Collect-and-place machines represent one of the most popular types of placement machines in automated printed circuit board (PCB) assembly. For scheduling the operations of this type of machinery, a three-stage heuristic solution approach is presented. In the first stage, the feeders (component types) are assigned to locations in the magazine of the placement machine. In the second stage, based on the assignment of component feeders to magazine positions, the component placement sequence is determined. Apparently, for a collect-and-place machine, this problem is similar to the well-known vehicle-routing problem. Therefore, we adapt standard methods for vehicle-routing problems, namely savings heuristics introduced by Clark and Wright [Clark, G., & Wright, J. W. (1964). Scheduling vehicles from a central delivery depot to a number of delivery points. Operations Research Quarterly, 12, 568-581]. Finally, local search principles are applied in order to improve the feeder assignment and the component placement sequence obtained. Numerical experiments are performed in order to. compare the performance of the various savings-based heuristics under different experimental settings. (C) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.