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Challenges with Origins, Mate Connectors, and Imported Assemblies

S1monS1mon Member Posts: 182 PRO
If I import an assembly (call it 'A'), and its origin is not located on a part feature, but yet I want to use the origin as a mate reference in another assembly (call it 'B'), what is the best way to do this?
(this happens to be a PCBA that I can't share)

Steps
  1. Import a STEP from Allegro for a PCBA
  2. fix one part in assembly A (a connector or some other unlikely to change part)
  3. group all the parts in assembly A
  4. add a mate connector (call it 'C') at the origin of A
  5. create a mate connector in B (call it 'D')
  6. insert A into B and use a fasten mate between 'C' and 'D'
  7. drag parts of A around in B
  8. C and D stay locked together, but because the fix from #1 goes away in B, C just floats relative to the parts from A
It seems like there's probably a better way to do step #3 so that the mate connector is tied to the parts, but since there's no feature at the origin, it's awkward. I can create a mate connector which is manually offset from some part feature, but if there's a good chance it won't be a round number, and then I can't be sure that my assembly positions will match the other CAD system. This seems like madness when all I want is a reference at 0,0,0 that doesn't float around.

I'm slowing wrapping my head around how the mates in Onshape work but decades of Pro/E and Solidworks are making this confusing. Especially since so many things that I work on are assembled and don't have a lot of motion. I'm used to dropping in an assembly at a default position and having it not move.
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