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Adaptive length parts, comparable to a weldment profile.

Question asked by Joseph Dunfee on Jan 10, 2017
Latest reply on Jan 13, 2017 by John Stoltzfus

I have not found any solution to this, so I wonder if it is even possible in SW. 


I want to design a part, and be able to use it in an assembly, where it needs to adapt its length (call this method A). It would be compatible to a weldment, where the extruded length is adaptable to its situation.  However, the part is not an extrusion, and each end has its own sub-components.  I don't actually need the sub-components represented, since they are assumed to exist.  But, it does mean that the ends are not simply a chopped-off.  It has a specific profile that needs to be maintained.


The reason I use the weldment as an example, is that I can manufacture the part at any length.  I realize that I can create an individual part that will be adaptable in an assembly.  But, if I need another of the same part, but at a different length, currently, I have to save the part under a new part name, so the two different instances of the part, that are different lengths, are different parts (Call this method B).  This behavior is OK, except that I would prefer to generate a BOM more like a weldment, with the same part# , and add the length as an additional parameter.


I am OK, with generating different part files for each unique length. But, as the design progresses, I would prefer that instances of the same part length be a single part. With method B, if I am inserting a new instance, I must first check to see if there might be another instance that is the same length, and then insert it. But, then if my assembly changes dimensions, that new instance may no longer be at the appropriate length.


An example part might be a "dog bone".  I.e. a connecting rod cut from a single piece of metal, with holes at each end for bearings to be inserted. See the attached image.


Thank you for any suggestions.