Looking through other directories in this forum, the following strategies seem most popular to keep track of changes without using PDM:-
1. Keep a single SWorks part with associated drawing throughout its design life. At each new revision, create a PDF with revision identifier in the filename and keep this as the master 2D document. Create a STEP file with revision identifier in the filename for a permanent 3D record. When a revision change is required, modify the SWorks part and drawing, manually update the revision and create a new PDF and STEP.
The PDFs and STEPs will be the revision history and SWorks assemblies will always be up to date.
2. Add a revision identifier to the end of the filename of the SWorks part, drawing and assembly. When a new revision is required, copy the part and drawing, manually edit the filename to the next revision, then modify the new part and drawing as required. The revision history will be all the SWorks parts and drawings files with their unique revision identifier. PDFs and STEPS are not required. Assemblies need to be updated manually, which would be a pain for multi level assemblies.
I work part time for a medium size manufacturing company and we use Enterprise PDM to keep track of revisions and changes so I am aware of PDM's advantages.
I also work part time for another small manufacturing company with a single SWorks standard licence - no PDM. At the moment I see no benefit for them to use PDM, but I am writing to find out if there are any oversights in my strategy for them.
At the moment, the small company needs revision control of parts and needs 3D files for their CNC machines using MasterCAM. They need assembly drawings to show how the parts fit together. And of course they need 2D drawings. Their assembly / sub-assembly drawings have a BOM table showing the parts used and the part's revision. Their product has about 150 components with four levels of sub-assembly, i.e. part ->sub-assembly -> main assembly -> top level assembly.
I thought I could adopt the following strategy:-
3. Similar to strategy 2 above, parts and drawings have a revision identifier at the end of the filename. When a new revision is required, copy the part and drawing, manually edit the filename to the next revision, then modify the new part and drawing as required. All assemblies DO NOT have a revision identifier. Only the assemblies immediately above the part need to be updated manually, all higher assemblies will be up to date.
What pitfalls have I overlooked?
Additionally - are there any other suggestions on how to maintain some form of revision history in a simple way and keep the assemblies correct? Do people use 'detached drawings' for keeping old revisions?
Thanks in advance for all replies