6 Replies Latest reply on Jan 22, 2010 6:02 PM by 1-YJ1IM

    Looking for EPDM template help/suggestions

    Steve Hildinger

      Ok so we've been working on getting all setup with EPDM.  I am having some issues with templating and generting serial numbers.


      Our parts have different serial numbers depending on certain things (i.e. purchased, manufactured, tabulated).  You can tell the difference because they start with a different letter and have their own serial number sequence for each type.  The way we currently have templates (before EPDM, the prtdot files), they are separated into tabs based on the material and in the tab are specific thicknesses for material of that type.  These templates may be used in any of the categories that we have (i.e. purchased, manufactured, tabulated).


      So what I'm trying to do is have it use the templates to generate a new number based on what category it falls under.  I run into problems when I want to choose what the source file for the part is.  I have to pick one of the many material/thickness combinations templates to base it off of.  I tried making a couple lists that would allow you to select one of the combinations, but quickly found out that the source path doesn't like variables in it so that isn't going to work.  I don't think I can use the options for generating serials under the Enterprise PDM\Options\Vault Settings section because it's specific to "Parts" and we need it to be specific to a certain category of parts.  Short of making a template for each part material/thickness/part type combination I'm not too sure what else I can try.


      Any ideas?  Ideally it would be nice if we could choose those 3 options from the template card and decide which template file and serial number generator to use.


      Thanks in advance,


        • Re: Looking for EPDM template help/suggestions
          Steve Hildinger

          Many times parts aren't created from scratch either.  Right now they will typically do a save as from an exsisting part/assembly and right now they have to go to another system to get a part number to use.  If we use EPDM to generate the part numbers how would I do something like this? Would you just name it whatever you want for the initial save as and then use a variable on the intial file card popup to determine which serial generator to use, then proceed to rename and move the file?  If that's the case then we could probably use a similar method and just use the current templates (prtdot) that we have setup.


          I think the main conflict that I am having is that we have different serial numbers for different types of parts/assemblies.

          • Re: Looking for EPDM template help/suggestions
            Steve Ostrovsky
            I may not have absorbed everything you've laid out here, but if I understand that you need to access 3 different Part template files, why not just create 3 different EPDM Templates that call on 3 different SolidWorks parts. That way you can independently do whatever you want. Again, I may have missed some of the finer details, so this is a first shot at an answer.
              • Re: Looking for EPDM template help/suggestions
                Steve Hildinger

                Those three types of parts need to pull from a different serial number generator each.  I was trying a method similar to yours where each possible part type(manufactured, purchased, etc.) has a different number generator attached to it.  The problem is that the prtdot files we use now aren't seperated by those categories.  The prtdot templates are organized by material and thickness.  So if we choose to engineer a part that will be manufactured, they also need to choose which material/thickness they use, also a part of another type (say purchased) may also exist of the same material and thickness.  The prtdot templates are fairly basic and just have some CustomProperties setup that we were using for all files along with the material, thickness, k-value, and bend radius.


                So if I did it the way you are suggesting we would end up with a choice for each template (not a problem, but there are 20-30 of them), but we would then have to get it to choose the correct serial number generator somehow (maybe i can use a file card or the workflow somehow?)

                  • Re: Looking for EPDM template help/suggestions
                    Joy Garon

                    Hi Steve -


                    Your scenario is a little hard for me to follow when it gets to '.. I run into problems when I want to choose what the source file for the part is...'.

                    Enterprise part templates use an actual sldprt file and not the prtdot files. Typically you would create an EPDM template for each part file you have.

                    So, if you have 20 prtdot files in the manufactured category you would have 20 EPDM part templates that each draw their part numbers from the same serial number generator, etc. This may be more than you are willing to do.


                    Another option is to consider a custom app utilizing the EPDM API. (There are 3rd party service solution providers who may be able to help).


                    Lastly, if you are at SWW, look me up and I'd be glad to delve into the issue a little deeper with you to explore other options.


                    Best Regards,


                      • Re: Looking for EPDM template help/suggestions
                        Steve Hildinger

                        Each of the 20-30 template files we have pre-EPDM can be either purchased, tabulated, manufactured, etc.  Meaning we would need to make multiple copies of our current templates.


                        Let's say we have 1mm Alum, 2mm, Alum, 1mm Steel, and 2mm Steel for templates right now.  They would use those to create a new part.  Then, they get a serial numer depending on if it was going to be purchased/manufactured/etc and name the file based on that.  Any purchased/manufactured/etc. parts can all be either 1mm Alum, 2mm Alum, 1mm Steel, or 2mm Steel.


                        You say "This may be more than you are willing to do", and that is exactly the case because to cover all combinations I'd have to make up 80+ EPDM templates for the parts alone (although assemblies and drawings shouldn't have this particular issue).  I was really wondering if there was just an easier way to go about it than to make every combination.  It would be perfect if I could just throw variables into the source path for the template.  I am considering writing a serial number generator add-in that would solve a the issue and we are also considering the possibility of being on a single numbering system (there really isn't a reason for the way we have it after the PDM is in place).


                        I'll be at SWW! Can't wait



                          • Re: Looking for EPDM template help/suggestions

                            What all do you have in your current part template files? I am assuming you have the material defined. This could be done in the datacard. Have that variable mapped to your material custom property. You mention what I am guessing as a sheetmetal thickness. This could be set with a simple macro.


                            As Joy mentioned, the Enterprise PDM API has a way to write an addin for generating serial numbers.