It reminds me of the Pandora!


EvilDragon

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Whewwww, quite a while since I found the time to post something here - so sorry about that!

It's been pretty hectic and stressful times, a lot of organizational work is happening in the background (not only Pyra-related, as I also need to take care enough cash flows into our company as well, but a lot of that is Pyra-stuff too).

So, what's happened, what's the status, when will we ship?
This is probably what most of you are asking :)

Well, assembly has started - mostly Askarus was doing it, as I was still busy with organizing some things.
And...it totally reminded me of how we started with assembling the Pandora!

There are a lot of small things we need to fix. Cut some plastic rests here and there, and so on.
So it's a slow start, as expected (similar to the first assembly of the Pandora :D)

These are all things you don't realize when you build prototypes - but when you start mass production.

As soon as Covid-19 gets better, I'll need to go to Greece so we can discuss what issues we have left here.

The good thing is though: It just will be a bit more work to assemble the Pyras. It's nothing that will make it impossible to assemble them fully (which COULD'VE happened as well).

Also, the coating company needs to tweak the machines a bit, as there were quite a few parts that have a too thick coating on, so they can't be used.
But they're already working on the next batch.

So, are there any units assembled yet that can be shipped?

No - simply because we're doing it in a similar fashion to the Pandora:
First, we assemble the lids with the LCD, magnet, illuminated logo, displayboard and LCD Cable.

After that, we combine these with the base-keyboard part and put everything else in there (speaker, nubs, keymat).
Then the PCBs are being put in and finally, the backpart including the shoulder buttons is put on.

So we're NOT assembling unit after unit - but we take a larger batch (around 100 - 150 units) and then we're doing each step for all these and then the next step.

The reason for that is that you are a lot faster, when you're repeating the same thing over and over again. So while it will take longer, before the first machines ship, it will be faster in the end (trust me, we tried that already with the Pandora).

Another issue is space. With the Pandora, we had Craigs huge town hall where we could easily put 300 half-finished units on one large table... right, now, we're very limited and have to rearrange parts and half-finished units all the time. Which is pretty annoying.
It looks like I'll rent some small hall where we can do that. I've already found one for a decent price (200 EUR a month) and am just waiting for the confirmation.

Then we'll have our very own Pyra assembly space :D

The box design by traylorpark has been finished in the mean time and the boxes should arrive here in 2 - 3 weeks.
Everything else is already here... so let's hope we can ramp up assembly speed soon :)

So, again, I'm very sorry for not posting in a long time... but organization is just something that eats away your time. :/
 

ClockworkCoder

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Thanks so much for the update. I was starting to worry less about the Pyra and more about DragonBox lately, as the current situation is more than a little challenging, so it's great to hear from you.

Little irksome about the issues, but I guess it's par for the course, and I imagine they would be trivial to sort if we were in a normal situation. But just a bit more time is no problem. Just wish more of us could do something extra to help somehow.
 

matzesu

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If it where like on the Pandora, whe wouldnt have a cool Box at start, i can remember my Pandora came in the Carry Case, ..
I became later also the Box which allready looks cool, but i would also be fine whit the Pyra wrapped in Bubble Wrapp ^^..

There will be another batch from the Coating Company: also in Black or will they also include some of the Chrome Ones as they also got some votes on the Survey?..

A own Assembly Space sounds cool, but it could be some work to move the Pyra Parts and some Tools to the Assembly Line..

Althought i thought that you said you will make the Assembly at GC..

It dosnt seems that the Corona Situation will be less, so maybe a Video Conference to Greece would be a better Idea?
 

pimaster

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*sticks out tongue* Can we almost taste it?

I'm sure you were hoping that the next news post was going to be an order announcement but it's not to be. Having to hire a place to start the assembly process is an exciting problem to have from a progress standpoint. Totally understand the efficiency increases of assembling parts in batches (instead of completing units).

I hate to be the guy that asks more questions but I'm so curious.

What number of cases were made unusable by thick coating? You say quite a few so I'm assuming more than 10. Did it run into the 100's? I'm scared to find out if it was more than half. I'm assuming it interfered with key travel or being able to close the device. I guess these will be perfect cases for customisations, sanding back the flaws should make them usable?

Did the mainboards and cpu boards get manufactured and delivered? I thought there would have been a big hoorah when that bridge was finally crossed. I would love to find out the final failure rate as you were expecting 10% or so (I'm assuming they had a minimal testing at GC to validate the run). Although I have no idea how you've placed the order for the right number of EU/US/Plain boards. Hopefully people don't change their mind from their preorder plan.
 

ClockworkCoder

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I'll be happy when just a few more get delivered and when we can start to get more posts and stuff from actual users. At least it will feel like we're getting somewhere when there's at least one "unboxing."
 

Zwerg01

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How many units have been assembled so far?
How many units can you assemble until you get exhausted and bored?
What is the time you need to check the payment, comission the parts, assemble the pyra, flash the software, test the unit, package and finaly ship?
The pure assembly time is one thing, but it is more work. I expect a throughput of around 20 units per workday which is an improvement in comparrison with the pandora. I belive, you can only spend one day per week for the pyra, especially when the christmas season begins. There are still tasks that ED has to do besides assembly, like keep track of software development, fly to greek, illness etc. And also keep in mind, there will be devices with some problems, so you will have some returns from customers very quick wich also cost additional time. So one complete workday per week for assembly is optimistic.
This leads to a total output of 80 units per month(again, huge improvement to pandora!) and mean, the last preorderer will get his unit in september next year if all starts now.
 

Grench

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This leads to a total output of 80 units per month(again, huge improvement to pandora!) and mean, the last preorderer will get his unit in september next year if all starts now.
No, not really. Right now they are designing and building the process to build Pyras efficiently. Once they have the individual steps and process flow worked out and defined, then they can move much faster - maybe with more people. I.e. building the assembly line.
 

FBnil

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I celebrate this progress news with another photoshopped gimped image. It's kinda irrelevant now, as the heatsink has been modified to work two month ago.


This movie is about Young kids that wanted a Pyra so bad they could not wait. In order to lessen their waiting pain, their memories were wiped, and they were locked up inside a maze.
Now, as they slowly start getting their memories back (4GB in total), they are running to Ingolstadt, to the man that can answer all their questions.
Along the way people keep reminding them: WiCKeD Evil Dragon is good.
In this installment of the franchise, the pre-orderers arrived at the Right ARM’s headquarters that was visited to order microchips, but these became too hot when in use, in fact, it scorched the case during trial runs (see: The Scorche Trialruns) so all hopes are set on a custom build heatsink build at location. Now, they need fumble until it doesn' t throttle too much.
 

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EvilDragon

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How many units have been assembled so far?
None fully, as mentioned in the intro text.
Around 100 up to the stage where the speakers, keymat and PCBs need to be put in.
That took around 10 hours (which is a lot, but as mentioned, the first units always take especially long).

We're now waiting for the next batch of coated cases. 350 are bound to be finished in 1 week, the next ones 1 - 2 weeks later.

How many units can you assemble until you get exhausted and bored?
Eh? I guess people you hire do that as long as you pay them for :)
It was the same for the Pandora. I'm no doing that all myself, we're just doing it in-house for the moment.

For the Pandora, around the first 2000 have been assembled in-house, after that, things were optimized enough to let the assembly happen at GC as well.

What is the time you need to check the payment, comission the parts, assemble the pyra, flash the software, test the unit, package and finaly ship?
You seem to forget that I'm running a full online shop.
During christmas, we easily handle packaging and shipping up to 150 packages a day - and these have different contents. Packaging with all the same contents is a lot faster.

We usually have 15 - 20 orders a day, so packaging and shipping the units is the least of my concerns.

Flashing takes around 3 - 5 minutes, but it does this non-interactively, similar with the Pandora. Same for a quick hardware test.
So you've got 10 - 15 Pyras sitting on the table, put in an SD card in the first one, start it, put an SD card into the second one, start it, etc.
So it's around 6 - 7 minutes to flash and test 10 Pyeas.

The pure assembly time is one thing, but it is more work. I expect a throughput of around 20 units per workday which is an improvement in comparrison with the pandora.
Where do you get these numbers from? With the Pandora, I received around 400 fully assembled units from GC per week.
This was - of course - after everything was optimized.

I belive, you can only spend one day per week for the pyra, especially when the christmas season begins.
Except for that I am only the one overseeing it.
I've got one employee who is mostly assembling stuff already (Everdrives, MegaDrive games (we flashed and assembled 2000 Ultracore carts for Strictly Limited Games last year, and that took 2 weeks)) and Askarus wants to help as well.
Shipping is being handled completely by a different employee already anyways, and I've got four other helpers I can hire anytime as well.

Why do you think I'm doing all that alone? Never did that for the Pandora.

This leads to a total output of 80 units per month(again, huge improvement to pandora!) and mean, the last preorderer will get his unit in september next year if all starts now.
You should probably stop throwing out random numbers or claims if you don't have any ideas what you're talking about.

When I took over the Pandora production, we produced and delivered 100 a week,
After the first 2000, GC assembled and delivered a full batch of 1000 Pandoras in around 2,5 weeks.
 

bennr01

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Thanks for the explanation ED! It's really nice to see actual numbers and I've also always wondered how much your shop usually sells.


Two short questions:

1. A couple of years ago there was a discussion about serial numbers. Are you planning to write the serial number on each pyra? I would love it.

2. What other pyra-related hardware will be ready to order when the first pyras ship? Namely extra cases?
 

EvilDragon

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Thanks for the explanation ED! It's really nice to see actual numbers and I've also always wondered how much your shop usually sells.
Well, it's roughly 500k EUR in one year, if you're interested in that number as well :D

1. A couple of years ago there was a discussion about serial numbers. Are you planning to write the serial number on each pyra? I would love it.
They're printed on the stickers, the same as it was with the Pandora.
They will also have the IMEI printed on a sticker, as that's mandatory in Europe.

2. What other pyra-related hardware will be ready to order when the first pyras ship? Namely extra cases?
I'm not creating specific Pyra-Carry cases, as the ones we have for the Pandora fit perfectly :)
And we have around 1500 left :)
Batteries will also be available as soon as the Pyra is ready to be shipped (we already have 3000 of them).

If I find the time, I'll add the transparent cases as well.

The only other hardware would be the S-ATA adapter... not sure if these can be produced that fast :/

BTW: I've got a DragonBox Shop Discord channel where we also have some Pyra-Chats (German and English).
You're welcome to join:
 

Zwerg01

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When I took over the Pandora production, we produced and delivered 100 a week,
I am convinced! So it is 13 weeks to christmas. 100 units can be produced per week, around 1100 to produce. So everyone is having a pyra on christmas, even if there are some small delays. That is good news!
 
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