What to include in a Request for Quotation (RFQ)

A Request for Quotation (RFQ) is used by buyers to invite suppliers to bid on a part or a project. This article explains the essential composition of an RFQ. Hope makers and hardware entrepreneurs can benefit from it and establish effective communication with suppliers.

1. Contact Information

Name, telephone number, Fax, Email etc of buyer. Contact info of engineers/designers can also be list here as technical contact.
Delivery and billing info can be also added here though the ones on Purchase Order make more sense.

2. Design Specification

Part number, description, drawing number, revision. If not specified on drawing, material, post treatment should be specified here. Attach related drawings, quality codes, instructions etc to RFQ package. Double check legibility of all documents.

3. Quantity

List yearly quantity and per-order quantity.
For new designs, yearly usuage is hard to determine. Ask supplier to quote different quantities will help you make purchase decisions.
For example, if we are launching a new product but we estimate yearly usage of a part to be between 200 and 200k, we can send the following quantity to supplier.
Yearly Per-Order
1,000 1,000
5,000 5,000
20,000 20,000
50,000 50,000
200,000 200,000

4. Packing Requirement

Specify if parts need to be specially packed or labeled.

5. Quality System Demands

Specify if FAI, PPAP, Warranty period, material certificate, CoC etc, are needed. In generally most suppliers would provide basic certificates and FAI for free if order dollar value is greater than a few thousand US dollars.

6. Other terms and conditions

Specify quotation deadline if it is important to you.
Payment term and delivery term may appear here, these are essential parts of Purchase Order.

Choose the right Free 2D CAD

This article is not a comprehensive description of what these tools are, what features they have, or where to get them, since most readers can get these information from their website easily.

Instead, based on the experiences using all these software, I would give a list of key points you should consider when choosing a free CAD package to start your drawings.

Free: the software must be free to use, or has a full-feature free version.
2D: the software must contain every feature a design engineer needs for a professional 2D drawing.
CAD: we are talking about the drawing program, not viewers.


From Dassualt Systems, the producer of 3D CAD tools SolidWorks and Catia.

The best thing is it is available on Windows, Mac and Linux. If you have to use Mac, so far it is the only tool I would recommend.

The DWG format which is now a industry standard of 2D drawing is natively supported by DraftSight. It is supported by AutoCAD and most other editors and viewers.

It uses command-line style input: though many people dislike it but one who was trained with AutoCAD may feel easier.

Solid Edge 2D Drafting

From Siemens, marketed as part of the Velocity Series together with Solid Edge (3D CAD).

Solid Edge 2D Drafting is the best free CAD package for mechanical drawings, period.

It is robust. There are extensive libraries of symbols, tools, templates.

However it is native on Windows only. It uses its own PRT format. but can import other formats such as DWG, DXF. It has no command line input but the interface is easy to use.


It is open source and free. It contains all you need for a professional drawing, though may not as easy to use. It does not require activation or renew of license as the two above do. For any reasons you cannot use DraftSight or Solid Edge 2D Drafting, try LibreCAD.

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