CASE STUDY #9 Key Kitting

The Challenge

A very popular video game developer wanted to produce their own game controller. Mass production of the game controller was undertaken by a contract manufacturer. A major problem that the contract manufacturer faced was that the individual keys for the controller were produced in large batches by the mould maker. Part of the assembly process would involve the inclusion of 11 different keys in the game controller. In order to speed up the assembly process of the controller, the keys would need to be sorted out and grouped according to the assembly processes.

PSB Tech was approached to help automate the process. There were at least 11 different types of keys being produced. The keys are moulded in batches and are loaded onto trays. The requirement was to transfer these keys, depending on the assembly sequence and keys combination, either as group of 2 or 4 keys onto a single tray which will be supplied to the assembly modules to be assembled onto the game’s controller. The key kitting machine would then need to pick the different keys and arrange them into a required configuration on assembly trays for the subsequent assembly process.


  • • Use of spider robots for high-speed and accurate pick and place of the keys.
  • • Each pick cycle averages 0.7s
  • • Machine output of 1 assembly tray in 93 seconds
  • • Flexibility to load output tray with group of 2 to 4 different key types
  • • Vision system to assist in accurate loading and to check present of keys in the tray

The Result

The outcome of the project was a key kitting machine comprising 2-4 kitting stations. The machine greatly reduced the assembly time for the game controller by first sorting and then arranging the required keys into the desired configuration as the different batches of key were being produced.