Cuttable LED Module Pros and Cons

April 24, 2019

This post is part of a series on cuttable LED modules. We’ve explored the benefits of LED modules with short cut lengths as they relate to engineering, design, and procurement departments. Today we’ll look into the potential cons to specifying cut LED modules.

Are there downsides to a breakable board?

We’ve established several benefits of cuttable boards, such as versatility in engineering and design, lower SKU counts, and cost savings on custom modules. However, these pros come at the cost of a few limitations.

LUXTECH flexible constant current LED tape that can be cut every inch. It is a static white cuttable LED module.
LUXTECH FLEX CC is a constant current LED module that is cuttable every inch with an LED pitch of 0.5 inches. This configuration gives ample room for a blade or scissors to cut the reel to size without slicing an LED or other component.

One thing to consider when evaluating a cuttable LED module is that it will add a step to your production process. Assembly will require cutting, typically with scissors, a razor blade, or bench shears, depending on the substrate. Employees will need to learn a new process for cutting the modules to the specified length. Cuttable LED boards may free up budget in purchasing and have a quick lead time, but will require onboarding. Consider the additional time that will be needed to ramp up production before specifying the new process.

Another element to consider is how your company will manage inventory for an LED module that has been cut. For example, rigid cuttable boards have multiple segments that can be used in production even what cut to smaller sizes. While ordering SKU’s will be reduced, you should think through how you will store and inventory any leftover cut segments. LUXTECH boards are designed to be production-ready when cut, but that means the shorter segments must be handled and stored appropriately until their use.

Finally, some projects still need a custom module design. For example, fixtures with extremely tight pitch requirements or unusual size constraints are not a good fit for cuttable designs. There has to be enough room for a blade between the LED placements. If the pitch is too tight on a cuttable module, it increases the risk that user error while cutting will damage the LED. Depending on the priorities of the project, a custom module may be necessary to ensure the desired pitch can be achieved without compromising due to physical constraints.