one hundred or so units of the first production run to insure that all are manufactured and operate within accepted parameters. After that units flow freely through the process. If you sum all these lead times it looks like we might begin our first DI-145 shipments by mid-March if everything goes according to plan. In this context, taking orders in January seems a bit premature, especially when you consider that just one problem can easily push delivery out to Q2.

The upshot of this is that we’ll accept pre-release orders, but definitely not before the final engineering prototype is built and approved. That means most likely not before the end of January, and we’ll keep you informed of any decisions regarding this in real time on our RSS feeds, Twitter, and Facebook pages. As always, thanks for following DATAQ Instruments and the DI-145 data acquisition starter kit development program.

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