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Instantiating a library

billy2billy2 Member, OS Professional, Mentor, Developers, User Group Leader Posts: 1,433 PRO
edited March 1 in General

How to create a library for a company using Onshape. It also works for individuals.

Features of this instantiated library:

  1. no maintenance
  2. no admin
  3. easy to find & reuse parts, part studios or assemblies
  4. creates a repository for assemblies that have inheritable motion
  5. it's free, professional licenses are easier to setup
  6. wish I had done this along time ago

When inserting into an assembly, just use a filter:

  1. "lib" is a custom property I created; you can call it "anything"
  2. lib is a boolean with only a true/false state
  3. lib was created for only parts, part studios & assemblies 
  4. click it true and only library components show up when inserting

Highlighting parts shows only parts in the library:

  1. currently there's only 1 part & 1 assembly in my library 

Highlighting assemblies shows only assemblies in the library:

  1. Here's the only assembly in the library

Adding vendor to search filter:

  1. shows library components from this vendor
  2. if the vendor field is empty it's ignored
  3. the vendor field is case insensitive ie.. rusty shed equals Rusty Shed

This seems like a good pattern to reuse geometry and it's fast. Having a library of moving slides, cylinders, clamps.... will help develop automated equipment more quickly. There's not much to setting it up except to say, "I'm going to do it". If you work with multiple people, everyone should agree to a standard of some kind. Remember garbage in your library means garbage out of your library.


  • john_mcclaryjohn_mcclary Member, Developers Posts: 2,812 PRO
    Oh that's nice. I just had a shared folder with the company. But it needed to be browsed to and showed everything. This should be a lot clearer. Thanks 
  • billy2billy2 Member, OS Professional, Mentor, Developers, User Group Leader Posts: 1,433 PRO
    I'll be setting up a library and creating a library component Wednesday 11th @ 6pm pst at our users group.

    If you're interested follow this link:

  • john_mcclaryjohn_mcclary Member, Developers Posts: 2,812 PRO
    I plan on watching the live stream 
  • bruce_williamsbruce_williams Member, Developers Posts: 473 PRO
    edited March 2
    Thanks for sharing your methods and doing the web meeting!  I really appreciate your organization tips.

    Just to confirm; this will be at 06:00 P.M. PDT 3/11/20 (since Daylight Saving Time starts 3/8/20).  Correct?

  • billy2billy2 Member, OS Professional, Mentor, Developers, User Group Leader Posts: 1,433 PRO
    @bruce_williams you are correct 6 pm pdt.

    we arrive around 5pm pdt setting up, starting webcast and answering questions.

  • john_mcclaryjohn_mcclary Member, Developers Posts: 2,812 PRO
    You gonna set up a webcam so we can see what's going on outside of your computer screen?? 🖥️👀😜
  • bradley_saulnbradley_sauln Moderator, Onshape Employees, Developers Posts: 329
    edited March 4
    I just updated this tech briefing to take into account composite parts and replace assembly. It is definitely targeted more towards getting data into Onshape for the start of your library: https://learn.onshape.com/learn/article/best-practices-for-managing-custom-libraries

    One thing I've been experimenting with some companies on is how to keep this sort of challenge as straightforward as possible. The problems to overcome are:
    1) How do I quickly find the part I want to use
    2) How do I check to make sure this is or is not already part of the company standard library
    3) How do I filter out the duplicates, which will ideally be handled in a cleanup phase that you go through.

    I think first and foremost, relying on the already existing Part number field is a good place to start. From this part number field you can run searches either at the browser level or at the insert dialog level assuming that you are properly filtering for the part and searching in the part number field.

    This is where creating a chrome search engine is extremely helpful so you can find a part very quickly:

    Again, as long as you have a good part numbering scheme set up you are good to go and this might be the very end of your needs. Every run a search in Onshape's search bar for a part number and get several results for the document, part studio, part, and several duplicate parts? This would solve that for you.

    If you are looking for a way to more granularly drill down into your company common components, especially if you have a very comprehensive library, then I am all on board for the proposed approach of using a custom property checkbox or field. I am always a fan of keeping things as simple as possible to start especially since I could envision future improvements helping in this area, I would want to make sure that my process if future-proof.

    I look forward to the continued discussion.
    Engineer | Adventurer | Tinkerer
    Twitter: @bradleysauln

  • Per_Oskar_OdermalmPer_Oskar_Odermalm Member Posts: 8 PRO
    Will you record the livestream? 2AM CET is bit late/early for us in Europe, so that would be great. :smile:

    Keep up the good work.
  • billy2billy2 Member, OS Professional, Mentor, Developers, User Group Leader Posts: 1,433 PRO

    March 11th 6pm PDT

    We're moving the Wednesday evening users group to the web only. It's a sensible precaution due to what's currently going on.

    For us to do this; we needed more web space and have created a new gotomeeting link below.

    attend webinar

    meeting notes





    • 5pm setup, answer questions
    • 6pm start presentations
    • 7pm signoff
  • billy2billy2 Member, OS Professional, Mentor, Developers, User Group Leader Posts: 1,433 PRO
    edited March 11
    It looks like it'll just be me and possibly a few others. Most companies in San Diego are shutting down group meetings.

    It's my intent is to record this event. 

  • owen_sparksowen_sparks Member, Developers Posts: 2,660 PRO
    Respect for a fine decision :+1:
    Business Systems and Configuration Controller
    HWM-Water Ltd
  • bradley_saulnbradley_sauln Moderator, Onshape Employees, Developers Posts: 329
    @billy2 could you post the recording from your meeting here if possible?
    Engineer | Adventurer | Tinkerer
    Twitter: @bradleysauln

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