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Can there be a BOM column that is item specific, but not an item property?

Question asked by Jim Sculley on Nov 9, 2009

We have an interesting problem that I was able to work around in the short term, but I'm fairly certain it will not be viable long term.  Here is the situation:


We have a project with some stringent documentation requirements.  One of these requriements is that each item on a BOM must have a Quality Category Assignment (QCA).  The QCA defines what level of QA control is required for a component on a particular BOM.  So, if I have a 1/4-20 UNC screw, it can have different QCA values on different bills, despite the fact that it is the SAME screw with the same part number.  The QCA only defines how the part must be purchased, inspected and controlled prior to assembly.


Ideally, this piece of data would automagically appear in the BOM.  The only way I could think to accomplish this was to make model configurations representing each of the QCA values (A, B and C) with a matching config-specific custom property, and then using the appropriate config in the assembly model.  The BOM has a column that uses the config-specific property and everything is A-OK.  Due to some looming deadlines, I hacked together a macro to automate this somewhat.  When a user is done making a model, s(he) runs the macro and the 3 extra configs are added.


The problems:


1.  Every model now has 4 or more configurations, where the only thing that is different is the value in a custom property.  Hardly efficient.

2.  Models that already have a bunch of configurations (i.e. hardware) now must have even more.  We have a SHCS model with 150+ configs.  Adding 3 more for EACH of those 150 would be a nightmare.

3.  Care must be taken when making revisions since there are now multiple configurations.

4.  It is a complete kludge.


At this point, I think the only option may be to make this a completely manual process.  Users will have to enter the appropriate QCA in the BOM and any changes to the QCA will have to be managed via the normal revision process.


Is there anything in EPDM bills of material that can help with this peculiar requirement?


Jim S.