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Custom Feature: Cable/Wire Routing

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    andy_colbornandy_colborn Member Posts: 9 PRO
    I absolutely love this tool. But I am having some challenges with getting the cable to show up. 

    In some instances (2 out of 8) in this part studio, the cable works totally as expected.



    In others though, the path looks right but the moment I hit the "show wires/cables" button the feature fails and the wire path disappears. I've been fiddling my bend radius in case that's the cause but nothing I do seems to fix it.

    All my cables have the same settings. Has anyone else run into anything the same problem? Here's what my current CSV looks like (which has a super tight bend radius in the hope it fixes the issue).


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    Glenn_BabeckiGlenn_Babecki Member Posts: 30 EDU
    It's been a while since I've seen any activity that is working to put closure on some of the open inquiries, so I have to ask is this FeatureScript going to at least progress as a prototype, is the intention to evolve it to become a feature fully integrated into Onshape, or is it just going to stagnate as is and wither away?
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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517
    @Glenn_Babecki - been working on it when I can - v2.0 is imminent if I can finish the training videos and iron out a few niggles
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    Glenn_BabeckiGlenn_Babecki Member Posts: 30 EDU
    NeilCooke said:
    @Glenn_Babecki - been working on it when I can - v2.0 is imminent if I can finish the training videos and iron out a few niggles

    Yeah; thanks Neil!  I see you and the team were busy with the latest Onshape release so I can appreciate juggling priorities.

    I've been writing a User Guide for our local application.  I'm not a professional tech writer but it's a lot of work to cover all the angles.

    BTW, when you get even more spare time, I would appreciate if you could circle back on my outstanding questions back in October and November (a page back in this forum thread) regarding Transforming the cable raceway part to gain access to the mate connectors.  Not sure if new Context Instance Visibility update or your V2.0 Cable/Wire Featurescript update has any bearing on my issue, but I'd appreciate figuring out what I'm missing in your explanation.

    Thanks,
    Glenn
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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517
    I’m hoping v2.0 fixes it. 
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    Glenn_BabeckiGlenn_Babecki Member Posts: 30 EDU
    NeilCooke said:
    I’m hoping v2.0 fixes it. 

    Neil,
    Couple of questions.
    I see V2.0 has been automatically updated in my document.  Given this is still a prototype feature, is there a description of the changes somewhere I can review?

    Additionally you indicated you are working training videos.  Will they be available in the Learning Center or somewhere else (e.g., Forum) given this is still a prototype feature?

    When you say "I'm hoping V2.0 fixes it," could you be a bit more explicit about exactly what and how the new release fixes?  I assume this is in response to revisiting my inquiry on how to access the cable raceway mate connectors.  Can you recap the sequence to access the part Mate Connectors for Clip references given whatever the new updates to the FeatureScript provide?

    Thanks,
    Glenn
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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517
    edited January 2023
    @Glenn_Babecki - I renamed the versions in the doc to say v1.x to make it easier for me (and everyone else). I will edit this post and add the new videos at the top (about 8) and add a changelog into the version. Advance warning: due to some necessary architecture changes, i can't guarantee that 100% of existing wire routes will regenerate. If that occurs, only use v2.0 on new projects. 

    For cable raceways, I include a solution in the video which will hopefully solve your issue.
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    Glenn_BabeckiGlenn_Babecki Member Posts: 30 EDU
    Thanks for all the work!  It's late by the time I got around to view your forum response but will review all the info tomorrow.
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    Glenn_BabeckiGlenn_Babecki Member Posts: 30 EDU
    Thanks for all the work!  It's late by the time I got around to view your forum response but will review all the info tomorrow.

    Er, actually whenever you get around to updating this forum thread.
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    aeromorrisonaeromorrison Member Posts: 16 PRO
    I've just come across this FeatureScript and so far it's looking really good! An additional feature that would be helpful for a future revision is twisted pairs. Our wire harness software outputs twisted pair combinations and it would be amazing if these could be shown. The main reason is that the act of twisting makes the effective length of the twisted pair shorter. Each wire included in the twisted pair is cut longer than the effective length after the twisting is done. In a sense it's like another form of bundling.

    Amazing work on this tool!
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    Glenn_BabeckiGlenn_Babecki Member Posts: 30 EDU
    Geez Neil, an amazing amount of updates to this feature!

    Adding Connectors and Clips to the parts definitely takes a lot of repetitive steps out of the wiring side of the process.  Making the use of Mate Connectors clearer and more accessible to the creation of these parts is a great advancement as well.

    Adding the wire offsets to the Clips to spread out the wires more realistically is a good start to fix the prior version's overlapping routing.  It would be nice to eventually perform some automatic aggregation of each wire passing through a particular clip based on the space each wire diameter occupies thus creating a proper bundle, but I suspect that's a lot of work to add to the feature.

    With regards to Clips (a.k.a Wire Management as I like to refer to these parts), many thanks for going the extra mile to handle the Cable Raceway/Duct scenario I posed to you.  The creation of a routing path sketch within the raceway seems like it was complicated to develop but a very clever solution to establish the possible combinatorial routes.

    I also like all the advancements in wire routing.  The creation and management of cables and harnesses appears more refined.  I don't know if the some of the routing operations were possible in the previous FeatureScript version, but the solutions to fixing reversed routing though Clips is a blessing.  I had a number of reversed routing that I just couldn't seem to fix no matter how I defined the Clip.  I also really like the adjustable angle attribute to the wire edit feature to fix bend radius violations.  A lot of times simply editing the wire segment Cartesian orientation is not enough to fix bend radius problems.  Being able to tweak the angle on the wire is just the ticket to refine the wire position.

    There are probably a few other feature nuances that I missed in this feedback, but bravo on your latest revision!  My only problem is the model I created to develop application standards was based on the previous FeatureScript version and that is now obsolete.  These updates are too valuable to ignore so I have to rework the development model to take advantage of all these great capabilities.  The one upside is that I haven't gotten too far into the accompanying User Guide documentation so I can write the procedural steps (as outlined in your videos) from scratch.  It will definitely be worth the effort to rework the model because this new version is more intuitive and should provide time savings with the capability of predefining Connectors and Clips.  I'm sure I'll have to go through these videos a few more times to really capture all the how-to steps.

    Many thanks for your work!


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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517
    edited January 2023
    @Glenn_Babecki thank you for your kind words. The raceway can also be created by creating a sketch, using mate connectors or selecting circular geometry at each possible entry/exit point so that there is just a small curve to select, rather than having to select/create every possible internal pathway - the idea of adding points to a wire to control the entry/exit direction of clips came after I shot that video. Hope that makes sense.

    I've added the part from the video to the doc's main workspace, here: 
    https://cad.onshape.com/documents/3599036701247d65f0106997/w/616e6f87cc1f718256a4d639/e/c4effcbc255f95293c0eca36
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    Glenn_BabeckiGlenn_Babecki Member Posts: 30 EDU

    Thanks for the link to the part from your video example.  I'll check out all the variations when I get back to reworking my development model.  Keep the features coming!
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    eric_pestyeric_pesty Member Posts: 1,630 PRO
    @NeilCooke
    I only had a quick look but this seems like a really nice evolution of the feature (or feature set I should say)!
    Setting up the "clip" in the part will take out a lot of the repetitive work (once setup initially). 

    Just one thought: it looks like it names the composite part "clip", which might make it a bit tricky to keep track of in the assembly tree (or will require manual renaming)... It would be nice if it could include the name of the original part/composite (and ideally copy any properties it already has) to minimize the amount of work when "converting" existing components.

    I also couldn't quite tell if/how it is able to manage "contacts" for connectors (eg. the crimped/soldered pins on a multi-position connector). Obviously it would be easy enough to add them to the assembly after the fact but it would be neat if it could be automated considering we already have wires coming to specific connector locations (but probably low priority)!
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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517
    @NeilCooke

    I also couldn't quite tell if/how it is able to manage "contacts" for connectors (eg. the crimped/soldered pins on a multi-position connector). Obviously it would be easy enough to add them to the assembly after the fact but it would be neat if it could be automated considering we already have wires coming to specific connector locations (but probably low priority)!
    Hi Eric, you can add terminals/contacts to the Part Studio and it will make them all into a single composite. When I get to adding connector details to tables, it will call out the individual part numbers for the connector "assembly".
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    eric_pestyeric_pesty Member Posts: 1,630 PRO
    NeilCooke said:
    @NeilCooke

    I also couldn't quite tell if/how it is able to manage "contacts" for connectors (eg. the crimped/soldered pins on a multi-position connector). Obviously it would be easy enough to add them to the assembly after the fact but it would be neat if it could be automated considering we already have wires coming to specific connector locations (but probably low priority)!
    Hi Eric, you can add terminals/contacts to the Part Studio and it will make them all into a single composite. When I get to adding connector details to tables, it will call out the individual part numbers for the connector "assembly".
    Good to know! I guess the decision to do this or not would likely depend on if all pins are always used or not.

    Now we just need the ability to "straighten" the wires! Should only take a couple of days to implement, right ;)
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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517

    Now we just need the ability to "straighten" the wires! Should only take a couple of days to implement, right ;)
    v3.0 my friend.
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    eric_pestyeric_pesty Member Posts: 1,630 PRO
    @NeilCooke
    I can hardly contain my excitement even though I haven't even had a chance to play with the v2.0 features yet!
    I was looking at the example do and mentally trying to figure out what the workflow would be for creating a "straightened" version manually and looked like not all the data would be directly "accessible" but (to do it manually) did think it seemed like it should be "doable" in FS (although that looks like a pretty tricky thing to do)...
    It's nice to know it's in the works though and I can't wait to see the ingenious way in which it's implemented, judging by how this works up to now I have I expectations (no pressure ;))!
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    eric_pestyeric_pesty Member Posts: 1,630 PRO
    edited February 2023
    @NeilCooke
    Just noticed that the doc still link to "v1.0" video so you might want to edit (or remove if new one not ready) that link to avoid confusion if someone updates without coming here first.

    Also thought of another "nice to have" feature: wire gauge/area information in the library for "idiot-proofing". I.e. set the range of gauges a terminal accepts and throw a warning in the table if terminating a wire outside the range. But I'd rather have the "straight wire" so this can wait until v4.0 ;)
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    Kristoffer_NilssonKristoffer_Nilsson Member Posts: 6 PRO
    Ive played around with this now and when everything is set up it seems quite solid. And the workflow in general is just to get used to and then it goes faster...Howerver, it would be awesome if we could put out points in 3d to route the cables "on the fly. Remembering back in the days when I did some wire harness packaging in Catia and you could click out points on the surface of something in an assembly and itrouted the harness there and took the diameter of cable in the calculation to if I dont remember wrong.

    Or is there any other good workflow to control the routing that Im missing? I know the clips etc but sometimes it could be nice to do a quick and dirty routing before adding clips..

    Great work anyway, looking forward to the future updates!
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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517
    Ive played around with this now and when everything is set up it seems quite solid. And the workflow in general is just to get used to and then it goes faster...Howerver, it would be awesome if we could put out points in 3d to route the cables "on the fly. Remembering back in the days when I did some wire harness packaging in Catia and you could click out points on the surface of something in an assembly and itrouted the harness there and took the diameter of cable in the calculation to if I dont remember wrong.

    Or is there any other good workflow to control the routing that Im missing? I know the clips etc but sometimes it could be nice to do a quick and dirty routing before adding clips..

    Great work anyway, looking forward to the future updates!
    It's not possible to gather randomly selected locations on a face because there would be no guarantee that it would regenerate the same each time. You can add additional control points to each wire segment if that helps?
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    eric_pestyeric_pesty Member Posts: 1,630 PRO
    NeilCooke said:
    Ive played around with this now and when everything is set up it seems quite solid. And the workflow in general is just to get used to and then it goes faster...Howerver, it would be awesome if we could put out points in 3d to route the cables "on the fly. Remembering back in the days when I did some wire harness packaging in Catia and you could click out points on the surface of something in an assembly and itrouted the harness there and took the diameter of cable in the calculation to if I dont remember wrong.

    Or is there any other good workflow to control the routing that Im missing? I know the clips etc but sometimes it could be nice to do a quick and dirty routing before adding clips..

    Great work anyway, looking forward to the future updates!
    It's not possible to gather randomly selected locations on a face because there would be no guarantee that it would regenerate the same each time. You can add additional control points to each wire segment if that helps?
    Maybe if the control points could be defined with offsets from a reference that would provide the necessary control (similar to the "freeform spline")?
    What @Kristoffer_Nilsson decribes is basically what I do when using the freeform spline, I might pick the nearest point/corner that a wire needs to go by and offset it by diameter/2 away (and then move it around in the other directions). Automatic 1/2 diameter offset from along normal would be neat when picking a face though!

    That said if it's just for "rough" layout before adding clips then moving the points around "freely" is probably ok...
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    SebasSebas Member Posts: 3 PRO
    This feature is definitely a game changer for me!

    I am using your wiring custom feature for cable/routing 2.0 and I am having some difficulty with the references, when i select some of the references it give me a ERROR REGENERATING, do you think you can help me with this? The other components were selected and worked properly, when it comes to referencing the ones on the front panel it doesn't work! 

    With this resolved I will live happily ever after! Thanks for your mega help on this one!



    Also the rest of them have perfectly referenced, these are just giving issues for some reason. as shown below:


    Any help on this would be phenomenal! Thanks
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    NeilCookeNeilCooke Moderator, Onshape Employees Posts: 5,517
    @Sebas please create a support ticket, share the doc and mention me (Neil Cooke) in the ticket, thanks.
    Senior Director, Technical Services, EMEAI
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    SebasSebas Member Posts: 3 PRO
    @NeilCooke
    Just did thank you for your prompt response! Let me know if you need anything else
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    SebasSebas Member Posts: 3 PRO
    Sebas said:
    This feature is definitely a game changer for me!

    I am using your wiring custom feature for cable/routing 2.0 and I am having some difficulty with the references, when i select some of the references it give me a ERROR REGENERATING, do you think you can help me with this? The other components were selected and worked properly, when it comes to referencing the ones on the front panel it doesn't work! 

    With this resolved I will live happily ever after! Thanks for your mega help on this one!



    Also the rest of them have perfectly referenced, these are just giving issues for some reason. as shown below:


    Any help on this would be phenomenal! Thanks
    I found the solution to this issue, if your PIN names are more than word and are separated by a space it will give you a regeneration error, by simply addind a dash between the PIN names you solve the issue!
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    Kristoffer_NilssonKristoffer_Nilsson Member Posts: 6 PRO
    NeilCooke said:
    Ive played around with this now and when everything is set up it seems quite solid. And the workflow in general is just to get used to and then it goes faster...Howerver, it would be awesome if we could put out points in 3d to route the cables "on the fly. Remembering back in the days when I did some wire harness packaging in Catia and you could click out points on the surface of something in an assembly and itrouted the harness there and took the diameter of cable in the calculation to if I dont remember wrong.

    Or is there any other good workflow to control the routing that Im missing? I know the clips etc but sometimes it could be nice to do a quick and dirty routing before adding clips..

    Great work anyway, looking forward to the future updates!
    It's not possible to gather randomly selected locations on a face because there would be no guarantee that it would regenerate the same each time. You can add additional control points to each wire segment if that helps?
    Maybe if the control points could be defined with offsets from a reference that would provide the necessary control (similar to the "freeform spline")?
    What @Kristoffer_Nilsson decribes is basically what I do when using the freeform spline, I might pick the nearest point/corner that a wire needs to go by and offset it by diameter/2 away (and then move it around in the other directions). Automatic 1/2 diameter offset from along normal would be neat when picking a face though!

    That said if it's just for "rough" layout before adding clips then moving the points around "freely" is probably ok...
    Yes exactly, the freeform spline FS basically do this, I guess I could maybe use that also.
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    Kristoffer_NilssonKristoffer_Nilsson Member Posts: 6 PRO
    edited March 2023
    Any exciting updates coming for this FS soon @NeilCooke ? :)
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    Seymur_DadashovSeymur_Dadashov Member Posts: 4 PRO
    edited May 2023
    @NeilCooke
    Amazing wire featurescript that you have made. Really providing so much control over wiring. 

    I ran into the follow issue where the script is complaining that the geometry being made could have violated curvature yet nothing appears red nor does it stop it from completing the cable. I know it happens exactly after I add the following wire "Output_Encoder_MA+" and continues for the last 4 in the table. I know its not a naming issue since the names are essentially the same in the previous cable.I attached below with image of the from-to file as well as the script before and after removing the last 4 wires in the second cable.
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