I wouldn't try to do this with a workflow, I would do this with 'Control Logic' on a PDM Datacard.
The most common example of this that I've implemented is :
Part Type: Can be Purchased or Manufactured
Variables such as Vendor Or Cost will not "show" unless the Part Type is set to purchased.
Type= blank or Built
Type = purchased
This concept could easily be transferred over to your specific scenario.
This crossed my mind but didn't know how complex it would get with a dozen part types.
It could get fairly complex but not un-doable.
The other options is simply list all the dims for all part file types in a seperate tab (or hide them all together) and just forget control logic.
You can put frames around the dim to identify 'part types' but that could get really messy if there are a lot of shared ones.
If the idea is get that data searchable, this accomplishes it. I only suggest hiding them or putting them on a separate tab on the data card for a couple of reasons. First, users don't need to see all this complicated data each time they touch a file and secondly, you won't be forced to pre-sort the part types files into separate folders.
It's not the most elegant way of doing things but it gets the job done. The fun bit is now that you have all that data captured.. it can be easily found and if you WANT to sort those file, it'll be a piece of cake in PDM, what with moving files and not breaking references and such..
Well, I would suggest the simplest first:
Create a folder for Shafts and save a shafts specific datacard within the folder.
Create a folder for Bearings and save a bearing specific datacard within the folder.
However, I have a few questions: what is the purpose for this? is it for searching? where is this information currently stored?
Sometimes, a well defined part naming specification can solve the issue:
SHAFT, DIAMETER, LENGTH
I don't think you want to get to the point where you end up with a coding and classification system :-)
Folders is out of the question unless we can automate it. We have a set parts that make up mold components for a product. I thinking we would have a folder for the product. Then to make a dozen folders to put one of each individual part in seems crazy.
I also thought dispatch might help but didn't see any commands to define data cards.
I need to use folders to organize our products and folders to define security, and now to define the variables assigned to a part.
I'm struggling with how to organize my data and how to use this tool as each step seems to be a challenge.
I havent even got to what the users have to do to get the files in the right place.
Most all of our parts come from template files. The template has a custom property that defines what the part is. The dimensions in the parts are assigned to file custom properties. If we can move the dimension properties to a data card and database we can search for parts based on dimension values. This allows us to reuse similar parts. It all fails if the user ends up putting the file in the wrong folder.
I believe our file naming convention could work in some cases but I thought data cards were defined by the file extension. I'll have to experiment with this.
Hi Tom -
Well, there is not a way to automate the creation on a datacard.
One last thought is to use the indexing and full text search functionality available in PDM Professional (assuming you are using Pro).
You could then use SOLIDWORKS properties to add searchable data...
Perhaps use the property tab builder to build part type templates...
Good luck with whatever method you choose.
Another option could be to use a Tab control and let it be driven by a variable value. Add a droplist control with an entry for each part type. Add a Tab control to a card and create a tab for each part type. Select Controlled by variable in the Properties and select the variable associated with the droplist (Type in the example below). Only the controls on the tab named after the value in the droplist will appear to the user.
Thanks for the suggestion.
I've used the tab controlled by variable especially for PDFs (a PDF of a drawing versus any other PDF). The variable could be modified in the workflow if needed or selected by the user as Michael suggested.
I think tabs controlled by variable and control logic are 2 somewhat hidden gems in designing cards.
Thanks for the suggestion.