with the filter just showing the "o-ring" parts, drag a box to select them all, and assign a color. then clear the filter.
with the filter just showing the "o-ring" parts, drag a box to select them all, and then use "invert selection" to select everything else, and set to transparent. then clear filter.
I haven't messed with it much, but this looks like something that could be done with Assembly Visualization.
You can sort by any of the columns (or you can add others that refer to custom properties)
This is a quick example sorting by vendor, I wanted to show all of the hardware from one vendor (DMB)
I added the color sliders, so everything above the DMB parts is red, everything below is blue, and all of the DMB parts are white.
one more quick edit - since they are already sorted in the Assembly Visualization tree, it is easy to select parts and change them to transparent -
I've tried your suggestion and Steven Dod's, and both were helpful. Assembly Visualization looks intriguing, but I found that it took a long time to run on a smallish assembly, using a powerful computer. If it's possible to run an AV and then save it in an assembly so it doesn't have to be generated fresh every time, that would help. But that's a separate issue, which I'll need to research.
Anyway, your suggestions are an improvement on what I had. Thanks!